Potential Downsides of Adding WordPress Plugins
WordPress (WP) is a convenient, DIY platform that can often make the average Joe feel like a full-on developer – while working with the free blogging system that is. When it comes to a versatile WP-hosted site, however, the stakes are a little higher. Plugins can further complicate unwitting attempts at customization too, even if an experienced programmer performs the installation. Want to learn more about the dangers of installing WP extensions and modifications? Consider these common plugin problems.
Implementing third-party plugin code can introduce unpredictable elements to even your best-laid web plans. First, you should know that a “bug” refers to any snag that creates an unexpected result in software. That said, our now seemingly redundant header “unexpected bugs” is meant to serve as a reminder.
Bugs can happen at any time, without warning – especially with outsourced code that’s subject to irregular updates and version releases. There’s no telling what tweak might throw the plugin or your website development out of whack. WP and its affiliates offer free and paid (premium) plugins, and the free options aren’t the only add-ons with risk. Premium plugins can cause evils of their own.
Any old bug doesn’t necessarily lead to a breach; however, sloppy code is usually the culprit in any case. For sites featuring eCommerce or protected member log-ins, security is especially important to the user experience. That’s why it’s alarming to think that the very plugins permitting these features could come with their own vulnerabilities. A plugin audit by a professional programmer can help you anticipate and identify latent security threats before you ever install faulty code.
Locating the source of a bug or a breach can take hours or even days, leading many business owners to wonder whether the plugin was worth the trouble in the first place. While checking for WP/plugin version compatibility on the plugin download page offers some insight into probable future glitches, it doesn’t tell the whole story – especially when it comes to sudden code errors (never mind general installation issues).
Are WordPress Plugins Worth It?
You may wonder if there’s an upside to all the potentially dangerous downloads. There is. There are some great WordPress plugins. For the bad ones, WordPress.org features a collaborative forum space where developers can help each other responsively resolve real concerns. Note that each plugin download page includes a support area that displays the number of open tickets versus resolutions. Common, solved errors are often featured in closed-topic sections; on the other hand, if the malfunction has not yet been covered, it’s possible to start a new topic regarding coding advice and more.
Want a problem-free plugin? While that isn’t always possible, an experienced WordPress programmer can certainly minimize the risks. Let us work with you on your next website development or customization project. Give us a call today and find out how we can help.