15 Best Tips for WordPress Theme and Plugin Development
Are you looking for best tips for WordPress Theme and Plugin Development?
Did you know that WordPress takes up 50% to 60% of the total share of content management systems globally?
This makes it the most popular CMS out there – more than 19 million websites on the entire Internet use WordPress. So, it goes without saying that WordPress Development is where the attention is today.
So, if you are interested to know how plugin and WordPress custom theme development work and how you can go ahead even if you are a newcomer, this blog for the best tips for WordPress Theme Development is going to be a helpful guide.
Best Tips for WordPress Theme and Plugin Development:
Tip 1: Firstly, Strengthen Your Focus
There is no purpose in attempting to begin anything if you are distracted. You will just end up scrolling through your Twitter feed and watching random YouTube recommendations if your focus isn’t there.
Five minutes into Custom WordPress Web Development, and you are getting frustrated and in this state, getting anything done is impossible.
Procrastination is tough to tackle but you are not the only one, and there are so many ways to deal with it. If you know when you are the most productive during the day, when you are alert and excited to work is an easy way to schedule your work time.
Fix your schedule accordingly when the sun is up. Or if you are nocturnal, then get everything else—family stuff and household chores—out of the way before you begin your work.
Tip 2: Planning
Imagine you just sat down to work and you remember that you didn’t bring the water bottle with you or your body betrays you and demands a bathroom breaks.
Now, imagine the same happening with your tools when you are working on your WordPress website.
Here are three WordPress tips and tricks for beginners you can use in the initial stage of development:
Bookmark the Pages You Use Frequently
This tip is mostly for new developers but it works as a reminder for experienced developers as well. Going back and forth to find the page you found that was valuable to you on the Internet consumes too much time and chances are, you might not even find it thanks to Google’s ever-changing algorithm. Bookmark the resources you exercise frequently to gain knowledge faster and diminish the time you’d waste on searching.
Save Pieces of Your Code
This preparation tip is in regards to your code snippets that you must keep close to you all the time. It is a massive timesaver. If you realize you have been typing the same code multiple times, it is seemingly for the best to keep it somewhere, so that you can access them when the demand arises.
Make a List of All The Themes You Trust
Like bookmarks and code pieces, there are surely many plugins that you keep using over and over again, whether it is for testing or development. Track the basic plugins you apply and once you have the list, setting up the next theme development or plugin extension cuts the need to do set it up over and over again.
Tip 3: Arrange the Correct Text Editor
Since you will be spending a lot of time with a code editor, you should choose something you are adept at using. You can choose an uncomplicated text editor or choose a more dynamic editor that is associated with whatever you are working on at the time.
Most developers agree that a text editor that contains syntax highlighting is satisfactory. They favor ease that can be found with editors like Sublime Editor or Coda.
On the other hand, using an integrated development environment (IDE) will provide you more tools and powers. Visual Studio Code is somewhat newer than most, but it is a free Microsoft product that is suggested by many experts.
It is quick and perfectly adapted for WordPress Development. It has many add-ons that are specific to WordPress and it will conserve your hours of development time.
Tip 4: Establishing the Testing Environment
When it comes to WordPress themes and plugins, testing is crucial. But you can’t just test it anywhere – you need to establish the staging environment.
Manual set up of a staging environment is not easy, therefore, you would need a tool. And if you think you can do this on a live website, let us stop you right there.
Use a staging website instead and for your convenience, WordPress has options for hosting that include staging sites, so all you would need to do is access your hosting account and press click.
However, if your hosting doesn’t cover this, you can check out the WP Staging plugin. This plugin makes your life easier; it provides uncomplicated solutions and you do not need particular server conditions. This plugin will make sure you are ready for testing within a few seconds.
Download it on a live site you have to work and just let it work its magic. It creates a site copy in a subfolder on your original installation of WordPress. With this plugin, you can test without a worry about damaging your live site permanently.
Tip 5: Begin from the Ground Up in Seconds
When you are developing, you will test a new plugin or theme and something goes wrong – you can’t help this from happening since it is the very essence of development.
So, when things go wrong, you need a new WP environment for the next testing round. For this purpose, the WordPress plugin WP Reset works perfectly. With one click, it restores WordPress, offering you a clean, nice website to test again.
It provides more enhanced options as well, such as reactivation of plugins after restorations, so you don’t need to do so manually. Therefore, you can make a WordPress theme from scratch with this plugin.
With this plugin, you can create the required checkpoints also, thanks to the feature of database snapshots. You can snap the database you are comfortable with within seconds. After you are finished with testing, you can return to a specific snap over and over again.
Tip 6: Following Testing
There is no purpose in testing except if you are looking to advance the execution of your WordPress theme plugin. Subsequent to it, there could be a slew of reasons you may nevertheless end up operating on the identical plugin.
There are many ways you could make this method as easy as possible.
Reason #1: Debugging
If everything is going evenly, by all means, place it out there for the entire world to view and accept. However, if there is a problem, you may want to repair that before you go to the market.
It is likely that the greatest amount of your time transpires in debugging, and this is what makes you late. Nevertheless, you shouldn’t jeopardize the essence of your plugin for pace. Just discovering the glitch appears to be too much.
You can utilize Query Monitor to support you here. This very popular WordPress plugin development offers the data in a structured list in the admin counter and allows you to view what is accountable for the problems you are encountering.
Reason #2: Testing All Browsers as a Precautionary Measure
After the plugin goes live, don’t wait for the tickets. Ensure that your theme or plugin runs on all the browsers effortlessly and that the theme does not tamper with the website’s responsiveness.
Even though more than 63% of people utilize Google Chrome, running exceptionally just on one browser omits the other approximate 37%.
You do require to continue updating, and you consider that you can return to it later if necessary when the fact is, it is surely much more useful to have the essentials completely programmed and available for shipping so that you are free to add the latest features rather than returning and changing the very thing repeatedly.
Reason #3: No Specific Cause At All
If you are generating your WordPress custom theme development, you want to ensure that it is according to those practices which you should not break. For this purpose, there is a plugin that you can use to assist you.
The foremost checker that you should be utilizing is the WordPress Theme checker. This one is remarkably helpful because it assists you to examine if your theme is up to standard with other existing WordPress themes. It enables you to manage the testing tools that WordPress would apply when you present your theme.
Once the inspections are finished, which won’t take long, you can view if anything in the theme is not in accordance with WordPress criteria. You can include WordPress’ most reliable practices more comfortably, without needing to waste eons learning them beforehand.
Tip 7: If You Get Obstructed
In case of interruption, which can happen any time, keep your cool and don’t get too frustrated. Often, you might take a break or something else more important needs your attention, so you leave your workspace.
Going back to it after some time can take you some time to return to the game and figure out what modifications were made. Worst case scenario: a co-worker in your WordPress Development Company may have changed something when you weren’t there.
To ensure none of this happens, download the Simple History plugin. Once you have downloaded and activated this plugin, you will be able to view it on the dashboard.
So if some downloads something or makes any modifications, you can see them there easily. It helps you to plan your next steps.
Tip 8: Keep a Record of Your Speed
Another tip associated with endorphins that could generate the energy you could be yearning: Time yourself.
Presently, in the beginning, this may seem slightly counter-intuitive. You plausibly understand roughly how long it demands you to finish a plugin or theme, and it is not an amount you are satisfied with.
Nevertheless, there is no cause for you not to attempt this. To state it clearly, you should face yourself. Timing yourself can be an excellent pointer of what is delaying you. When you keep time, it is much simpler to comprehend which features of your development endeavors necessitate fixing.
Some of them may be taking you considerably longer than you expected them, and others will become much easier.
Once you grasp which elements are the most difficult during WordPress Development, you will understand which of those plugins is the correct fit for you. Till then, make certain to fix and initiate them all because you can always hit reset on them.
Tip 9: Use Child Plugins and Themes
In WordPress Theme and Plugin Development, newcomers jump directly in and begin changing the files of core themes. This is a straightforward blunder.
All of your modifications will vanish immediately after an upgrade, and as themes and plugins are refreshed about as frequently as apps on mobile phones, this is rather often.
To circumvent this, design children of your themes and plugins. This saves your adjustments, you can update in your time also. The related steps applied to design a child theme can be used to building a child plugin.
Tip 10: Expedite Everything Up with Caching
WordPress leveraged hosting services like Siteground, or the more costly Wpengine, instantly back WordPress caching. If your host has WordPress-specific caching ready, it’s the most suitable choice.
For those working on a VPS server with source access, Google PageSpeed is an optimization and turn-key caching solution by Google that runs with Nginx and Apache. If all of that seems like a lot of work, then proceed with Cloudflare, a free minification system and CDN.
Tip 11: Be Aware of Security
Due to the popularity of WordPress, it makes it high precedence for hackers. If you don’t update frequently, you are vulnerable to hacking.
Instant updates are a little risky for people with plenty of plugins and customizations, therefore, a security plugin is necessary. iTheme Security is recommended highly as it implements safety options such as file monitoring and password lockout.
WordFence Security is also great, which is a specific firewall for websites.
Tip 12: Developer Tools to For An Easier Life
Among the best tips for WordPress theme development are tools.
WordPress has several add-ons and plugins to make a developer’s life much easier, particularly, these ones:
With this exceptional tool, you can improve and minimize WordPress within seconds, and also refresh plugins.
Advanced Database Cleaner
This tool cleans out transients, spam comments, and built-in revisions. You can also use it to set up the running of tasks automatically.
If things are running too slow and you are not sure why this tool allows you to view what queries are consuming the most execution time and also display PHP glitches and warnings.
Tip 13: Avoid Excess Plugins
The more extra plugins you possess, your website becomes more cumbersome and that affects the loading times, so don’t apply plugins unless definitely required.
If you have to apply many WordPress plugins and themes, ensure you have Plugin Organizer fitted to control them. This excellent plugin allows you to determine what plugins are initiated on which pages.
Tip 14: Function to Load CSS and Scripts
WordPress already retains a record of all the CSS and scripts that it has stored, so rather combining your CSS and JS into a footer or header, let WordPress manage it with its <enqueue> functionality.
WordPress, this way, keeps dominions in check and you will bypass possible frictions.
You combine enqueue methods to the function of your theme respectively: wp_enqueue_script() or wp_enqueue_style().
Tip 15: Remember to Have Fun
The most significant destroyer of your productivity when building WordPress themes is if you are doing something you don’t enjoy or you find tedious.
Play your favorite tracks, watch a couple of cat videos, and think about relevant compensations for a job properly accomplished.
So, what are you waiting for now? Hire WordPress Developer or get started yourself on your WordPress website today with these tips!
How can I customize my WordPress theme?
You can go to the Theme Customize by traveling to Appearance – Customize from your dashboard or by choosing the Customize button in your admin bar at the page’s top.
What does a WordPress plugin do?
They can increase functionality or combine innovative features to your WordPress sites.
What are plugins used for?
A plugin is a portion of software that serves as an add-on to a web browser and provides the browser added functionality.