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  WordPress Plugins - The Basics  
Thereís a lot of buzz around WordPress, and not surprising since this is an incredible flexible CMS system. Itís not just a blogging platform. Itís also a valuable platform for anyone wanting to publish content-based sites on the web. This is why WordPress usage has gone over the top in the last couple of years. This very active community has led to the development of WordPress plugins by the thousands.

So what is a WordPress plugin? Itís a software program or simple script that extends the WordPress platformís functionality beyond that of the original developers. This is why CMS is so raw offering just the basic functionality such as the ability to create pages, posts, and edit basic code.

A WordPress plugin is usually installed through the WordPress plugin administration area. It can be done automatically through the plugin directory on WordPress or it can be installed manually using FTP or the backend upload on WordPress. Usually thereís no need to manually install plugins.

There are two types of plugins that youíll come across. There are the plugins that are available free, and there are the premium plugins. Free plugins are generally available in the WordPress plugin directory. You can search by keyword(s). On the other hand premium plugins are found out in the market and you must pay for them.

The only reason to pay for WordPress plugins is if you require certain functionality that isnít available in the free plugins. This might be things like creation of close WordPress installs, code tweaks, etc.

WordPress plugins can turn your WordPress into its own separate system(s). For example there are membership plugins or shopping cart plugins that will turn your WordPress from a simple blog to a paid membership site. Other plugins might turn it into a sales letter, a payment portal, while other plugins will offer things like social media links, admin extensions, and backups.

Letís have a look at the top WordPress plugins.

* Events Calendar Ė create custom events posts on your calendar.
* Urban Menu Ė a mega menu thatís highly customizable and ready to use right out of the box.
* uBillboard Ė develop sliders for your WordPress themes, a nicely polished plugin.
* Video Gallery Ė this stock video gallery is the most advanced in the world.
* WP Auctions Ė this plugin lets you host your own auctions. Itís one of the best out there.
* uPricing Ė this is a pricing table thatís nicely finished.
* Gravity Forms Ė you can build your own forms fast and effortlessly, configure them how you want, and do it in just minutes.

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