How to do damn near anything with WordPress

A couple of the plugins listed here show up on Extend with warnings about not having been updated in the last two years. You can ignore those warnings. They haven’t been updated because they were written correctly in the first place.

Best Plugin for…?

Great big list of best plugins in several categories (forms, user management, security, etc.)


Improving workflow in a multi-author blog

If Edit Flow is too much, try a combination of Editorial Calendar, Peter’s Collaboration Emails, and Peter’s Post Notes

Post Formats

Post Formats UI plugin makes it easier to add posts in different formats

The difference between post formats and post types

Custom Fields and Meta Boxes

save yourself a lot of trouble and use the meta boxes class to create  your custom fields

Custom Post Types and Taxonomies

Introduction to taxonomies in 2.8, a refresher with new features in 3.0, and a movie database example

Custom post types

Custom post type and taxonomy code generator

Course post types example (.zip)

Creating a faceted search form with taxonomies and Relevanssi

Advanced taxonomy queries

Post type switcher and Convert post types plugins

Developing Themes and Plugins

Secure coding techniques presentation and Data validation in the Codex

How hooks work

Plugin options starter kit or Options framework

OOP techniques

Debug tools:

Creating Themes

Building a theme (old, but still good)

Theme development training wheels (newer, but somewhat less comprehensive)

Child themes in the Codex and child theme basics tutorial

example: Boston University’s theme framework and child themes

Body class tricks

Using the settings API in theme options pages

Using the theme customizer in your own themes

Making a custom control for the customizer

Using the theme customizer instead of options pages

The proper way to modify or add a loop

Query reference

Creating Plugins

Using the settings API in plugins part 1, part 2

Plugin development best practices

Querying the database

Adding scripts and styles to your plugin’s admin screen only

Adding help to your plugin’s screens (see also the WP Help plugin)

more APIs: filesystem, HTTP, rewrite, shortcode

Integrating with external APIs

JavaScript, jQuery, and JSON

Script libraries included with WordPress (spoiler: including jQuery, in compatibility mode)

Making JSON requests


Allowing more MIME type uploads: PJW MIME Config plugin

Adding more file type filters to the media library

Defining custom image sizes, adding them to the insert dialogue, and using them in loops

Building Flickr-like attachment pages for your theme

Displaying non-image attachments

Embedding external media via oEmbed and adding oEmbed providers

Listing Users

Creating a shortcode to list all authors

Creating a user directory, part 1: changing profile contact fields

Creating a user directory, part 2: building the page template (with microformats)


Multisite 101

Domain mapping plugin

Aggregating posts from subsites: Network Shared Posts plugin

Other practical multisite functions

Show site ID columns in multisite


The basics (note the first comment)

WP Security: cutting through the BS

On vulnerability reports and responsibility

The Almost Perfect .htaccess File for WordPress Blogs

10 awesome .htaccess hacks for WordPress

Pimp your wp-config.php


Scaling WP

Architecture, caching, and project management for scale

Plugin Performance Profiler

Running WP on Nginx

WordPress as…

forum: bbPress

social network: BuddyPress


document manager

issue tracker ($)

job board ($)

Changing WP’s Default Stuff

Changing strings (menu labels, etc.)

Disabling Dashboard widgets

Influential Sites Using WP

Famous brands VIP clients

Importing to WP

List of importers

HTML Import plugin

Presentation on importing: slides, video

Documentation, Discussion and Help



WP StackExchange

IRC Channels

Mailing Lists

News and Events

WP Candy

Planet WordPress


Developer Blogs

Nacin, Westi, Otto, Jaquith, Scribu

Things to Avoid

WPMUDev plugins aren’t inherently evil, but the “one-time” purchase is actually a subscription that will bill you monthly unless you cancel — and by canceling you lose access to updates and support. Use plugins from the official repository instead.

Thesis is a theme framework that replaces many built-in WP functions and hooks with its own. This is inherently evil, in that it breaks plugin compatibility. Use Genesis, Headway, Thematic, Hybrid, or just about any other framework instead.

This is an excerpt from Content Strategy for WordPress.My latest books are Content Strategy for WordPress (2015) and WordPress for Web Developers (2013). Sign up to be notified when I have a new book for you.


  1. says

    Brilliant collection, thank you!

    One thing your blog missing however: social share buttons. Had to insert the link to facebook manually )

  2. Daniel Sachs says

    Brilliant, absolutely brilliant, Stephanie. Bookmarked as a reference. One addition though: Maybe a couple of links on Multilingual WP?

    BTW cute little guy you have there :) I have a son of the same age, they are adorably destructive at this age, aren’t they? :)

  3. Bharat says

    Thank you soooo much for the this list.

    Also, I was considering to go with DIY Themes as many reputed blogs use it. Thanks for the recommendation…

  4. says

    That was in detail. I should learn shortcodes as no shortcode plugin comes with complex integrations. Thanks for the article :)


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *