As a photographer, your website is a powerful tool for growing your business. However, getting it online is only the beginning. After your site is launched, you’ll need to actively maintain it, so that it stays secure and functions smoothly.
One of the best parts of creating a photography site with WordPress is the wide range of plugins that are available. You have thousands to choose from, and most of them are both free and easy to install. This enables you to integrate a variety of tools and services with just a few clicks.
In this post, we’ll explore four top-quality plugins that will make maintaining your WordPress photography site significantly easier. Let’s get to it!
1. Wordfence Security
When it comes to WordPress maintenance, the importance of security cannot be overstated. This is why one of the most useful tools for any photography site is a security and firewall plugin such as Wordfence:
Wordfence is both a malware scanner and an endpoint firewall. It can help keep your photography website safe, especially if it’s a relatively small site. While you can use many of this plugin’s security features for free, there is also a premium version that’s worth checking out.
This plugin includes Two-Factor Authentication (2FA), login page CAPTCHAs, and IP blacklisting to keep out potentially malicious users. With Wordfence, you can also monitor hacking attempts, and keep an eye on visitors and live traffic.
You probably spend a lot of time perfecting your photography site. Unfortunately, there’s always a risk that something will happen to it, whether that’s because of a hacker, an incompatibility issue, or something else entirely.
This is why backups are an integral part of proper WordPress maintenance. To make scheduling and performing them as simple as possible, we recommend using a plugin such as UpdraftPlus:
With over two million active installations, UpdraftPlus is one of the most popular backup and restoration plugins for WordPress users. With a single click, you can save both your WordPress files and database to the cloud.
Using a backup plugin such as UpdraftPlus gives you peace of mind. You’ll know that if anything unexpected happens to your site, you’ll be able to restore all of your critical data quickly and easily.
You can download UpdraftPlus for free from the WordPress Plugin Directory. This version lets you store your backups in Dropbox, Google Drive, and Amazon S3. However, if you upgrade to the premium version, you can save them to even more places, including Microsoft OneDrive, SFTP, Google Cloud Storage, and more.
3. ShortPixel Image Optimizer
Obviously, images are a central part of any photography website. They’re the bread and butter of your business, so you’ll want to make sure they’re displayed in the best light possible.
However, featuring lots of high-quality images on your WordPress site can negatively impact its performance. To avoid that problem, one of the best tools you can use is an image optimization plugin such as ShortPixel:
This is a freemium plugin that automatically compresses your images and optimizes your files, which can take a lot of site maintenance off your plate. In addition to resizing and rescaling features, ShortPixel is also compatible with photo galleries (including NextGEN Gallery, which we’ll discuss next).
ShortPixel comes with 100 free credits per month to use. However, if you’re using it for your photography site, we recommend upgrading to one of the premium plans, all of which are fairly priced.
4. NextGEN Gallery
In addition to making sure your photography site’s images are optimized appropriately, it also helps to have a variety of display options to choose from. That way, you can select the layouts that are most compelling for each page on your site.
This is why we recommend using NextGEN Gallery:
NextGEN Gallery is one of the most powerful extensions you can install as a photographer. In fact, it’s arguably the most popular WordPress photography plugin. The free version comes packed with features, including a variety of galleries and album displays for your site and automatic image resizing.
There is also a premium version of this plugin. NextGEN Pro makes it easy to transform a simple photography portfolio into a dynamic e-commerce business. It comes with dozens of quality extensions and add-ons, including tools for image proofing, protection, and sharing.
To make the most of your online photography business, it’s crucial to properly maintain your WordPress website. Although this can seem overwhelming at first, there are plenty of tools and services designed to make your job easier.
In this post, we’ve looked at four cool plugins that can help you maintain your WordPress photography site:
- Wordfence Security, which offers peace of mind since you’ll know that your site is regularly scanned and monitored.
- UpdraftPlus, so you have a readily-available backup solution.
- ShortPixel Image Optimizer, to improve your image loading times and overall site speed.
- NextGEN Gallery, so you get plenty of options to choose from for displaying your images.
Do you have any questions about using these plugins on your WordPress photography website? Let us know in the comments section below!
Will Morris is a staff writer at WordCandy. When he’s not writing about WordPress, he likes to gig his stand-up comedy routine on the local circuit.