How to Add a Forum to Your WordPress Website
WordPress is definitely one of the most conventional, and easy to navigate platforms to hold your website in. If you already have a WordPress site, chances are, you are able to reach out to a good number of readers—no matter how many they are—because of how easy it is to add tags, categories, and make your posts known in the cyber world.
Then again, if you already have a handful of readers, don’t you think that it would be nice to add a forum to WordPress? You see, even in this day and age, speaking in forums, finding people who like the same things that you do, and finding a community of people whom you can engage in honest, smart conversations with is still helpful. It is still a way of reaching out to others, and fostering your own community.
But just like a lot of bloggers and site owners, you may be asking the questions: Are there any WordPress forum plugins around? Can you actually add a forum to WordPress? Well, the answer to both of these questions is an absolute and resounding yes!
And how do you make it happen, then? Read on, and you will easily learn how.
First and foremost, you can make way for WordPress BuddyPress Forums by using the BuddyPress plugin, of course. This is one of the most well-known—and probably the most popular way—on how you can add a forum to WordPress.
One thing you should know about BuddyPress is that it is rich in a gallantry of amazing features. It is pretty much a great, powerful community plugin that can provide you with a forum, user profiles, notifications, activity streams, and groups that can keep you sane, inspire, and motivate you in the crazy online world.
Some of the best things that BuddyPress can do are the following:
Provide an internal communication tool for your website / company / service—so there will be no need to use the confusing Facebook messenger, or some of those very unprofessional chat apps that are better used for personal conversation, rather than professional ones;
A campus-wide social network for your college, school, or university—to keep conversation exciting, and safe, at the same time;
Focused communities for services and products—so that you will have a better idea of who are patronizing your niche, and get their opinions to help make your work better;
Niche / social specific groups, so you can foster camaraderie among your readers, and;
The best part is that it provides you with an intelligent, enhanced forum experience that you probably have not tried anywhere else!
WordPress BuddyPress Forums are also open-source, making sure that you will not have a hard time getting hold of them, and that you can turn your website into a more prolific, engaging community—definitely way better than just a simple blog.
However, if you feel like this is not the best thing for you, well, you will be glad to know that there are other WordPress Forum Plugins around—and you can get to know them below.
For a big selection of WordPress BuddyPress themes, click here.
Speaking of other WordPress Forum Plugins, maybe BbPress is more your thing—especially that it is currently one of the most popular plugins around, making it one of the most trusted, too!
One of the things that most WordPress users like about it is that it is easy to set up. And from there, you already know that you will not have a hard time moderating this forum because it would not be too cluttered for you—which is especially helpful if you are still a beginner in the online blogging community. It also makes use of the following philosophies:
That it will always stay open source ;
That simplicity will always be its main feature;
That less code is more—again, perfect for beginners, and;
That it will always be secure and speedy!
Aside from that, you can also be sure that you will be able to get a fully integrated central account—all in a one-click install process, which is something that most plugins cannot give! Upon doing so, you can then divide your site into sections—so members who have nothing to say about certain topics could just go and talk about what they want to—making sure that animosity would not rule your site!
Why not CM Answers?
Now, here is another one of those amazing WordPress Forum Plugins: CM Answers!
If you are the type who always likes to hear your readers’ opinions, or at least, get some gist of how they think by providing them with thought-provoking questions, CM Answers may be the right forum plugin for you!
Dubbed as WordPress’ very own Powerful Q & A Discussion Plugin, CM Answers would be able to improve your site because of its customizable mobile-responsive services. As you might know, most people read articles or blogs on their mobile devices these days—as they are often on the go—so it is important to make sure that your blog—and the resulting forum—would be optimized for mobile.
With the help of this plugin, you will be able to do that, and enjoy the following, too:
Be able to edit or have questions answered after posting;
Change templates so it would work well with your blog;
Great multiple file upload support so you could multitask and save loads of time;
Generate a list of logs and statistics to help you understand what is going on with your website, and understand the kind of readers you are dealing with, and;
Provide Geotags—to understand where your readers are coming from, and how impactful your posts are, for them.
If mobile optimization is your thing, and you really want to keep up with the times, this one is right for you!
DW Question and Answer
Another one of those amazing WordPress Forum Plugins is none other than DW Question and Answer!
More than just a forum, you would be able to create a Question and Answer site—ala Ask.Fm, Quora, or the early FormSpring. Sites, and forums like these often cater to the younger generation, which is good, because admit it or not, the youth has a lot of influence on people these days. It is also a means of learning more—and easily—about various topics, which means that gaining knowledge could be fun and never boring.
Some of the best features of this plugin include the following:
Email Notification System—to check if someone has posted either a question or an answer;
Vote and Pick Best Answer System—just like the classic Yahoo! Answers, so your readers would at least have a gist about which answer is right, and so the questions in their head could easily be cleared;
Submit / Filter / Order / Edit Question Ability;
Questions / Answers Follow Function—same as following comments on websites so you will not have to follow what you do not want to;
Shortcodes—so that sharing would be easy and more professional-looking, and;
Answer and Comment Options, of course!
Basically, it is an easy way of allowing your readers—and you yourself—to give opinions and have good conversations on your website—and that is always something good as it increases traffic, and provides you with more followers!
Here is another convenient way for you to add a forum to WordPress: AnsPress.
AnsPress is a Q & A-like forum plugin that you can use to enhance your blog or website. As you can see—and as provided with the choices here—people these days are often looking for ways to express themselves, and one of those ways is to add a Q & A type forum to your site—and AnsPress can help you out with that!
The great thing about this plugin is that you can control or manage it both on the Admin Menu, and also on the Settings Page. It also has a great interface—which can add to the aesthetic value of your site! With this plugin, you will also be able to experience the following:
Custom Fields—so your readers could provide both questions and answers;
Various Categories—in pages and lists, so that questions and their corresponding answers could easily be found;
Email Notifications, so you will know what is going on—and so you can follow the questions and answers that you like, and;
Easy tagging features—so with the help of the right tags, your readers can get to find what they may have long been looking for.
Therefore, if you want more questions and answers, you can definitely go for this one.
Meanwhile, if you are looking for a premium option that can help you add a forum to WordPress, why don’t you try SabaiDiscuss?
While it also uses the Question and Answer format as its forum type, it is a more defined unit, and has this façade that looks like Yahoo! Answers or Stackflow—two of the most trusted Q & A forums on the internet!
With the help of this plugin, you will have chance to turn your website into a more community-driven place, which is important when it comes to building your list of followers, and making sure that you get great reputation in business. This way, you could have your very own helpdesk portal—courtesy of your website, and your readers could experience the benefits of the following features, too:
Easy search and filter forms created with Visual Editor;
Be able to search questions, keywords, and answers with the help of user-friendly features;
Flat and fully responsive design—which is one of the keys to having a great website these days;
The ability to reopen or close questions, as preferred;
Vote for questions/answers, as well as comments;
Add file attachments to enhance the way of answering questions, and providing more realistic answers to readers;
Make way for hierarchal categories—which means that everything would be properly segregated;
Have questions and answers filtered the right way;
Create a good user reputation system—to make sure that your readers would come back and enhance their online profile;
Add user profile pages;
Flag questions and answers that are deemed derogatory, in one way or the other, and;
Have restrictions ready, among others.
As you can see, this plugin offers a lot of features, makes sure your site is aesthetically pleasing, and also makes sure that your readers get what they need from it—which definitely makes it one of your best bets!
This was first known as a social media plugin, but is mostly used to add a forum to WordPress. From WP Symposium, it is now known as WP SymposiumPRO, with its name giving you an idea that it provides you with all your forum needs—all in one place!
Aside from the usual email notifications, reply voting, favorite, and sticky topics, there are other things that this plugin could provide, and these include:
Updated Directory—to help you get in touch with, and get to know your readers more;
Easy compatibility with your blog—no matter what it is;
Multi-lingual features to work wherever you are in the world, and;
Loads of customization features to make this forum YOUR forum!
It does not have lots of features, compared to others, but it is still good in the sense that it allows you to create a forum for your website, without having to deal with problems when it comes to installation and updates. If a fuss-free plugin is your thing, you definitely have to go for this one!
Groups Forums is one of those WordPress Forum Plugins that you have to pay for, but the good thing about this is that it has a number of special features that you may want, especially if you have already been on the site for a long time. These features include:
Topic Asignees and Topic Moderators—creating the feel of a “real forum”—all in your WordPress blog;
User Support System, which can help readers provide feedback, and tell you if they are experiencing something wrong with the site;
Front and Back End topic submissions;
Various widgets, such as forums, topic tags, topics, and topic search, amongst others;
Theme template support—so you can easily customize both your blog and the forum the way you want to—and without having much of a hard time;
Published / Pending topic notifications that work for the site admin, the moderators, authors, and readers, and;
Various shortcodes that can be used, such as edit topics, let users submit, list forums, topic searches, topic tag clouds, and front end editing, amongst others!
And while you do have to pay for this blog, it might be good for you to know that having it would easily help you manage your website, which is good, especially if you are quite meticulous about your blog. However, if you are a beginner, you might want to try the free ones, first, but hey, if you like this one, then, why not?
BubLaa Forum and Comments
The next plugin on the list is Bublaa, and what you have to know about this is that it is somewhat different from its contemporaries, in the sense that it really makes way for an old-school discussion community. In short, you would have real-time discussions on your site, just like Twitter, which could also help your readers express themselves more, and know that their comments or questions are actually being heard.
It also has amazing features, such as the ones listed right here:
Unique forum interface, which makes way for the modernization and easy navigation of your blog—and can easily be appreciated by others;
A fully responsive forum—which is important in helping your readers and followers realize that your site is prolific, active, and definitely around to hear them out, and help them, too;
Rich text, links, video, and images previews;
Search-engine friendly mechanism to make navigation and use easy;
Social sharing—which also makes way for more traffic and free advertising for your website;
Admin and Moderation tools to help you take better control of your site, and;
Request and bugs support—so you could provide the best services for your readers!
If you like the kind of website that is modernized, and that most netizens today would like, it might be good for you to try this one out!
Now, here is a fun way to add a forum to WordPress! You see, ForumEngine has that old-school forum feel, so aside from usual posts, and comments, users would also be able to create their own profiles—and badges—and over time, as they keep on using the site, they would notice various titled being handed to them. It is nothing extremely special, but it stays true to form, which is great if all you want is a proper forum for your readers. It also makes way for the following features:
Optimized discussion—so your readers would not find it a hassle to state their opinions on your website, and connect with fellow readers, too;
Frontend controls, for you to make sure that the forum is going well;
All screen size support, which means it would be optimized for whatever it is that people are using to access your website, and its forum;
Easy administrative tasks—so that managing the website—and the forum—would not be a hassle for you, and you would not be lazy about it;
Simple Interface, so reading and discussions would be easy, and;
Weekly updates—to make sure that the site is going well, and also to help you understand whatever is going on!
If you want to foster camaraderie between your readers and followers, this plugin might just be what you are looking for—and more!
Or, Go for Simple:Press
Finally, there is Simple:Press. And you know what the good thing about this is? Well, it has almost all the features of the other WordPress Forum Plugins combined into one—so you are definitely getting a lot if you would choose to have this installed on your blog—complete with widgets, badges, and smileys that make way for fun discussions—and user-friendly experience!
This plugin was one of the first plugins that were known to help create forums on WordPress. It has a lot of amazing features, such as:
Sub-forum support for any given level;
Features could be added by means of a simple plugin system;
User defined signatures;
Theme and template driven capacities;
Customizable icons for both forums and groups;
Online list, as well as other forum stats;
The ability to create hidden “spoilers”—to give that feel of excitement for your readers;
WordPress integrations and registrations, as well as log-ins;
Comprehensive Administrative Options—making way for that old-school feel, but with an enhanced, modern twist;
Coded to make way for WordPress security routines;
Private or Public forums;
Page and Browser title settings;
IM and Social Network identities;
Ability to set own user time zones, depending on where they are;
Data inspection tools, and;
Growing translation tools, amongst others!
This has most of the things you need, especially if you are new to blogging—and to the forum world—so you might want to start with this, just for sure.
Choose Your Type
Now that you know how to add a forum to WordPress, you just have to make your choice as to which of these plugins you would like to try. What matters now is that you have to know what your site needs, and what would work well with your readers. Once you have chosen what you want and you feel like it does not work the way you want it to, you can always go for something else.
Good luck, and have fun!
There are tons of great themes out there that could be perfect for building a website witha forum. Maybe you find what you need in one of these collections?
So you have resolved to begin a new site. You are likely to use WordPress to get it done, but you are not a designer, or you do not have the time, patience or desire to construct a new WordPress theme from scratch. What should you do? You select a WordPress theme that is the ideal match.
But waitsince 2008, if the WordPress premium theme marketplace began to eliminate, the amount of choices have multiplied exponentially. There is free themes and superior themes and freemium themes (these are those which begin off Lite, and upsell to Pro variations with added bells & whistles). There is theme woods and theme mojos, there is woos and zillas.
Here are a few things to think about when you’re trying to find a new WordPress WooCommerce theme.
Is the website company, or private? If you are building a web site for a company, go with a premium theme. There is some wonderful free themes out there, but if cash is at stake, it is ideal to go with all the professionally endorsed theme that provides regular upgrades and future-proofing. Simply speaking, a superior theme by a solid developer will provide reassurance.
A completely free theme that is cutting edge and feature packed right now may prove to be a nightmare down the street when there’s no support for new versions of WordPress, as it fights with a plugin upgrade, or even once you want a support request replied today, not 3 weeks from now.
As a general guideline, remember that you generally get what you pay for. A programmer selling fifty themes for $10 is not likely to provide the degree of service and quality management of a much more expensive provider. There are exceptions, however a sensible price for a top quality, affirmed theme is somewhere between $40 and $100.
This is a great alternative for a new small company that does not have a great deal of funds to operate with up front. Update when the money starts flowing.
Which Kind of Website Are You Currently Building?
This one is straightforward concerning design and aesthetics. If you would like to start a site about fishing, then guarantee that the layout complements the material. A theme designed with style in mind could seem excellent, but may be off-putting to burly outdoorsmen who land on your website searching for useful hints about bass fishing. Have a peek at other websites like yoursand see exactly what they are doing. You may want to shake things up with an experimental, creative theme, however believe that in several cases moving against the grain of anticipation may be off-putting to website visitors. Have you got a logo, or even a color strategy unique to your own brand? Be certain that the emblem will match and the theme provides you a lot of control over colours.
Concerning features, you also had better produce a listing of the qualities that you need in progress, and keep these in mind when picking. But keep it simple as possible: there is little to gain by bogging down your website with features you do not think you will ever use or need. If it turns out you want a specific feature in the future, it is very likely you’re going to have the ability to fulfill that requirement using a plugin rather than
When you are trying to pick a WordPress theme, be skeptical of themes that record dozens of heaps of attributes. More frequently not, this is due to bad development practices. Some vendors on Themeforest are conscious of the. Display and performance ought to be split as far as you can.
If you are a master of all things internet development, you might opt to go for a free theme and creating and adjustments and fixes yourself if necessary. But if you are new to WordPress, or web development in general, or when the theme you are considering unusually complicated, be certain you are going to have access to standard, well-thought documentation out. You also need to ensure that your provider is capable of providing timely assistance. It is not always easy to tell beforehand, but when a service team is insufficient, there is a fantastic probability that somebody is discussing. Google to turn reviews up. Here are some great minimalist WordPress themes.
If you believe that might need extra customization into the theme, look at purchasing from a provider that provides customization solutions. General theme support generally will not cover any personalization.
Does This Work?
This seems like it’d be a no-brainer, but keep in mind that browsers display websites differently, and various devices display websites otherwise. Do not buy a theme that does not offer you a live presentation, and test which demonstration on as many browsers as many programs as you can. IE8 service is currently starting to tapper off, however when this is significant to youpersonally, many themes do support it.
Make sure you check out how it’ll appear on tablet and smartphone if you’re able to. You have to make sure that the theme not only functions on mobile devices, but shows on them properly. This is known as totally responsive layout, or mobile-first layout. There are theme programmers selling non-responsive themes now. Since we are living in 2014, not 2006, you should not buy one.
Nobody can forecast the future, and also the greatest providers and many well-known themes could evaporate tomorrow, but it is definitely worth noting how often the theme you are contemplating is upgraded. It goes without saying that a theme with regular, recent upgrades is a much better option over a theme that has not been touched in weeks or even years. A theme that is in active development now has a far greater prospect of being in active growth tomorrow.
Again, a word regarding separation of functionality and presentation: themes that have characteristics baked to them, rather than sensibly split to plugins, may leave you trapped the street and many times are best prevented. You do not need to end up in a situation in which altering the overall look of your website signifies giving up content, or spending more money than needed to vent characteristics from the preceding theme into the new one.
If you prefer it, and it satisfies all your needs, then use it. Someone can spend weeks pouring over theme after theme, a number nearly equal in features in style. Sooner or later, you merely have to pull the trigger. If you’d rather, you can select one of these premium WordPress themes to help get the job done.
One of the fundamentals of Conducting a WordPress website is knowing how And when to upgrade the core files, plugins, and themes that comprise it. Previously updating WordPress, while still comparatively easy, had a little more guesswork than it does today.
Since WordPress 3.7 premiered automatic updates for minor and Security releases have become standard. It’s also now possible to get core or major upgrades with no website admin performing anything. This naturally requires the guess work out upgrading WordPress for most users; an incontrovertible advantage. But, auto updates for WordPress are not the right solution for everyone.
In today’s post I will weigh the pro’s and con’s of empowering Automatic WordPress upgrades and then show you how to configure them to best fit your requirements.
The Pro’s & Con’s of Automatic WordPress Updates
The advantages of automatic updates seem pretty obvious. If they just Happen, at a secure and secure manner, then that is just one less vital facet of managing your WordPress website you’ve to deal with or be worried. What exactly about the possible negative scenarios of automatic updates for WordPress? What are they who do they impact?
Basically, if you encounter one of the following classes, you may want to hold off on automatic upgrades:
1. If you’ve made customizations into the core of WordPress. Any Automatic upgrades to those core files will populate and eliminate those customizations.
2. If your website depends on third party (non-official WordPress.or) Themes/plugins to operate properly. You do not wish to run the possibility of your site updating beyond the compatibility of your theme and plugins, leading to those things breaking. This can lead to something as moderate (but annoying and unprofessional) as features/functions breaking or on showing properly. Or at the worst case, your entire site could go down and that is not fun for anybody.
Those reservations (important though they are) aside, you will find However, it should be noted: if you are going to update your site, whether or not via a plugin or service–you need to back it up. In order to accomplish this with automatic upgrades you might have to automate your backups also. To learn more on WordPress backups have a look at our post 10 WordPress Backup Plugins You Need to Know About.
As soon as you’ve figured out that you can feel safe in putting the subsequent automatic update solutions into practice.
So let’s say you drop into one of these two groups and you would like to Disable automatic WordPress upgrades. In this section I will cover the manual method and below I will cover the plugin options.
To manually disable automatic upgrades for WordPress All You’ve Got to Do is add the following line of code to your wp-config.php file:
define( ‘WP_AUTO_UPDATE_CORE’, false );
While this will disable WordPress automatic updates, you’ll still Be notified whenever there is a new version available. So that you do not have to be concerned about it leading in no updates whatsoever. It is just in your terms at there.
Now let us say You Don’t fall into either of these two groups I mentioned above. You’ve got a very basic setup with themes and plugins that are constantly kept up to date and compatible with the latest version of WordPress. In your case, automatic upgrades, even major ones, are perfect. For more minimalist WordPress themes, we’ve got plenty to take a look at.
To manually enable automatic updates for WordPress all you have to do Is add another line of code to your wp-config.php file:
specify ( ‘WP_AUTO_UPDATE_CORE’, true );
This will enable all core upgrades. Nightly builds and advancement upgrades included–only the important security, minor and significant changes. To disable those add the next bit of code for your functions.php file and you’re all set.
Ok, so the manual solution will no doubt prove to be painless for Lots of you. HoweverI realize that not everyone is comfortable editing the documents of their WordPress install–even if it’s just pasting in a line of code. Not a problem. Among the contributing WordPress core programmers created a excellent free plugin called Advanced Automatic Updates just for you.
Once installed, navigate into Settings > Advanced Automatic Updates and you’ll see a screen just like the picture below.
With a few clicks you can choose to upgrade WordPress Core Automatically for major versions or small versions. You could also opt to upgrade your plugins and themes mechanically. However, the theme update attribute only works for themes accessed through the official WordPress theme repository in WordPress.org. If you’ve made a third party buy, you are going to need to update the theme manually. here are some personal blog themes for WordPress.
Other Automatic Update Options for WordPress Ways to do the same thing. Below are the last 3 techniques you can arrange for automatic updates if both primary/individual solutions above aren’t what you’re searching for.
Managed WordPress Hosting
There are a lot of alternatives available for handled WordPress hosting. Bluehost, WPEnginge, Flywheel, along with many others all offer excellent services for a vast range of WordPress users. The goal of this section is not to highlight every single service and compare these, but rather only mention for the vast majority of handled WordPress hosting services automatic updates are a part of what you are paying for. They will make sure the center of your setup stays up-to-date and secure. Some might upgrade your themes and plugins too, but since those can change so much that’s probably not standard.
ManageWP is a plugin/service which attracts the kind of integration and Service features of a hosting provider or multi-site install to users that are handling any number of independently hosted WordPress.org sites. With their strong dashboard you can get and updated anywhere from two to two hundred different WordPress installs with a single click. Among a number of other amazing features.
WordPress Management Services
Not long ago I wrote a post here called How to Begin a WordPress Management Business in Less than a Day. This post talks about the way, using tools such as ManageWP, someone having enough WordPress savvy may prepare the basic components required for that company in an extremely short amount of time and be up and running when they could land their very first client.
If that is not you (and you do not even like the Concept of installing a Plugin such as the one above) then perhaps selecting a WordPress maintenance or management service is a step in the right direction. Any good service of this kind will ensure your site, themes, and plugins are always running and up-to-date properly.
WordPress updates are such an essential part of working with this Platform that it is a good idea to figure out what automatic upgrading option works best for you personally. Whether that be major updates, security updates, minor updates, theme or plugin upgrades understanding that everything is present, secure, and functioning properly can provide a fantastic sense of peace and calm. It will also make sure your website doesn’t break. Which is rather important, would not you say?
Speaking of the things you say, we’d like to know what you’ve chosen To do for WordPress updates and which option you recommend. Let us know
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