The use of images to enhance the visual appeal of your website has always had a special place in marketing, but it’s not until recently that it begun gaining much steam. That’s because the internet is coming to term with the fact that images catch people’s attention way quicker compared to ordinary texts, thanks to the explosion memes. Even better, online users are likely to retain a visual message for longer compared to written content.
That explains why images, info-graphics and videos have invaded every aspect of our virtual space, and web owners in Singapore are making the best of it.
But plastering your images haphazardly on your website isn’t going to make it look any better. For enhanced aesthetic appeal, you not only need quality images, but some creativity as well with regards to how you choose to display them.
You have limited time to grab your visitors’ attention. Make the most of it by choosing cool images to draw them in. But how do you plan to showcase them?
Well, use sliders.
One good thing about sliders is that they come already integrated with a good number of WordPress themes. All you have to do is import its demo content and you’d have successful installed and even configured one to your website.
But in the off chance that the theme you’re using is customised or doesn’t come with one, here’s a step by step guide on how to get it installed on your website.
Choosing a Slider Plugin
With hundreds of different slider plugins available to choose from, the task can be pretty much overwhelming, considering NOT all plugins are the same. Plus the plugin you meet has to snugly match your needs, otherwise you’ll have a rough time configuring it to your taste.
Here are a number of things to consider while you’re out there searching for a WordPress plugin to use:
Are you looking for a premium plugin or a free one?
If you have the budget for it, of course a premium plugin is a much better option. But there are a number of free plugins that are just as good.
Another thing, some free plugins might require you to subscribe for the premium package to enjoy some of the features. Meaning you might find yourself hamstrung when you opt for a free plugin, whose top features are only limited to premium users.
How do you plan to use the plugin?
How advanced should the plugin be?
A good number of the plugins you’re likely to come across on WordPress have basic functionality. If you’re looking to do some advanced customisation, then it’s important to note that your options are only limited to a small few.
Prefer Drag and Drop Functionality?
Not all plugins have the drag and drop functionality. So if you happen to have a special preference for the feature, then you might want to consider that in the choice you make.
Will the plugin require an Upgrade?
Some free plugin will require you to upgrade it to enjoy some of its extension and premium features. Make sure everything is all clear to you with the plugin you choose before deciding on whether or NOT to install it.
Other things to Consider:
The number of downloads
Good plugins are generally downloaded frequently. So other factors held constant, simple logic would demand that you pick a plugin with the most downloads.
WordPress allows users to rate their plugins. A plugin with a low rating has its fair share of flaws and should therefore be avoided like the disaster it is. In the same vein, always aim for a plugin with a 4 stars and above.
Does the plugin have a dedicated forum? Or just in case you encounter some diffulties while working around it, does it have a sound support system to contact?
Top-rated Slideshow Plugins to Consider
The sheer volume of slideshow plugins to choose from will certainly overwhelm you. But if you’ve got limited time on your hands, and you have no trouble trusting a third party, here’s a list of the best plugins to consider choosing from.
MetaSlider is a free WordPress plugin with an incredible list of premium features. Examples include, the incredible set of themes to choose from and several transitional effects to fine tune slide movements.
Also featured is the widely treasured drag and drop builder and an in-built image cropping tool.
After installing the plugin, you’ll be presented with four different sliders to choose from, each of which comes with an incredible list of unique features and advantages.
The premium version unlocks even more features including more skins, animation effects, and ability to include dynamic content to your slides.
Royal Slider is one of the most popular and most downloaded slider plugin, boasting of having been used with some of the big names you know including Land Rover and Coca Cola.
Going for $24, the plugins can display all types of content including videos, texts, images, animations and anything else you have in mind.
Even more elating is the full-screen slider, and the ability to pull photos off your Flickr account.
Other top features of the plugin include:
Responsive slider capabilities
Built-in Slider Templates
Different navigation formats and options
Easing slider is one of the most lightweight plugin you’re likely to come across online. It’s the plugin you choose if you’re mostly concerned about your site’s loading speed.
Even better, the plugin allows you to upload a greater amount of images all at once. Plus if you’ve ever used the WordPress editor, then you’ll certainly have an easy time using the plugin.
For extended functionality, you’d want to purchase some of the premium extensions and add-ons, which allow you to insert captions, videos, and even add some lightbox effects including swipe and touch compatibility for those using mobile devices.
How to Install a Free Slideshow Plugin
Start by logging into your WordPress dashboard and follow the standard WordPress procedure to both search and install your preferred plugin.
Activate it once done.
Next, try locating the plugin on the side panel of the WordPress dashboard. Now find the menu option and follow the steps provided to configure the plugin.
How to Install a Paid Slideshow Plugin
Paid plugins are NOT purchased from WordPress, but from the developer’s site or from a script or code selling platform such as codecanyon.
The point is to head to the site you bought the plugin from and download it before coming back to WordPress to install.
Once you have the plugin downloaded and saved to you PC, you can go to your WordPress dashboard and click on plugin followed by ‘add new’.
Now upload the plugin and follow the steps provided to install and activate it.
The next step involves configuring the plugin. For this, you’re required to get the extensive documentation provided by the plugin providers, and follow the instructions therein to install it.
It’s a Wrap
There’s no problem with experimenting with the free option of each plugin before choosing the one you prefer most. Keep in mind that some of the plugins are pretty straightforward and simple to both install and configure.
But just in case you’re still stuck, feel free to contact MediaOne for a free website setup or SEO consultation or Slider Installation and customisation.