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WordPress: Why Avoid Plugins and Instead Code from Scratch

Primarily being a WordPress Developer, I come across a lot of people trying to just get another plugin in order to add a new feature. Unless it’s Woocommerce, Advanced Custom Fields, Contact Forms 7 or Cerber, I’m usually won’t add it.

Here’s some context…

When developing my websites, I start from scratch. I have my own WordPress theme that only has my essentials

  • jQuery 3 (for easy js)
  • Bootstrap 4 (for easy page formatting)
  • FontAwesome 5 (for easy icons)
  • Advanced Custom Fields (for easy custom fields)
  • And a few other misc tools (for easy other things)

I also created my own set of frequently used functions that make development easier. This theme is very lightweight and I can create a site specifically for a client with a branded style guide in a fraction of the time. No Divi or Visual Composer here!

So about plugins…

Plugins (though built with “best practices” in mind) still come with all their differences, requiring other code libraries that may conflict with each other, especially if one code library is from a few years ago. In the end, you end up having this super bulky website that starts breaking itself.

Instead, I code from scratch. Most things that can be added to a site only require just a little bit more development, and you have just the set of code you need.

So when thinking about adding a plugin, think twice. You may be able to just code the feature in yourself, or make sure you’re hiring a developer who can.

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