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Transcript of Episode 215

It’s Episode 215 and we’ve got plugins for testing plugin speeds, auto posting to social networks, disk usage, Gravity Forms A/B Testing, and WooCommerce Bulk Price Changes. It’s all coming up on WordPress Plugins A-Z!

All transcripts start from the point in the show where we head off into the meat and potatoes. They are the complete verbatim of Marcus and John’s discussion of the weekly plugins we have reviewed.

WordPress Plugins A to Z Podcast and Transcript for See complete show notes for Episode #215 here.

It’s Episode 215 and we’ve got plugins for testing plugin speeds, auto posting to social networks, disk usage, Gravity Forms A/B Testing, and WooCommerce Bulk Price Changes. It’s all coming up on WordPress Plugins A-Z!

Episode #215

John:                All right, well the first plugin I’ve got here is my review of the one you did last episode.  This one is called The Disk Usage Sunburst.  This is the one that you were talking about Marcus last episode about it, putting up that nice display, showing you how all the files are in your website.

Marcus:           Yes.

John:                And it does a really great job of showing the makeup of all the files in there.  It allows you not only when you click on it, if you click on one of the little Sunburst items, it’ll actually enlarge that Sunburst item and create a smaller Sunburst item in there to see, say you’ve checked on a folder, it’ll show you what’s inside that additional folder.  So you can break it down into the depths.

The biggest problem I found with this is it varied from server to server, because I tried it on a couple of different servers.  It’s that because it is AJAX driven, it does sometimes take a little bit to load everything up and it also depends on how large your site is.  I actually tried it on my own website, which has, you know, gigabytes of stuff in it.  So it took a while for it to actually load the piece up there.  So the bigger it is, the longer it’s going to take to load.

Other than that, it’s a pretty decent way to check out your file structure of your WordPress website and see where you might be sitting on excess amounts of data that you’ve forgotten about.  I gave it a 3-Dragon rating; I think you gave it a 4, so we’ll split the difference somewhere in between.  It’s a pretty decent plugin.  Check it out: The Disk Usage Sunburst.

Marcus:           Yeah, I thought it was pretty cool just to see exactly where — for me, it was nice to see where the biggest image files were —

John:                Yeah.

Marcus:           — that I may not have optimized to make sure that everything is the way it should be, as far as small sizing.  I’ve talked about a plugin before, John, dealing with image sizing that automatically uses that service Tiny PNG to compress things.  And boy, what a difference on a site that you don’t use that on, because I found out using this Disk Sunburst thing that I had images as large as 2MB on my site, so it was a very handy tool.

All right, first one out of the gate for me.  I am big into Gravity Forms as are you, John, and a lot of other people here that listen to this show.  And there’s really no good way to switch forms.  I’ve done — by switching forms, I mean like running AB testing.  So I have a plugin that I’m bringing to the show today called Gravity Forms AB Testing.

It’s just a simple extension for Gravity Forms that allows people to do AB testing within a short code.  So rather than just saying Gravity Forms ID = 1, you can actually say ID = 1, 2, 3, 6, and it will actually do AB split testing amongst all those form IDs that you put.  So if you want to test to see which forms maybe get better responses, different kinds of responses, random stuff, maybe quizzes, things like that, this one will do it very nicely.  And I rated it a 4 out of 5.

John:                That’s useful.  I like the idea of using it for like polls that you can create in Gravity Forms and have it show random polls on the side.  That’s an idea I think would be useful for it.

Marcus:           Yeah, absolutely.

John:                All right, next up here I have one called Next Scripts Social Networks Auto Poster.  This one here is an additional plugin.  Currently I use Social for posting to social networks, so I was wandering around and I tripped across this one.  This plugin helps you post to even more social networks than Social does.  This will allow you to publish to Blogger, Delicious, Facebook, Google Plus, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Tumblr, Twitter, and

And with the pro version, you can customize the Facebook and Google Plus posts that are sent out.  It does a pretty decent job of posting to all of these different places, so you can actually centralize all of your social media posting to your WordPress website, as it should be, and send out and draw people back to where they belong.  All in all, a pretty nice plugin.  It worked pretty decently.  I liked it; it’s a pretty recently updated plugin and downloaded over a million times, so pretty popular.  So check it out: Next Scripts Social Networks Auto Poster, and I gave it a 4-Dragon rating.

Marcus:           Excellent!  Well, I’ve actually got one to add onto that.  My plugin is called WhatsApp Sharing Button for Jetpack, and this allows you to extend Jetpack a little bit and supplies it with a WhatsApp button for your website.  So a lot of people out there use WhatsApp on their phone and all that.  This one is a really cool way to go from WordPress to everybody’s WhatsApp.  So I don’t typically use WhatsApp; I have it installed.  I don’t think I’ve ever really tried it.  But this definitely works and I’ve checked it out.  It works really well, so I gave this one a 4 out of 5.

John:                All right.  And the final one I’ve got here this week is the Plugins Speed Test.  And what this plugin does is this helps you determine the impact your plugins are having on your site loading.  It does have some limitations that it only works with plugins that are currently in the WordPress repository.  It doesn’t work with any others at the moment.  I’m not sure on why.

But it’s simple to use.  You just install it, activate it, and then you go look at your list of plugins that are installed on your website, and it adds a new column all the way to the right that tells you the impact the plugin is having on your site.  It shows you the resources the plugin has added, how much space it’s taking up, it tells you the number of tables it’s used, if it’s added new tables to it, it shows you the impact of the plugin on your homepage, how much RAM its taking up, how much its taking up on your posts page, and a little bit of other info to help you figure things out.

It’s a pretty decent one if you’re trying to analyze what’s going on in your website and how your plugins are impacting your site.  And if you do silly things like me and run 120 plugins sometimes, it’s a good way to help you sort out the mess.  So anyway, I gave it a 3-Dragon rating.  A nice even plugin.  Check it out: Plugins Speed Test.

Marcus:           Very nice!  Yeah, I’ve talked about that one on WordPress Weekly last week.  I tried it and you’re right about that.  It only really does the ones that are in the repository.  It won’t do custom or paid plugins, same things like that.  But the ones that you do have, which are a majority probably that are in the repository, this one will fit the bill very nicely.

So finally, I want to talk about everything I’ve got today was boy, I had a Gravity Forms, I had a Jetpack, and now I’m going to go with a WooCommerce plugin.  So everything kind of requires something else, but this one is called WooCommerce Bulk Percentage Pricing.  And quite simply it does just one thing: it allows you to completely update all of your store pricing for all of your products all at the same time by a percentage.

So if you want to raise your prices by 10% on everything across the board or 5% off sale on everything across the board or something like that, this one plugin allows you to do that with just a few clicks.  So you can adjust all of the store pricing within just a minute or so.  Very handy plugin and I gave it a 4 out of 5.

John:                That is very handy, especially if you’ve got lots of products in your store and you need to do a price raising because your costs have increased.

Marcus:           Yeah, or if you want to do a one-day sale.  Everything’s 30% off today.

John:                Excellent.  All right, well in this episode I covered up The Disk Usage Sunburst, which I gave a 3 to, the Plugins Speed Test, which I gave a 3 to, and the Next Scripts, which I gave a 4 to.

Marcus:           And I spoke about Gravity Forms AB Testing, gave that one a 4 out of 5, WhatsApp Sharing Button for Jetpack; 4 out of 5, and WooCommerce Bulk Percentage Pricing, also a 4 out of 5.

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