Transcript of Episode 405 WP Plugins A to 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  John’s discussion of the weekly plugins he has reviewed.

WordPress Plugins A to Z Podcast and Transcript for See complete show notes for Episode #405 here.


It’s Episode 405 and I’ve got plugins for WooCommerce Shipping, Restaurant Reservations, WooCommerce Discounts, Crossword Puzzles, and Classic Press Options, all coming up on WordPress Plugins from A to Z!


Episode #405

John:    It’s Episode 405 and I’ve got plugins for WooCommerce Shipping, Restaurant Reservations, WooCommerce Discounts, Crossword Puzzles, and Classic Press Options, all coming up on WordPress Plugins from A to Z!

[Intro]

WordPress, it’s the most popular content management and website solution on the internet. And with over 80,000 plugins to choose from, how do you separate the junk from the gems? Join us for a weekly unrehearsed conversation about the latest and greatest in WordPress plugins. This is WordPress Plugins from A to Z.

John:    Well good morning, good afternoon, or good evening, wherever you happen to be hiding out there on the globe today. Coming to you direct from the Brewery Overlook in beautiful Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, I’m John Overall. And I have the usual great show for you today but of course right off the top, you can get all the show notes over at wppluginsatoz.com.

And if you’ve got a couple of minutes, I’d greatly appreciate your time over at Stitcher Radio, Google Play, and in the iTunes Store, subscribing to the show and leaving reviews there. They really do help the show out. And also, watch me live every Thursday here on YouTube, where you can also subscribe to and check out our training videos, screencasts, and all the extra shows that do show up from time to time.

You could also follow the show over at Twitter, @wppluginsatoz, and you can join me on my Facebook page at wppluginsatoz.com/facebook and connect with me there. Take a couple of minutes also and subscribe to the newsletter where you can get additional information. The newsletter is sent out every Friday afternoon.

So with all that being said, it is time to dive right into the meat and potatoes of the show.

[Plugins lead-in rock music]

And I have a great set of plugins today and to start off, I am still going through my list here, although it’s starting to thin out and I’ll probably have to start dropping it down to one for a little while, or maybe even have to eliminate this until I get another backlog of plugins from developers.

The first couple are plugins that have been sent in to me by developers and listeners over the last while and they accumulated, mainly because I couldn’t get to them, I had no use for them in any projects, and no time to just test out plugins. I still thought it might be useful for you to know that these plugins exist.

So first off here, I’ve got one that was sent in by Kuldip Patel and it’s called Advanced Shipment Tracking for WooCommerce. And what this plugin here is for, it’s a free plugin – freemium plugin, I think. But what it does is it allows you to set up some advanced shipping tracking notifications in your WooCommerce store. It provides your customers with an easy way to track their orders, shop managers can add shipment provider tracking number and date of orders, the customer will receive the info and when their order is completed and shipped, the plugin provides more than shipping providers and you can add your own custom providers to it.

It looks like a pretty decent plugin. If you’re running a WooCommerce store and you’re shipping out, this might be something for you to look into to make it easier and more transparent for your shipping processes to your clients and users, so go check this plugin out. It’s got a free version right off the WordPress.org site and it’s called Advanced Shipment Tracking for WooCommerce and I give it a 3-Dragon rating.

The next one I have for you was sent in by Ivan Zambouka and it’s called Table Reservation, and this is a freemium plugin – they do have a premium version – and this looks like a really great plugin. If you’re running a website or you’re building a website for a small restaurant/café and you offer up table reservations in the restaurant, instead of going with one of those premium services and they already have their own website, they can set it up on their website here where people can book and reserve seats right on their website.

It’s a pretty nice-looking plugin. They’ve got an essential version which comes with the free version, where you’ve got some scheduling settings, opening hours, closing hours, custom email notifications, you can put a picture on, using mapping, you select which tables are available for reservations, then they click on that table, set their reservation times that are available in your store hours. They can add and edit bookings from the admin panel. You can check the correctness of user input data. Supposedly, it’s GDPR-compliant, which is really great for those of you in the EU.

So it looks like a pretty nice, simple, straightforward plugin if you have a small restaurant business that allows for table reservations and you don’t want to pay a fee off to one of those table booking services like OpenTable or whatever all those other services are. Go check this one out, recommend it to your client. They could save themselves a little bit of money over time. Most small businesses need to save as much money as they can, and it runs right off their WordPress website which you’ve already built. So go check this one out. It’s called Table Reservation and I give it a 3-Dragon rating.

All right, this show currently brought to you by…

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All right, and currently we don’t have any contests running, so we’re still in the process of negotiating with some developers for licenses to give away. But all our contests are powered by Simple Giveaways plugin who kindly provided us with the premium version for our contests. Go check them out; there’s a link in the show notes for it. For more information on our contests, just go check out wppluginsatoz.com/contests, where the next contest will be announced. Of course it’ll be announced on the show, but chances are it’ll start before the show version happens.

All right, next up I’ve got for you another WooCommerce plugin. This one here is called WooCommerce All Discounts and it is a freemium plugin, but the free version is pretty decent if you’re setting up a simple, basic WooCommerce website. I recently had to use this on a WooCommerce site I was setting up for a small client and what he wanted to do was offer discounts on bulk purchases and, of course – surprise, surprise – that’s not built into WooCommerce. You’d think that would be a built-in thing, but no. You’ve got to add something for it.

This one here is pretty straightforward and simple. It allows you to get in there and set up multiple types of bulk purchases. You may be looking for bulk purchases where they’re gonna have multiple purchases of the same products, they get a discount. The total order of the thing, they get a discount. If they’re ordering from specific categories, they get a discount. If they’re ordering specific variations, a discount. Well, that’s what this plugin does for you in its base setup.

It does have some advance setups in it that allow you to setup even more items, such as they can buy a product from one category and get a 15% discount. They can buy two products, buy one/get one free – there’s a whole lot more in the premium version, but of course I didn’t need that for the particular site I was setting up.

All in all, a pretty decent plugin to add into WooCommerce to set up and allow for discounts on your products in there. Go check it out. It’s called WooCommerce All Discounts, premium plugin, and I give it a 4-Dragon rating.

Listener feedback! I do love listener feedback and I greatly appreciate those that take the time out to go make reviews in iTunes, Stitcher Radio, Google Play store – Stitcher Radio, Google Play, it takes me a little longer to find those ones. But iTunes, I have a monitor which comes in for me, so I might get them a little late, but I always get them.

This week here, I would like to thank Bryce Giesler who gave us 5-star rating from the US, and his rating goes:

Title: Plenty o’ Plugins

And what he had to say: I’ve been following this podcast for several months. Though I only support one website I have found several plugins that added features or helped me process things better. Good Job!

Well, thank you very much, Bryce. I really appreciate you taking the time out to add that review. And I’d really appreciate anyone else who hasn’t added a review to the iTunes Store, please go do that. That really helps the show increase in its rankings in iTunes – at least that’s what they tell me. I can’t – nobody can verify, but it seems to be shows that get lots of ratings rank well in iTunes.

All right, and this show is a value-for-value model, meaning if you get any value out of it at all – I mean any value – if it saves you five bucks, please donate $5. The money doesn’t make it to my pocket. I just don’t have that many people donating yet. All it ever does is help offset the costs that I put out to pay for transcripts, the server bandwidth space, me taking the time out of my working schedule to produce the show, etc. It never actually makes it into my pocket, but it is much appreciated and it’s really great that people can show their appreciation by donating something to the show.

All you’ve got to do to do that is go to wppluginsatoz.com/donate. Choose the amount you want to donate, it takes you to PayPal, donate that amount, and away we go. Also, another way you can help support the show is aside from monetary donations, I am working through the process of figuring out a decent way for people to submit artwork. I’m looking for additional artwork. I’m looking for – what is iTunes now? – a 2400 x 2400 image. I want to have a different artwork.

I’ve started several episodes back and I started changing the artwork for every show to just make it that much more interesting for the show, and it takes me time to create those. While I’m kind of limited, I’m not overly artsy – I’m okay at it, but really, if someone out there wants to create me something, I’ll be happy to supply you with a copy of the logo in a .png format that you can use. All you gotta do is place that on there somewhere and I’ll give you credit and shout-outs here on the show, so lots of kudos for it.

All right, next up I have here a plugin called WHA Crossword. Now, if you are running a newspaper type of website, this is a perfect little item for you. You know, I’ve had it asked me many years ago when I was helping someone with a newspaper website, they wanted a crossword plugin for their website. Well, they didn’t really exist and there were crossword websites out there that you could put crossword puzzles up there, but there was no real way to create something that was dynamic and interactive onto your WordPress website.

Well, I’ve discovered one. This is a relatively new plugin. As far as I can tell, it’s only a few months old and this popped up when I was searching for something else in the WordPress Repository. It’s amazing; you type in one keyword and you get some random plugins sometimes. At any rate, it looked kind of cool, so I thought I’d check it out, and it is actually rather cool. It’s completely blank when you start. You go in, you set it up. You pick the words you want and you start with your first word and then you make words and make sure that your additional words use at least one letter from the other words that you’ve got in there, and you create a clue for the word – a clue for the word and then you set up the colors you want on it.

They do have a premium version which allows you to modify it even further. But once it’s set up, you just pop a shortcode onto your page and poof, it creates an instant crossword onto your website for you. Really nice – it sets up, people fill out the crossword online. It tells them if they got the word right instantly; it tells them if they got it wrong instantly, so it highlights it in either green or red or any color you choose.

It’s just kind of a fun way to help keep people more interactive on your website, so come check this one out: WHA Crossword Puzzle. Even though it has a bit of a freemium version and I usually don’t give freemium plugins a 5, this was just so cool and set up so easily and actually works so well. I had to give this one a 5-Dragon rating.

[Dragon roar]

WHA Crossword.

All right, ClassicPress Options – and of course since the release of Gutenberg and its fallout, ClassicPraise – Classic Praise? We’ll call it ClassicPraise – I love my tripping. ClassicPress has garnered a lot of attention, and it is moving along quite nicely, and I have just started on to my first buildout of a pure ClassicPress website. So I’ve started it from the beginning, bring it down, and installing ClassicPress.

And of course this week’s plugin that I’m using for it is once I’ve started moving forward is I’m starting from the first few plugins I use and see how they work. This week’s plugin is Elementor for ClassicPress, and of course Elementor is a plugin but it’s also a theme. It’s a page builder but I wanted to see how it would work on a pure ClassicPress site, not something I converted but something I started from scratch.

Well, it installs excellently, and it sets up with no problem. So far, I’ve started building out just the front page of this site and it’s functioning just the way it should. And of course, Elementor – a fantastic plugin. I’ve started building websites from it. What I’m using for the theme for the Elementor plugin I’m using is one that was supplied to me by Jezweb at Jezweb.com.au, and I’m sure you’ve heard that name many times. He’s a great supporter of the show and he took the Hello theme and has customized it up for a much cleaner look.

I’ve left links to his Github repository for the theme if you want to go check it out, and it’s a really nice theme. I like the way it’s cleaned up the dashboard area and made it a little more usable. It’s a little confusing at first but once you get used to it, it’s fantastic. At any rate, Elementor, a fantastic plugin, and of course I’m using the pro version myself because I’m building out multiple sites on it. Go check it out. It works excellent in ClassicPress and of course it gets a 5-Dragon rating.

[Dragon roar]

All right, and a little side note about that. I did mention that I was building out my first ClassicPress website and one of the things I noticed on the install of the ClassicPress site is that it is much cleaner on its install. It has a minimal amount of junk on its install and I realized a couple of things that in there are kind of needed for new users, such as the default post, the default page, a couple of other little, miscellaneous things. But I’ve been using a plugin called Tasks After Install for a long time when I install a WordPress site from scratch. You go in and install this plugin. It removes all the junk plugins, all the junk themes – everything from the site that is all junk and leaves you just a pure, bare bones installation.

Well, what this plugin does to a ClassicPress site is it removes all the themes – the ones even specifically set for ClassicPress. It’s probably because it doesn’t recognize them as ClassicPress and they belong with the site, so it removes it all down and all you have left after you install using this Tasks After Install is the base necessity for running your dashboard area. You have nothing for frontend, so you have to go in and instantly install a theme if you want a frontend. I found it kind of interesting; it’s actually kind of a little cleaner to me for a fresh start, but all set up and well, so go check that one out.

Well, that wraps up everything here and a quick note. If you’re looking for a listing of ClassicPress-specific plugins, there’s a link in the show notes that’ll take you to the ClassicPress forum where they have a really nice listing of plugins. Right now, the list is kind of short but I’m sure it will grow more over time.

And that wraps it up for this show here, where I covered up Advanced Shipment for WooCommerce, which I gave a 3 to; Table Reservations, which I gave a 3 to; WooCommerce All Discounts, which I gave a 4 to; the WHA Crossword, which I gave a 5 to; and Elementor for ClassicPress, which I gave a 5 to.

And a couple of quick reminders… the next WordPress Meetup in Victoria is on May 21st and it will be broadcast live here on the YouTube channel, so make sure you go check it out. It’s at 6:30 p.m. For location and more information, just go to wppluginsatoz.com/meetup. It’ll take you directly to the Meetup here and the next presentation is going to be done by me and I’m going to be talking about maintenance and monitoring of your WordPress website to prevent issues.

You know, all the things you’ll want to do, plugins you’ll want to set up onto your site for monitoring your site, and this is especially useful if you’re like me and not into your websites every single day because you’ve got client work and other things interfere. You’ll want notifications if something is going wrong. So this is the stuff I’m going to be talking about. It’s going to be an interesting presentation. If you live in the Victoria area, please come down to the presentation and the Meetup, say hi to me, tell me you listen to the show. I’d be greatly appreciative. If not, well, watch us live on YouTube.

Don’t forget, subscribe to the YouTube channel for notifications of when the weekly show happens and notifications when I put up new videos. And if you have suggestions about plugins you would like to have reviewed, please submit them to the website at wppluginsatoz.com/submit and it’ll take you to the page where you can submit a plugin. You don’t have to be the developer to suggest a plugin to me. I’m always open to plugins for reviews.

And a final note to developers, if you would like to support the show and you have a premium plugin and you would like to donate a premium license to be used in a future contest, please go to wppluginsatoz.com/plugin-contest to set up all the information and donate to the show. I greatly appreciate it.

And before I head out, don’t forget after all the rolling credits I do stick around for a couple of minutes to chat with people if they want to. All right, so I’m going to let my girl take us out of here.

[Female speaker]

Reminders for the show: All the show notes can be found at wppluginsatoz.com, and while you’re there, subscribe to the Thursday newsletter for more useful information directly to your email inbox. Wppluginsatoz.com is a show that offers honest and unbiased reviews of plugins created by developers because you support the show. Help keep the show honest and unbiased by going to wppluginsatoz.com/donate and set the donation level that fits your budget.

Help us make the show better for you by subscribing and reviewing to the show at Stitcher Radio, Google Play, and in the iTunes Store. You can also watch the show live on YouTube, check out the screencasts and training videos, and remember to subscribe and hit the bell to get notification of all new videos. Also, follow the show on Twitter @wppluginsatoz.

John can be reached at his website at JohnOverall.com or send him an email, john@wppro.ca. Thanks for joining us and have a great day.

 [Outro]

Thanks for listening to the show. This show is copyright by JohnOverall.com. So until next time, have yourselves a good morning, good afternoon, or a good evening, wherever you happen to be out there on the globe today.

[Child giggling]

 

[End of Audio]

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