The Future of WordPress Plugins: What to Expect

In the sphere of WordPress, 2015 was one of the greatest years. With so many advancements including stable core releases, high profile hissy fits and unveiling of some high quality plugins, what are we to expect in 2016?

What does the future hold for WordPress plugins? Interestingly, more is expected to change in the coming years with the following being some of the notable predictions.

Growth of Premium Plugin Market

The premium themes market has had its share of progress in WordPress. But recently, premium plugins and functionality they add to themes also found their ways into many people’s hearts. In a research done by Scott Bolinger on the most successful WordPress businesses, premium plugin developers were pointed out as the people who have a fair portion of dominance in the coveted list.

Established firms like Gravity Forms and Yoast have continually made fortunes out of this business. The entire aspect of plugins in WordPress has not been at the forefront until now. With much focus being laid on the same, greater success is anticipated in the world of commercial plugins. The demand for plugin developers will be higher than expected with the trend holding on for the next couple of years.

More Radical Changes in Plugin Landscape; thanks to WP REST API

At the rate it is currently being implemented into new WordPress products, the WP REST API is bound to take the WordPress world by a huge storm. Not only will it override the limits of existing plugins, but also transform WordPress into a more palatable and powerful platform.

Rest API stands for Representational State Transfer Application Programming Interface. This allows for connecting between two different applicationsUser friendly (WordPress and something else) and it works by following these standards:

  • Light
  • User friendly
  • HTTP based (thus compatible with almost anything on the internet)
  • Can transfer big loads
    With WordPress becoming a fully-fledged application framework, more specific changes are expected in the plugins sphere. These include:
  • Increased third party integrations – Blending of this API and tools like Zapier opens new doors for integration of third party applications. In the next couple of months set your eyes wide open to see an array of plugins designed to connect WordPress with business-oriented applications.
    With such an expected rapid increase, the significance of WordPress in the corporate arena is bound to rise even more. Try to be among the first and adopt the new API to make the most of your WordPress products.
  • Friendlier Plugins and Mobile Apps– Most internet users spend their time on mobile devices. More precisely, they spend a greater portion of this time in apps. Apparently, WordPress has been preparing itself for this phase. With WordPress for Android and WordPress on iTunes.
    WordPress is bound to find its way through the walls of mobile environment; an area that has remained impermeable to them for so long.
Scaling Beyond WordPress

With the emergence of this powerful API, most developers will no longer be limited to PHP and the current plugin framework. Instead, they will be free to choose a coding language of their preferences and thereby create the possibility of plugins moving outside WordPress. WP Rest API will bridge the gap between languages and transfer functionality to WordPress on demand.

This might not take overnight but will eventually come to happen. We are still at the beginning of the REST API era and so much is subject to change. Despite the humble beginning, there are already great projections of revolutionised plugins platform. The future of plugins is largely based on this. To the users, it will be a big win because WordPress will be opening itself to a more sustaining programmatic world, which means more plugins are on the way.

From Plugins to Mini Platforms

WordPress is speedily spreading its wings and grounding roots in the hearts of many consumers. Renowned plugin masters like Easy Digital Downloads, Gravity Forms and WooCommerce are already leading the way by offering their reliable APIs for others to build on.

This approach is more desirable to plugin makers regardless of their niche. Whether they are into ecommerce plugins or targeting specific, this strategy will build a world of mini platforms.

The world should better be prepared for it. WooCommerce success has already exposed the potential benefits of exploring this strategy. Very soon, others will be in.

International Plugins

WordPress is bound to go beyond the current 25% share of the world market. It will soon find grounds in non-English speaking nations. For a long time, WordPress has had its eyes set on internationalisation and localization. This has remained on top of their priorities long enough. In WordCamp Europe, Matt Mullenweg confirmed to a live audience that it is where WordPress is moving.

In the coming months, active plugins are bound to be imported in WordPress.org from where they will be translated to other languages. There might not be a fixed schedule for rolling out this plan but it will eventually happen. Finally, the non-English speaking consumers will have a use for the majority of WordPress’ most popular plugins.

If you in the business of producing WordPress plugins, you should probably pay someone to translate them to several of of the most used international languages. You’ll greatly extend your reach.

A perfect Premium Store for Plugins

The world is eagerly waiting for that time when WordPress will offer an advanced plugin directory. Matt Mullenweg has been on the record saying there might never be a premium plugin store. The argument has always been that they are already available on plugin developers’ sites and renowned commercial plugin marketplaces, such as CodeCanyon.

With the expected growth in plugins, it is apparent that CodeCanyon will no longer remain the only shark in this ocean. The idea might seem speculative, but soon enough however, the gap will be wide for everyone to see. Among the likely suitors for this challenge will be Automattic, a company that stands behind WordPress, Jetpack, VaultPress and other plugins found in the WordPress.org repository.

Web-Dorado plugins have helped to elevate WordPress from a mere blogging platform into a notable Content Management System. We invite you to try them and empower your WordPress based website.

We are proud to have been a part of this exciting journey, so we’ll continue to go forward and be one of the game changers in the world of WordPress plugins.

Web developer Richard Sutherland has been working with WordPress, Joomla, Drupal and other content management systems for over a decade. Graduating from Edinburgh’s Heriot-Watt University in 2000 with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science, Richard has held a number of prominent website development roles at major companies such as Samsung, ASDA and Prudential.

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