It’s easy to enjoy the WordPress plugin repository, with over 50,000 plugins available. You shouldn’t have so many plugins since more plugins mean more problems.
If your WordPress site has too many plugins installed, it might slow down to a crawl and cause many problems.
In order to make your site load as quickly as possible, it’s important to reduce the number of plugins you use.
Is it possible to have too many plugins on WordPress?
You can have issues with your WordPress site if you install too many plugins. Today, I’ll explain how. As well as answering the all-important question of how many plugins is too many to install, I will answer that as well.
Table of Contents
Maybe I’m Amazed at the Way Plugins Work
Plugins are unnecessary. Why bother installing them? In most cases, WordPress is not enough to meet your needs, despite its plethora of features.
Although the WordPress core is a great place to start, plugins give you the power to customize your site.
In addition to providing practical solutions such as SEO optimization, database caching and site speed up, they also offer decent security. Yet that’s just scratching the surface.
Additionally, plugins are available for every aspect of your website that you could possibly want. If your website needs eCommerce, hosting, or membership features, there is a plugin for it.
It’s a fact that if you’re aiming for a robust site with lots of features, you’re going to need some WordPress plugins.
WordPress has more than 50,000 plugins available in its plugin repository.
Plugins, Don’t Let Me Down
There is a risk of problems on your site increasing as you add more plugins to it.
How Many WordPress Plugins Should You Install?
Problem #1: Increase in HTTP Requests
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Your front end can be enhanced a lot with plugins. It may be possible to allow visitors to book appointments or shop for physical items or digital products.
HTTP requests use up server resources every time they are sent. Resources are used more as more messages are sent. A server that uses all its resources crashes (and your website too).
You definitely don’t want that to happen since your visitors won’t be able to view anything until everything is back up and running.
The request processing time is also an issue. You’ll notice a slower loading time on your site if you have more HTTP requests than it takes for it to complete.
The processing power of your brain is similar to that of HTTP requests. Even if you have to solve only one little problem, it’s not difficult. However, if you have to solve hundreds of them, it’s nearly impossible. Tiredness and sluggishness stop you from solving problems.
Your brain will say “That’s enough!” if worst comes to worst.No matter how small the problem, she won’t accept it.
Problem #2: Too Many Database Queries
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Too many database queries can also be a problem brought forward by plugins when it comes to HTTP requests.
Databases contain much of the information on your WordPress website. It takes time and resources to load each page and request information from your database.
With a query, you are putting a strain on your database, similar to HTTP requests, and therefore the speed of your site suffers.
Problem #3: Bloated Database
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Your WordPress site’s database expands as more plugins are installed.
The more information you collect in your database, the bigger and bloated it gets until you are all out of storage space on your server and database.
In particular, this leads to a slow website because your database runs inefficiently.
Deactivated plugins are less problematic, but they still add bloat to your database. It is possible for plugins to store stray data even after they have been deleted.
Problem #4: Compatibility Issues
You are more likely to run into a compatibility problem as you install more plugins. That occurs when a plugin’s code does not work well with another plugin.
Machine gears are like this. It is possible for two gears to rotate simultaneously when their teeth are compatible. The gears will grind together if those teeth are not lining up properly, causing the machine and gears to fail.
There are many plugins out there, and since they are not all developed by the same developer, it is difficult to ensure that they all work well together.
It’s worth noting that there are more than 50,000 plugins in the WordPress repository alone. Testing one plugin against all the others available is virtually impossible.
Problem #5: Security Holes
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Accidental security vulnerabilities are easy to create. Security holes can be missed even by the smartest and most talented developers because they aren’t always obvious.
If you use too many plugins, then it can be exploited by a hacker to infiltrate your site and infect it with malware.
Problem #6: Poorly Coded Plugins
Nobody’s perfect–er, I mean nobody makes a mistake–no matter how hard we try. The same applies to plugins.
Statistically speaking, it is impossible to write 100% error-free code — no matter what level of developer you are.
There will be bugs in every plugin, but there are also some plugins out there that are incredibly poorly coded. They damage your site in many ways, as described above.
Plaster and wood can be used to build a dam. If the dam collapses then you are suggesting that the surrounding city be flooded.
Poorly-coded plugins are almost always going to cause problems.
We Can Work it Out
These are the few tried and tested ways to solve the problem. Lets go through them:-
- Plugins with multiple functions – Install plugins that have more than one feature you need to reduce the number of plugins you use.
- Reduce your plugin usage – Using fewer plugins decreases the chance of encountering issues.
- You should only keep what you need. Look at your plugins and deactivate those you do not use. It’s a good idea to delete any downloaded apps you’ve not used in a long time or won’t use in the future.
- Ensure that your plugins are clean and lightweight by reviewing their code. It is better to research the plugins you would like if this is not possible. Review plugins before downloading them and only download them from developers and companies you trust.
- Spring cleaning your database – Take steps to remove bloat from your database regularly.
- Ensure your website is hosted properly – All web hosts are not alike. Pick a website host appropriate for your site’s needs – When choosing a web host, do your research and choose an appropriate plan.
- If you’re installing plugins on a live site, make sure you test them first on a staging or a local environment. Then, any issues can be caught before they reach the live site.
- If you run into one of the problems mentioned above, back up your site often so that you don’t lose everything. Your site can be restored to a previous state if you do so.
- You can take measures to ensure your site is secure by installing a security plugin. You can then either fix the problem or delete the plugin to prevent (further) damage.
- By regularly updating and maintaining plugins, you reduce the risk of running into malfunctioning plugins that are unlikely to receive necessary bug fixes.
How Many Plugins is Too Many?
What is the right number of plugins? The number isn’t fixed.
As a general rule of thumb, all the factors mentioned above have an effect, but here is a more detailed guide:
- 0 to 5 plugins for shared hosting or budget cloud hosting
- In general, cloud hosting, virtual private servers, and dedicated servers – generally 5-20, but ideally 10 or fewer
This general recommendation has the drawback of being general. I’ve seen sites with over 1,000 plugins installed that ran like lightning.
There’s no set number for plugins on a WordPress site, but following the tips I gave above will help you figure out the ideal number.
What is the number of WordPress plugins you have installed on your site?
When you load your site, how fast is it? Is there anything I missed? Comment below with your experience.