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Plugins are generally specified lines of codes that give added features to your website. In WordPress, plugins are those that make the most of your site’s work simpler. It helps in various ways to increase your site productivity, traffic, and whatnot. There are several free, freemium, and premium plugins available out there in the WordPress plugin store. If you power your site with WordPress, then the foremost thing that you should know is how to install a WordPress plugin. We are here to guide you on all possible ways to install plugins on your WordPress site.

Ways to Install WordPress Plugins

There are lots of ways to install a plugin on your WordPress and most of them are pretty simple. Some of the best ways are

  • From the WordPress Plugin Store
  • Add Plugin Manually
  • Upload Plugin via FTP
  • Upload Plugin via cPanel

Note: Before adding any of the plugins to your WordPress site, it is important to have a backup of your WordPress site to safeguard data.

How to Install Plugins from the WordPress Plugins Store

WordPress has its own official plugin store where you can find over 60,000+ plugins for instant installation and activation. They are available as both free and premium. Also, all the plugins available here are verified by WordPress for complete viability before it gets added to the store.

[1] From your WordPress dashboard, click on the Plugins section.

[2] Choose Add New from the menu.

Add New
[3] In the Search bar, search any of your required plugins.

[4] Click on Install Now to install the plugin on your WordPress.

How to Install WordPress Plugins
[5] Once installed, click on Activate to make the plugin available on your site.

Activate plugin

Upload Plugin Manually

Also, WordPress allows you to install a plugin that is not available on the WordPress plugin store. It can be done by uploading the plugin as a zip file on your WordPress. Some of the popular WordPress plugins repositories are Envato, Codecanyon, Themeforest, etc. Also if you are a user, then you should have a Business plan to upload the plugin manually.

[1] From your browser, download the plugin zip file from the respective website.

[2] Go to the WordPress dashboard and click on the Plugins section from the dashboard.

[2] Choose Add New from the plugin menu.

How to Install WordPress Plugins
[3] Click on the Upload Plugin button next to Add Plugins heading.

Upload Plugin
[4] Click on Choose File to locate the zip file of the plugin and click on Open.

Choose Plugin file
[5] Once the plugin is uploaded, click on Install Now to unpack and install the plugin.

[6] After installation, click on Activate Plugin to avail the plugin in your WordPress site and editor.

How to Install WordPress Plugins

Disclaimer: Plugins that are added manually may need to be configured to your site settings or else it may malfunction your site. Also, the configuration process differs among various plugins.

Related: How to RollBack WordPress Plugins & Themes. This guide will greatly help you in case if your plugin doesn’t suit the version of your WordPress CMS. In that case, roll back your plugins to previous versions to make it work.

Upload Plugin via FTP

This method is very helpful to know because sometimes due to restrictions the WordPress and the hosting service may not allow you to upload or install the plugin manually on your WordPress site. In that case, FTP is the only way to install a plugin on your WordPress website.

[1] Download the plugin as a zip file from any site.

[2] Extract the zip file to a folder with the same name (name of the plugin).

[3] Launch the FTP client on your PC and log in with the username & password provided by the host.

[4] Inside the FTP, go to /wp-content/plugins/ folder on the web server.

[4] Drag and drop the plugin folder or just right-click on choose Upload to add the plugin to your WordPress site.

Upload Plugin in FTP
[5] Once the file is uploaded, open your WordPress Dashboard.

[6] Go to the Plugins section and click on Installed Plugins.

How to Install WordPress Plugins
[7] Navigate to the plugin uploaded via FTP from the list of available plugins.

[8] Click on Activate to make the plugin available on your WordPress site.

Activate Plugin

Disclaimer: Again, as discussed above, manually added plugins must be configured to your site settings to avoid possible malfunctioning.

Upload Plugin via cPanel

[1] Download the plugin file as .zip from any external site like Envato, Codecanyon, etc.

[2] Go to cPanel provided by your web hosting service.

[3] Under the Files section, click on File manager.

File Manager - cPanel
[4] From the directory section, click on Public_html and select the wp-content folder.

[5] Here scroll down and choose the Plugins folder.

Plugin folder
[6] Click on Upload on the top and locate the plugin file on your PC.

[7] Once the zip file has been uploaded, right-click on the file and choose Extract from the context menu.

[8] Enter the extraction path to the plugins folder which is added by default (The path is public_html/wp-content/plugins).

Extraction path
[9] A popup appears after successful extraction, click on Close.

[10] After successful installation, get back to the WP dashboard.

[11] Go to the plugin section and navigate to the plugin installed via cPanel.

[12] Click on Activate to make use of the plugin on your WordPress site.

Activate plugin

Disclaimer: Plugins that are added manually may need to be configured to your site settings or else it may result in malfunctioning of your site. Also, the configuration process differs among various plugins.


These are some of the simple and most important ways by which you can add plugins to your WordPress. You can also add plugins from the WordPress Plugin Repository via web hosting services like GoDaddy Pro, Bluehost, Sitegator, etc. To do so, simply drag and drop the zip file on your site, or in some cases, you can add it from the settings. Hope this guide helps you add plugins to your WordPress site in several ways. Also, here are some of the best WordPress plugins you should check out on your WordPress site. If you are facing any issues or queries on installing the plugin in WordPress, make use of the comments section below.

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