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How to Install WordPress Plugins

When someone installs WordPress, the first thing that comes to their mind is how to install themes and plugins on WordPress.

In this article, we will show you step by step how you can install plugins in WordPress and activate them.

Keep in mind that you can install WordPress plugins only on WordPress.org and not on WordPress.com as there is a difference between both platforms.

If you are not familiar with this, you can check out our comparison between WordPress.org and WordPress.com, to understand more what they offer and how they are used.

How to install plugins in WordPress

Adding plugins to WordPress can happen in 2 different ways by either installing them from inside WordPress or installing them with a ZIP file.

Installing WordPress plugins from search

First of all, you will need to go to the WordPress dashboard and locate the plugins option.

Once you hover on it a tab will appear and you will need to click on add new.

On the top right corner of the screen, you should be able to see a search form, in which you will be placing the name of the plugin you wish to search for.

Type in the name of the plugin and when the search has finished, results will start popping up on the screen.

You can find the plugin that you wish to install, hover on it and click install. When the install finishes, you only need to click activate, if you wish to start using the plugin.

Installing WordPress plugins from ZIP files

Installing plugins from ZIP files isn’t a hard task and will require you to do it every time you download or buy a WordPress plugin.

So if you wish to install WordPress plugins in ZIP files, you will need to go to the WordPress dashboard and hover on the plugins tab.

From there you click on add new and on the top next to Add Plugins, you will see a button, which says upload plugin.

Click on the button upload plugin and then on the next button, which says choose file.

You will have to pick the plugin’s ZIP and choose the option open. Once the file has been chosen, the button install now will get lit and you will need to click it.

When the installation process finishes, you will have to click activate if you wish to start using this plugin.

Frequently Asked Questions about Installing WordPress plugins

My WordPress add plugin button is missing?

If your add plugins button is missing or the plugins tab is not opening, here’s what you can do:

  • Disable all of your WordPress plugins and see if that helps.
  • Check if you have administrator permissions.
  • Disable your current theme and use any default WordPress theme.
  • Check your WP-config.php file if it has – define (‘DISALOW_FILE_MODS’ , true); and change it to false.
  • If the problem continues and you have a clean WordPress installation, you can uninstall and install WordPress back.

Why can’t I install plugins on WordPress?

If you can’t install plugins on WordPress you will need to check if you have administrator permissions or granted permissions to install, delete or modify existing plugins.

Another reason for that could be that you are having an issue with WP, and you need to follow the previous question and see if that resolves your issue.

Why can’t I install plugins on WordPress.com?

If you are using the free version of WordPress.com you will not have permission to install any plugins on your website.

Except if you are paying for the WordPress.com business plan, which costs $299 per year, you will not be able to download any plugins.

How to install plugins in WordPress without business plan?

There is currently no way to install plugins on WordPress.com if you don’t have the business plan bought.

You can either switch to WordPress.org, which offers you freedom, but you pay for hosting, or sign up for the WordPress.com business plan.

Can I use plugins with WordPress org?

Yes, you can use plugins in WordPress.org as it gives you full freedom, but you will need to be the administrator of the site, or have permission to install plugins.

Where do I download plugins?

You can download WordPress plugins either from WordPress plugin authors and their relative websites, or just find any plugin in the WordPress repository.