WordPress is a great content management system that helps many of the less tech-savvy bloggers, small business owners and even celebrities keep their websites running with a good deal of efficiency. This is the age of seemingly unlimited access to various forms of media, and we humans like our media nice and shiny – we want to be able to see it and see lots of it. Whether you are looking for a way to organize your team page, showcase your products, display your art or just provide a wealth of images and videos to go with your written content, you will be in need of an efficient way of presenting all of the above to the anxious member of the online public that has come across your website. Being a user friendly and accommodating CMS that it is, WordPress allows you to utilize a huge variety of plugins to help you customize your website. Installing the plugins in this article is a breeze and they have been chosen in regards to several key criteria: they are easy to use, they offer ample opportunity for customization and they are all responsive.
Now, I can’t stress this enough, having a responsive design is a very important thing in an age when about half the time people access your website, they will do that using a smartphone or a tablet – devices that have pretty small display areas, when compared to laptops and desktop computers. It is particularly annoying to try to view images on a website that doesn’t support these compact devices, so a lot of people will stay clear of such websites, which means that these websites will end up losing a good deal of traffic. You don’t want this to happen to you. I’ll take the liberty to assume that you are responsible for maintaining a WordPress website – since you are reading an article on WordPress plugins it’s not that big of a guess really – and offer you several great responsive plugins that I think you will find useful.
A somewhat minimalistic, straight-to-the-point squared grid, the uSquare plugin offers a checkered layout switching between squares containing images and squares containing descriptions or other texts.
Clicking an image reveals additional information in the form of scrollable text with icons that allow you to share content or contact a person through social networks or via email. You can fit quite a bit of text in the dedicated squares as you have the ability to scroll down through the text, which adds to the overall utility. There are also a number of customizable icons, which you can also scroll through, available at the bottom of each square – so it’s easy to see that you are getting a great deal of functionality in a tightly knit package.
uSquare is fully customizable, offering a number of colors, backgrounds, fonts and adjustable item proportions. You can add as many items as you like and rearrange them with ease – by simply dragging and dropping. It is useful for creating team pages or showcasing products, designs and art pieces.
2. Slider Revolution
Slider Revolution gives you an opportunity to create a full-width slider that is fully responsive and allows the content to remain readable to search engines. A variety of customization actions can be performed to truly make it your own.
It offers unlimited Caption Layers and the image and thumbs can be sized according to your preferences. You can display a full screen video as well, and the plugin is supported by YouTube and Vimeo. Slider revolution is very easy to integrate into your website and pretty simple to use.
One of the features that grabbed my attention was the multitude of caption animation types (10 different types) and slide transitions (20 different transitions) that further help you with choosing the precise formula that is best suited to your website.
3. Easy Media Gallery
The Easy Media Gallery plugin can be used to display image galleries, portfolios but is suitable for single images, video and audio files and Google maps. It can help you organize and showcase various media and it also allows you to share your content on a number of social media sites.
The plugin is also very useful for putting media inside articles with the option to align it to the left, right or in the center. The media is presented in the form of thumbnails, which can be clicked and opened up to their full viewing size, on the front and center of the screen.
The Easy Media Gallery is a great plugin for big blogs that have trouble packing a number of media files into their articles efficiently, as well as for websites with large image galleries that can easily be divided into subcategories or displayed all at once.
4. Thumbnail Scroller
The Thumbnail Scroller plugin is an ideal solution for a website that has plenty of high-quality images to offer and needs an adequate way to display thumbnails. The layout is fully responsive and customisable with over 80 different options and the ability to play a slide show.
You are not restricted in the number of images that you can display, and the scroller can easily be converted into a full-on image scroller if you so choose. With this plugin, you also have the ability to embed YouTube and Vimeo clips as well as show thumbnails at random.
The Thumbnail scroller is a great example of a simple and effective solution to a common problem – you can implement it really quickly, it can be customized in a great number of ways and can be modified to function as an image scroller.
These plugins have all been chosen for their utility and responsiveness, and they can cover most of your basic needs regarding image galleries, image and thumbnail scrolling, efficient slider designs, displaying a large amount of items and relevant information, without cluttering up the screen as well as managing and incorporating other media into your articles. This is a wide range of capabilities that you can cover with these few tools, and I believe that having a small number of highly functional tools is better than amassing a huge number of tools of dubious quality.