I know, you’ve seen a million “Top Ten WordPress Plugins” posts over the years. A quick Google Search will yield about 5,400,000 results. But while these top-ten lists are as common as they frequently are helpful, what about the top ten WordPress plugins that don’t exist yet?
Or, better yet, what about the WordPress plugins that I just wish existed?
If I had a WordPress Genie who granted me ten plugins (with no limits as to practicality or any such nonsense), these are the ones I would come up with. If any of these really do exist in some obscure corner of the Internet – well, we’ll just call that “progress.”
1. Click-and-Drag Design
I paid $400 for the WordPress template I use on my personal blog (sorry, no links here), so it would sure make things easier if you could design your own Template as easily as PhotoShop.
Instead of fiddling with ad code and trying to place it in just the right spot, you could just click and drag some AdSense ads, plop ‘em right where you want ‘em, and be done with it. Then you’d click “update” and your template would look exactly as it did in the preview.
2. AutoTemplate Suggest
Somewhat similar to #1, what if WordPress could incorporate with your Google Analytics (see #9), see where visitors most like visiting, and recommend where to click-and-drag your design?
AutoTemplate suggest will tell you which ads get the most hits, where you might make improvements, and what belongs “above the fold,” so to speak.
Even better, you could click “accept suggestions” and AutoTemplate Suggest would change it for you. Not too shabby.
3. AutoModerate Comments
The theme of “Auto-something-or-other” is going to be a common one in this list. Check out the current admin tab of my blog’s WordPress page:
That amount of comments isn’t exactly because my blog is popular – it’s about 30,000 comments full of Viagra peddling, porn-linking garbage that’s collected in such a heap I don’t know what to do with it.
There are already plugins out there that help to handle comments, but I don’t want to waste time busting spam or reviewing heaps of comments. This is 2008: can’t a robot handle that?
4. Topic Suggester
I don’t know about you, but sometimes thinking up fun/interesting topics doesn’t always exactly come easy. Topic Suggester would scrape the content of your blog, see which topics are popular, as well as look at some other similar blogs, and then whip up five suggestions.
Or, in the spirit of customization, you could have it whip up 10, 15, or even 20 suggestions. It is a robot, after all.
With these five suggestions, you choose which you like, and then click “write,” and you’re off to the races.
5. Full vBulletin Integration
Obviously this one’s only relevant to you vBulletin users, but if you do use it, I imagine this one would have a big impact.
Imagine writing posts on WordPress, having them publish not only on your blog, but published directly to your vBulletin Forums. These posts would take just one publishing – like a normal WordPress blog – but would work under both your WordPress and vBulletin accounts, which I imagine would be merged.
vBulletin stats and comments could then be integrated to the admin page of WordPress. Basically, they just need to become one.
Similar to #4, this plugin would take some content you wrote, do a Google search and then recommend some relevant links that might enhance the content and quality of your blog post.
You wouldn’t have to include these, but if you activated this plugin, it would show you some recommended links, and you’d click “Add this,” along with some content to explain it, to insert it into your post.
Also, you should be able to click and drag this new content into the post you’ve already written so that it appears in the right context.
One of the first things you’ll notice about WordPress and the search engine traffic it brings you is that if you have a unique category title, you’ll probably find your site on the #1 page for the same keyword. A top ten WordPress plugin I wish existed would simply be this: a suggestion for category titles.
It would scrap your content, see what you most often write about, and then scrape the Web to see what kind of keywords you could target and place for. Not bad, eh?
8. Ad Integration
I run AdSense on my blog, and it’s a bit of a pain to maintain two accounts to check – the WordPress admin page and the AdSense account. It would be great if these could be merged somehow, or if WordPress could at least report the AdSense stats (or whatever automated ads you use) in the Admin function.
Generally, as much as all of these aspects of blogging can be unified onto a single dashboard, the better. It’d be great to log on to one blog page and see this:
“Good morning, Dan, your blog made $15.43 in ad revenue yesterday. Would you like to write a post? Here are 5 article suggestions. We’ve also recommended a template update for you. To review and make this update, click here.”
Hey: dare to dream.
9. Google Analytics Integration
The same as above, only with Google Analytics. This would also tie in to #2, which reviews your navigation and structure for the site and recommends how to monetize it better.
10. AutoHide Comments
When you start a new blog and don’t exactly have much of a following yet, it’d be nice if it didn’t say something to the effect of “ZERO COMMENTS, NO ONE LOVES THIS BLOG” after every post. (And are the capital letters necessary?)
This one’s simple enough that probably exists in some WordPress templates, but I’d prefer it if it said “Comment on this post!” when there aren’t any comments yet, and then only reported the comment count after a set limit (like 1 or 2 comments, for starters) has been surpassed.
That’s it for the make-believe plugins; I’m sure you’ve found some you liked, some you dislike, and some you went “ha! Impossible!” But we can only hope that some young, enterprising designer comes across these make-believe plugins and says “Hmm – you know, I might be able to get on that.”