The Social Network, a true story about how the massive social network goliath Facebook came to be. Good movie, at least I thought so.
Back when Facebook was first launched in 2005 or so, there were not easily accessible tools for newbies to create any form of website, let alone a website meant for social networking, there was just a small handful back then like MySpace and Facebook, and maybe a few other much smaller ones as well.
Today is different however, the online world has changed and website creation is a much more simple and enjoyable process, with entire website design platforms available to you, and plenty of cool add on’s and plugins to choose from to change and enhance your website in many different ways, like the BuddyPress plugin as an example.
BuddyPress is another really awesome, free plugin for WordPress that can help to increase the interactions within your site. What to learn more about it? Then please read on.
Why Would You Want This Plugin?
I’ve said it before and it’s still the truth today, Google likes seeing natural, positive interactions between users on a site, it tells Google that people find value and worth in your site, which will in turn lead to better rankings within Google.
The BuddyPress plugin helps to create opportunities for those natural interactions by adding various social network features to your site, allowing for you to more easily cultivate a niche community within your site, which is something you most certainly want going for you. It adds all sorts of awesome features such as personal profiles for your users, a friends list system, notifications, private messaging between users, group creation and more features I suggest you take the time to check out yourself should you decide to download this plugin.
Also keep in mind that just like WordPress, BuddyPress is an opensource project, meaning designers and programmers that use this plugin themselves also have the ability to fix problems and add new functionality to it, and this plugin has a good sized community contributing to it.
Assuming you do want to snag this plugin for your website, I went ahead and wrote up a quick set up guide to get your new plugin up and operational as soon as possible, check it out!
Quick Set Up Guide
Head to the WordPress plugin catalog and look up the BuddyPress plugin, created by The BuddyPress Community. Activate it, open up your installed plugins and enter the settings area, where you can see the different components of the social network plugin.
There are a bunch of different options, but we just need to make sure the more important parts of this plugin are activated before you can determine what else you want to activate or not. Make sure that extended profiles is active so users can make their own profiles to tell more about themselves, also make sure that account settings is active so they can change certain things about their account such as how notifications work.
The private message option and friend connection option may not be activated by themselves upon instillation so make sure that both of those are also active as they are both obvious components for a website with social aspects to it. Double make sure that the BuddyPress Core and the Community Members functions are active to finish off on this page and then make sure to save before we move on.
Once you save you can move on to the pages section where you can make sure that the plugin creates the two new pages for your activity stream and for your members area, which it should have baring any unusual issues. Final thing to make sure is in order is the options section which allows you to enable features such as the ability to delete profile accounts, allows them to upload avatars or images and a couple other things, most of which should be already selected for you, but I encourage you to do some playing around to your personal liking, although there isn’t much to mess around with.
This should be all that’s needed to get the plugin properly working, anything else as I said I encourage you to check out for yourself to see what you feel would work best for you and your users.
BuddyPress truly is a fantastic plugin that anyone with a blog/niche site should consider taking advantage of, it could really add a sense of depth to your site that may be exactly what is missing for your readers, who knows?
Well I would imagine there is a good chance you may know, but you get my point. Whatever the case I really do hope this quick set up guide helped you to discover a useful new plugin for you to try out and experience.
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I appreciate you taking the time to read through this quick set up guide, do you have anything you would also like to add? Feedback on BuddyPress you feel should be shared with fellow readers? Or maybe you have a better alternative to this plugin entirely, whatever the case I want to hear what you have to say, so please make sure to leave your thoughts in the comments below.
Thank you again for reading,