The next thing we’re going to talk about is installing plugins on a Genesis theme website. There are two methods of installing plugins. The first method is the Quick Installation Method and this is actually the method you’re going to use the most often. It’s simple, it’s quick, it’s easy and you’ll get accustomed to it very quickly.
The second method is the traditional FTP Method. I’m going to teach you this because it’s an essential skill to have. I began teaching this in Lesson 4, Set Up Your FTP System. FTP is an absolutely essential skill for you to have because sometimes automatic installation, automatic upgrades, those don’t work properly and you really need to use the manual system to do that.
I’m going to teach you both methods and I want you to keep in mind that the FTP method is an essential skill.
I’m surprised by the people that are confused by this. If you’re uncomfortable with FTP, you need to go back and look at Lesson 4, practice it and just follow what I’m teaching here tonight. Maybe what you should do at first is only use the FTP method of adding plugins. At least that way you become accustomed to using FTP, accustomed to using FileZilla, using synchronized browsing and having that system in place. Once you’re there and are comfortable with that then you’ve got the tool set down.
Quick Installation Method
Having said that, we’re going to start off with the easy tool set. The easy way to install is essentially to come over here and say, Add New which can be found either under the menu on the left here or up here with this button. Then you are given a choice, you can search for a plugin and that’s the main screen that shows up but you can select upload or you upload a plugin from your computer that you’ve downloaded.
WordPress Featured Plugins
WordPress features a bunch of different plugins and you can look at their featured plugins, you could go to the popular plugins which is based on the number of downloads. I don’t know if it’s in any given month, I think that’s probably what it is, just something like that.
Then you can look at the newest plugins. These newest plugins are based on date, this plugin was just updated probably today or within the last few hours. This is a way for you to look up plugins that are the newest. The chances are, the one you’re going to use is Search.
What we’re going to do is to install the NextGEN Gallery using this feature and we’re going to search for NextGEN. Having searched for it, now everything with NextGEN and its name comes up. What we really want is the NextGEN Gallery which is this one right here, this is the main NextGEN Gallery.
Installing this is as simple as saying, Install Now and say, “Yes, I really do want to install this plugin”. Once the plugin is installed, it doesn’t automatically gets activated. It tells you that it’s been downloaded, it’s been unpacked, it’s been installed and that it’s successfully installed it but if you want to activate it, you have to select the Activate Plugin here.
Once we’ve selected Activate Plugin, now that plugin has been activated. With it being activated you can see the NextGEN Gallery shows up in the menu over here now. These are all the settings for this plugin.
We’re going to configure the NextGEN Gallery at the end of this session so we’re just demonstrating how to use the automatic quick installation method for installing the plugin, we won’t worry about setting it up at the moment. That was really simple, wasn’t it?
The next thing we’re going to do is use the FTP system for doing this. We’re going to start off by opening up FileZilla. If you’re not familiar with FileZilla, go back and look at Lesson 4 on how to set this up. We go to wordpress.org, go to plugins and we’re going to search for the plugin, Genesis Favicon.
This is the Genesis Favicon uploader and we’ll just download it from their site, I’m going to show it in its folder, move it to where I want it, cut that out, go over to my documents, my business website, WordPress, wp-content, plugins and I’m going to paste it there.
Upload a Plugin Using FileZilla
What I’m going to do is unzip it and when it’s unzipped, I can upload it using FileZilla. Let’s refresh our view and here we have the Genesis Favicon uploader. The way this works is once you’ve got the plugin downloaded to your computer and unzipped to your location, all you do is upload it from your local computer to your remote location.
If any of that seems mystical to you, go back and look at Lesson 4, look at the file structure that I suggest that you set up and how to set up synchronized browsing. What we’ve just done is upload this Genesis Favicon uploader to the remote site over there. If we come back over to our site, and we refresh the plugins panel, you’ll see it showing there, Genesis Favicon uploader. What we have to do is activate it.
That’s the manual method, it’s essentially searching for the plugin. You end up doing this with my plugins which are not on wordpress.org so you get to download the plugins from my website to your local computer then you upload them from your local computer to your website. We’ll be doing a whole bunch of that and this is the process.
We’ve got our Genesis Favicon uploader. Since we’ve got this thing installed, we’re going to use the Favicon uploader and we’re going to add a Favicon. Now, what’s a Favicon?
What is a Favicon?
A Favicon is this icon right here. It’s this little image that shows up in your favorites bar, you can see this Favicon showing up in my favorites bar and shows up in the tab. It’s a way for you to provide branding for your website. The Favicon is a special kind of image, it’s an ICO image and the thing you want to do is, if you’ve already got one, that’s great but if you don’t have one, you want to create one.
How to Create a Favicon
I want to show you how to create one. We’ll start off actually by going back to our lesson page because I’ve got a link to my favorite Favicon creator which is favicon.cc and you can use that link. Essentially, this is like a paint by numbers kind of thing where you can change your colors and do stuff. If you don’t put color in it, it’s transparent so it’s either colored or it’s transparent.
You can definitely do this although I think what probably works better is for you to create what you think is an appropriate icon and to import that image into this rather than coloring it from scratch. We can import an image, we choose an image and for example, I could choose my face.
You could take that headshot, import it and we’ll keep the dimensions. What it does is it samples that image, takes that image and turns it into a Favicon. You can see down here what it looks like. If you’ve seen my picture before elsewhere, that’s not the worst representation of it ever although really, there’s too many colors and the face is too small.
This isn’t really a good example of one but you could pick one that is a good example. For example I’m going to pick another one, this image here would make a good Favicon. I can select that, hit open and upload. See, that’s actually a pretty good Favicon. You can see what it looks like down here, it’s readable just like my BYOB Website gal.
Once you’ve done this, you can select download Favicon, it’ll download to that place in your computer and you can see what that Favicon looks like. Notice its name, favicon.ico, that is critical to this system working. You don’t get to name it whatever you want to name it, it has to be an ico file and it has to be called favicon so it automatically does that for you when you download this.
I’ll show that in my folder, I’m going to cut it from there, come back over to my documents, my business website and images, I’m going to paste the Favicon here. Now I’ve got my Favicon there and we’re going to add this Favicon to the page using that plugin.
Add Favicon to the Genesis Theme
I activated this Genesis Favicon uploader plugin and here under the Genesis theme menu, the Upload Favicon is a menu item. We’ll select Upload Favicon, choose a file and we’ll come over again to my documents, my business website and images. Grab the Favicon, open, add the Favicon. Then if we go back and look at the site, now you can see the Favicon has been added here.
What we’ve just done is we’ve learned how to upload plugins, activate them and how to add a Favicon to the Genesis theme. This plugin only works with Genesis so this is a Genesis system for doing it.
With other themes you’re going to have different ways. Obviously, Thesis has a different way of doing this but in terms of the system for Genesis and Agency, this is how you would add your Favicon. You definitely want to add a Favicon, otherwise it’s going to look like this, it’s going to have “G” here which is the Genesis Favicon and which I think is not a good choice for you, you want to add your own branding there.
It doesn’t have to complicated, obviously the branding I have here is very simple, it’s just these 4 squares, so just something that differentiates you and that people will say, “Oh, that website” when they see this.