Now that you’ve worked long and hard in developing a sweet new WordPress plugin you are finally are ready to release it to the masses, but how exactly do you go about promoting your plugin to stand out from the 30,000+ plugins already out there? Well, here are some tips I have learned first hand.
1. Submit your plugin to the official WordPress plugin repository – if your plugin is not found here, your plugin does not stand much of a chance to succeed. Most users search for new plugins to add within their WordPress dashboard and the list of plugins is pulled only from the WordPress repository.
2. Choose a simple yet memorable name for your plugin – especially because the name of your plugin is going to be the name of the plugin folder underneath the WP-plugins directory. So if your plugin name is an entire sentence long, it may be annoying to users who frequently access their site files via FTP.
3. Choose a name based on keywords that users will search – the WP plugin repository has a very basic search engine so if your plugin contains the keywords that a user searches for, your plugin will be at/near the top no matter what. So I recommend doing keyword research with SEO tools to figure out the best keywords you would want your plugin to rank for and then use the keywords as your plugin name. For example, WordPress SEO by Yoast is a genius name because people will search for “WordPress SEO” without even realizing that it was the name of the plugin in the first place. Also, the search engine within the WordPress dashboard for users IS DIFFERENT than the one used by the external WordPress Plugin Directory at http://wordpress.org/plugins/. This means that there are different ways of optimizing your plugin name and description for each search engine. I recommend focusing on the internal search engine first since that is where most users look for plugins.
4. Keep the plugin updated – your plugin pops to the top of the plugin lists whenever you update your plugin via SVN. But be careful to not abuse this because your plugin can and will be banned if the moderators if you try to update your plugin too often simply for trying to game the search engine results.
5. Leverage your Readme.txt file – fill out your Readme.txt file with as much information as possible. Also, choose keywords that you want to tag your plugin with. But don’t do too many or edit them too often because your plugin will get flagged as well.
6. Get users to rate your plugin – a 5 star review is awesome but make sure the reviews and ratings are legit. It’s easy to tell when they are faked and will likely end up causing your plugin to be banned.
I have a lot more to write, especially ways to promote your WordPress plugin that I have basically discovered myself because I have never had any luck finding other ways to promote my plugin from other articles. Anyways, I will come back and write more in depth later.