Illustration representing woocommerce plugins

A WordPress site, out of the box, is great, but you can add all sorts of extra features to your website with a vast array of plugins available that are both free and paid. In today’s post, I’m going to go over a few plugins that provide extra features that I really like and use regularly.

Digital Downloads

Want to have a download library where people can download various documents. Businesses can benefit from having a download library on their site for several reasons. Companies can offer free content like ebooks, white papers, case studies, or templates relevant to their industry. This establishes them as a thought leader and attracts potential customers interested in their expertise. For instance, a marketing agency might offer a downloadable guide on “Content Marketing Strategies for 2024.”

Businesses can provide downloadable product manuals, tutorials, or FAQs to help customers understand and use their products or services effectively. This reduces customer support inquiries and improves the overall customer experience. A software company might offer downloadable user guides and video tutorials for their new product.

So how do you do it? If you go to the WordPress Repository and search “downloads” you’ll see a lot of results. But I’m going to tell you about the two I like best. Both plugins have a free level, which I find to be sufficient for most needs, but they both also have a premium level if you need more features.

Download Manager

Download Manager

Download Manager is my go to plugin for adding digital downloads to a site. The free version has tons of features that make it great. You can upload all your downloads into the library and make them available throughout the site in a variety of ways, singular downloads, a download list, download buttons, etc. Here are just a few examples of ways to display and organize downloads: a filterable download list, a form library, or a single download.

For advanced users, you can even design and edit the templates to display the downloads in a variety of ways.

One of the best advantages of using a plugin like this for downloads is that you can eliminate the possibility of having outdated files and downloads available. When you upload to the media library and then your document has changes, you have to go through your site and update any link to the old file to the new file, and anyone with the old link could still get the old file. With a download manager, you can change the download that is at the end of the link, and you don’t have to change the links.

Easy Digital Downloads

Easy Digital Downloads

I like Download Manager a lot, but if you are looking to sell downloads? Then I recommend Easy Digital Downloads. There are a lot of ways to make downloads available for purchase, but I think this one, as it says in the name, is the easiest.

Here are some of EDD’s key features:

  • Sell unlimited digital products: There are no limits on the number of products you can sell or downloads you can offer.
  • Easy to use: EDD is known for its user-friendly interface, making it simple to add products, manage customers, and track sales.
  • Multiple payment gateways: EDD integrates with popular payment gateways like PayPal and Stripe, so you can accept payments securely.
  • Discount codes: Create coupons and discount codes to promote your products and boost sales.
  • Reporting and analytics: Gain valuable insights into your store’s performance with built-in reporting tools.

Events Calendar

There are several reasons why a business might add an event calendar to their website. It can be a powerful tool to boost engagement with your audience. By showcasing upcoming events, workshops, webinars, or classes, you give visitors a reason to return to your site and stay informed. A clear and organized calendar also promotes your events effectively, generating interest and attracting potential customers. Furthermore, event calendars can contribute to better SEO for your website by providing fresh content for search engines. This can increase your website’s ranking and visibility online. In addition, some calendars allow you to include registration links right within the event listing, making it easy for visitors to sign up for events that interest them. So, from keeping visitors engaged to promoting events and even improving SEO, an event calendar can offer a range of benefits for your business website.

Events Calendar

The Events Calendar

The name says it all. It is THE Events Calendar. This is my go-to calendar. Out of the box it looks good, and functions well and is well-supported. It is free in the repository, but there is a premium version that can add additional features like the ability to have recurring events. There are also add-ons that allow you to sell tickets, have event registration, and allow community event submissions. One of the things I like about The Events Calendar is that it integrates with Beaver Builder, which allows me lots of freedom in how my events display. It also has a large user-base for additional support.


Timely All-in-One Events Calendar

Another plugin I’ve used for events is the All-in-One Events Calendar from Timely. This is a good looking calendar that comes out of the box with a great user-experience and is known to be easy to use. If you are looking for a good event calendar that looks great without a lot of work, this is a good option.


If you are looking to offer members-only content, there are lots of ways to do it. The Membership Plugin sphere is vast. But there are two main plugins I use: MemberPress and Paid Memberships Pro.



MemberPress is a powerful plugin for WordPress that transforms your website into a full-fledged membership site. It allows you to create paid memberships, control access to content based on membership levels, and seamlessly accept payments through secure gateways. MemberPress is known for its user-friendly interface, making it easy to set up membership plans, drip content for scheduled release, and manage your members.

Paid Memberships Pro

Paid Memberships Pro

Paid Membership Pro (PMPro) is a comprehensive WordPress plugin that allows you to create a membership website with flexibility and control. It offers a free version with core functionalities like unlimited membership levels, recurring payments via Stripe and PayPal, and content restriction for various WordPress content types. Where PMPro truly shines is its extensive range of features available in its paid plans. My go-to membership plugin is MemberPress… unless I need to have a member directory. That’s when I jump to PMPro.

Amy Masson, Web Developer

Amy Masson

Amy is the co-owner, developer, and website strategist for Sumy Designs. She's been making websites with WordPress since 2006 and is passionate about making sure websites are as functional as they are beautiful.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.