The plugin “unlocks” the social networking capabilities of WordPress. In other words, BuddyPress allows users to register and create profiles, post messages, build connections, create groups and generally socialize.
BuddyPress’ author at WordPress.org says the plugin is “social networking in a box”, and I tend to agree.
To create an appealing and powerful BuddyPress social network, you need a killer theme (or a designer), time, and a couple of plugins that stretch BuddyPress beyond the remits of imagination.
Today’s post will introduce you to 15+ of the best BuddyPress plugins you must try on your BuddyPress installation. Enjoy and remember to share your views in the comment section.
1. Youzer Community & User Profiles
Give your BuddyPress network a new lease of life with Youzer’s new-era community and user profiles. The default BuddyPress plugin doesn’t offer you much in terms of aesthetics. Youzer is a WordPress front-end user profiles management solution with a secure membership system, front-end account settings, powerful detailed admin panel, smooth effects, many advanced author widgets, fully responsive design and extremely options customizable with a bunch of “unlimited” features.
Youzer ships with a wide range of features helping you to create an amazing BuddyPress network without bending over backwards. You can expect goodies such as 16 color schemes, 35+ widgets, 14 header styles, social wall, verified badges, emoticons, mentions, likes, social login, private profiles, unlimited ad spaces, multiple post formats and a fully responsive design among others. With over 700 other options, Youzer is just the tool you need to add color and pomp to your BuddyPress network.
You can also earn more money with Youzer by advertising on your website users profiles by creating unlimited ads with both of types banners and Adsense code. This way you can leverage Youzer to become a source of income for you if you use it wisely.
The developers built Youzer to make a one of a kind WordPress plugin. They know that choosing the right user profiles plugin is crucial for your business because a better platform means more opportunity for growth. That’s what makes Youzer one of the best WordPress user profiles plugins.
2. USERPRO User Profiles with Social Login
UserPro offers your users the ability to log into your WordPress Website (and your BuddyPress community) with their social networking accounts. There are tons of great options you can activate, and if your visitors don’t want to use one of their social accounts they can always log in to your site the old-fashioned way. The plugin costs $30, but it’s well worth it.
UserPro comes with an insane number of options including multiple registration forms, Google fonts, PayPal integration so you can create paid memberships, beautiful member profiles, member search, newsletter integrations, custom icons and much more.
Not only does it integrate seamlessly with BuddyPress – but also with bbPress, WooCommerce, MailChimp, and most WordPress themes. Plus it also includes easy to use options to make setup simple. The drag & drop admin panel takes the guesswork out of your customizations, and 4 pre-formatted color skins make it quick and easy to get started. Plus the theme is translation ready and includes RTL support so it works great no matter what country your target audience is from.
3. BuddyPress Activity Plus (Free)
BuddyPress Activity Plus is the plugin you want if you seek to increase user engagement and boost social activity on your BuddyPress community. The plugin adds Facebook-style sharing buttons to the BuddyPress activity feed, so your members can share images, posts, and videos quickly. If you are looking to make it easier to post and share content from the entire internet on your BuddyPress network, BuddyPress Activity Plus is your answer.
BuddyPress Activity Plus comes with 3 button styles, plus you can add your own custom styles. In addition, BuddyPress Activity plus creates content snippets automatically, which makes sharing content a bliss.
Other than that, the plugin allows you to preview and edit content before posting to your site, which means you can add your own commentary while automatically pulling titles, descriptions, and thumbnails.
4. BuddyPress Registration Options (Free)
With a social networking site comes all types of users. We have civil users who are cool folk, and then there automated spam bots and spammers who are addicted to mayhem. To maintain a decent social network worth its salt, you need to catch spam before it degrades your pages. This is where the BuddyPress Registration Options plugin comes in.
According to the developers, BuddyPress Registration Options “…allows you to enable user moderation for new members, as well as help create a private network for your users.” In other words, the plugin helps you to prevent spam bots and new users from accessing your BuddyPress platform before approval. Additionally, new users will not appear in the Members list until approval.
However, unmoderated users can receive email confirmations and access their user profile, but that’s just about it – they won’t be able to use the social network or interact with other users until you approve them.
At the time of writing, BuddyPress Registration Options supports three languages namely Catalan, English, and Hebrew. However if you’re so inclined, you can become a WordPress contributor and translate the plugin into your language.
5. Advanced All-in-One-Email Delivery
Also known as All in One Email for WordPress, this plugin extends WordPress email functionality by adding features such as:
- Custom “From” fields to replace WordPress defaults
- SMTP support so you can send email from external servers
- Clean HTML emails and templates
- BuddyPress and WP-eCommerce email theming
- WordPress MU (Multisite) compatibility
- WYSIWYG editor and previewer
- And so much more
But even with these exciting features, don’t confuse Advanced WordPress Email Delivery for an email client; it is merely a tweaker that adds warmth and personality to your outgoing emails.
The plugin is compatible with the latest version of WordPress, BuddyPress, and works well across all browsers except IE6, which does not support the plugin’s admin panel. Advanced WordPress Email Delivery will set you back $18 bucks, but it is worth every penny.
6. rtMEDIA for BuddyPress & bbPress (Free)
If you’ve been looking for a feature-rich media solution for your BuddyPress, bbPress or WordPress website, look no further, rtMedia is the real deal.
rtMedia, which was authored by rtCamp and 40 other developers, allows you to add photo/video albums, setup sharing and privacy preferences, implement front-end uploads, and encode (convert) both audio and video files.
And that’s just the tip of the iceberg as the plugin has many other features including a templating system, seamless BuddyPress and WordPress integration, a rtMedia uploader that supports drag-and-drop uploading, featured media, and the ability to attach media to activity streams.
This plugin comes in two versions. You can choose the free version or the rtMedia premium add-ons that come with a million and one other features, moderation, and priority support. rtCamp advises you to try the free version before making the purchase. They are confident you will love it.
7. BuddyPress Users Chat (Free)
Boost user engagement on your BuddyPress site with a chat plugin like no other. If you are looking for a chat solution for your community, BPChat offers you a range of exciting features such as:
- Facebook-style chat for all logged in users
- Seamless BuddyPress integration
- Easy to customize with unlimited colors, backgrounds and images among others
- Sound alert system
- Browser title notifications
- Support for multiple languages
- Online/offline indicator
- 80 smiley icons
- Multi-user chat
- Friend search
- Responsive design and Ajax support
- And much more
The plugin offers you the ability to provide a fulfilling chatting experience to your users. The best part is the plugin is compatible with BuddyPress, WordPress and WordPress MU, meaning you can use it on just about every WordPress project. In short, you have to try BPChat to get the thrill.
Give your users a better user experience and increase engagement on your site with BPChat. It sells at $35 bucks only.
8. BuddyPress Default Data (Free)
If you just started using BuddyPress, you will want to test your platform at some point before launch. The BuddyPress Default Data plugin allows you to populate your BuddyPress installation automatically for testing purposes.
BuddyPress Default Data is easy to set up. Just install and activate the plugin, and then access it under “Tools” in your WordPress admin screen. Once the plugin launches, all you need to do is tick two checkboxes and click “Import selected data”. It is that easy. Your installation will be populated instantly with 25 users and 75 activity items, which are actually quoted from famous personalities.
That’s not all. The plugin imports more data such as 100 private messages, 45 new groups, 440+ group members, 95+ friend connections and 225 profile entries among others.
All users have the same password that is revealed to you, so do not worry about that. Moreover, you can clear the dummy data at once by clicking the Clear BuddyPress Data button.
BuddyPress Default Data is awesome for testing purposes, but don’t use it on a live site. Additionally, turn off email notifications on your profile or you will spam yourself.
9. BuddyPress Analytics
To stay on top of things and run targeted campaigns, you need to understand your users better. The BuddyPress Analytics plugin promises you just that.
With this plugin, you can see the total number of users who visit your BuddyPress network. What’s more? You can consolidate stats to put a finger on the time each user spends on your site.
Additionally, you can tell which keywords users enter the most in a search. Other than that, BuddyPress Analytics shows you the number of visits per user, group and page.
Moreover, you can see the number of users with empty profiles and get support for the entire year with the full version.
The plugin comes with an easy-to-use dashboard that summarizes profile stats as well as show user count. You also get some nice charts and the author promises more features in the future. The lite plugin is free, but you can choose the full version at any time for $55.
10. iThemes Security for BuddyPress
Once your WordPress marketing starts paying off, you are bound to attract hackers and spammers in trawls. It’s inevitable, and you can do nothing to stop these undesired users from getting to your website.
However, you can stop them from registering and wreaking havoc with iThemes Security. With amazing features such as security checks, user ban, file change detection, database backups, brute force attack protection and so much more, iThemes Security means business.
The plugin is free to use but you need the premium version if you need extra features such as two-factor authentication, re-CAPTCHA, password expiration, malware scan scheduling, and magic links among others.
However you look at it, it is a great steal since iTheme Security pro costs you between $80 and $197 bucks per year. Really, this is a tiny price to pay for world-class security.
11. Ultimate Membership Pro
The number one selling membership plugin on Envato, Ultimate Membership Pro helps you to monetize your BuddyPress network, what with a slew of content locking features.
You can lock your most valuable content be it a page, post, custom URLs, products, content sections, menus, categories and so on, and set up redirections or replacement content.
The plugin comes with some attractive features including:
- Social login supporting 7 social networks
- Support for multiple payment gateways
- Free/Paid/Trial payment models
- Drip content, so you can release content at regular intervals
- Content locker to restrict any content on a page
- Custom fields for user profiles and registration forms
- Integration with 9 email marketing platforms
- Woocommerce compatibility
- Visual Composer
- Coupon codes
- And so much more!
We can’t possibly list all the features in Ultimate Membership Pro, so you’ll want to take a good look for yourself.
12. Yellow Pencil Visual CSS Editor
Good design goes hand in hand with better user engagement and conversions. Obviously, the last thing you want is a BuddyPress website that looks like an advert from the 1960s because let’s be honest, we don’t have a huge collection of visually appealing BuddyPress themes.
What to do? In most scenarios, you make do with an average looking theme and a few customizations. Well, that’s if you have the coding knowledge or design skills to customize your theme. Suffice to say, going this route isn’t an option for most BuddyPress users, you included.
Enters the YellowPencil visual CSS style editor and the day is saved. No matter your coding experience, you can use YellowPencil to make extensive design changes to any theme. Yep, you can edit your website design in real-time and on the front-end, without touching a line of code.
Features at your disposal include 600+ fonts, 300+ backgrounds, visual resizing, drag and drop, 50+ animations, live code editor, color picker, parallax backgrounds, CSS3 filters, 50+ CSS properties, responsive design and we could go and on, but that would just bore you to death.
13. ADS PRO Advertisement Management
Selling ads is one of the best ways of monetizing your website, what with advertisers spending over $150 billion on digital advertising per year.
While you can create paid memberships on your BuddyPress site, there is nothing stopping you from supplementing your income with a couple of adverts.
All the same, managing ads is not an easy task more so for the perfect beginner. If you don’t know what to do or where to start as far as selling advertising space on your site goes, we point you to the Ads Pro Plugin.
Ads Pro Plugin ships with features such as 20+ ad display locations, 30+ advertising options, 3 payment methods, 3 billing methods (CPC, CPM, and CPD), ad scheduling, A/B tests, 25+ ad templates, an advanced backend admin panel, full statistics, WooCommerce support, and geo-targeting among others.
14. WPAchievements Community Rewards
As human beings, we thrive on competition and more so the satisfaction of coming out on top. Our innate desire to win is exactly the reason why WPAchievements works wonders for your BuddyPress site.
The plugin helps you to boost user interaction thanks to the ability to create unlimited achievements and quests that keep users on your site chasing after new achievements. On top of that, you can create a million and one ranks to keep the user dreaming of a higher rank.
You can set triggers for your achievements and quests for maximal autonomy. What’s more? You can use WPAchievemens to reward users who attend any of your offline even thanks to special activity codes users can use to unlock achievements.
In the design department, the WPAchievements plugin starts you off with over 60 custom icons and interactive progress maps that motivate your users to complete quests. Additionally, the plugin ships a shortcode editor that helps you to manage WPAchievements shortcodes, so you can drop your achievements and quests wherever you wish. Further, WPAchievements comes with pop up notifications to instantaneously inform the user whenever they unlock a new achievement.
Lest we forget, this plugin ships with a special Achievements and Quests page where users can compare what they have unlocked and uncover what’s left to gain. If this plugin sounds interesting, you will be glad to know that it publishes completed achievements and quests to the user activity stream automatically, which increases interactivity.
Other than that, WPAchievements ships with a content locker, detailed reports, user and point management, multi-site/network support, social sharing so users can share their achievements, custom widgets and an advanced settings panel among others.
15. Activity Reactions for BuddyPress (Free)
You have to keep up with the times if you are to excite your users and compete with the guys eyeing your members. Just the other day, Facebook released “Reactions” as an extension of the infamous “Like” button.
Now, you don’t what to be left behind what with the entrance of the Activity Reactions For BuddyPress plugin. In a simple line, this plugin allows you to add Facebook-like reactions to your BuddyPress activity stream.
Best part is the plugin comes with an extra reaction, the Thankful reaction that Facebook dropped because it was only meant for Mother’s Day.
Activity Reactions For BuddyPress is simple to install and use. You don’t have to configure anything because the plugin works as advertised straight out of the box.
16. GEO My WordPress (Free)
The internet has indeed made the world a global village, so why don’t you bring your BuddyPress network users even closer with a plugin like no other? If you pine over location-based services or would like to help your BuddyPress users to find other users nearby, GEO my WordPress is the plugin you need.
In the words of Eyal Fitoussi, the developer, GEO my WordPress is the “…ultimate geolocation, mapping, and proximity search solution for WordPress.” Yes, this includes BuddyPress too, so fret none. This plugin boasts of features such as:
- Ability to geotag any of your posts or pages
- Unlimited proximity search forms
- BuddyPress members locator
- Widgets and shortcodes
- Runs on Google Maps API
But as far as BuddyPress goes, the plugin helps your users to “…search and find other members near them or near any address using an advanced proximity search form.”
SimplyChat was developed especially for BuddyPress. It is a standalone plugin, that runs on your own server and does not require the usage of an external service. It fully integrates with BuddyPress by pulling information about users and groups, profile pictures, accounts, friends, members and more. This also includes that the chat plugin will automatically create a group chat when a BuddyPress group is created. Plus it adds/removes users from that group chat if the members of the BP Group are being edited.
Offering private and public groups, extensive community-management tools and settings for the site administrators, the developers proudly call it the premier BuddyPress Livechat plugin.
SimplyChat was developed with responsiveness in mind, so your chat users will have the best possible user experience even on their mobile phone. The ability to ban users, filter profanity and more round up this complete livechat plugin.
It is compatible with the latest version of WordPress and BuddyPress and will be constantly updated. Our roadmap includes a lot of amazing new features, that will launch soon, including a complete encryption, more community management tools and more.
Over to You…
Which plugin(s) do you use on your BuddyPress website? How do they help, and would you like to share your experience? Please feel free to share to your heart’s content in the comment section below.