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BuddyPress- A handy plugin

Considering the ever-rising demand for social networking websites, it won't be wrong to say that switching from a plain website to a complete social media platform is an excellent business decision. If you're thinking in the same direction for your WordPress website, then this is a post which will serve as your perfect guide. Here, I've discussed about the very popular WordPress plugin called BuddyPress which has been successfully used for converting your traditional WordPress website into a feature-loaded social media platform.

A brief on BuddyPress

BuddyPress is a brilliant plugin which has been specially designed for WordPress.org powered websites. Once installed, this plugin allows you to incorporate the most impressive social network features including activity streams, user groups, user profiles etc. into your WordPress website. As a free to download and install plugin, BuddyPress enables you to set up an internal seamless communication tool for your organization/enterprise. By switching to the social network mode for your WordPress website, your users can easily take complete advantage of joining different groups or communities, receiving notifications and a lot more.

Pre-requisitives for installing BuddyPress

Here's a look at the minimum requirements that your WordPress setup must meet before starting with the installation of BuddyPress plugin:

  • A functional WordPress installation
  • MySQL 5.0 version or higher
  • PHP Version 5.4.4 or higher
  • Ensure the “active” status of the mod_rewrite Apache module

In addition to above, you must also ensure that your WordPress website has been installed manually using FTP Or file manager.

BuddyPress- Installation and configuration

Simply navigate to your admin dashboard and further click on 'Plugins' tab, followed by clicking on “Add New” option. Here, search for BuddyPress. Now, you'll find multiple links. Choose to click on “Install Now” link and the installation process will start. Once the process is completed, you can proceed ahead with setting up and configuring the BuddyPress plugin as explained within the below steps:

Step 1- Select the right components

Here, you need to choose the components that you would like to place on your WordPress website. While some components are installed by default, you can opt for activating and deactivating the same based on your specific requirements. Once you're done with choosing the components, simply click on “Save Settings” button for navigating to the next step of BuddyPress configuration process.

Step 2- Set up the list of pages you want to include

The BuddyPress wizard comes with a “Pages” link that allows you to display the list of pages that you plan to set up for your WordPress-enabled social networking website. This section has been segregated into two parts viz: Directories and Registration. While the former part allows you to select pages that you intend to associate with each of the “BuddyPress” components Directory, the latter one allows you to associate the social website pages with a sign-up and activation page. Once you're done with all this, click on “Save All” button.

Step 3- Set up the permalinks

Now, move to the Permalinks tab, set the permalink structure for the website and finally click on “Save and Next” button to navigate to the next step.

Step 4- Choose a suitable theme for your converted WordPress website

As per this step, you can either opt for a default BuddyPress theme or choose a different theme for your social networking website. Its better to opt for a fully responsive, widget-ready default BuddyPress theme that would enable you to execute a simple and clean installation process.

Step 5- Click on the “Finish” button

Once you've made all the required changes, simply click on the “Finish” button for completing the BuddyPress setup and configuration process. Now, you'll be able to view a tabbed menu from where you can navigate to the settings screen and make the required edits to different selections that have been made during the setup process.

With that, you're ready with your WordPress social networking website!

Conclusion

BuddyPress has helped WordPress sites in evolving from a plain online portal to a social media network that's been applauded by millions and millions of internet users across the globe. So, if social media has been impressing you lately and you want to upgrade your WordPress site to one, installing the trendy BuddyPress plugin will serve as your best bet.

Author Bio:

Samuel Dawson has in depth experience in the field of Web Development. He is a front-end developer in Designs2HTML Ltd, a leading psd to html5 conversion company. Samuel also shares new things with others on the web.

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