Have you heard this? I need a good, free plugin that will [fill in the blank].
I popped into a Facebook group that I belong to. I don’t visit it much (let alone Facebook as a whole). I went through just a couple of post and there they were: someone whining about the free plugin they were using.
It wasn’t doing what they need it to.
They wanted more recommendations.
Oh, yes. And they wanted it to be free.
Ah, the way of WordPress.
WordPress Free Plugins for Your Online Store
Over the 12 years I have used WordPress, it’s been interesting to watch the plugin space. Sure, I have used my share of free plugins and still do. There are some really good ones out there. In fact, I am very grateful for the generosity of those developers.
So don’t get me wrong, I will never bash free plugins.
Of the 47 plugins we have on our site, 26 of them are premium. I’m not trying to boast. It’s simple. I need specific functionality and I am will to pay for it.
What If Brick-and-Mortar Shop Owners Thought This Way?
Setting aside the fact that WordPress is open-source, can you imagine a shop owner in the middle of Manhattan walking into the local building security business and asking if they have anything free they could use to keep their store secure?
Or perhaps they drop into the local Office Depot and see if there might be a cash register—nothing to0 fancy, but with enough bells and whistles to do the job. But they want it for free?
Exaggeration? Not at all.
Attitudes of Store Owners
I get it. I know budgets can be tight. But when you go into any size of a business, you have to invest. It’s simple economics. You might cut corners in the beginning, but not on something that will jeopardize the chance of your business making it.
It continues to amaze me that people who are creating an online store with WordPress expect otherwise.
What does that say?
While there is nothing wrong with using high-quality plugins that are free, sometimes you gotta spend money to make money.
This isn’t meant to be a rant. It’s just something that people who are starting their first, second or third eCommerce site need to get through their heads. You get what you pay for.
Free plugins can be useful. Just don’t gripe that they don’t do enough.
Open your wallet. Deal with it.