WordPress – Determining When a Plugin or Theme is Updated

WordPress - Do Something When A Plugin or Theme Updates

Recently, I was faced with an unavoidable situation where I had to alter a third-party plugin’s code. The plugin is one I consider a “well-made” plugin, incorporating apply_filters or do_action all over the place. However, the hooks weren’t available in a specific spot where I needed them for a project.

Of course, the downside of altering third-party plugin or theme code is maintainability. Every time the plugin or theme releases an update, the custom code must be reintegrated manually once the upgrades are complete. So, tracking when a plugin or theme is updated becomes important.


Creative Filtering in “WP WooCommerce Mailchimp” Plugin

Creative Filtering In WordPress Plugins

I’ve went on and on about “well-built” plugins for WordPress. As much as I’d like plugins to “filter all the things”, in reality, they never account for all use cases. One such challenge I had recently involved the WP WooCommerce Mailchimp plugin.


Local WordPress Development – How To Sync Content From Staging or Production

Local WordPress Development - How To Sync Uploads And Database From A Staging or Production Site

Given that WordPress is still growing1WP is about a third of the web now, as of April 2019, there’s no shortage of work for proper WordPress developers. In my case, work comes from several sources, all of it freelance. The vast majority of work I do is retainer. Agencies/companies need me to come into a sprint, usually for the stuff that’s a bit too much for juniors.

Since every project is different, the workflow is usually unique as well. Unless I’m involved with the engineering at project kick-off, I usually have to adapt to what’s been put in place by other developers. Typically that means writing custom shell scripts and aliases to help sync both code and content.


Contact Form 7: Salesforce Integration

WordPress Contact Form 7 Salesforce Integration

Here’s another forms use-case for WordPress. You have a form built with Contact Form 7, WP Forms, Gravity Forms, etc. However, when the form is submitted, you also want to send the form data to a third party, like Salesforce, SugarCRM, Marketo, etc. Luckily, the form plugins I mentioned allow us to “hook in” to the processing flow.

In this tutorial, I’ll show you a quick way to send Contact Form 7(CF7) submission data to Salesforce. We’ll be using some core WordPress functions to help with the integration. The code is pretty straightforward, so we’ll just put it in our child theme’s1You are using a child theme, right? functions.php file.


Contact Form 7 – Custom Validation Messages

WordPress - Contact Form 7 Contextual Validation Error Messages

In this month’s edition of “well-built plugins”, we’re taking a look at Contact Form 7 for WordPress. Specifically, we’ll be customizing validation error messages on the front end. The popular contact form builder plugin is quite easy to extend, so let’s jump right in.


Gravity Forms – Dynamic Confirmation Redirects

Gravity Forms - Dynamic Confirmation Redirects in WordPress

Extending well-built WordPress plugins and themes is something I do almost daily. Gravity Forms is a popular form-building plugin for WordPress that I integrate and customize quite frequently. Custom form fields, form settings, and third-party integrations are common requests.

Recently, I had to find a way to handle custom, dynamic redirects on form submission.  The redirect would be dependent on query string parameters provided by an inbound affiliate link.  I was able to quickly create a solution due, in no small part, to the fact that Gravity Forms is a “well-built” plugin.1A “well-built” third-party plugin/theme means that it adheres to WordPress Coding Standards and makes APIs/hooks available to other developers for extending the base functionality, among other things.