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How to Install WordPress Plugins From Zip? 3-Step Guide!


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How to Install WordPress Plugins From Zip?

how to install wordpress plugins from zip?

June 27, 2024

By, Editorial Team


Ever wanted to add extra features or functionality to your WordPress website but weren’t sure where to start? Plugins are the answer! These powerful tools can transform your site, allowing you to create contact forms, boost SEO, or even sell products online using WooCommerce

But what if the plugin you want isn’t available in the official WordPress directory? Don’t worry! WordPress experts have made it simple to install plugins directly from a ZIP file. In this beginner-friendly guide, we’ll walk you through the process step-by-step, ensuring your plugin installation doesn’t get stuck at any point.

What are WordPress Plugins?

WordPress plugins are essentially software extensions that enhance the capabilities of your WordPress website. Just like apps on your smartphone, plugins add new features or functionalities that aren’t included in the core WordPress installation. These functionalities can range from simple tasks like adding contact forms to complex features like building an online store or creating membership areas.

What are the Uses of WordPress Plugins?

  • Enhanced Functionality: Expand your site’s capabilities with features like contact forms, galleries, sliders (e.g., Meta Slider), and social media sharing buttons (e.g., Social Rocket).
  • Improved Design: Utilize plugins to customize your website’s appearance with new layouts, widgets (e.g., Elementor), and color schemes.
  • SEO Optimization: Boost your website’s search engine ranking with plugins that help with keyword research (e.g., Yoast SEO, Rank Math), on-page optimization (e.g., All in One SEO Pack), and sitemap generation (e.g., XML Sitemaps).
  • Security and Backups: Safeguard your website with security plugins that offer protection against malware and hacking attempts (e.g., Wordfence Security). Additionally, backup plugins ensure you can easily restore your website’s content in case of any issues (e.g., UpdraftPlus).
  • Ecommerce Functionality: Transform your website into a fully functional online store with plugins that manage products, payments, and shipping (e.g., WooCommerce, Easy Digital Downloads).

In short, WordPress plugins offer a vast array of tools to personalize your website, improve its functionality, and achieve your specific goals. With popular options like those mentioned above, you can easily add the features you need to make your WordPress website a success.

How to Install WordPress Plugins?

Adding new features to your WordPress website is a breeze with plugins. However, for some users, the installation process might seem daunting. But fear not! This guide will walk you through the steps of installing plugins from both the official WordPress directory and from a ZIP file.  For more complex plugin installations or customizations, consider hiring a WordPress developer to ensure everything is set up correctly and securely.

Method 1: Standard WordPress Plugin Installation

The official WordPress plugin directory offers a vast collection of free and premium plugins to enhance your website. Installing plugins directly from this directory is the simplest and most recommended method. Here’s a step-by-step guide:
WordPress Plugins Tab
How to Add New Plugin in WordPress?

The official WordPress plugin directory offers a vast collection of free and premium plugins to enhance your website. Installing plugins directly from this directory is the simplest and most recommended method. Here’s a step-by-step guide:

1. Access the Plugin Directory: Navigate to your WordPress dashboard and select “Plugins” from the left-hand menu. Click on “Add New” to access the plugin directory.

WordPress Plugin Installation
How to Activate WordPress Plugin?

2. Find Your Desired Plugin: Utilize the search bar to find the specific plugin you need. Alternatively, browse through the various plugin categories displayed.

3. Install and Activate: Once you’ve located the desired plugin, click on “Install Now” to initiate the installation process. Upon successful installation, the button will change to “Activate.” Click on “Activate” to enable the plugin’s functionalities on your website.

For some plugins, you might encounter additional configuration options after activation. The specific steps will vary depending on the plugin, but most will provide clear instructions within their settings menu.

Method 2: Install WordPress Plugin From .Zip File

While the official directory offers a wide selection, there might be times when you find a plugin you desire that isn’t available there. In such cases, WordPress allows you to install plugins directly from a ZIP file. Here’s how to do it:
How to Upload WordPress Plugin?
How to Install WordPress Plugin?
  1. Download the Plugin ZIP: Ensure you download the plugin’s ZIP file from a reputable source. Avoid downloading plugins from untrusted websites to safeguard your website’s security.
  2. Access the Plugin Upload Section: In your WordPress dashboard, navigate to “Plugins” and select “Add New.” Click on “Upload Plugin” located at the top of the page.
  3. Upload and Activate: Click on “Choose File” and select the downloaded ZIP file from your computer. Once selected, click on “Install Now” to initiate the installation process. After successful installation, you’ll have the option to “Activate” the plugin.

Remember, installing plugins from external sources comes with a slight security risk. It’s crucial to only download plugins from trusted developers and reputable websites. If you’re unsure about a plugin’s legitimacy, consider sticking to the official directory or consulting a WordPress developer for guidance.

How to Fix Plugin Upload Error in WordPress?

Installing plugins from ZIP files offers flexibility, but sometimes you might encounter an error message during the process. Here are some common causes and solutions to troubleshoot the .Zip plugin upload error in WordPress:

  1. File Corruption: The downloaded ZIP file might be corrupt or incomplete. Try redownloading the plugin from the source and ensure a stable internet connection during the download.
  2. Incorrect File Type: Double-check that the downloaded file is indeed a ZIP archive (.zip). Some plugins might be packaged in RAR or other formats, which WordPress won’t recognize.
  3. File Size Limit: Your WordPress hosting provider might impose a limit on the size of files you can upload. Verify the plugin’s file size and compare it to your upload limit. If it exceeds the limit, consider contacting your hosting provider to increase it (if possible) or explore installing the plugin from the official directory (if available).
  4. Insufficient Permissions: In rare cases, insufficient file permissions on your server might prevent the upload. Consult your hosting provider for assistance in adjusting file permissions if necessary.

If you’ve tried these solutions and the error persists, consider deactivating any conflicting plugins or temporarily switching to a default WordPress theme to separate the issue. Additionally, checking your WordPress error logs for specific error messages might provide further clues. Remember, for complex troubleshooting, seeking help from a WordPress developer is always recommended.

FAQs About Installing WordPress Plugins From Zip

This is the most common method. Here's how:

  1. Login to your WordPress dashboard.
  2. In the left menu, click on Plugins -> Add New.
  3. Click the Upload Plugin button.
  4. Select the downloaded plugin ZIP file from your computer.
  5. Click Install Now.
  6. After installation, you can choose to Activate Plugin immediately.
Technically, installing a plugin from a ZIP file doesn't involve importing. WordPress recognizes the ZIP file as a plugin package and uploads the necessary files during the installation process. Refer to "Method 2: Install WordPress Plugin From .Zip File" for a step-by-step guide.
While it's not recommended for most users, you can install plugins via FTP (File Transfer Protocol) by uploading the plugin ZIP file to the WordPress plugins directory on your server. This method requires FTP access and knowledge of server file structures. It's generally safer and easier to use the WordPress admin panel method.


By now, you’re equipped with the knowledge to confidently install WordPress plugins from both the official directory and from ZIP files. Remember, plugins are powerful tools that can significantly improve your website’s functionality and user experience. With a vast array of options available, you can customize your website to perfectly suit your needs and goals.

Whether you’re looking to add a contact form, boost your SEO ranking, or create an online store, there’s a plugin out there to make it happen. And if you ever encounter any challenges during the installation process, don’t hesitate to consult the troubleshooting tips or seek help from our team of WordPress experts. We’re here to ensure your WordPress website reaches its full potential!


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