min read

10 WordPress Tools for Website Developers

There is no need to say how the right instruments can make a developer’s life easier and streamline the process of creating a website, be it simple or complex. 

Many people still perceive WordPress as some kind of a builder, while it’s a full-fledged CMS. Sure, there are visual builders that exist on top of it that make it possible to create simple sites, even for very beginners. However, if you want to get a high-quality result, there are certain standards for structure, tools, approach, security, and performance. That’s why you will definitely need tools that help with it, and this article is about them. 

Development and staging environment tools

Local WP (Free)

It’s a popular tool for WordPress website development on local machines. The secret of its success is that it’s free and very easy to install and work with. A new site can be deployed within a few minutes; it can use a blueprint as well, and you are ready to go with your new project. What is really handy is that it has a Live Link feature, which makes the local website available on the Internet, so you can show the results to your team or client. Also, Image Optimizer, Link Checker, Instant Reload, and other add-ons and features are available to make the project completely ready for deployment. 

Local WP is owned by WP Engine hosting and has an easy deployment feature to their live environment. However, there are no annoying advertisements there. 

InstaWP (Freemium)

InstaWP is a cloud-based development and staging environment with all the perks this cloud nature entails. Using it, you can create new staging sites in seconds, share links to them with your team and clients, and edit databases or files in one click. But that’s not all: you can also connect existing live sites and manage them from one place. It includes not only installing or updating themes and plugins but also one-click access to their databases and files for fast edits. 

In higher-paid plans, you can publish sites to live hosting many times a month, instantly sync them with staging, create teams, host sites for free, and even create WaaS to sell templates with hosting. 

InstaWP is actively growing and adding new features. A lot is still on the roadmap, but even what they offer now is quite impressive. 

WP Staging Pro (Premium)

This is a really helpful plugin for staging and backup purposes. It does the job in a few minutes, even if you have a huge site. You can create staging sites and push back the changes in one click, make several copies, assign users, choose files to be copied, etc. 

This plugin offers backup scheduling and remote storage providers, supports multisite, and overall, just does the job properly, while some other similar plugins often can stop in the middle of the process or take hours for migration. Although it has a free version, it’s very limited, so I associate it with the “premium” category. 

Plugins for creating advanced website architecture

Crocoblock plugin suite (Premium)

This plugin suite is a comprehensive set of plugins for building dynamic and complex websites without coding. However, it can also be a great asset for small sites. The plugins are seamlessly integrated with Elementor, Block Editor, and Bricks. 

One of the most powerful plugins here is JetEngine, which allows you to not only add custom post types and meta fields but also display them on the front end in almost any layout, including a calendar, map, or carousel. You can create custom dynamic loops to fetch these fields and objects, add new or edit default option pages, and use data from very custom queries that developers can make without any coding. 

In addition, JetEngine is a full-fledged REST API plugin that allows you to easily manage and display remote content. 

Crocoblock also offers plugins for advanced filtering, booking, appointment scheduling, WooCommerce template customization, membership functionality, mega menus, and much more. 

JetFormBuilder (Freemium)

JetFormBuilder is one of the most feature-rich form plugins on the market, and its core functionality is available in a free version, which is quite unique for this kind of plugin. Using it, you can create forms of any complexity and add plenty of after-submit actions, including calling webhooks, registering users, adding or updating posts, and more. 

In addition to this core functionality, it offers powerful add-ons for recurring payments, WooCommerce checkout integration, form scheduling or setting its expiration date, generating PDFs, adding custom events, and more.

This plugin seamlessly integrates with all the Crocoblock plugins mentioned above. In conjunction with JetEngine, it gets even more powerful functionality. For example, it can use dynamic tags, access its glossaries and option pages, generate post relations, or send data via REST API. 

WPTurbo (Freemium)

This online service is a time-saver because it’s a code snippet generator for WordPress. With its help, you can create a code snippet for a new post type or meta box registering, a custom widget, plugin, or theme code, a base for Elementor widgets, WooCommerce hooks, and much more. 

Even if you are a big fan of writing some PHP code, this tool will significantly speed up the process. Most of the functionality is available in a free plan. 

Code Snippets (Freemium)

This is a big code snippet library in the form of a plugin. You can not only safely add your custom PHP, JavaScript, or CSS code to header, body, or footer areas but easily insert one of many dozens of ready snippets from the cloud library. Often, you can replace many small plugins and, thus, reduce plugin overhead with a simple piece of PHP code. This tool has all the functionality needed to do it efficiently. It’s very easy to use; you can validate and debug custom code, set up a snippet execution order, minify JS, and automate a workflow using WP-CLI. 

While the free code version is mostly enough for custom code, you would need a premium subscription to access the cloud library. 

Instruments for debugging, testing, and monitoring

Query Monitor (Free)

It’s a plugin thousands of WordPress creators can’t imagine their life without, as it’s an ultimate debugging developer tools panel. It shows what’s going on under the hood: enqueued scripts, stylesheets, HTTP API calls, database queries, PHP or JavaScript errors, and so on. 

Query Monitor not only displays all the diagnostic information but presents it in a handy way by grouping things by plugins or functions and signaling when something is going wrong. Because of this, even beginners who are not very familiar with code can get at least an idea of which element of their website might cause a problem. 

LambdaTest (Freemium)

LambdaTest is a cross-browser and mobile app testing cloud that is made easy. It’s made a way to be a great asset both for simple manual testing and for big enterprise-level projects. So, if you just want to check how the website looks in different browsers and on various devices, you can use a free LT browser. But if you want to document the testing process automatically, run automated tests, use various Selenium or JavaScipt frameworks, emulate real devices, and much more, you can choose one of the paid plans. 

WP Umbrella (Freemium)

This SaaS tool is made to manage and monitor multiple websites from one place. With its help, you can save a lot of time not only on updating sites but also on scheduled backups, as well as performance and security monitoring. You can also get a log of PHP errors and integrate it with various messengers for prompt notification. 


There are many more very useful tools for WordPress developers that can not only streamline the website creation process but also improve the quality of the result. In this article, I presented you with some of the go-to instruments for creating, deploying, monitoring, debugging, and testing that are definitely worth trying.

10 WordPress Tools for Website Developers

min read

Subscribe to DevDigest

Get a weekly, curated and easy to digest email with everything that matters in the developer world.

Learn more

From developers. For developers.