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As you start adding plugins to WordPress, the administrative area of your dashboard, especially the left navigation menu, becomes unorganized. Often, it is difficult to find what you are looking for as plugins add menu items in a totally illogical order. Sometimes they put their menu items on the top. Sometimes they put their settings under their own menu title. Others put their settings under the “Settings” menu, and still others under the “Tools” menu.

Often, plugins add all sorts of items to the menu that might occasionally be necessary for the site’s administrator, but have no relevance for a blog editor or store manager, just adding clutter to the menu. And then plugins are constantly looking for you to leave reviews, purchase a premium version or a subscription, or nagging you to update to the latest version.

You end up with a dashboard that looks like this:

If menu items were alphabetical or categorized by function it would certainly make finding what you are looking for much easier. And if certain menu items were hidden based on user-role, that would make for a much cleaner interface. Perhaps you could consolidate all your admin notices into a single location. Maybe make some shortcuts to your most used functions. You might end up with a much cleaner dashboard like this:

There is not a single plugin that will do all of these things for you. But there are a combination of plugins that will let you accomplish this. You will need the following:

Admin Menu Editor

The Admin Menu Editor lets you re-order menu items, hide or rename menus, and add custom menus. This is how I created the yellow headings to group menu items according to functionality. Here is the exact code I used if you want to copy it.

 

Admin Notices Manager

This is the plugin that combines all updates, review requests, and other admin notices into a single location rather than cluttering up your interface. A simple notification appears in the upper right of the admin bar.

CMS Tree Page View

This plugin simplifies being able to quickly locate pages on sites with lots of pages, as it organizes your pages into a tree structure that you can expand and collapse, rather than paging through lots of pages to find the one you are looking for.

Custom Dashboard Widgets

This plugin lets you add custom dashboard widgets to simplify the task of navigating to your most commonly used items.

FileBird – WordPress Media Library Folders & File Manager

At some point, you are going to have thousands of images on your website. this makes finding the image you are looking for a difficult task. Unless you have them organized into folders using the Filebird plugin. With Filebird, you can create folders and name them whatever you want, and put images into those folders so you can quickly find them again.

Plugin Groups

Plugin groups is a way to organize your plugins by grouping them together. for example, if you have a lot of WooCommerce related plugins, rather than just searching for them haphazardly, you can group them together to quickly find them regardless of what they are named. Plugin management is mostly an administrative function, but this can be very helpful when managing a large number of plugins.

White Label CMS

The White Label CMS plugin allows you to add your own logo to the top of the dashboard menus, customize your login page, hide menus, and more. Basically, you can change WordPress to your brand.

We’ve seen how you can use multiple plugins to make your site easier to navigate instead of searching for items randomly and wondering where a particular function is. While configuring plugins can take a little bit of work up front, it will make you more productive in the long run.

If you feel like the guy in the comic and configuring plugins sounds overwhelming, give WebStores Ltd a call and we’ll get your dashboard organized so you can be more productive in no time!

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