Does Google Need To Make Their WordPress Plugin Better?

I was listening to a recent episode of the excellent WordPress Weekly Podcast of WP Tavern (episode 134), which covered WordCamps.

One thing that piqued my interest was the discussion of the first plugin released by Google in the repository. On it, one of the panelists (I didn’t quite get who) mentioned that it “sucked”. Which is something I actually agree with.

The reason I believe it sucked was that it only did two things: Webmaster Tools verification and allowing to add Google Adsense to your site, both of which had a lot of plugins in the repository. The panelist then went on to discuss the number of other technologies that Google have that are criminally underrated in the WordPress Repository: Google’s two factor authentication (incidentally, I’ve been using Rublon recently, and it’s pretty good), and Schema implementation are both pretty under-represented, surely it would be better if Google focused on one of those plugins?

In two words, probably not.

To play devil’s advocate, I think the reason why Google’s first plugin is Adsense’s focus is that their core business revolves around advertising. It make sense that they become to the go to plugin for people wanting to put Adsense on their site.

Yes I wish it was more advanced and I believe there would be better things for Google to work on for WordPress Sites, but remember Google doesn’t owe you anything, from rankings, to mail client, to even what is in their WordPress plugin.

Such is the beauty of WordPress that the plugin’s open source nature that anybody can take the plugin to make it better (something I’ve been messing around with). So yes: as I recommended at my MWUG Presentation on SEO for WordPress: listen to Google, but question them.

2 thoughts on “Does Google Need To Make Their WordPress Plugin Better?”

  1. It’s actually the second plugin Google published. The first is Google App Engine for WordPress ( which is needed if you’re running WordPress on Google App Engine. I’ve been a tester for it, it also missed a few things which I (and others) mentioned and they responded to (not super fast but they did).

    As for the quality and features of both plugins, I’m sure they will listen to the community and get more involved and responsive over time.

    Also, imho, it’s not a bad thing to publish a plugin with basic features to start with and add to it over time based on feedback rather then assume a huge feature set.

    Regarding the Google Authenticator plugin, I’ve had many discussions about that specific plugin with clients and WordPress core developers. While the plugin isn’t that bad we think it needs some more work to become really good. I’m working with my client to free up some budget to contribute to that plugin.

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