WP File Download Review – A Powerful Download Manager from JoomUnited
Few days ago, a WordPress user asked us how he can offer file downloads to his subscribers from a WordPress site? Though WordPress’ default media manager do offers limited functionality, it is not as powerful and intuited at the same time.
WP File download by JoomUnited solves this problem and helps you upload files to your WordPress site. It make it easier for your subscribers, visitors, and even your customers to access them and download them. It is an ideal WordPress plugin, which is a one-stop solution to manage, display, and control access of all your assets.
WP File download offers additional features including Remote file download, File preview, User file repository, file versioning, statistics, bulk download, etc. It is fully compatible with third-party builders as well, like Divi Builder, Themify Builder, Gutenberg, Google Analytics, Elementor, WooCommnerce, and more.
In this review article, we will review how the premium plugin works and if is it worth all the hype and money?
Installation the WP File Download Plugin
The installation of WP-Download is quick and straightforward. Go to JoomUnited and download the plugin.
Once you have downloaded the plugin files, Go to your WordPress and Click on Plugins -> Add New. Click on Upload Plugin and select your plugin to install. Activate the plugin after the installation is complete.
WP File download comes with a configuration wizard that lets checks server compatibility and plugin’s main configuration.
Most of the steps at this stage are self-explanatory.
And the final step:
How the WP File Download Dashboard Works?
After properly configuring the installation, you will be able to access the WP File download dashboard.
Go to your WordPress Dashboard and Click on the WP File Download option in the left sidebar. This is how the dashboard of the plugin looks like.
The dashboard is divided into three columns. The left column has the Category Section where you can create a new category, rename it, or delete one. You can also add a sub-category to the parent category. You can simply drag a category into another category to make it a child or a sub-category.
The center section is the place where you Upload your files to. You can simply drag and drop your files here. You can select a category and drop files into that category. The files being uploaded are shown in the bottom right section of your dashboard.
You can sort the list, copy-paste, download, or delete the files from the list. A search filter is present, which lets you search using keywords when you have an extensive list to go through. You can also filter the list by adding extra columns for Modified date, Version, Hits, etc. You can select all the files in the directory using the Select All button.
The right column is the parameters sections. It lets you change the visibility of the files, ordering, and the ordering direction.
You can add more detailed information and parameters about a single file. You will be able to modify the published status, add the remote URL, add a description, change the name of the file, add a custom icon, set tags, and add direct file links. WP File download supports versioning. You can save all these changes simply by Clicking the save settings button. You can add a newer version of your file, and it will automatically be listed on your page.
Adding Files to Your WordPress Page/Post
Probably the quickest way to add files to your posts/ pages would be using shortcodes. The shortcodes can be used directly into your WordPress posts/ pages to add the download functionality.
Quick Tip – You can add a shortcode of an entire category or single file only.
Once the shortcode is copied, Simply paste the shortcode in your desired post, and you will have a beautiful download section on your website.
You can easily preview your files before downloading them. The current download section is in the tree layout. This layout can be changed from the configuration settings easily. If you are using WordPress 5 and above, you can easily add the WP-File download block to your site. The plugin is fully integrated with WordPress Gutenberg block editor and lets you add blocks to your page or post.
You can easily select your available files after you’ve added the block to your page. You can simply choose the category or an individual file for download.
File Download Statistics
WP File Download offers you a separate option to see the number of files downloaded from your site. You can view the data of a selected date range. You will be able to filter the data with the total number of downloads or Category wise download. The downloaded file, along with the download count, is available in the bottom part of the table.
The Download statistics can also be exported to a CSV file with a single click.
#1. Main Plugin Settings
a). Admin Side
This section lets you modify different settings of Admin, front-end, and statistics page. You can control what kind of files are allowed to be uploaded from the admin side. You can add a file extension to the list separated by a comma. If you want to restrict a certain extension, you can simply delete it from the list.
You can modify the file history count and the maximum file upload size. You will be able to enable/disable different options. You can show/hide a category owner, file count, imported files. The admin file list theme can also be changed easily using the admin settings. You can also enable/disable the option to delete all the files when you uninstall the plugin.
b). Front-end Side
The frontend section lets you modify settings for your customers and visitors. You can set the extensions that can be accessed with the frontend viewer. You can enable/disable theme per category, download category, custom icon, Open the PDF in the browser, the default theme, and pagination options.
c). Statistics Settings
The download statistics can be monitored using GA tracking. You can enable/disable the option. You can also track the user downloads. You will be able to choose how long the statistics should be saved.
#2. Search & Upload
You can change the search engine and Upload form shortcode generator settings from this menu. You will be able to create a front end search for visitors with different filters.
You can enable/disable different options, including excluding categories, plain text search, filter by tag/creation date/page, etc.
#3. Themes (Not your WordPress Theme)
The theme or visual appearance of the download list can be changed here. You can select the default theme or choose from GGD, Table, and Tree option. You can also modify the parameters of the theme. You can change the margin size, show/hide description, show folder tree, breadcrumb, and many other options here.
#4. Other Setting Options
- Single File:- This option lets you change the file properties, primarily the color options that a visitor would see.
- Email Notification:- The plugin comes with a flexible email notification system which can initiate an email notification with different actions or event on the file change. You can enable/disable the use of the SMTP server, port, host, username, and password from this menu.
- User Roles:- The User Role controls the role-based access control of the download section of your site. It lets you modify which user roles can access the download or perform a specific action. Each role comes with specific access that can be enabled or disabled from the menu.
#1. Social Locker Add-on
WP File download comes with a Social Locker addon, which lets you lock your files with social buttons. The visitors will only be able to access the contents after he/she likes your Facebook page, shares the content on Facebook, or tweet about the page. This addon can help to grow the social media presence of your site.
#2. Cloud Connection
You can connect also WP File download to cloud storage applications like Google Drive, Dropbox, and One Drive. Simply set a folder and connect it with the plugin.
With cloud connect, you can easily synchronize the WP File manager with cloud drives.
WP File Download Review – Wrap Up
WP File Download plugin is a powerful file manager by JoomUnited. It is available at a very reasonable price of $29 only with six months of free updates and support. Although features like Cloud storage and WooCommerce are available at a higher price of $69 per year.
Price wise, It offers tons of exciting features to manage files on the front-end, as well as in the back-end. If you are in search of a download manager plugin for your WordPress site, WP File Download should be your priority. If I were to start a file download website today, this plugin would the one I will use.