WordPress Essentials

A lightweight, multi-purpose plugin to accelerate WordPress and make content management easier

Essentials is an open-source plugin I developed for WordPress that’s designed to expand WP’s content management features without compromising usability.

Eventually I would like to develop this plugin to the point where many simple, advertisement-laiden plugins become obsolete.

My philosophy is to build a plugin that is:

  • Lightweight without any unnecessary fluff, dashboards, or adware
  • Completely free and open-source
  • Designed to make managing WP content easier
  • Compatible with multi-site WP installations


Download the latest version of Essentials directly from GitHub!


After downloading the zip, upload it to your plugins and enjoy the assorted shortcodes.

Shortcode Documentation


  • Current Year
  • iFrame
  • Go-Back Link
  • Embed Libsyn Podcast
  • Embed YouTube playlist

Current Year – [year]

If you have a copyright clause anywhere in your website, you can add

Copyright © [year] My Organization

The current year is 2021.

iFrame – [iframe src *width *height]

Enables iframe embeds anywhere within WordPress content.

[iframe src="https://marcelocubillos.com"]

Without specifying a width or height, the iframe defaults to a width and height of 400px. Otherwise you can specify width and height.

[iframe src="https://marcelocubillos.com" width="1000px" height="500px"]

Go-Back Link - [back text]

Creates an anchor that when clicked, has the same effect as a user clicking the back button in their web browser. This is useful if you have a 404 page and want to encourage your visitor to go back a page.

[back text="Perhaps try going back?"]
Perhaps try going back?

Embed Libsyn Podcast - [libsyn id entries]

Create a grid of episodes from a Libsyn podcast. Entries specifies the max amount of episodes you want to load.

[libsyn id="313challenge" entries="1"]

Pro tip for y'all gamers out there, if you set the entries to a negative number, there won't be any limit on the number of episodes pulled (do at your own risk).

[libsyn id="joeroganexp" entries="-1"]

Do at your own risk to performance - this shortcode is written in JavaScript as to not use extra server performance, but it could slow down your visitors' PCs if too many episodes are loaded.

Embed YouTube playlist - [youtube-playlist id entries *cols]

Create a grid of videos from a YouTube playlist

[youtube-playlist id="PLGLwvWoVEFCYfRyn7egNJ6DpV5Ix8-_yv" entries="6" cols="3"]

Max specifies the max number of videos to display, and cols specifies the number of columns to display. If nothing is specified for cols then the table will default to 3 columns.

Create/embed a Google Pie Chart - [google-pie-chart title data *width *height *display-title]

Using this shortcode, you can generate and display a pie chart with parameters specified in the shortcode.

The data parameter of the shortcode follows the format "FirstCategory:Number,SecondCategory:Number", where each category is the name of the category and the number represents the number of items in that category. For instance, a valid shortcode may look like:

[google-pie-chart title="What My Fancy Breakfasts Usually Consist Of" data="Bacon:4,Eggs:2,Oranges:1,Biscuits:2"]

You can specify the width and height of the shortcode using [google-pie-chart width="x" height="y"] where x and y are valid integers, though if they're not specified the pie chart will default to 900x500px.

You can also specify whether or not to include a title by including "display-title='false'" in the shortcode. If this parameter isn't specified, the title will be displayed by default.