In the last few weeks I have received a bunch of questions related to the future of WordPress and WordPress plugins in particular. The main question was how I see the future of WordPress plugin development and market, and if there is any specific niche for talented developers to fill up.
First of all it is important to mention that in the core of WordPress ideology is creation of community which works on improvement of WordPress platform and possibilities. And this is not related only to core programming, but also such things like WordPress theme design and of course plugins. WordPress itself is developed in a way which was well accepted by tech community and till this day proven to be leader among web development platforms. For sure there are many factors which defined success of WordPress, nevertheless ability to use open-source base for creating of your own stuff is one of the key features developers appreciate a lot. Moreover, such approach allowed WordPress improve on a daily basis and strive to the top in the shortest possible time.
By the time we can see several types of developers who uses WordPress in their everyday work. First ones are those who use WordPress as platform for their client projects and solutions. Such developers usually rely on other groups by applying 3rd party solutions and often defines trends on what should go next. The second group is working on WordPress themes and offer premium quality user interface. This group usually do not provide services to the end client, nevertheless they have set a powerful support system for end users and developers who uses their products. Moreover in order to raise their theme popularity theme developers like to include premium class plugins in their theme packages in order to offer their client maximum value. Finally the third group is plugin developers whose main purpose is to create sustainable and well maintained solutions for both previous groups plus end user. One of their works from business perspective is to see upcoming trends defined by other and react on them quickly in order to move their plugin on the top of others.
In the last few years I saw how users usually travel from first group to second and third. This is also something that happened to me as I started to use WordPress and saw that there are opportunities for me to dig deeper and implement my ideas in order to succeed. By following the same path I would suggest to start from the top and slowly move downwards so you can understand all the stages of how the trends are set and learn how to guess them. At the time you will get into plugin development you should be able to define niche where you can use your expertise and skills.
Do not afraid to get deep into WordPress plugin market and start working on narrow niche, at first it will lover competitiveness and allow you to grow slowly, but steady. It can be such things as specific add-on development for WPBakery Page Builder, like those we already have on the market – team showcase or parallax backgrounds. Once you will get established you can start to think over where to move next step by step starting from your base. Once you will start to grow your product, clients and global trends will tell you which way to go and what adjustments should be made. In the meantime, keep working hard and believe in your ideas and success.