If you want a forum on your wordpress blog/site, you can choose one of the following options :
Option 1 - Integrate a forum running on a script like bbPress/phpBB/vBulletin/smf/etc with your wordpress blog – Choose this if you already have the forum set up and running. Will need some work, some plugins might make the job easier.
Option 2 - Use a wordpress forum plugin – these plugins are designed solely to add forums on a wordpress site. This is the best, the easiest and the fastest way to get a fully functioning forum on your wordpress installation. It is as easy as adding a new page on your wordpress blog – which is exactly what it is!
This post will help you through the steps to implement Option 2.Now, the obvious question is – Which Forum Plugin to Choose? – And the answer is Mingle Forum. After testing all the available ones – i choose to use Mingle Forums. Though you can also the others (each one has its own advantages).
As usual, here are the steps to implement Option 2 :
Step 1 – Install Mingle Forum
Just go to the it’s download page on wordpress and Download the latest version. I can bet that it will be compatible with your WordPress version. Then just upload the files in the /wp-content/plugins/ folder using your ftp.
Step 2 – Visit your Dashboard to Configure the Plugin
Now you need to visit your WordPress dashboard and look for the Mingle Forum Settings – You’ll find something like the image on the right.
There you can choose the options for the forum, add new categories and forums, manage mods & other user groups & also change the theme of your forum.
It’ll be advisable to choose a skin that looks similar to your blog theme.
Step 3 – Add the Forum on a New Page
This is easier than you think – Just create a new page and add the short code [mingleforum]. That’s it, now view the page to go to your forum. Start inviting & posting, Have fun :)
- I just started using mingle forum on Durofy. Check it out to see what it looks like. (Notice that I’ve removed the sidebar from the forum page)
MORE (USEFUL) CUSTOMIZATIONS
- You can add the forum on a post as well
- Create a template to remove sidebar from your forum page.
- Change the skin of the forum. Use a redirect plugin to redirect users straight to the forum after they log in and skip the Dashboard
- Get support/help for the plugin.
- Put Adsense on your forum – there are already settings to do this.