Custom fields are one of the most important elements within the WordPress architecture because of varied applications and the room for customizability. Like everything else with WordPress, many developers have found ways to take advantage of custom fields through various tactics. Meta Box plugin is one of the most popular tools to access and utilize this functionality.
Meta Box is well known for helping users deal with custom fields effectively, and easily. The plugin has 100+ five-star ratings and 500.000+ active installations. In this review, I will have a closer look at Meta Box, its features, and its advantages.
The Application Scenarios
Custom fields can be applied in different scenarios, especially for the operations of an ecommerce website. When you want to include extra and special information for your products such as technical specifications, you can use Meta Box. It also helps you create a customizable landing page, product page, classified advertising page, easily.
What’s more, there are various sites that can be created with Meta Box, including
- Booking websites for tourism and hospitality industries
- FAQ page
- User profiles and register pages with easily manageable frontend
Meta Box team frequently publishes new case studies and guides so you should visit their blog or, better yet, subscribe for updates.
Why Should You Use Meta Box Plugin?
One of the factors that influence the choice of the users is the number of supported field types. Meta Box has 40+ different field types and thus supports 40+ data types correspondingly so that users can find any data they want to input like posts, attachments, terms, media, radio, HTML. That’s why Meta Box becomes the top-notch custom field plugin.
Intuitive User Interface
Someone may mistake that Meta Box doesn’t have UIs, but it’s not true. Even when you use the premium package or not, Meta Box still has UIs.
If you choose the premium Meta Box Builder extension, you will have the UI right on the backend. If you don’t want to pay, the free Online Generator tool is the right choice for you.
But wait, do you know why UI matters? Because normally, you must generate code, create fields, and everything else yourself manually. That’s such a difficult task for non-coders or unprofessional users. With the help of UI, everyone can do it with drag-and-drop or clicking manipulations. Therefore, beginners, non-coders, or even professional coders can benefit from it and save a lot of their time and effort.
Online Generator and Meta Box Builder are nearly the same when you use them. Meta Box Builder has more advanced features and can work with other Meta Box extensions, thus eliminating common problems when dealing with custom fields.
Each feature of Meta Box is divided into separated extensions and the number of extensions can be up to 27 (both free and premium). They can adapt to almost all the demands of a developer working with custom fields, custom post types, custom taxonomies.
Now, let’s take a quick look at some of the most prominent extensions:
- Group, repeat, and collapse fields: you can use Meta Box Group. It will organize custom fields into a better, clearer structure.
Meta Box Group
- Conditional logic: available in Meta Box Conditional Logic and helps organize and manage the relationships between fields to enhance them.
- Display the value of the fields on the front-end: use MB Views without opening the theme files.
- Use tabs to display custom fields better: available in Meta Box Tabs. For example:
Meta Box Tab demo
- Add custom fields to taxonomy terms: MB Term Meta can help.
- Display custom fields on the front end: MB Frontend Submission. It lets users input data on the front end.
- Display or hide meta boxes in specific pages by conditions: find it in Meta Box Include Exclude (using PHP) or Meta Box Show Hide (using JS).
Meta Box Show Hide’s demo
Fast and Lightweight
Instead of buying the whole package, you can get extensions individually so you don’t have to waste money on extensions (features) that you don’t want. This tactic also reduces the footprint and the resource requirements of the plugin.
How to Install and Configure Meta Box?
If you used to spend sleepless nights dealing with custom fields, don’t worry, it will stop now. Even when you have tech-based knowledge or not, the Meta Box plugin is the right choice for you because it’s simple and easy to use.
Here are two cases: you use only the free Meta Box core plugin and you buy Meta Box premium extensions. Now, go into each step of using in both cases.
Installing the Plugin
If you use the free Meta Box plugin only, download it from WordPress.org like other free plugins.
If you own the Meta Box extension, you need to install them with the free core plugin. Besides, Meta Box AIO will help you control all the extensions in a quick and simple manner.
Meta Box extensions
Create Custom Fields
You don’t want to spend any dim on the UI? Alright, just use PHP to have meta boxes manually. Or you can use a free Online Generator (which has a similar UI to the Meta Box Builder). After that, insert the code into the theme’s functions.php file.
In the premium bundle, there is a Meta Box Builder that provides you with a UI in the backend.
Display the Value of Fields on the Frontend
The function rwmb_meta can help you display the field’s values on the frontend.
$value = rwmb_meta( 'name' ); echo $value;
But within the MB Views extension, you don’t need to do anything in the theme files.
There is an in-depth documentation of the Meta Box plugin so you should read it before getting started. Meta Box also has free support for every user and an active Facebook user group so you can contact for help easily.
Working with custom fields is no more a difficult task if you find the right companion. Now, with this flexible and powerful plugin, you can sleep better, work better, and gain more success for your project.
Happy dealing with custom fields!
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Passionate about technology, entrepreneurship, and marketing, Mansoor Ahmed Khan is in computing since he knows how to type on a keyboard. His daily life is rocked by his family, projects, and his screen. Probably in this order, he likes to be convinced at least. You can reach out to him at [email protected]