Best WordPress Portfolio Plugins for Impressing Potential Clients

Portfolios are a great way to showcase your hard work and (hopefully!) impress future clients who many come across your site.

While there are many themes designed specifically for displaying portfolios, in most cases it makes sense to use a plugin rather than change your site’s design.

The collection of portfolio plugins below (in order of popularity) includes free and premium options. Some of the plugins offer very basic portfolio features such as the ability to display images, while other are more comprehensive and include filterable grids and project pages.

  • Easy Media Gallery (Free/Premium)

    With more than 270,000 downloads, Easy Media Gallery is the most popular plugin available for displaying portfolios and other types of galleries.

    This plugins supports various media, allowing you to display grid galleries, photo albums, portfolios, image galleries, image sliders, Google Maps and Google Street Vide, YouTube video, Vimeo video, MP4 video, audio and URLs.

    It’s also a highly customizable plugin, allowing you adjust colors, positions, grid, media sizes, hover effects and more using an extensive options panel.

    The premium version of this plugin comes with more features, such as the ability to create with an unlimited number of media, color picker, more light boxes, and support.

    Interested in Easy Media Gallery (Free/Premium)?

  • Portfolio (Free)

    Portfolio is a simple and functional plugin that lets you create a page on your site for displaying portfolio items. You can add details to each item, such as screenshots, a description, URL, technologies used, and date of completion.

    While the backend options allow you to customize the basic look of your portfolio and even add a profile page, the front-end display is lacking and looks out-of-date. Hopefully in future versions there will be more options for customizing how the portfolio looks.

    Interested in Portfolio (Free)?

  • WordPress Portfolio Plugin (WP Portfolio) (Free)

    This plugin is aimed at web developers/designers who want to show off their portfolio of website creations.

    WordPress Portfolio Plugin allows you to display your portfolio on a single page on your site with automatically generated thumbnails. Inserting a portfolio into a page is as easy as pasting a shortcode.

    If you want to display screenshots of your websites dynamically, you’ll need to create an account with Shrink the Web. However, if you create screenshots yourself there’s no need for an account.

    The portfolio looks pretty bland on the front-end, but it’s possible to customize the look and feel with HTML/CSS.

    Interested in WordPress Portfolio Plugin (WP Portfolio) (Free)?

  • WordPress Picture / Portfolio / Media Gallery (Free/Premium)

    This powerful plugin will transform a boring WordPress site into a feature-rich media gallery showcasing your latest projects, client logos, photography and videos.

    Easily group your portfolio items using built-in jQuery filterable tabs. PrettyPhoto is also built-in for picture, video and PDF previews. Another nice feature is the plugin’s responsive design, which means your portfolio will look great on any device.

    Four premium add-ons are available if you want to spend the cash: a premium skin, isotope filtering, PrettyPhoto extension, and Swipebox gallery library for mobile devices.

    Interested in WordPress Picture / Portfolio / Media Gallery (Free/Premium)?

  • Awesome Filterable Portfolio (Free)

    If you’re after simple and customizable filterable portfolio, this is the plugin you need.

    Awesome Filterable Portfolio is ideal for designers, artists, photographers and other creative types who want to showcase images and examples of their work. This plugin features smooth animations and image hover effects.

    Some other nice features include the ability to order portfolio categories and items, and configure animation properties.

    Interested in Awesome Filterable Portfolio (Free)?

  • OTW Portfolio Light (Free)

    This simple and easy to configure plugin lets you create a great looking portfolio on your site minus the bloat.

    You can create portfolio items and categorize them. The portfolio is also responsive so it looks great on all devices, big and small.

    This plugin comes with a three column template for displaying a page or portfolio category. It offers options for filtering or paginating your portfolio items.

    Interested in OTW Portfolio Light (Free)?

  • Projects by WooThemes (Free)

    Projects is a relatively new plugin compared to the others on this list (it was released in February). It offers a simple solution for showcasing your client work.

    Easily add your recent projects and display them on a specified page using a built-in template system, or with a shortcode, widget or template tag. You can also include various images on project pages, as well as detailed information such as categories, client details and projects URLs.

    Project can be integrated with WooThemes’ testimonials plugin so you can associate a testimonial with a project and display it on a single project page.

    Interested in Projects by WooThemes (Free)?

  • Aeolus - Creative Portfolio (Free)

    Aeolus promises to display your work in a “clean, fancy way” and it delivers.

    It’s easy to add items to your portfolio. The plugin uses custom post types to store images and videos. You can also use large images and video as feature images.

    Other features include responsive design, an extensive admin panel with a drag and drop interface, as well as a well-designed modern look and feel.

    Aeolus is a great option if you want to display portfolio images and don’t need project pages.

    Interested in Aeolus - Creative Portfolio (Free)?

  • Easy Portfolio (Free)

    This aptly named plugin allows you to showcase your projects in a grid-style portfolio layout and click through to individual projects so you can view more details.

    Easily add new projects, create categories, and add details to projects, including descriptions, URLs and images.

    This plugin uses shortcodes for displaying portfolios and associated projects.

    Interested in Easy Portfolio (Free)?

  • Waving Portfolio (Free)

    Waving Portfolio provides an elegant way to showcase your work with its filterable grid portfolio layout and modal pop-ups.

    Adding a new project to your portfolio is as easy as creating a new post. You can also create portfolio categories and tags. When you click on a portfolio item on the front-end, projects are displayed in a modal, adding a clean and professional touch.

    Other features include the ability to customize the dimensions of portfolio items, shortcodes so you can insert your portfolio anywhere on your site, and light and dark skins.

    Interested in Waving Portfolio (Free)?

  • Portfolio Mgmt. (Free)

    You will need to be prepared to roll up your sleeves and do a bit of work if you want to use Portfolio Mgmt.

    From the outset, this plugin looks fairly simple to use, and it is if you don’t mind how the portfolio looks like on the front-end. This plugins requires four optional template files (custom post types) for displaying portfolio content, otherwise the next ability default template in the WordPress template hierarchy is used.

    If you’re happy to edit files and add your own CSS, this plugin could be for you. However, if you’re after a simple solution you may want to look elsewhere.

    Interested in Portfolio Mgmt. (Free)?

  • Media Grid (Premium)

    With more than 6000 sales, Media Grid is the most popular portfolio plugin available at CodeCanyon. It’s a comprehensive plugins with a stack of features, including the ability to created an unlimited number of responsive portfolios, unlimited colors and layouts, visual grid builder with mobile mode, unlimited item options with retina icons and full media support (images, audio, video).

    This plugin makes the most of masonry grid, allowing you to create filterable portfolios. You can even created your own layouts and adapt them to any size.

    Another nice feature is this plugin has an adaptive design so portfolios look great on big screens down to sidebars.

    Interested in Media Grid (Premium)?

  • Go (Premium)

    This is hands down the most impressive portfolio plugin in this list, just check out the developer’s demo page.

    Go allows you to build beautiful, modern and responsive portfolios. It includes four default portfolio styles (Flex, Door, Vario and Delux) and includes a comprehensive (huge!) options panel so you can customize your portfolio to match your site’s design.

    Create unlimited portfolios and unlimited custom post types using all kinds of media (images, video and audio). There’s also a built-in template and style editor so you can customize the layout of your portfolios.

    The CodeCanyon pages includes some great examples of how websites have used the plugin to showcase their work.

  • ZoomFolio

    ZoomFolio offers three responsive portfolio designs and unlimited customizations. This plugin uses a shortcode generator for displaying portfolios.

    It’s easy to set up a new portfolio, just enter the shortcode generator from any port or page, click “Install Sample Data”, and then choose this example suits your site. Portfolio items are displayed on the front-end using light boxes.

    While the portfolio templates are eye-catching, there aren’t as many options as other premium portfolio plugins. Still, this plugin is a solid option if you want to display media rather than project pages.

Choosing a Portfolio Plugin

Finding the right portfolio plugin for your site depends entirely on what you need and how willing you are to customize.

If you’re after something easy to use that requires little effort, Easy Media Gallery is a solid choice. It’s highly configurable so you can adjust your portfolio to suite your site. And if your site outgrows what the plugin offers, you can always upgrade to the pro version.

If you’re looking for a portfolio plugin with more heft, check out Go. This is my favorite plugin in this list. The developer’s site offers an impressive collection of demos of how the plugin can be customized. The built-in template and style editor also makes it easy to change the layout of your portfolios.

Do you have a portfolio? Do you use a theme or a plugin? Let us know in the comments below.