HELP: Which plugins? User save which categories to see + ad/click management?

Hi guys, I really hope someone here can help me out with some good suggestions on which plugins to use/how to combine…

I have a potential client approaching me with some very specific wishes for functions and display for a kind of advertising site.

As I’m not a developer (can copy paste into functions.php though :wink: I need to be able to combine plugins for this.

Although I love WPMUdev-plugins, it does not necessarily need to be a WPMUdev solution, but you guys here usually rock, and since I’ve searched the net for hours without actually finding a specific solution, I now put my hopes that someone here can come up with some valid suggestions.

If useful, I already have access to non-wpmu plugins like Types/Views, Gravity forms etc. and suggestions can be of other paid plugins also, as long as they play nicely and will allow me to create the site as specified.

For now, here’s what I need (more might come though):

Basically it’s an ad site (no other content but ads, somewhat a’ la’ groupon, where each ad has it’s own post with images, price-tag, a short description, tags, categories it belongs to etc.), but each with a link to a specific (pr. ad) off-site webpage, where people can then buy or get additional info.

The advertisers then pay pr. click on the link.


On their profile page, Registered Users have to be able to choose which ad-categories that are relevant for them to see, AND be able to save those preferences.

(so that initially they will only be served/view ads of those chosen categories, BUT they should still be able to search the site for other type/specific category ads if needed – I suppose that tags are sufficient for this last part).


Either a full-on ad-plugin (with possibility of link, custom fields, text, images etc.) that also registers/counts how many times the link on each ad has been clicked

– or a combination of more plugins/custom posts types etc., that together adds that function. those ad-posts should be searchable and filterable (so user can save category preferences) and listable (like index), and function like normal wp posts.

Maybe even a possibility for the advertisers themselves to be able to create the ad, view stats etc.?

I am SO open to suggestions/possible solutions and need to answer the client soon…

Thx in advance


  • aecnu
    • WP Unicorn

    Greetings Claire,

    Thank you for the detailed post, it is certainly appreciated.

    Do not let yourself down, you are indeed a developer, just not a coder :slight_smile:

    Unfortunately I am not a coder either and the specifications you have given are certainly a tough one to fulfill and will probably require an absolute custom solution because nothing comes close that I know of as you have already found.

    I do see some tricky bits as well concerning the profile and picking categories etc. which will obviously need to be stored in a database and related to the user.

    At this point the best thing to do and to serve you as well would be to refer you to a coder who can buckle down and custom code this exactly as you folks envision.

    You should see if there’s a developer available at wpmu jobs who could get onto it right this minute

    Because I certainly do not know everything, I will let this ticket ride a little while to see if we get any pointers from the members out there.

    Cheers, Joe

  • Claire Wielandt
    • Design Lord, Child of Thor

    Hi Joe :slight_smile:

    Thx for your uplifting words (coder vs. developer :wink: )

    Actually, what I have found that could be of some use (just to get everything in here) are the plugins below.

    I’d love to use the ad-plugin from WPMU, but it lacks some of the function I need, so, until now the best suggestions I have found are these:

    AdPress for the Ad-part, which seems really promising:

    (unfortunately they still need to get the click-tracking integrated, it’s on a to-do)

    My category excluder, for the categories on user profile:

    (although I’m not sure if the user then can search the other – excluded – categories if needed – and if I can integrate it with the categories from AdPress)

    Maybe combined with the Multiple Category selection for general search:

    … but I then still need a plugin for the ad-link tracking – the links/ads created by Adpress, and one that is NOT associated with i.e AdSense or the like, as this will be custom ads and not i.e Adsense/amazon ads…

    And then see if I can get them to play nicely… :disappointed:

    Any suggestions/ideas are still very welcome.

    Hiring developers at the moment will be a problem, as the site have a minimum of start-up finances, but I would instead get percentages of the ad-clicks later on… But will contact the developers on the AdPress and ask how far with their to-do’s they are and maybe donate a bit. That could possibly get me a bit further.

  • Claire Wielandt
    • Design Lord, Child of Thor

    Ahhhhh…. great with the AdPress pro link, hadn’t found that one, seems like that might solve half of it, although I still need to look closer :slight_smile:

    For the theme, that does not matter, as I’ll create a custom theme from scratch for the client.

    My worries are mostly on the ad-part and the possibility of choice of categories to see from the user profile, but now it seems I’m on my way.

    This is great, thank you :slight_smile:

  • aecnu
    • WP Unicorn

    Greetings Claire :slight_smile:

    Thank you for the additional input.

    While I was reading it I thought of a software that I use that actually creates the adsense type ads and many other different types of ads without Google of course.

    I have been using it outside of WordPress but included in my WordPress sites and it is called InClick Ad Server

    Fantastic ad dispensing software/script.

    Cheers, Joe

  • aecnu
    • WP Unicorn

    Greetings Claire :slight_smile:

    The software I suggested runs on its own domain, actually makes it so you can start your own PPC business if desired and if not absolutely free, and is updated often.

    You can see it in use on a production server here:

    Please note the “by AECNU PPC” which designates those particular ads.

    I have incorporated it into that very site just using the templates normal widget area and copying/pasting the advertisement code within – that part was easy peasy.

    Thank you for the ad system link. I like it so much that I will purchase it. There may be other uses for it as well when I think of this statement in their sales pitch:

    Paste HTML Code (adSense, iframes, …)

    If you do choose to go with it do not miss:

    The “Free” add on :smiley:

    Cheers, Joe

  • Claire Wielandt
    • Design Lord, Child of Thor

    Hi Joe :slight_smile:

    Well, sounds easy to use, that one (you have). It could be a solution :slight_smile:

    As for the last link I added, I’m not sure if I can insert the actual campaign into i.e. a specific post with a shortcode (which is what I’d need to do – only one campaign on each specific post – in order to make the categories search work with it). But I’ll see.

    Not sure if the client picks me or someone else, but in any case I would now know how and what to do, to make it all play together :slight_smile: – one never knows what one might need in the future :wink:

    Thx a lot for your responses, I knew it would most likely pay off to ask in this forum :slight_smile:

  • aecnu
    • WP Unicorn

    Greetings Claire :slight_smile:

    Thank you for letting me know and it has been a pleasure working with you and researching these items as well expanding both of our findings and knowledge :smiley:

    Thank you for being a WPMU Dev Community Member!

    Sincerely, Joe

  • aecnu
    • WP Unicorn

    Greetings Claire :slight_smile:

    Thank you again for letting us know and certainly we will be here and will do whatever we can to help if we can.

    However, one kind note of course :smiley:

    If the item is not related to the subject covered in this thread, it would be in your own best interest to create a new ticket with the title related directly to the issue if possible which gets us the best possible support with our eyeballs on it.

    Cheers, Joe

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