WordPress Tabs Plugin – Popular Free Plugins Review

📂 Category: WP Plugins

🖺 Last modified: 8th Sep 2020

💻 Experience: Beginner

🕑 Read Time: 7 min

Tabs are a common way to display various types of information on a web page. In many cases, tabs are the best way to arrange and sort content on a page. Creating tabs in WordPress is quite simple, using one of the many plugins available. Our WordPress Tabs Plugin review is here to help you choosing the right plugin for your specific needs.

How does a WordPress Tabs Plugin work?

There are two types of tabs plugins in WordPress. The first type of plugins have a separate visual tabs editor where you create and visually customize your tabbed content. After you’re done crating tabbed content, you insert an id defined shortcode anywhere on your website. This type of WordPress Tabs Plugin usually doesn’t require any coding knowledge so it’s suitable for non-coders and less experienced users.

The other kind of a WordPress Tabs Plugin doesn’t have a separate tabs editor, but uses an opening and closing shortcode instead. Tabs are created by wrapping content you want to display as a tab inside those shortcodes. Those plugins usually have less customization possibilities than those using the visual editor. All customization is done by editing parameters inside the opening shortcode. Those plugins are suited for more experienced users that will be able to customize the tabs according to their needs using some additional HTML and CSS coding. The advantage of this type of tabs plugins is that they are more lightweight and affect the website loading speed less than the first type.

How we performed our WordPress Tabs Plugin test?

The choice of tabs plugins is quite wide in the WordPress Plugins Repository. We made a selection of the most popular and most used plugins from the Repository and compared their performance. We tested each WordPress Tabs Plugin by the following criteria:

  • ease of installation and initial setup
  • ease of use and customization possibilities
  • visual appearance
  • advanced options
  • website loading speed impact

Each plugin WordPress Tabs Plugin does it’s job well. Nevertheless, each plugin has some specific features of it’s own that might be crucial when making the choice. Please read our reviews carefully so you can choose the right one for your specific project needs.

WordPress Tabs Plugin Example

Tabs are a good practice of displaying different kinds of content on a webpage. Creating tabbed content is quite simple thanks to many WP Tabs Plugins available.

 

Tabby Responsive Tabs for WP

Tabby Responsive Tabs by CubeColour is currently the most popular free WordPress Tabs Plugin. It has over 30.000 active installations and it’s voted 5.0 by over 130 WP developers. Let’s see why is this plugin so popular.

Upon installation, the first thing we noticed is that there are no settings to configure. Great, no need to spend time on customize those, we can jump to creationg our tabs right away. This WordPress Tabs Plugin has no tabs editor either, tabs are created directly inside posts and pages using shortcodes. Developers that love to have a clean backend and Dashboard will appreciate that for sure. Creating tabs is quite simple, all you need is add an opening shortcode for each tab you need and add some content after it. To mark the end of the tabbed content you insert the closing shortcode. Tab names are added as opening shortcode parameters. A couple more shortcode parameters are available. For example you can add Font Awesome icons to tab names and decide which tab will be open by default.

Nevertheless Tabby has no visual customization options, the default look of the tabs block is discrete, but quite elegant. All tab block elements have CSS classes, so with some additional CSS coding you can style the visual appearance of the tab block according to your needs.

On our test Tabby generated only 4 server requests, which is considered very lightweight. If you’re optimizing your website for speed, this WordPress Tabs Plugin won’t have a big impact on it. We recommend this plugin to more experienced users familiar with using shortcodes and CSS coding.

Pros

  • extreme simplicity, no settings or tabs editor
  • Font Awesome support
  • very lightweight

Cons

  • no significant downsides
  • suited for more experienced users

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Tabs Responsive for WP

Tabs Responsive by WPshopsmart is the second most popular WordPress Tabs Plugin among developers. It has over 20.000 active installations and it’s rated with an 4.5 average vote by over 400 developers. The plugin is frequently updated and compatible with the latest version of WordPress.

When installed, Tabs Responsive gets it’s own section in the WordPress Dashboard menu from where you access the tabs editor and manager. There are no plugin settings to configure, so you can start creating tabbed content right away. The tabs editor is straight forward and easy to use. It’s suited for non-coders and less experienced users, with on hover tooltips describing each option. Visual customizing options are quite extensive, so the tabs block can be perfectly styled to mach any website. We like the choice of Font Awesome icons to use with tab names, and a couple of tab switch animations. After a tab group is created and customized, you can easily insert it anywhere on your website using a id defined shortcode.

This WordPress Tabs Plugin generated only 5 server requests which is considered quite lightweight. The only thing we don’t like about this plugin is the tab editor user interface, a bit too overcrowded with banners and ads. Since it’s a free plugin that does it’s job well, we won’t consider it a significant downside.

Pros

  • suited for non-coders and less experienced users
  • tabs editor with extensive visual customizing options
  • helpful on-hover tooltips
  • Font Awesome support
  • tab switch animations
  • quite lightweight

Cons

  • tab editor user interface overcrowded with banners and ads


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Responsive Tabs with Accordions plugin

Responsive Tabs with Accordions by Oxilab has over 10.000 active installations and a 4.5 average vote. It’s another good option to consider for creation of tabbed content in WordPress.

Responsive Tabs with Accordions gets it’s own button in the WP Dashboard menu, from where you can access the plugin settings and the tabs manager and editor. There’s not much to configure inside the plugin settings, only the option to activate Font Awesome support. We suggest turning that off in you don’t plan to use icons to increase the loading speed. The tabs editor is not as straight forward as on other similar plugins. Even experienced users will need some time to get used to it. After you get familiar with the user interface, a whole lot of visual customization options comes into play. Firstly you get to choose between a couple of predefined templates, and then you additionally customize them. Even the default look of the templates is very nice, better than what we saw while testing competitive plugins. Special features of this WordPress Tabs Plugin are the Vertical tabs template and a Timeline-like template, which looks great. Likewise similar plugins, this plugin uses a id defined shortcode to insert created tabs anywhere on a website. No coding is required so even less experienced users should be able to create great looking tabbed content.

Except for getting used to the editor concept, we think this is a great WordPress Tabs Plugin with many possibilities. On our test it generated only 5 server requests, which is quite lightweight and fast loading for this kind of plugin.

Pros

  • very nice and modern visual appearance
  • suited for non-coders and less experienced users
  • tabs editor with extensive visual customizing options
  • predefined templates
  • vertical tabs and timeline-like tabs templates
  • Font Awesome support
  • quite lightweight

Cons

  • takes some time to get familiar with the tab editor user interface

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Responsive Tabs WP plugin

Responsive Tabs by WP Darko is another quite popular and frequently used free WordPress Tabs Plugin. It has over 10.000 active installations and a 4.5 average vote. The plugin is regularly updated and it’s compattible with the latest WordPress release.

This WordPress Tabs Plugin is a simple and fast tool for creating tabbed content. There are no plugin settings to spend time configuring upon installation. Also, the tabs editor has almost no visual preferences to configure which makes the tabs creation a simple and quick process. The simplicity of the editor makes this plugin suitable for non coders and less experienced users. Tab sets have id defined shortcodes used to insert tabs anywhere on the website. Even though the visual styling options are limited, the default appearance of the tabs is nice and elegant. Experienced users will have no problem to further style the look with some additional CSS coding.

The Responsive Tabs plugin generated only 3 server requests on our test. That makes it the fastest of all tested plugins and we recommend it for projects where website loading speed is of utmost importance.

Pros

  • no plugin settings
  • simple and fast tabs editor
  • nice and elegant visual appearance
  • suited for non-coders and less experienced users
  • very lightweight

Cons

  • limited visual styling options

Download the Plugin

Which WordPress Tabs Plugin should you use?

Each WordPress Tabs Plugin we tested did it’s job well. They all have some specific features of their own, which might determine you choice. So instead of declaring an overall winner, we’ll give you some guidelines on how to choose the right plugin for your project.

  • Tabby Responsive Tabs: very simple and lightweight plugin for more experienced users that don’t like separate accordion editors in WP Dashboard
  • Tabs Responsive: for those in need of maximum control over tabs visual appearance
  • Responsive Tabs with Accordions: plugin with very nice predefined customizable templates, vertical tabs and timeline-like tabs
  • Responsive Tabs : fastest plugin, very simple to use and suitable for non-coders or less experienced users, limited visual customization options

Pro Tip: Accordions are another good practice of displaying a lot of content on one page. To learn more on how to create expandable and collapsable content blocks check out our WordPress Accordion Plugin Review.