Best Plugins To Add Custom Cursor Effects To WordPress

Published: 7 months ago

If you've ever scrolled through award winning WordPress websites, you may notice that there is a custom mouse cursor effect on many of them. This typically consists of a small pointer, dot, circle, or other thing that replaces the cursor. While there is a ton of debate in the user design and experience community on whether this is actually a good practice, the fact of the matter is that it adds a unique spin to the tried and true mouse pointer. If you integrate it properly into a WordPress website, a custom cursor effect could add a truly premium feel.

A guide to custom cursors in Webflow | Webflow Blog

There are several ways to go about doing this, but by far the easiest way to add a custom cursor effect to a WordPress website is by using one of many plugins that are designed to do exactly that. Of course, if you have a completely custom WordPress website, like the ones that we build, you are definitely better off creating your own cursor using CSS and JavaScript, but for standard users and creators, this is out of budget and out of technical ability. That's when WordPress plugins come into play.

You already know that you can add pretty much any functionality with a WordPress plugin, And adding a custom cursor effect is no different.

First, let's take a look at what custom mouse pointers and custom cursor effects look like on several word press websites that incorporate them into their design. We're also going to take a look at other interactions that these custom cursor effects have, as many of them don't just remain as a pointer and circle.

For example, in several prominent hotel web sites, they have a custom cursor that snaps to each button, making it easy for the user to click on. In other websites, the custom cursor changes depending on what type of content it is hovering over. Use case: if the website needs you to drag to the right to advance a slide, the custom cursor transforms from a circle pointer to a right arrow saying “scroll”.

Now, when you are trying to change the cursor on WordPress, there are several ways to go about doing this as stated above. You can use standard CSS in JavaScript, or incorporate a plug-in. This article is going to round up the best plugins to add custom cursors through WordPress, including both free and premium options. Let's get right into the list of plugins that allow you to create custom mouse pointer effects in your WordPress website.

MagicMouse For WordPress

The first plugin is one created by us. MagicMouse for WordPress comes in at $5, and helps you integrate the MagicMouse.JS library directly into your WordPress website. Then, all you need to do is initialize the plugin on pages that you want your custom mouse cursor effect, and also use CSS to set up the “snap to button feature”.

It requires some coding, but it's pretty well documented in our blog post titled "Adding a Custom Cursor to Elementor", and is much cheaper than many premium options out there. When compared to free plugins, it's also just a bit better. If you would like to install the Magic Mouse library by yourself, you can learn how to do that in this article (it's free but requires some technical know how).

Ultimate Custom Cursor

Ultimate Custom Cursor is a WordPress plugin that is freely available on the repository. It's not the most popular one out there, but it definitely gets the job done if you're looking to simply replace your standard mouse pointer with a new design.

There's a simple back end dashboard panel, as well as a couple options that you can toggle on and off. If you're looking for a free starting point, this is a great plugin to get you going. However, if you still require more features, you may want to look at the next plugin which is a premium offering, or even explore creating one with custom CSS and JavaScript. There are several tutorials on the web, and that offers you the most flexibility.

WP Custom Cursors | WordPress Cursor Plugin

The 3rd and final plug-in offering on this list is a premium one that was sourced from Code Canyon. We've actually used this before and have some experience with the tool.  

WP Custom Cursors has been around for a while and has about 500 sales. It costs $16.00, and allows you to integrate fairly advanced custom cursor effects in your WordPress website without needing to touch a single line of code. If that's your aim, this is the plug in for you.

It's actively maintained, and allows you to choose between many different cursors that will replace the standard mouse pointer. Additionally, it comes with your typical hover effects, custom integrations, and more. As developers, what we really like about this plugin is that the company behind it continuously updates it with backward support for older browsers.

For example, the most recent update which was shipped in September 2020 added support for Safari 9.1. That's a very small user group, but if you're looking to incorporate a custom cursor, you'll want to be able to support as many people on as many browsers as possible. Because the company continuously adds support for different browsers, that is something to be commended.

Conclusion

If you are looking to swap out the default mouse pointer with a custom cursor on a WordPress website, and want to do it with a plugin, avoiding any custom code in, these three are your best bets. The first one is created by us and costs $5 for lifetime access. It helps you install the Magic Mouse JS library on your WordPress website, meaning that all you to do is initialize it on the specific pages (or globally).

The next plugin is a free offering that is available on the repository, and if you need basic mouse pointer features, it's something to check out. The final plugin is the leader of the industry, and allows you to easily create custom cursors on your WordPress website. However, it comes in at $16.00, and if you know anything about JavaScript or CSS, you could replicate most of the functionality relatively quickly.

We hope that this gave you a good rundown of your choices when it comes to adding a custom cursor to WordPress, if you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them below.

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