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How to Address WordPress Updates

 

WordPress has become a very popular platform for businesses to build SEO friendly websites. WordPress has, what some could consider, endless plugins for any business type;  yet WordPress comes with it owns flaws. It is vitally important that you keep your WordPress site updated to ensure that it is running at peak performance. Before you press those annoying Update buttons on your WordPress website, we will walk you through a couple of very important things to know.

Aside from keeping your website filled with great content, it is also important to keep your WordPress versions and Plugins update to date. The 5 most important reasons to keep your WordPress website updates are: Security, Performance, Bug Fixes, Compatibility, and Features.
WordPress is a CMS that powers up to 1/4 of the internet which is why it makes it so popular for security attacks. WordPress is also an open source software which means that WordPress has an amazing community of users and developers which makes security vulnerabilities easy to spot and deal with on a regular basis. If you are concerned with your website needing a WordPress update, don’t worry, your system will notify you of the update. If you are feeling confident, you can click the Update button, however, ensure that you have a backup of your website.

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By keeping your site updated, you can enhance security on your site and reduce the possibility of attacks. Your site will also perform better with the recent WordPress updates and it can even eliminate bugs.

Another great reason to keep WordPress updated to the current version is because it can sometimes enhance compatibility with other plugins. Note our emphasis on sometimes. If WordPress releases a major update, many times other plugins will release updates to ensure that they are compatible with the newer versions, but here is where you need to pay close attention. Sometimes major updates to either WordPress or Plugins will rename table in the database that runs the plugins. What does this mean? It means that any outside customization that has been done to the plugins can be wiped away with a swift push of the button. How do you ensure that this doesn’t happen to you? Here are some things that you need to consider.

  1. If you have any customization done to any paid or unpaid plugins, ensure that you keep the name and phone number of the person who made these adjustments for you.
  2. Ask your programmer or developer for the file names and locations of which files were customized. Keep these files in hand for when you consider an update.
  3. If you have any customization done on your website, we recommend that you ask a professional before you update to ensure that your updates won’t harm the functionality of your website.
  4. Consider all possible risks before making an update to your WordPress site or Plugins and have a contingency plan if anything changes. In some instances you might need to change how your site takes in leads or how orders are routed to a fulfillment center depending on the level of changes that happen within the upgrade.

It is important for you to note where you purchased or downloaded your plugins from so that you can always obtain the updates from the same source each time.
WordPress offers manual updates or automatic updates and we recommend that you leave it on manual updates, especially if you have customization. This will allow you properly think out the updates that make the most sense for your online business.

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Best,

Rick

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