With more than 26% of the web running on Wordpress, that's over 76 million sites; even if the percentage doesn't sound impressive enough, it's fair to say Wordpress is popular. Wordpress is a powerful tool for both website development and content management. It allows you control over the content on your website and the ability to change or add to that content at any time you like. Having this level of control over your site is essential, especially for website and business owners competing in the fast moving industry we are working in today. This is great but as a wise old man once said, “with great power comes great responsibility”. In this case, the responsibility is ensuring that your Wordpress website is up-to-date.
Updating wordpress and your plugins is an essential part of keeping a site running smoothly. Everyday developers are coming up with more efficient ways of doing things and improving security, it is important to take advantage of these improvements via the updates they provide.
Before updating however there are a few steps you should take to ensure a smooth update. Updating a plugin to a version that isn't supported by your version of Wordpress can break your site. Likewise updating Wordpress to a newer version that one of your plugins won't work with will cause issues too. This gets slightly more complicated when both plugins and wordpress require updates.
When something does go wrong, fixing these issues is time consuming and, in some cases, repair costs can be higher than the cost of a new website.
Here is what we recommend you do before you update Wordpress or a plugin running on your website:
- Check that the plugins you are updating are compatible with the version of wordpress you are running or the version you are updating to.
- If your site is used to sell products or services then make sure you have a current record of all your orders and their states -ie. pending, shipped, complete, etc.
- Make a complete backup of your site incase there are issues with the update.
If you don’t feel comfortable doing the updates yourself the E9 Hosting+ plan provides a monthly update service where it is all handled for you.