WordPress releases an update an average of every 2 months. Typically to fix bugs and a variety of security issues. Updates also add new features and functionality that can improve the overall design and performance of your site.
The main components that need to be updated regularly are the WordPress core, themes, plugins, and other software that powers your site so that everything continues to run smoothly.
Although it is possible to perform the updates yourself, doing it properly is quite time consuming and risky. It’s important to have updates performed regularly by a professional developer who knows what they’re doing and can monitor and tackle any issues that may arise from the update.
Software updates usually go smoothly, but occasionally they conflict with each other and can trigger malfunctions that can cause a poor experience for your visitors, or worse yet bring your site down entirely.
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Table of Contents
Monthly WordPress Core Updates
WordPress itself is a fast-moving platform, and new features are added and regularly improved. If the WordPress Core is not up to date, your website gradually becomes less secure and stable, and will not be performing at the level it should be. Not only can this cause a poor experience for your visitors, it can have a negative impact on search engine rankings.
Monthly Theme Updates
Themes are the framework that makes your site look and act the way it does. Like the WordPress Core, Themes are frequently improved and updated for security and performance. Using an out of date theme limits the function, security, and form of your web presence.
Monthly Plugin Updates
Plugins are the independent pieces of software that can be added to your WordPress site to add features and increase its functionality.
Plugins are created by different authors and regularly updated. If the author updates your plugins, but they are not installed on your website, you could be missing out on enhanced features or causing security issues and malfunctions on your website.
Off-site Daily Backups
The WordPress platform is stable, but that does not mean it is invincible. In the event that your website is hacked or goes down for some reason, having a backup off-site (on a remote server) can save you from the devastating effects of having to start from scratch.
Offsite backups of your website should often be done, especially as you post more and more fresh content.
Our hosting package includes daily backups, in case we need to restore any files, folders or email accounts on your hosting account.
Security is not something taken lightly by WordPress, however, even as the platform is strengthened; malicious individuals will explore new ways to overcome them.
Google and other search engines will actually blacklist a malware infected website, leaving it virtually invisible search traffic. A hacked website is a security risk to their users, and to other websites. It allows for the spread and escalation of malware attacks on other websites, and even attacks against national targets and infrastructure. Ensuring that your security is up to date and at its best is certainly something that should be taken seriously.
Understanding the vulnerabilities and taking the necessary precautions is vital to the protection of your website and possibly the reputation of your brand.
Another reason why it’s important to have a professional perform consistent WordPress maintenance is to prevent possible security breaches. When updates are installed, there are changes to your files making your site vulnerable to hacker attacks. Part of the maintenance process with WordPress is consistent backups of your site.
Backups are also performed before updates are made. Any CMS (Content Management System) based website is vulnerable to hacker attacks. Keeping your WordPress website core, plugins and themes up-to-date will prevent your website from being vulnerable to malware infections and outside attacks.