Keep Your WordPress Updated

You cannot overstate the importance of keeping your WordPress website up-to-date. Three elements need continuous updates:

  • WordPress Core
  • WordPress Themes
  • WordPress Plugins

All three of these WordPress elements comprise your website functionality. The WordPress core is the foundational part of your WordPress website, which controls how your website works. The WordPress theme controls how your site looks, and the WordPress plugins give added functionality to your website.

Security

The main reason for keeping your WordPress website up-to-date is security. Because more than 30% of the internet sites are WordPress, hackers love to try to figure out how to attack them. Plugins are one of the most vulnerable aspects of a WordPress site and need to be updated to fix any discovered issues. 

Just because plugins are more vulnerable does not mean that the WordPress core or themes do not need updating. To have a secure and properly functioning WordPress website, WordPress core, theme, and plugins all need updating.

Backup

It is critical to backup your website before performing any updates, and primarily if the update includes an update to WordPress itself.

Automatic Updates

I have tried all of the automatic updates tools and plugins, and they all have limitations. I have found it best to manually perform all updates because it needs functional verification after each update.

Frequency

It is far too time-consuming to update each time a plugin prompts you to be updated. Unless you are getting an urgent security notification from WordFence, monthly updates seem to work best.

Large Sites

It is best for large sites to have a staging site where you can check the updates before applying them to the production site.

Roll-Back

Roll-back is an idea because sometimes, plugin updates are not compatible with your theme. Adding a “roll-back” plugin to your website allows you to go to a previously working version of a plugin or WordPress release. This plugin works with plugins, themes, and WordPress core.

Stopping all Updates

If you need to stop all updates, you can install a plugin that prevents WordPress from automatically updating plugins, themes, or the core itself.

Conclusion

You may need assistance to get your updates under control, and you will need a backup plan/tools as well. Do not neglect this task; you do not want to lose your website to hacking!

Should you need help with WordPress updates or backups, please call RapidPage today.

Written by Nicholas Hughes