Keeping your WordPress site up-to-date keeps it working properly.
WordPress is ever-evolving software with an amazing team of developers across the planet that keep improving and refining the CMS, which is why you should update WordPress every month (at the very least).
As with all software, it needs to be kept up-to-date to keep it secure and to take advantage of bug fixes and tweaks.
So how do you update WordPress?
One of the many great things about WP is that it tells you when it needs an update.
There’s an updates section within the WP admin that shows you what needs updating (themes, plugins etc).
Updating WordPress is as simple as pressing that blue button…
So why not do it yourself?
With great power, comes great responsibility.
Not all WP updates go according to plan and you need to be able to fix things if the site updates don’t work.
If you are experienced in fixing WordPress at server-level, then this shouldn’t be a problem – if you’re not, get a web design company to sort it for you.
But if you’re going to update WordPress every month, you run the gauntlet every month (and you’re more likely to skip months).
What? I don’t know my way around a server!
We hear you – and this is why WP updates are part of our WordPress support packages.
Here’s how we support your WordPress updates
Depending on the type of support you have with Toast, we’ll update your site monthly or weekly.
The process is as follows:
- We take a fresh backup of your site and database
- We look at which plugins or theme(s) need updating and check if any are major updates
- We run plugin updates and any theme updates (if you’re using an off-the-shelf theme instead of our bespoke theme)
- After this, we check the site for plugin and theme conflicts to ensure everything is working correctly
- If there are issues post-update, these can be caused by a wide range of issues, so we fix things
It’s a pretty straightforward process.
So what can go wrong with if you update WordPress every month
There are too many things to list here in full, but some of the more common issues are:
- Theme and plugin conflicts (usually easy to diagnose)
- Plugin conflicts (complicated if you have lots)
- Out-date-plugins not working with new versions of WordPress
- Partially completed updates
- Server time-out issues
- Site stuck in Maintenance mode
- White Screen of Death (WSOD)
You know when you get that sinking feeling…
If you update your site and take it down, you’re going to want it fixed NOW!
If you don’t have a support contract for your website, you’ll need to phone us (or your developers) and it’s unlikely we can do it right this minute.
If you have a large mission-critical site, a site outage can be a serious problem, so we think it’s worth making sure you are covered.
Let’s be realistic
If you phone your agency, you’re going to be asking them to stop everything they are doing and jump right on to fixing your problem.
This isn’t something that usually happens.
Agencies and developers have current workloads, meetings and other commitments TODAY or even THIS WEEK, which means you may well have to wait.
If you’re covered by some form of support, it’s a different story.
At Toast, we do drop everything for sites covered by our support plans that have gone down – it’s a priority.
But as part of all our support plans, we’ll update WordPress every month for you.
So it’s not something you need to worry about, and one more thing off your to-do list.