Why you must keep your plugins updated

You finally have the website of your dreams.  The one you called your mom about immediately, maybe you even shed a tear.  You are so freakin proud and everyone better get ready for all the social sharing about it!  New born baby pictures ain’t got nothin on this new babe of yours!

So now what?  It’s just going to run on it’s own everyday and keep looking all pretty and treat your customers exactly how you want it to no maintenance required.

And all the Web Designers said, “NOPE!”

Here’s the truth about this amazing website that you just had to have… Much like that newborn baby, it’s going to take work.  There are backups to be made, security to be maintained, broken links and errors to check for, and PLUGINS to be updated.

For this post were going to cover the importance of updating your website plugins and talk about some important tips to remember when doing so.

Let’s get straight to the point, you need a beautiful and functional website that works all the time.  This requires maintenance and part of that maintenance is to update your plugins.  Plugins are created by software designers who are continually providing updates to increase the functionality of their creations and you will be missing out on those improvements if you don’t update them.

Updating your plugins will ensure that your website:

  • Performs at optimum speed
  • Secures your information
  • Operates with the newest features available
  • Is free from bugs and errors

Now that you are SOLD on the importance of updating your plugins, DO NOT run off and start updating them all at once.

THIS IS A BIG DEAL.  You can mess up that pretty site real quick if you don’t run the updates correctly.  I think you know that neither you or your website designer want that to happen.  It would be like spilling pink lemonade on that new custom flower girl dress.  It’s fixable, but it could take hours.  Hours that you are not going to want to spend trying to figure out what happened.  Or it could just cost you money for all the hours your website tech will need to fix it.  OK fine, I totally understand it could be an easy fix, but that’s the thing with software, you just don’t know what’s going to happen with any update.

   

Here is what you need to know to update your plugins properly.

  1. Run a backup of your site.  This will ensure you have a working copy of your website to go back to if your site breaks after the update.
  2. Check to see that your plugins of choice are compatible with WordPress.  This information is available in the plugin directory.  Look in the lower right corner of each plugin description for a statement that says “Compatible with your version of WordPress” or “Incompatible with your version of WordPress”.
  3. Run updates for each plugin one at a time.  Check your site between each update to ensure everything is working properly.  If not, then you know which plugin caused the problem and this can help you trouble shoot the issue.  Even if you have to contact a professional to help you, knowing which plugin caused the problem could help them get the issue resolved more quickly than if you update them all at the same time.

Updating your plugins is a time consuming process that ensures your site stays secure, functions properly and continues to make you look good!

If you read this post and decided that you never want to handle a plugin update, contact me, I will gladly manage this process for you each month as part of our monthly service package.

Check back soon for more tips on having a beautiful online presence!