Why Do I need WordPress Website Maintenance?
If you have a self-hosted WordPress website it will require regular maintenance.
WordPress websites use a theme to control layout / appearance and plugins to provide various functions. These items require regular updates.
The WordPress software is running on your web server all the time controlling these and serving pages when people visit your site.
If you don't maintain your WordPress installation it can become a security risk and open to hackers.
If your website is hacked and defaced or disabled it will cost you time and money to restore it.
Added to the fact that some web hosts may shut-down sites running vulnerable out of date plugins it is a fact that WordPress maintenance is not only desirable but essential.
WordPress Software Updates
The WordPress software itself is now self-updating but problems can still occur occasionally which need to rectified manually.
Plugin updates usually follow every WordPress update and they will also be updated from time to time when the author makes improvements. Some plugins self-update but most require manual updates. Using auto-updating plugins can be risky because if something goes wrong your website may be off-line without you knowing about it.
Leaving plugins on your site without updating can cause the functions they provide to stop working, particularly forms. This happens when the plugin becomes out of date and may not work with the current version of WordPress. They can also cause conflict with other plugins.
Any plugins that are not updated by their authors to be compatible with current versions of WordPress can become a security risk and should be replaced with alternatives.
Some plugins become vulnerable to hackers and become a security risk - it happened recently with a very popular SEO plugin downloaded by over 17 million websites. The authors quickly released an update, but it was still up to site owners to update it on their websites. Anyone failing to do so left their website at risk of being hacked.
Plugin updates can and do fail occasionally, which can cause websites to crash and leave the WordPress admin area inaccessible. To rectify problems like this usually means disabling plugins via FTP to regain access (if you know exactly whay you are doing) and re-nstalling them.
Plugin Update Screenshot
Theme Update Screenshot
Themes usually require updating to be compatible with current versions of WordPress. These can also become a security risk if left without being updated.
Some themes require updates to be downloaded and then loaded to WordPress for installation. This can be a tricky process without the correct expertise and some people just don't bother, leading to problems. If the authors do not update their themes it is worth considering a change to a different theme to avoid problems.
We can provide a maintenance and update service for our customers for a monthly fee so that your website is always kept up to date.
We can also add security and back-up plugins to help keep your website safe from hackers and maintain automated back-ups of the files and database to our own on-line file storage facility. This means your website can be quickly re-instated in the event of a disaster, without the need for costly re-builds. We can also move your website to a new web server quickly and easily using these back-up files.
Also, if your website needs a new theme installed we have the expertise to do that, which is not always as simple as some wouuld have you believe.
Items we can deal with include:
- Theme Updates
- Plugin updates
- WordPress Core Updates - Check and Repair if problems occur
- Check website forms after updates
- File & Database Backups Weekly / Fortnightly
- Uptime monitoring
- Clean Up and Repair Database
- Website performance optimisation
- Media Library Organisation
- Anti spam - comments
- Anti spam - forms
- Monitor for malware and viruses
- Security monitoring
- Disaster Recovery
- SEO optimisation
- Site upgrades
- Content management
For more information and a maintenance quote for your website please visit our Maintenance Costs Page
Screenshot of failed WordPress login attempts at one of our clients' websites - all blocked by a security plugin. Note all the different locations.