Because WordPress is constantly evolving, so are the themes and plugins that work with it. In order to keep your website secure, loading as fast as possible and functioning well, you need to keep your core software, theme/s and plugins up-to-date on a regular basis.
How often should I update? Ideally, every day. Once a week may not be often enough. Once a month is the bare minimum. If you go longer than a month, you are putting your website at high risk of being compromised either by malware or outdated code.
How do you know if your site needs to be updated? When you login to your dashboard, you will receive a notification when something needs to be updated in the Dashboard—> Notifications area . Roll your mouse over Dashboard to see the link for “Updates.”
Here are the best practices for keeping your self-hosted WordPress website updated:
- Always backup before updating the core WP software – can’t hurt to backup before updating a theme or plugin as well. Review my post on how to backup if you need a refresher.
- Store your backup securely , then Go to Updates in your dashboard and choose “Update Now.”
- Make sure the plugin has 100% compatibility (according to its author) with your version of WordPress before you update it.
- Keep your current theme and/or the most recent default WordPress theme updated as well.
Short on time and prefer to hire someone to maintain your site for you? Cat can help with that.
This tutorial is part of a series of e-courses created by Cat Scholz to empower you with using the self-hosted version of WordPress to achieve your internet marketing goals. Get more information and/or sign up: