My Top 5 WordPress Web Design Safety & Maintenance Tips
If you’re a website designer, developer or even a business owner looking to set up your website, you’ve surely come across the WordPress platform and how valuable it can be as a web design tool.
After all, with over 70 million WordPress websites out there. The platform has definitely proven itself as a valuable web design tool for both experienced website designers and for less-savvy users wanting to manage their website content.
However, with such popularity also comes some potential risks in the form of security, maintenance and functionality.
Let’s tackle the most important WordPress website tip first!
1. WordPress Website Security
It’s not a surprise to anyone that WordPress is by far the most attacked web building platform out there. WordPress can store enormous amount of data ranging from personal information to credit card information and hackers are always looking for a quick and easy way to compromise a popular system. The smartest and best approach is to always create unique and strong usernames and passwords and avoid the common versions such as “admin” “user” or “123456” and “password” these are all ones that are automated in Brute Force attack bots and will certainly get your website compromised.
These are 3 of my favorite WordPress website plugins I install automatically when signing on a new WordPress client:
a. iThemes Security
– This is a full featured security plugin but the main reason for using this plugin is because it automatically bans the IP of the user who enters a wrong username or has multiple failed login attempts. This plugin also does a thorough security check of the entire installation.
b. Activity Log
– Although this is not a “security” plugin, it’s a great tool that tracks every action one on your website and can provide a breadcrumb trail of what caused an attack. As a bonus feature, if you have multiple users on your WordPress website, this can help track the activity of each user.
c. Updraft Plus
– This is a great backup solution for your WordPress website in case of a disaster or a compromise. Updraft will backup your website off site to a cloud service like Google Docs, Dropbox or even an alternate host via FTP.
2. WordPress & Plugin Updates
I can’t highly stress the importance of keeping your WordPress website and plugins updated! Since the launch of WordPress, there have been over 200 updates to the WordPress platform! Most of these were functionality and bug fixes but many were security updates to the framework. Anyone using an outdated version of the WordPress platform risks leaving the backdoor open to a compromise or a hack. The same applies to any WordPress plugin you install. Many plugins also undergo attacks and security revisions and need to be updated. The great thing about WordPress is that it informs you directly on your dashboard when WordPress or a plugin needs to be updated. Sometimes, it’s just as easy as clicking a button!
3. WordPress Web Design Themes
Just like cars, fashion and home decor, website designs also change over time. WordPress was first launched officially in June of 2003 – over 15 years ago! In terms of website and internet standards, that’s a very long time! The great thing about WordPress is that it is basically a database-driven system with a “skin” on top of it for a design. This skin – which is referred to as a theme, can be changed as styles evolve and your branding needs evolve. There are many WordPress Website themes out there ranging from free to $100 than can give your WordPress website a facelift without having to do a complete redesign.
4. WordPress As A Centralized Website Solution
Initially, WordPress was simply a design tool. Put a few pages together, add some content and images and launch your website. You needed to manually code additional features like security, shopping cart, newsletter and image galleries. Over the years, website designers and developers have realized the value of WordPress as well as third party companies like PayPal, MailChimp, Google and other Search Engine Optimization companies. With the latest version of WordPress and the various plugins available, you can centralize your entire web business directly from the WordPress platform. You can manage and create newsletters, process online payments and transactions, manage customers and relations and even optimize your website for search engines and track your website’s traffic. The odds are if you are looking for your website to accomplish a certain task, there is most likely a plugin for that!
5. WordPress Customization
Most web designers in barrie and users know WordPress to be a drag and drop website design tool. Some themes even have built-in “modules” or shortcodes to create anything from a contact form to an image gallery. However, sometimes these pre-built shortcodes and modules don’t have exactly the look or functionality that you need for your design. The great thing about WordPress is that it is fully customizable. We only recommend an experienced WordPress developer dig into the meat and bones of your WordPress theme for further customization as it can seriously affect the functionality of your website and the addition of the future updates. However, everything in WordPress is fully customizable to suit your needs and WordPress can be used to truly make your website unique!