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3 Step Test To Do After Every WordPress Update

Do these 3 things with every WordPress Update.

You are busy running your business. Time flies by, and you don't notice that inquiries have stopped.

One day it dawns on you that you haven't received any website inquiries recently (or worse, no orders have come in. You look at your form submissions, and several weeks have gone by without an inquiry.

What happened? Well, if you've had a website for any length of time, you know things are cyclical. It's common to get barraged with inquiries and orders and then nothing. Also, certain times of the year are busier than others.

But the last thing we want is missed opportunities because things are not working correctly. And that happens more than most folks realize.

WordPress Conflicts Abound

Conflicts happen all the time. To put this in perspective, there are:

  • 400-500 Million WordPress Websites
  • There are 58,957 WordPress Plugins in the WordPress repository. This number does not include premium plugins * that are not listed there.
  • WordPress Themes repository has 4,100 themes. There are probably 10s of thousands more available directly from developers and theme shops.

So do the math on the number of possible combinations of all of the above. It's almost impossible to comprehend, right? With all the different combinations possible, conflicts will happen. There is no way for WordPress or theme and plugin developers to compensate for every possible combo or situation.

Not every plugin is going to work with every theme. Not every theme is going to play well with all WordPress updates. Some developers do not keep up with plugins and theme updates. You then have more possibilities for conflicts.

Test, Test, Test

Take my word for it. Even if you keep up and update when new releases of WordPress, plugins, or themes come out — you can still experience a conflict that causes features and functionality to not work as they did before the update. I wrote an article about how to troubleshoot conflicts here.

That's why It is always a good idea after doing any updates to poke around your website and confirm that the display, features, and functionality are as they should be. Even if you have someone else or a service doing your updates, mark your calendar to remind you to go through this process at least once a month.

WordPress Updates Testing Checklist

  1. Fill out all your forms. Contact, survey, mailing list — all of them.
  2. Place a test order. The last thing you want to discover — weeks later, is that something is broken and hasn't been working. $$ lost.
  3. Open an incognito browser window and do the same. This will help you discover what first time visitors may discover.

Are form submissions not stored on your website? Time to get a plugin that does for this very reason. This way, if you don't get the email or the email is not being sent — you still have the inquiries to refer to in your dashboard.

When it comes to preventing conflicts and keeping your site secure, updating is the primary way to accomplish that. Also, in my experience, sticking with premium themes and plugins contributes because the developers are invested in keeping their products compatible with WordPress core changes.

So get in the habit of running through this quick process every time you update. You then are doing everything you can to ensure your site is operating correctly so that site visitors can contact you and place orders. That's money.

At your service,

Judith: WordPress Consultant and Business Coach