WordPress is a great platform to build any kind of website or blog. We can choose from thousands of themes and plugins to better manage our web contents. Pick the right products from them in order to handle the respective tasks and grow your business.
Creating and maintaining a WordPress website is so easy as you may think. It gives you full control over the website management with a user-friendly interface and easy to follow settings. If you are still confused on how to do, approach a WordPress developer to optimize your pages for ultimate performance and increase the traffic.
There are several WordPress maintenance tasks you should perform on a regular basis to run your website smoothly. They are easy to implement and you can manage them without any complex coding knowledge or third-party help.
Today we are going to talk about 10 essential WordPress maintenance tasks that will improve the performance of your website.
1. Update your themes and plugins
Make sure that your website, themes, and plugins are up-to-date. Cybercriminals may attack your site using themes and plugin vulnerabilities, and security loopholes.
WordPress updates the core files regularly to introduce the most modern publishing features and protect your website from the hacking attempts. It will let you know about the updates as soon as they arrived through the dashboard notification panel. Don’t hesitate to use the latest version of the core system, themes, and plugins to meet the latest security challenges and keep running the business.
2. Change your passwords
This is one of the major WordPress maintenance tasks you should be performing to secure your precious contents against various kinds of threats. Use a strong, alpha-numeric password to prevent brute-force attacks and safeguard your money.
Now WordPress forces all users to generate and implement strong passwords for their accounts. But don’t forget to change it at regular intervals to avoid stealing your passwords and accessing the contents.
3. Optimize your database
WordPress stores all your website-related data in the form of a database. It includes your post revisions, comments, theme modifications, and others. Clean them at regular intervals to reduce your page loading time and speed up the website.
WP-Optimize is a great plugin to automatically optimize and defrag your database which will result in improving the performance.
4. Scan your website
Scan your website periodically to detect malware and other security threats. Virus infection may cause to damage your online reputation and search engine rankings. So you should monitor the site in real-time for malicious file changes, failed login attempts, and code injections.
iThemes is a popular WordPress security plugin to secure your website against all known and unknown threats. It lets you implement advanced security controls, two-factor authentication, and CAPTCHA login fields to keep hackers away from your site. An automatic daily scan is another advantage of the plugin. You can also run on-demand scans anytime you want to detect and remove malware instantly.
5. Check and delete spam comments
Check your comments regularly and delete spam comments as they will take unnecessary space in your database. There are many people who leave low-quality comments just to get a link back to their site.
If you’re getting lots of such comments from the same user or IP address, block them using a security plugin. Akismet plugin is another option to automatically check and filter your comments.
6. Find and fix 404 errors
Users will get 404 (page not found) errors when they try to open a webpage that doesn’t exist. It may happen because of a typing error, URL change or server outage. You can avoid the first instance as you can do nothing on it. For others, Google will send you warning messages along with the page links and the time when the issue occurred last time.
7. Backup your website
Backup is another WordPress maintenance task that you should perform regularly. It helps you to save all your content and database in a secured cloud vault, and you can restore them anytime if something bad happened to the site. A cyber attack, .htaccess code change or a theme modification may result in damaging the site and a backup copy is useful to bring everything back to your track.
WordPress provides plenty of plugins to backup your website automatically at scheduled intervals. But sometimes, they may not work. So monitor activity logs of your backup plugin and if it’s not working properly, backup the site manually.
8. Find and fix broken links
Fixing broken links is one of the essential WordPress maintenance tasks that help you to run the online business smoothly. Dead links will affect your rankings as well as user experience. No one will like to visit a website again if it contains lots of broken links. But as you know, it’s not possible for the webmasters to visit each and every page to check whether the links are working or not. So use a broken link checker plugin to detect and fix such links.
9. Clear your post drafts
Do you have a habit of keeping so many things in the drafts? It may be your upcoming post ideas, page links or incomplete posts. But if their number exceeds the limits, your page speed may decrease.
Monitor your drafted and trashed posts frequently, and delete unnecessary content to reduce your database size. You can apply the same rules to the posts that contain outdated information. Either update them with the latest details or redirect the users to other similar posts on your site using a redirection plugin.
10. Run Speed tests
It is one of the major WordPress maintenance tasks that let you evaluate the performance of your website. Analyze its speed using online tools like Google PageSpeed Insights or Pingdom and make sure that you are getting green signals across the device types. They will provide optimization suggestions to reduce the server response time and improve performance.
W3 Total Cache is a fantastic plugin to implement those suggestions and reduce your page loading time. It contains tons of options to optimize every corner of your website. It may be a little bit complex for the beginners but you can easily handle the configuration part by following tutorials from WordPress experts like wpmudev.
Are you performing these WordPress maintenance tasks regularly? Feel free to share your thoughts through the comment form below.