Clients often ask, “Do I need to install updates for WordPress, plugins, and my theme?” The answer is definitely “Yes!” and it’s because updates do the following:
- Enhance security
- Fix bugs
- Add new features and functionality
Content Management Systems such as WordPress are software, so you need to update them just like you update your operating system (Windows or Mac OS), applications, smartphone apps, etc. Here is why:
Why Update WordPress, Plugins, and Themes?
Updates to WordPress core, plugins, and themes usually
When any expert talks about WordPress security, one of the first things they mention is to install updates. Hackers and other malicious parties watch the release notes. As soon as they learn of vulnerability, they start exploiting it. So, you need to update as soon as a new version is released to reduce the time that your site is vulnerable.
Updates to WordPress core, plugins, and themes often fixbugs that were discovered in previous versions. To get the fixed version,update!
Add Features and Functionality
Updates to WordPress core, plugins, and themes often add new features and functionality. To take advantage of them, update!
How to Update WordPress
Fortunately, WordPress makes it pretty easy to update. You’ll see notifications when you log into your site. If you don’t log in daily, you should get email alerts by installing a plugin like WP Updates Notifier.
This is a great time to review your plugins and themes and remove the ones you’re not using. In general, the less code you have in your site, the fewer places there are for hackers to get in.
Here’s the update process we recommend:
- Read the release notes or changelog to see what the updateschange.
- If possible, test the update on a development site. Thatway, if anything breaks, you can troubleshoot before updating your live site.
- Back up your site. You should already have it backed up automatically and routinely using a backup plugin like BackupBuddy, but itnever hurts to make another backup.
- Install the updates.
Review and test your site. Focus on the items that werenoted in the release notes or changelog.
There it is, your WordPress, Plugins and Themes are up to date, making your site more secure from attacks. To enhance your site’s security, consider installing the Security Ninja Plugin. It will do you the magic of protecting your site from attacks.