WordPress is one of the most popular content management systems (CMS) in the world. It is used by millions of websites, both big and small, to publish and manage their content. One of the reasons for its popularity is the availability of a large number of plugins that can be used to add functionality to a WordPress website. However, using plugins comes with a responsibility to keep them up to date. In this blog post, we’ll discuss the importance of updating WordPress plugins and how to do it.
Why Is Updating WordPress Plugins Important?
Updating WordPress plugins is crucial for the security and performance of your website. Here are a few reasons why you should keep your plugins up to date:
- Security: Hackers are always looking for vulnerabilities in WordPress websites to exploit. Outdated plugins are an easy target for them. When a plugin is updated, it often includes security patches that fix any vulnerabilities that were found. By updating your plugins, you are protecting your website from potential security threats.
- Bug Fixes: Like any software, plugins may contain bugs that can cause issues with your website’s functionality. By updating your plugins, you can ensure that any bugs are fixed and your website is running smoothly.
- Compatibility: WordPress is constantly evolving, and so are the plugins. Updating your plugins ensures compatibility with the latest version of WordPress. This means that you won’t run into any issues with your website when you update WordPress.
- New Features: Plugin developers are always looking to improve their plugins by adding new features. By updating your plugins, you can take advantage of these new features and improve the functionality of your website.
What To Consider Before Updating Your WordPress Plugins
Before taking on the WordPress plugin updates, there are a few things to consider or take care of. In this section, we’ll give you tips on preparing your site for upcoming updates and how to be on the safe side of this process.
Keep Your WordPress Software Up To Date
WordPress has a dedicated section for you to check if updates are available for the core WordPress software, plugins and themes. To find this navigate to your WordPress Dashboard > Updates. Be sure top keep your core software up to date here.
Check the Changelog
Before you dive into updating your plugin, click on the Changelog …. it’s your go-to guide for all the updates and changes in the latest version of the plugin. From bug fixes to new features, the Changelog gives you the full rundown so you can update with confidence.
Update Manually or Automatically
Upgrading your WordPress plugins can be confusing – should you do it manually or automatically? The answer depends on the type of plugin. If the plugin only affects the backend of your site and isn’t tied to your content, you’re probably safe to let it auto-update. Worst-case scenario, it may cause some minor issues. But if the plugin is crucial to your site’s operation (think WooCommerce, page builders, galleries, or redirection plugins), you need to be extra careful. Faulty updates can really mess up your site.
So our advice is to manually update any plugins that are essential to your site’s functionality. Take the time to read the changelog and backup your site before updating. As for less crucial plugins, you’re probably okay to let them auto-update. Just be sure you understand the risks before you hit that button.
Backup Your Site!!!!
Here’s a friendly reminder: it’s always a good idea to make a backup of your site before updating any plugins. Trust us, it could save you from a major headache down the line. We all know that feeling when an update goes wrong, but if you’ve made a backup beforehand, you can rest easy knowing you have a safety net to fall back on. So, take a few minutes to back up your site before hitting that update button. Your future self will thank you!
How to manually Update WordPress plugins
Updating WordPress plugins manually is quick and easy. Simply log into your WordPress Dashboard and follow these three steps:
- Go to your Plugins section
- Click on Installed Plugins
- Click Update Available
From there, you can choose to update each plugin individually, or update them all at once to save time.
Update Plugin Individually
Simply click the “update now” link under each outdated plugin you want to update, and you’re good to go.
Bulk Update Plugins
All you have to do is check the box on the left side of each plugin in the list that needs an update. Or, if you want to update all plugins in one go, simply tick the box next to “Plugin” beside the Update Available list. With this feature, keeping your WordPress site updated has never been easier!
How to Update WordPress Plugins Automatically?
WordPress version 5.5 or later now includes an awesome auto-update feature? It lets you decide which plugins you want to be automatically updated when a new version is released. This means less time spent manually updating, and more control in the hands of WordPress. Get ready to sit back and watch those updates roll in effortlessly!
Navigate to Dashboard -> Plugins -> Installed plugins, here you will find to the right of each plugin click on the link Enable auto-updates for each plugin you would like to automatically update.
Keeping your WordPress site secure and up-to-date starts with updating your plugins regularly. To make things easier, we’ve shared some effective ways to update your WordPress plugins. Stay ahead of potential security threats and take control of your WordPress administration.