Regular WordPress Maintenance Activities

Please make sure, for the security of your website, that you make plans to regularly handle the following activities. Hackers will target both small and large websites, and you need to be prepared.

Regular backups

The minimum

Make sure you backup your website at least once a month. Updraft is a great plugin for scheduling automatic backups. Make sure you download a backup to your computer every once in a while so that either you or a professional can go in and restore your website if something happens.

Go the extra mile

There are a few more things you can do to take your backups a little bit more seriously. A service like VaultPress will backup all changes in real-time. In addition to using a service like this, you’ll want to set up your website to create daily database backups that are stored locally, and weekly backups that are stored on an off-site location such as Amazon S3 storage. BackupBuddy is a great plugin that allows you to automatically send backups to Amazon S3 storage. You will also want to occasionally restore a backup on a staging site to make sure you’re able to restore backups if you run into an emergency.

 

Updates

The minimum

Failure to update regularly is the number one way people get hacked. Schedule a time once a month to go in and perform any updates available on the website.

Go the extra mile

If you’re a developer, you can also configure automatic updates. However, the best system for handling updates involves setting up a staging site you can test updates on. This way you don’t have to worry about updates breaking the website. I go in every week of two and test updates on all of my WordPress sites, and then once I know everything is fine, I apply the updates to the actual site.

 

Database Optimizations

It helps your website load faster if you occasionally optimize your database and clear out any unused transients. Especially if the database is using the MyISAM engine (but you should convert it to an InnoDB engine if it is). The plugin “WP-Optimize” allows you to schedule database optimizations to be performed once a week.

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