When it comes to building a company website, it can be tempting to look for ways to save a little bit of money. However, like many things in life, taking a shortcut doesn’t necessarily add value or save time/money in the long run. This is certainly true should you decide to use free or inexpensive plugins or website templates when you develop with WordPress.
It doesn’t take but a few minutes of watching the news or reading online to realize that hacks – be it in the banking industry, the security companies, or a major website- occur frequently. As a business owner with a website, there are always website concerns to be aware of. Since WordPress is one of the most popular website authoring systems, it is highly targeted by hackers. The WordPress development team is very dedicated to patching security concerns quickly, but there are some things you can do to make sure that your site is as protected as it can be:
- Keep WordPress and plugins up to date! This is very important and unfortunately, many people do not regularly update their sites. This should happen at least once a month as those updates often include security fixes. Recently, hackers have managed to exploit a number of popular free plugins on the WordPress market, and that has taken many sites down.
- Make sure your hosting company scans for malware regularly so a problem can be found early.
- Use security plugins such as iThemes Security or Wordfence.
- Use 3rd party security firewall services such as Sucuri, Sitelock, or CloudFlare. These prevent a lot of attacks from ever reaching your website.
- Beware plugin overload. While, technically speaking, you can use as many plugins for a WordPress website as you would like (unless you exceed server memory limits), each plugin you run includes code that could potentially be exploited, even if you do not have it activated. So unless you have a really good reason, ditch plugins you are not using, or have not been updated by their developer in over a year. Here’s a fun fact: Did you know the world record for WP plugins is 637 – and surprisingly, the site works just fine!
- Don’t use WordPress Templates – While it’s great that you can buy a template for WordPress for $50 and get a new website up fairly inexpensively, we’ve discovered that in the long run, it often creates a lot of problems. What ends up happening is the template author stops supporting the template after a year or 2 and when it’s time to do a WordPress update, your theme breaks. And also, many templates come with a ton of plugins required to get the full benefit of the theme, and as mentioned above, much of the time, more plugins = more problems. Instead of using WordPress templates, consider using a popular commercial framework such as Divi or Genesis, or it would be best if you had your own custom theme developed. That will result in the least amount of code “baggage” and it will also make it easier to fix things if the theme ever were to break on an update.
When it comes to building a better website, it’s about more than pretty graphics and looking for ways to cut costs. You need to protect your site and those who use it by working with a developer who can create custom themes, plugins, and ensure that it is as secure as possible from hackers. The Page Progressive team understands how vital it is to design a website that is safe and secure for all those who use it. Talk to us today to learn how we can help you.