The Importance of WordPress Updates

 In Blog

This little Case Study could be useful to any business that uses a website based on the WordPress CMS, which is the most popular website platform in the world.

WordPress is brilliant for a number of reasons:

  1.  It is an “Open Source”, free platform.  This means that there are literally tens of thousands of WordPress developers around the world who can work on your website.  If you use some web agency’s custom CMS solution then you are locked into that agency pretty much forever (and thus they can hold your business ransom if there is a dispute.)
  2. It is pretty easy for non techy folk to use and add their own pages an blog posts.
  3. There are literally thousands of Themes and “Plugins” which can be used to add all sorts of functionality

There is a dark side to WordPress though!

Firstly, because of its open source nature, and all the different plugins (which are developed by all sorts of different developers all around the world), it can present several critical security challenges.  Hackers know that it is relatively easy to hack into a WP site if it has not been maintained and locked down correctly.  We have specific protocols we use to set up and lock down all our own WordPress sites and those of our clients.  Contact Us here if you’d like to find out how to secure your WordPress site.

Now, there is another aspect to the dark side of WP!  And that is to do with the theme (which creates the site page and blog templates).  You can use free themes and paid themes.  Themes these days should be “responsive” – that means they change the layout when the website is displayed on a mobile or tablet, so that it is easier to read on those devices.

Good themes are well developed, well supported and will work every time WordPress issues a new updates, which is quite regularly!

Bad themes are pretty much the opposite.  They use poorly constructed code, are not supported at all, or are not well supported, and may not be compatible with each new WP update.

Todays case study is in relation to one of our clients Aspley Accountants Northern Business Consultants.  This company had a nice looking website (the site you see as of today, 22nd September 2016) but with a recent WP update it suddenly decided that when you create a new page, it will just display the page that lists all their recent blog posts!  On investigation we found that the theme that had been used to build the site some time ago, was no longer compatible with the latest WP version.

So what did we do?

Our whizz design team, specifically Luis, created and almost exact replica of the website using a modern theme and what’s called Visual Composer.

Here’s the before and after pics:

 Before

 After

Rebuilding Aspley Accounts NBC's Wordpress Website - Before
Rebuilding Aspley Accounts NBC's Wordpress Website - After

Pretty cool huh?!

You can hardly tell the difference.

So it IS possible to pretty much REPLICATE a WordPress site to be the same as any current website.

However, the unfortunate thing in, this case, is that the old theme used some very clunky coding to display each page.  So we had to to have one of our webmaster team go through and manually input each page content into the new site, page by page (all 63 of them).

So, the moral of the story?  Always use a professional, well-supported theme for your WordPress site and make sure it stays updated and is always compatible with the latest version of WP.

We recommend the themes created by Envato, which include CodeCanyon and ThemeForest.  The specific theme we used to modify in the above case was this one.

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