WordPress maintenance is crucial and it’s why we use WP Engine
If you have a WordPress website, it needs to be maintained. Maintaining your WordPress website can be a time-consuming process, but it is crucial for the security and performance of your website. The core areas we look after in our maintenance plan here at Woodswork are:
- core updates to the WordPress platform
- updates to themes
- updates to plugins, both paid and free
The importance of security is at the forefront of every web design build at Woodswork, which is why we use the best WordPress dedicated hosting platform available. We won’t ever compromise on the quality of WordPress hosting we use. It’s the first step in our dedication to updating, editing and keeping our clients’ sites safe. Because of this, we try to make it as cost effective as possible; we feel it is that important.
Woodswork understands that site maintenance is an expense that clients may choose not to invest in. With that in mind, Woodswork offers two tiers of maintenance.
The cost difference of these two offerings per year is minimal considering the potential costs incurred in troubleshooting the issues on an unmaintained site. Over 50% of our clients that opt out of maintained hosting opt back in within a two-year period. The reason? The longer maintenance is delayed the more vulnerable the site.
Here’s an overview of our current offerings:
Dedicated WordPress Hosting only
We offer you all of the security and monitoring that WP Engine provides and we let you know when we receive any notifications from WP Engine regarding potential security risks and vulnerabilities.
At this level, clients opt to do all of their own updates. If clients don’t do this often enough, there may be more issues on a site. Clients who access their sites regularly to do scheduled maintenance reduce the vulnerability of their site, it’s that simple.
Dedicated WordPress Hosting and Maintenance
Again, we offer you all of the security and monitoring that WP Engine affords and maintenance of all updates are done as required. Plus, when we receive any notifications from WP Engine regarding potential security risks and vulnerabilities, we act on that information immediately and we sort out any issues, regardless of whether your regular updates have already been done.
BasicDedicated WordPress Hosting only on WP Engine
- Billed 6 Monthly @$240 +gst
- WP Engine WordPress dedicated host
- Daily backups
- Clients do all of their own updates
- Price as of 02.2022
DeluxeDedicated WordPress Hosting and Maintenance
- Billed 6 Monthly @$390 +gst
- WP Engine WordPress dedicated host
- Daily backups
- Core updates to the WordPress platform
- Updates to themes
- Updates to plugins, both paid and free
- Priority Support
- Price as of 02.2022
What are WordPress core updates and why are they are so important?
The best place to start this conversation is to explain what the core is. The WordPress core is a term used to describe the components of WordPress that ‘make it go’. It is essentially a bunch of code files and folders that each perform a very specific role. If a site isn’t updated to the latest version of WordPress, there can be implications. You can find more detailed information in this article by ithemes. WordPress core updates ensure known security vulnerabilities are minimised. They are vital to your site health and functionality.
What are theme updates and why do they need to be done?
The theme is another stack of code files and folders that allow designers and developers to build a website. When we customise files using code or a builder, they change the way the site functions and how it looks. This is how we create your branded website.
Updating the theme we utilised to build your website is very, very important. The creators of the theme (good themes anyway such as Divi used here at Woodswork) make regular edits to introduce new features, make improvements to things like site speed or to fix bugs. Now and then, theme creators launch major rollouts or extensive usability updates. Updating the theme of a site is also important to security and to the performance of a website.
What are plugins and why do they need to be updated?
Plugins are essentially extra bits of software that add a special feature to your site. It could be anything from the super functional form builder we use called Gravity Forms or something really simple like a plugin to change the login logo. Either way, they are ‘plugged in’ or loaded into the site either using the Plugin dashboard or a manual upload. It’s considered best practice to minimise the use of plugins as they can conflict.
At Woodswork, we apply the same high standards to plugins that we do to website building, and the key to using a plugin is to check its credibility. If a plugin is required, we ensure that it is tried and tested by the wider WordPress community. Due diligence is vital here. We check how many users have uploaded it and when the last update was made by its developer. We make sure it has a good number of reviews and that they are ‘largely’ favourable. We also read a few of the not-so-favourable reviews to see what the pain points were for the user. And we check the most important thing which is to make sure that plugin is compatible with the version of WordPress you are running. Which will, of course, be the most recent version because the updates are done, RIGHT?
Plugin updates are carried out for assorted reasons, including compatibility with the updated WordPress install. Out-of-date plugins can reduce performance and cause security vulnerabilities. The level of service required varies and depends on the type and critical nature of website: e-commerce sites require extra support for example.
Why we utilise WP Engine to host all our websites
In our opinion, and the opinion of 157K+ WordPress developers on WP Engine, a WordPress dedicated host is crucial to a healthy, easy to maintain WordPress site. Dedicated hosting means that WP Engine only hosts WordPress websites and so they are specialists at hosting WordPress websites. With WordPress having 65% of the market share of all websites, it’s no wonder dedicated hosting is a good business. Other providers also host WordPress. However, as they host other platforms as well, their support may have a diluted level of WordPress specific technical knowledge. WP Engine also provide an excellent level of uptime, which means your site won’t suffer the effects of downtime during maintenance periods as they may on other hosts. It’s no wonder WP Engine were the #1 choice in WordPress hosting in 2021 by PCmag and it’s all backed by award-winning, 24/7/365 support.
Above and beyond WordPress hosting
If all this isn’t convincing, WP Engine reduces the costs we pass to our clients. SSL certification on our sites hosted with WP Engine are free. Not only that, if you decide that having Woodswork look after your business, we can use the WP Engine Migration plugin to copy your site to our account. That means we can migrate your site free, too! They make it all so easy.
We recommend using WP Engine so much that if a client insists on using another host, (which is very rare) we charge more for the edits. Why? Because, in our experience, there will usually be more issues editing sites that we don’t host on WP Engine!