As you start your online journey into building websites, hosting stores, and promoting the virtual world, you are going to encounter problems. Some of these problems might be easy to solve like fixing your SEO, finding a good source for photos, or finding engaging content.
These are all things you might expect to be problems and cause you some difficulty now and then. Although, there are problems that will happen that you might not expect to happen along the way.
One of those problems is your websites health. You can think about your website like a car really. Over time, you will need to make updates, change some plugins, delete your cache, and rearrange your content. There are a ton of things that need to be done to a website to keep it healthy and thriving.
Therefore, we made a post to go over a few ways you can keep your website healthy, and what to lookout for!
Why Website Health Is Important
You might be wondering though, why is website health important?
To keep it simple, your website health can directly effect multiple things on your page.
- Decrease your page speed which could decrease your rankings
- Prevent new users from signing up for email listings
- Prevent you from adding new posts to your site
- Expose your site to bugs or hacks
- Keep people from seeing new posts
- Take your site down if you are not careful
There is a lot to do in maintaining a website, but the first trick we are going to go over is how to check the health of your site on WordPress since most of the new online pioneers use that platform.
Ways To Check Your WordPress Site Health
The best platform to use for new bloggers and online businesses is WordPress. WordPress has a bunch of native tools on its backend and one of those is actually a tool that tells you the health of your website.
If you go to Tools -> Site Health on your backend dashboard, you will see a few important things.
The first thing on the top of this list will be the critical issues on your site. There should be a brief definition of the critical problems on your site, and a link to follow to quickly fix them. If you do not see this area on your “site health” page, then chances are your site does not have any critical issues that WordPress can recognize.
The second section on the “site health” page will be recommended improvements. These are improvements that you can make, or simply put off making until a later date. Sometimes, these updates will be required at one point anyways, or pushed out by your hosting provider at a later date without you needing to do anything at all.
I would say, it is a good habit to go through this page once a month at a minimum to make sure your site is not only functioning properly, but does not have any hidden issues you are not aware of.
Besides these issues, there are other things you need to do to keep your site healthy. Here are a few things to consider and know that could effect your website over time if you are not careful.
Decrease Photo Size
A common thing for new bloggers is for them to not compress their images. When you upload images to your WordPress backend, you are actually storing these photos on your hosting site in your hosted files. Over time, if you fail to compress these photos your website can become quite heavy and potentially slow down. Even worse you could out use your storage if you have a basic package.
The worst thing about doing this is the impact on your page speed, and overall website speed. Slow page speed will get you penalized by Google rankings if you are not careful. Here is a picture compression site that I use all the time to compress my photos before I upload them to my websites to keep my site light and healthy!
Another common thing for new users to forget to do is delete your website’s cache. Although, I have realized that really this is just a lack of knowledge about what cache is and how it works.
Website cache is really files that are stored for users on your site. When a new user comes onto your website, they store a cache of your website for quicker access to the site, faster roaming, and increased usability. Although, when you make updates to your website, changes to the format, or even upload new posts, people can sometimes not see that on their version of your website.
This is because your website needs to dump all of the cache, and push out the new version of the site with your new posts and changes. There is a great plugin that you can use for this on your WordPress backend called WP Fastest Cache. Download this to your website as a plug-in and use it to delete your cache at the push of a button.
Delete Excess Themes And Photos
When you create a new website on WordPress, it comes with some native themes downloaded for people to use. Although, more than likely you will find your own theme and upload it for use.
If you do this, then you do not need those other theme files on the backend taking up space on your site. Therefore, it is generally best to delete those additional themes to clean your website up. You can easily achieve this in your Appearance -> themes tab.
You can do the same process with additional photos. There will be random photos on your site when you start off, or when you upload a new theme as placeholders. These need to be deleted as well to save space and increase page speed. You can do this easily in your media -> Library tab.
Update Plugins And Delete Ones Not Used
As you continue to blog and push your site to new limits, some of the plug-ins you are using will get updated by their developers and companies that created them. This is usually done to fix bugs, improve use-cases, or simply because the code is outdated and not preforming as intended.
If you go to your Plugins -> Installed Plugins tab you can check on these plugins and update them as needed.
In addition, while you are there it is good practice to delete plugins you are not using. The same way you update them, can be used to also delete selected plugins. This is basically the same as cleaning up your site from non used themes or excess photos. The plugins only take up space and slow down your website over time.
Thanks for reading our post on website health. If you do not keep up with your site’s health, then slowly it will lose rankings, performance, and ultimately it could get taken down.
Do you part to keep your site healthy, and it will give you better chances for people to find your posts!