Best Practices for Working with WordPress in 2021

Working with WordPress can be an opportunity for your company or for a new business, so check out some best practices if you want to immerse yourself in this world of website creation

work with wordpress
Working with WordPress

You've seen several WordPress tips here at Married Games and you can look for some courses to get deeper into website creation, not only for your business, not only for your personal website, but also for, who knows, becoming a developer of themes and then start earning some money from it. However, the technical part is only part of working with WordPress.

There is, as in all segments, a series of good practices that you can follow for those who want to start working with WordPress and offer their services to clients and start creating professional themes to sell or offer for free until you are sure that you can do it. themes with the professional quality you want. Let's talk a little about these best practices that WordPress professionals have.

Tips for Working with WordPress

Always make site updates in a test environment

This first tip won first place on the list for a very important reason: you should keep it in mind for everything else we're going to talk about.

By making changes directly to your live site, you run the risk that something will stop working. And if your website is linked to your business, downtime is an essential thing to avoid at all times, as it can mean lost sales. Of course, this should be combined with other security tips, such as always backing up your website.

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Learn how to securely Backup your website.

To eliminate this unnecessary risk, you can use a test environment to update your WordPress site. For quick fixes, a test site would work fine. If you're testing functionality or an entirely new site design, I recommend a local environment. If you've never worked with a test environment before, Local WP is a free app that will help you get started quickly. Download Location WP here!

Meet the Gutenberg Editor (WordPress 5.0)

WordPress 5.0 was released in late 2018, featuring the editor Gutenberg. Even if you are planning to use the Classic Editor Plugin for a while (which will be supported until December 31, 2021), it's worth meeting our new friend Gutenberg this year.

I recommend setting up a local WordPress site running version 5.0, so you can safely try out the new editor without any risk to your real site. If you're a content creator, try creating a post with Gutenberg to see what it's like to use blocks. You might also get some new ideas for formatting future articles!

If you're a developer, you can import a copy of your live site into your on-premises environment and then upgrade to WordPress 5.0 to fix some issues. This will allow you to see how your site's existing content reacts to Gutenberg, so you can put a plan in place to update the active site.

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Best practices for working with wordpress in 2021 | dc39d48c blocks | Development, Security, Website, Technology, Wordpress | working with wordpress tips/guides
Gutenberg

Update your themes and plugins

This WordPress tip is nothing new, but it's so important that it's worth including it on any best practices list! Now is the perfect time to audit your themes and plugins to make sure they are up to date and working as they should.

While it may seem tedious to go through all the sites you manage just to update these things, it's extremely important to the speed and security of the site. Outdated versions can have vulnerabilities that put the website at risk, and imagine how much longer it will take to fix a website with malware.

Bonus: Updating themes and plugins for your customers is an ongoing service that you can charge for recurring revenue. If you haven't started this pricing structure yet, I highly recommend it! This guide to recurring income can help you get started.

Learn how to update your WordPress site's PHP

Make sure your websites are mobile-friendly

This best practice isn't new either, but it remains extremely important: Your site needs to be fully responsive and mobile-friendly. If you're using well-maintained and up-to-date WordPress themes and plugins (which, according to the last tip, you should be!), there's a good chance your site will automatically run fine on smaller screens. (Thanks WordPress developers!)

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If you're performing a custom website design, however, you might need to think a little more intentionally about ensuring your website is mobile-friendly. And again, if you identify any changes you need to make, test them first in a local environment or test site. Otherwise, your website visitors might come across a pretty strange experience on your website while you're in the middle of updates!

enjoy the white space

Make blank spaces your best friend. It can be a nightmare for your users if your site looks like an old newspaper, full of text. Sometimes you need to prioritize aesthetics over efficiency. When you take advantage of white space on your site, your users are naturally drawn to the information you want them to see.

In addition to highlighting a specific section of your site, white space will also make your pages more elegant and readable. Add these practices to your priority list and your site will instantly be more refined.

Add SSL certificates to each website

There was a time when SSL certificates were considered important only for certain types of websites, such as e-commerce stores or online banking portals that dealt with confidential customer information. Today, however, having an SSL certificate on your website is considered a best practice, even if you're just creating a personal blog.

Google has even started flagging sites without an SSL certificate as “unsecure”, which is definitely not something you want to appear on your site.

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If you don't have an SSL certificate installed, start with your hosting provider. Many will provide SSL certificates (a common benefit of managed WordPress hosts). Flywheel offers Simple SSL, a free certificate developed by Let's Encrypt, for all sites.

Choose your favorite tools

This tip aims to help you have a more productive and efficient year in building websites for clients. One of the best ways to improve your workflow is to simplify the number of themes, plugins, add-ons, apps, extensions, etc. of the WordPress you use.

Of course, there will always be new challenges to solve and unique site requirements, but do a little auditing on all the tools you use. Is there any overlap? Can you simplify?

For example, when it comes to WordPress themes, do you have a single framework to always start from? Or maybe a themed company you trust? Or does each new website design require a lot of research time to identify an entirely new solution?

If you still haven't found your favorite tools, that's fine. This will help you increase your productivity and efficiency by defining your access options. So researching a custom solution and keeping your favorite tools handy is a great idea.

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Involve your customers in the design and development process

There's almost nothing worse than making a lot of progress on a project, only to find that the customer isn't happy with most of the project. This year, prioritize customer feedback regularly throughout the project to ensure everyone is always on the same page!

When you're hiring a new customer, take the time to get to know their business, what they like/dislike about other sites, and your goals for the year. Using a customer questionnaire can help standardize this process so you don't forget anything in the first phase of a project!

Once the project is underway, check with your client during the different phases, including wireframes, mockups, development, etc. If you're using Local WP to build the site, you can even send customers a link to the site on their machine, giving them a chance to view a working version.

Wordpress
WordPress can be a source of income

Ensure easy accessibility

To improve the user experience, make your content easily accessible. This is especially interesting for anyone who is finding ways to lower bounce rates on the site and make users stay on the site longer.

As the website designer, it is a necessity to structure the website in a way that makes it more attractive. Be sure to avoid poor layouts, low quality content and lack of search options. Everything must be navigable and clearly labeled. Your design should allow your users to readily determine whether your site contains all the information they are looking for.

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Now leave in the comments, what are your best development practices? Share your recommendations or your favorites and take the opportunity to read more about Technology on our website.

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Paulo Fabris is a journalist, writer, RPG player, gamer, cosplayer, nerd and fan of anime since the time of TV Manchete.