BeeWUG Summary 2nd November 2016

Summary of discussions

What’s Been Happening in the WordPress World Last Month


Guest Talk

Michael Cropper Professional Head Shot - Small - ColourThe guest talk this month was from Michael Cropper of Contrado Digital who talked about WordPress Fundamentals – The Advanced Topic About Getting the Basics Right

  • There are many ways to use WordPress
  • But very few you should
  • Make sure you have good web hosting in place, you really do get what you pay for. You’re generally paying for CPU, RAM, Hard Disk Space, Bandwidth and Priority. A whole managed service whether on a Shared Server, a Virtual Private Server (VPS) or a Dedicated Server
  • Take Web Server Security seriously and make sure you are covered at the Physical Firewall DNS Level, you have adequate Server Level Security Software configured and your Website Level Security is set up correctly too. Then make sure everything is fully automated and you are monitoring everything that is happening.
  • WordPress Core, simple. Keep everything up to date
  • WordPress Themes, When using a Theme from the WordPress Theme Directory, you can easily update this through the WordPress Admin area. Likewise, you can too with quality Premium Themes. On the other hand, when purchasing low quality Themes, often from Theme marketplaces, you have to manually update the Theme which most people simply do not do. So be aware of these issues.
  • Some interesting Theme usage statistics about what is currently in use,
  • Always use Child Themes when customising your Theme
  • Take a good look through the WordPress Template Hierarchy for the specific files you need to customise,
  • When dealing with Plugins to enhance the functionality of your WordPress website, the same applies when reviewing Themes as discussed above. Don’t go adding poor quality Plugins to your Website and introducing security holes that can be exploited. There are now almost 50,000 Plugins within the WordPress Plugin Directory which have been used almost 1.5 billion times. Crazy numbers.
  • When looking to customise your Plugins, never edit the PHP files directly. Instead, many leading Plugins can be customised by adding the files to the Child Theme such as with WooCommerce. Likewise many Plugins have a variety of Hooks available which you can then use Actions and Filters for within your Child Theme’s functions.php file to customise as needed.
  • Backups. Make sure you have both Server Level and WordPress Level backups in place which are fully automated, are full backups which include both files and databases and they are stored in a remote location with multiple restore points. This is a minimum requirement.
  • Some of the common mistakes people make include; Doing things on the cheap…; Purchasing low quality Themes and Plugins from marketplaces…; Cheap web hosting…; No backups…; No security updates to the Web Server, WordPress Core, Themes or Plugins…
  • As mentioned, there are many ways to use WordPress, yet very few ways to use WordPress correctly.

We’re always looking for guest speakers for the events, so get in touch if you want to speak about something you’re working on at the moment or something you want to share with the community.

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The next event will be on Wednesday 7th December. Hope to see you there. Spread the word.

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