Common Myths and Mistakes About WordPress: What You Need to Know

WordPress is an online content management system (CMS) that is used to power some of the most popular sites on the web. However, some businesses fear that WordPress has too many security problems, lack of disaster recovery and is difficult to administer.

In reality, many of these risks are mitigated by simple maintenance and best practices. Following these tips can ensure that your WordPress site is a valuable tool to attract and engage your customers.

WordPress Security

WordPress is an out-of-the-box solution, so creating scripts to hack a WordPress site is done regularly. It’s common to hack a WordPress site and insert hidden links for the purpose of passing PageRank to other websites. With so many WordPress sites out there, naturally the percentage of WordPress sites hacked is high compared to other custom applications.

The website owner can help protect the site by keeping the blog up-to-date with the latest patches. WordPress releases patches regularly that help secure the blog against the latest attacks. Always keep the latest version installed on the blog to keep most hackers at bay. Additionally, install plugins with care. Avoid plugins that are found on the Internet but not on WordPress’ official site. Some plugins are set up to allow hackers a backdoor to get into a system.

Myth: “WordPress is Only a Blogging Platform”

WordPress started off as a great, free blogging platform, but it’s evolved into a much more diverse portal. WordPress can support news sites, ecommerce, review sites and service portals. The installation for WordPress is the same for all types of sites, but within the WordPress portal there are thousands of plugins and themes.

The themes make the layout of the site, and the plugins are used for a particular industry. For instance, if the site takes payments, a plugin for Paypal payments exist. The site owner does not need to know how to code. Instead, he can install and configure the plugin to take payments.

Backups and Disaster Recovery

Disaster recovery should always be a concern when working on the Internet. Even if hackers never get into the site, the possibility of losing data is still there. WordPress has its front end user interface and the backend MySQL database. For large sites, the database can grow to gigabytes of information. If the site is large, cloud computing might work best for backups, because the cost can get out of hand when the business needs an archive of backups.

Large hosting companies such as Rackspace can offer a backup storage solution that only requires the business to pay for the amount of space used. That means no expensive hard drive costs for onsite backups. Additionally, offsite backups are a good way to protect from data lost after a flood or fire.

Although WordPress has some issues, the bad can be mitigated with good maintenance, a fast hosting company and regular updates. With enough thought put into a WordPress site, it can thrive and flourish as well as any other type of site on the Internet.

About the author: Jennifer Marsh is a software developer, programmer and technology writer and occasionally blogs for open cloud company Rackspace Hosting.


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