Maintaining a blog is not easy. As bloggers, our daily activities can range from engaging on social media, creating content, working on our blog SEO, pushing to rank our keywords, and last but not least, optimize our WordPress blog for maximum performance. An optimized blog makes better user experience, tighten security & lets you stay on top of the game. Conduct these 11 activities regularly & be rewarded.
What are the Best Ways to Optimize WordPress Blog?
1. Broken Links
Check for broken links that may appear on your blog. Do it at least once every month. Once per week will be advisable especially if your blog is getting much traffic. Broken links are bad for SEO, annoys your visitors and may even cause you loss of revenue. My vote goes to Broken Link Checker listed on #16 of this post.
2. Optimize Database
A bloated or obese database is not healthy. We need to regularly optimize our databases/tables, and remove obsolete or ophaned tables. Orphaned tables are left abandoned in our database as a result of incomplete uninstallation. Orphan tables if left unchecked over time can take up a huge portion of your database. There’s no point in keeping tables (data) that are obsolete. We need to keep our databases clean and compact.
3. Update WordPress, Plugins and Themes
Update your WordPress, plugins and themes as soon as there are new updates available. Unless you have serious compatibility issues and need to retain older versions, otherwise upgrade whenever you can. Generally the latest versions contains the following:
- provide better security against attacks,
- perform better,
- have bugs resolved,
- more features,
- better stability,
- less likely to have or cause conflicts.
4. Stop using Plugins that are Abandoned
It is advisable that we check the plugins’ developments once in a while. Maybe every 6 months? If a WordPress plugin has not been updated for 6 months or more, usually I get concerned since there is not going to be any support (free or paid), and start to look for an alternative. Not being updated frequent enough by the developer can cause potential conflicts and incompatibility issues with the rest of our plugins and themes. It may pose security issues as well.
5. Keep a Constant Lookout for Better Plugins
To continue having the best WordPress plugins for our blog, we need to be on constant lookout for plugins that can make our blog stronger and faster.
6. Deleting the Unnecessary
If you are no longer using any plugins and themes, why not delete them and save space.
7. Spam and Comments
For many of us, this is a daily event that we do every time we login to our WordPress dashboard. Use Akismet or any anti-spam plugin to fight spam. Other tasks include replying to comments, making sure there aren’t any legit comments in our spam list, and clearing the trash.
8. Image Optimization
If you are using a plugin to automate the optimization of images, then you are in good hands. Else, remember to optimize all the images you use to reduce the loading speed and improve user-experience.
9. Post Revisions
Familar to all of us. We need to remove post revisions at least once a month, or weekly if we create lots of content. To do this, we can modify our .htaccess file to remove the problem, or use a WordPress plugin to delete the unwanted post revisions. Too many of this pointless revisions makes your database bloated.
10. Clean up the wp_options table (aka remove unwanted plugin’s options)
If you do frequent installing and deleting of plugins, your wp_options table may get excessively big without you realizing. Basically your plugin’s options/settings are stored in the wp_options table, but are not removed from the wp_options table because the plugin uninstallation/deleting was incomplete. This task is usually overlooked, but can be resolved easily either on phpMyAdmin or using a plugin to clean up the unwanted plugin options.
A routine that is always recommended but sometimes neglected. Backup needs to include our WordPress files and database (SQL). Fortunately this important task can be automated with either free plugins or paid services. Or you can do it the old-fashion way by backing up using FTP and phpMyAdmin. Usually I optimize my databases first, before backing up.
Extra Tip: Password & Security
Get yourself a plugin to maximize your security and protect yourself from online attacks. Wordfence and iTheme Security are two popular security plugins. It is also highly recommended that we change our Wordpress login password regularly, and choose a complex password.
Are there any regular activity you do daily to optimize your WordPress blog, and it’s not mentioned here? Let’s share and learn!
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