Free Tools for Maintaining Your WordPress Website

Free Tools for Maintaining Your WordPress Website

Free Tools for Maintaining Your WordPress Website

After website development and deployment on the live hosting server, we take a sigh of relief and start focusing on our core business activity.

Unfortunately, modern websites, be it on WordPress platform or other, always are complex in nature due to the amalgamation of various technologies, services, and third party software attached as plugins to extend the features and functionality.

Therefore, website owners or webmasters never take complete rest and forget the website. If they do so, the consequence may bad enough such as:

  • Website start experiencing crash or downtime due to bugs or other issues related to functions or hosting
  • Page load speed may deplete significantly over the time
  • Site start showing various vulnerabilities and compromise on various safety as well as security issues
  • Decline in user experience becomes a norm gradually
  • Losing ranking in SERPs for various search engines begins

If you are experiencing such signs for your website, you might have a question that what to do with the website to regain the original performance and productivity.

Naturally, you may rush to consult your WordPress Website Development Company or a team of WordPress developers who have taken part in the development process and familiar with you and your website code/design.

I think they promptly advise you to go for website maintenance tasks and most probably pinpoint to their WordPress Website Maintenance packages available at a premium rate that anyone can afford it with a satisfactory quality of services.

However, before jumping on WordPress web maintenance packages or Hire WordPress Developers for Maintenance work, you must have hints regarding website maintenance tasks essential to run your WordPress website smoothly

Of course, I have listed the only handful of most significant and essential WordPress website maintenance tasks and tools to do it in the current post. It is better, you ask or take help of your WordPress web developers in due course to obtain tailor made website maintenance solutions.

However, before looking into various tasks and tools for maintenance, you must define and implement weekly, monthly, and quarterly schedule devoted to maintenance tasks in a regular manner.

Regular Back Up

In the world of machines, anything can go wrong, and make your server down for a while or from days to a week. Hacking, crashes, malware, user errors, deleted files, and bad commands are known enemies of smooth running of your website on the hosting servers.

Unfortunately, bearing cloud hosting for a small to medium scale WordPress website is a unviable option at economy point of view.

Therefore, smart and tech-savvy WordPress website owners always look for backup option both, online and offline to assure complete restoration.

Tools for WordPress Website Backup & Restoration

In due course, several WordPress website backup extensions are available with desired feature and configuration capacities. For instance,

1. UpdraftPlus

UpdraftPlus

  • It is among the highest ranking WordPress backup plugins
  • It has more than million active installations
  • It is widely tested and dependable WP extension
  • It is one of the highly rated scheduled backup type plugins
  • It offers extensive supports to various cloud storage services including Dropbox, Amazon, Microsoft, and Google
  • It provides quick restore for files and database backups with separate schedules for migration like processes
  • It is falling in automatic and scheduled backup types
  • It supports the latest encryption technologies for the sake up of security
  • You can make selective backup for different components and files/folders of your WordPress site
  • It splits larger WordPress portals into multiple archives and let you download backup archives directly from the WP Dashboard

2. BackupBuddy

BackupBuddy

  • BackupBuddy is a premium version and full featured
  • Most of the backup solutions take backup of databases and some selected components while BackupBuddy is covering all WordPress files, so it is a complete backup solution
  • It is scheduled and automatic backup WP extension
  • It allows you to take offsite backup along with online backup
  • It restores site quickly and easily
  • It permits individual restoration
  • It helps in different migrations like change of hosts, domain, URL, site clone, and replacement
  • It provides features and tools for WordPress security and optimization
Regularly Updates of Core, Theme, and Plugins

WordPress platform releases updates regularly, and installing updates as soon as possible makes great sense, as:

  • Updates come with security patches and solutions
  • Therefore, updates saves your site from tons of vulnerabilities, bugs, and crashes
  • Updates come with new features and functionality in core to make your site high-performance and smoothly running
  • Updates make site contemporary and compatible with the latest hardware, software, and technologies

After realizing the advantages of updates quickly and regularly, we must know different types of updates are essential for a website. For example,

  • Updates of core of WordPress site
  • Updates of theme integrated/installed on WordPress site
  • Updates of extensions/plugins integrated to extend features and functionality of WordPress website

Among these three major types of updates, an update of the core has prime importance because it is the largest pool of files and themes, as well as plugins, are integrated with it. Therefore, once you take an update of the core of the site, you need to look for the compatibility of themes and extensions immediately.

Therefore, updates of theme, which is a mid-size pool of files to define look-n-feel of your WordPress site or say front end of the site, follows. After updating themes, you should look at the extensions for compatibility and smooth functioning.

In industry, after the major update of the core, themes and plugins also release updates to ensure compatibility with it. Therefore, for a default WordPress websites and partially customized WordPress sites, automatic update is an excellent choice.

For heavily customized websites, manual update is recommended to avoid conflicts and errors in the functionality of the site. However, updating WordPress site requires disabling some components and plugins to allow smooth updates.

Therefore, it demands the intervention of a WordPress developer. Unfortunately, updates are frequent and hiring a developer is not cheaper for the sake of mere updates. Thus, WordPress extensions have developed to accomplish such daunting tasks automatically and without any hassle at all. Let’s check useful ones.

Tools for WordPress Website Updates

3. WP Updates Settings

WP Updates Settings

  • It has capability of setting updates and automatic updates in background using setting panel
  • It has feature to display or hide notifications regarding updates
  • You can set the major and minor core updates in background on automatic mode
  • Similarly, you can set automatic background updates for theme and plugin as well as translation files
  • It provides supports for multiple sites and contextual help

4. Update Control

Update Control

  • It is the most simple plugin as it lacks separate plugin interface and only adds some options to choose for setting your updates
  • It lets you specify how auto-upgrades should function
  • You can specify constant or add filters to hand options
  • You can use plugin on multiple sites
  • It has set for core updates like major, minor,development, and disable core updates
  • For themes and plugins, you can enable or disable automatic updates separately
  • When you select enable updates for VCS installation, it automatically bypasses the check for VCS in WordPress
  • You can disable default update results and debug email notification option to prevent sending it
Database Optimization

By nature, WordPress is considering a database-driven CMS, so all content stored in databases. It makes a lot of load on databases and its management system. Therefore, over time database optimization becomes essential for the better performance of the website.

You need to clean up extra junk such as deleted posts, spam comments, unused tags, and categories. Therefore, WordPress website owners have to take help of database optimization plugins to do things judiciously and automatically.

Tools for WordPress Website Database Optimization

In due course, following database cleaning or optimizing extensions are superb for your WordPress website.

5. WP-Optimize

WP-Optimize

  • It cleans up all unwanted data from your WordPress websites described above as well as removes pingbacks, trackbacks, and expired transient options
  • It runs de-fragment process on MySQL tables to compact it
  • Provides full control over optimization process
  • Allow automatic and scheduled clean-ups like weekly, fortnightly, or monthly
  • Take automatic backup before cleaning databases
  • It is mobile-friendly to work in responsive web design themes

6. WP-Sweep

WP-Sweep

  • It is one of the gems of database optimization plugins and make database cleaning superb easy
  • It depicts everything extra in your database of WordPress website
  • It cleans up revisions, auto-drafts, spam and deleted comments, and unused terms
  • You can set what to clean and not to touch it
  • You can clean orphaned meta data and duplicated meta data with settings
  • The best thing is that it applies WordPress delete functions instead to directly deleting MySQL queries, so it is safe
Checking Security

Today the Internet is full of malicious elements ready to attack your website to accomplish their bad intentions like hacking, spamming, data theft, data breach, spreading viruses and malware on the web.

Technically, managing various security aspects is the job of experts, and you need security expert WordPress, web developers. For large web portal, it is okay to hire a webmaster with required skills, but for small to medium scales of WordPress owners, finding free or less paid options are only ways to deal it.

Tools for WordPress Website Security

In due course, WordPress developer community has contributed a lot and released various extensions to manage security concerns very well. Those add-ons are:

7. iThemes Security

iThemes Security

  • It works to lock down WordPress, fixing common holes in security, cut automated attacks, and strengthens user credentials
  • It provides two-factor authentication feature for extra safety and security of your site
  • It makes updates of WordPress security keys and salts easy
  • It scans site automatically for malware and viruses every day or as per schedule
  • It offers password security by opting strong password and periodic password change by setting password expiration
  • Track user actions like login, logout, and editing
  • Provides security widgets right from dashboard to set user banning, system scanning, and so on
  • Detect file changes and scan for malicious attacks
  • It protects WordPress site from brute force attacks, troublesome user agents, bots, and blocks numerous attacks on site code, databases, and various WP files
  • It forces SSL for admin, posts, and other pages for extra security

8. Wordfence

Wordfence

  • It is powered by Threat Defense Feed like proprietary system working on website security aspects like firewall
  • Its firewall system saves your WordPress website from hacking and other malicious attacks on the web
  • It scanning features alert you in real-time when your WordPress site compromised
  • Live traffic view features provide you real-time visibility of traffic and attempts for hacking your site
  • Additional tool sets offers most comprehensive WordPress security solutions
Moderating Comments & Spam

Good and constructive comments with good intentions are always welcome at any dynamic and interactive sites like WordPress blogs, but comments with backlink building purposes are always hated by site owners and the audience too.

Therefore, comment moderation is essential to check spam comments prior to publishing on the post or web page.

Tools for WordPress Website Comments and Spam

Anti-spam measures by several WordPress plugins are the best way to deal with it quick and easy ways.

9. Akismet

Akismet

  • It comes with each WordPress installation
  • It is an advanced service for hosted anti-spam
  • It is capable of dealing with the latest and dirtiest tactics
  • You need to obtain API key to activate it
  • It is paid option with affordable price tags for personal and professional use

10. Disable Comments

Disable Comments

  • Disabling all comments is another way to save from comments related headaches and spam
  • If you want to disable all comments from all web pages of your website, this plugin is for you because it never allows exception for a page or section at all
  • It hides comments links from the Admin menu and bar
  • It also hides comment-related sections from frontend and backend of the WordPress website
  • It disables comment RSS or Atom feeds
  • It removes X-Pingback HTTP header from all pages as well as disable outgoing pingbacks
  • You need to delete existing comment before installing the plugin
Maintenance of Search Engine Optimization Aspects

SEO is an inevitable process for any website intended to capture the natural traffic from the various search engine by following their guidelines and obey the rules of algorithms.

Since search algorithm has hundreds of parameters, meeting all requires the best practices to follow, and modern SEO plugins for WordPress are capable of addressing all beautifully.

Tools for WordPress Website SEO Optimization

11. Yoast SEO

Yoast SEO

  • It offers free as well as premium (paid) options for advanced SEO support following the latest changes in algorithms
  • It provides feature for keyword optimization
  • Google, Facebook, and Twitter previews of your page
  • It performs readability check
  • It provides complete control over breadcrumbs
  • It eliminates duplicate content issues by setting canonical URLs
  • Provide tools for technical SEO
  • Offers link building tools and suggestion
  • Gives content insights

12. Redirection

Redirection

  • Redirection is a free of charge plugin for WordPress to manage 301 redirects and 404 errors
  • It offers 404 error monitoring
  • It automatically add 301 redirections as soon as page URL changes
  • It allows manual additions of 301, 302, and 307 redirects for a WordPress page/post
  • It provides complete logs for all redirected URLs and redirect statistics
  • It supports various redirection methods
Monitoring Website

The website is running on 3rd party hosting servers in most cases and out of control of the website owners or webmaster. Therefore, constant monitoring of website maintenance issue is daunting for anyone.

In due course, website monitoring plugins can help WordPress webmasters to provide essential tools and notifications to get real-time clues regarding website performance and other maintenance parameters.

Tools for WordPress Website SEO Optimization

13. Jetpack Monitor

Jetpack Monitor

  • It checks site status at regular intervals and provide reports in a comprehensive manner including visuals
  • If it detects downtime, it sends quick alerts or notifications as per your prescribed ways
  • It keeps your site secure even during disaster time by constant monitoring and automatic backup tool integration
  • It can detect web hosting outrage to corrupt files like problems easily
  • It provides statistics on site visitors, their origin, and exit journey
  • It also offers tools for design and content editing

Maintaining Website Speed

Today website loading and interaction speed is a part of search engine algorithm and most importantly user experiences. Therefore, website maintenance tasks always focus on site speed.

There are various website elements and programming glitches that hasten site speed anytime and at any point. Therefore, you should take help of site speed testing tools and site speed optimization tools to deal with site speed issues efficiently.

Tools for WordPress Website Speed Maintenance

14. Google PageSpeed Insights

Google PageSpeed Insights

  • It measures the performance of the web page for mobile devices and desktops by fetching URL for each category of device
  • It checks for speed rules and usability rules
  • It checks for common site speed best practices applied on your WordPress sites such as compression of JavaScript, CSS, and code, image compression, and graphics like other UI element compression
  • Based on the performance tests, it provides a score and suggestions to improve it

15. Pingdom

Pingdom

  • It allows examination of all parts of the web pages such as file size, load time, and details of web page elements to identify performance bottlenecks
  • It provides performance overview by giving statistics based on test results
  • It offers performance grades and tips like other tools
  • It lets you test the performance history of your WordPress website
  • Features for testing the site speed from multiple locations
  • It enables you to share results

Conclusion:

Based on above insights of various website maintenance tools, we can conclude that website maintenance at proper ways always requires the help of tech genius and simple integration of various relevant plugins or extensions is not sure fire way to deal it effectively.

Therefore, Perception Systems, being a leading WordPress Development Company offers website maintenance packages at higher premium rates that any level of business or website owner can afford.

Our WordPress website maintenance packages let you take a sigh of relief and focus on your core business activity without worrying regarding the website. If you are eager to know more contact our web maintenance team or support team for details.

Posted by Tarang Vyas

Tarang Vyas
Tarang Vyas head of eCommerce development team at Perception System, a leading WordPress Development Company.he has been in the industry for 15 years.

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