To run a WordPress website smoothly, you have to upgrade the website and all technical aspects.
Using WordPress for website development and some other tasks eliminates some complicated things like coding.
WordPress users don’t have to use coding or other programming languages. It does not mean, you can ignore such an aspect.
It is a platform where all operations are managed in the form of PHP language. Timely, there are some updates of PHP versions created for fixing bugs and improving the performance.
Everyone has to do updates as fast as possible to avoid errors. Here, you will get a complete guide for updating the PHP version in WordPress and all associated factors.
Reasons For Updating PHP
Some people don’t know technology and programming languages like PHP. Due to it, they don’t understand the importance or requirements of updating the PHP versions.
Here, some major reasons available by which you can introduce its importance.
Speed & SEO Benefits
Website speed and performance affect lots of things. In case your visitors find the website with the slow loading speed and bad performance, then the chances of a bounce rate increase. If you focus on the SEO ranking, then speed is also a ranking metric.
High website speed leads to better performance and it is not only useful to impress the visitors but also helps in getting a better ranking. PHP update will help you in making such changes and boost the website loading speed. Consequently, the website’s user experience is improved, more leads & conversions, and top-notch position in SERP.
Security is the first concern of all people who are dealing online. All website owners try to keep their sources fully secure from all types of cyber-attacks or malware. PHP update will help you in improving the website security as well.
PHP is a popular programming language and many websites develop by using it only. Around 79.0% of websites are based on PHP all over the world.
Every PHP update publishes with some security patches for strengthening web security and providing a better experience to the users.
Features & functionalities of a WordPress website work with plugins and extensions. For using the plugins, you have to check out the compatibility factors.
If your website standards are not compatible with plugin requirements, then you cannot install it.
Here, the importance of the PHP version increases. The website compatibility is based on the version of PHP.
You have to update the PHP versions to increase website standards and use all types of themes & plugins.
By paying attention to such reasons you can figure out why PHP update is important for managing a WordPress website perfectly.
Things To Take Care Of Before Updating PHP Version
While updating PHP versions sometimes things may go wrong and it leads to website break or functioning issues. Before you proceed to update the PHP version, you have to check out some basic elements. These elements can help you to prevent the chances of bad results.
Create A Backup
If you plan for some changes in the website or its source code or anything, it is good to create a backup first. Creating backup assists to keep data safe and secure.
In case anything goes wrong or you face data loss during an update, then you can use backup files to recover.
To create website backup, you have lots of options, technical ways by logging in the Cpanel or using a backup plugin. You can pick the source as per your comfort.
Updating the PHP can benefit in several ways but you should not forget to update the WordPress core as well.
You have to do such a thing before updating the PHP version.
Updating PHP without having the updated or latest WordPress core may lead to some compatibility issues.
Here, your latest PHP versions may not work with the outdated or old version of WordPress.
To avoid such an issue, it is good to keep the WordPress core always updated. In case your core is not the latest, then you can see a notification on the dashboard.
Inspect Themes & Plugins
Before paying attention to the PHP update, you need to keep everything updated and the latest. Here, you also have to check out WordPress themes & plugins.
If your website theme or any of the plugin is not updates or available with the latest version, then you should proceed with it first.
Sometimes, you may face compatibility issues of updated plugins with the current PHP version.
In such a case, you should disable the plugin first and then update the PHP version. These updated plugins are compatible with the new PHP version only.
Update PHP Version – Process To Follow
Step 1: Check Current PHP Version
Firstly, you have to check out the current PHP version. It can be possible in two different ways, by accessing Cpanel and using a plugin.
People who are not familiar with the Cpanel interface and its usage can pick the option of plugin. In case you choose to use the Cpanel method, then you have to follow the procedure given below.
- Log in to the web hosting account and access Cpanel.
- Here, you have to access the software section of Cpanel and choose the “Select PHP Version” button.
- Clicking the button will redirect you to a new page. On the page, you can find complete information about the current PHP version.
Step 2: Figure Out Other Things
Previously we discussed some major factors and elements that you have to update before starting the PHP update. You should check out all elements and make sure all things are updated (WordPress core, plugin, & theme).
In case you missed something to update, then you should complete such a task first.
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Step 3: Get Plugin & Run Scan
When it comes to updating the PHP version, then you need to make sure all errors are resolved and you have complete information regarding compatibility factors.
For checking it, you can get help from a specific plugin, PHP compatibility checker.
It is a third-party WordPress plugin, and you can easily find it in the WordPress plugin store. After installing the plugin, you can know, your website is compatible with the new PHP version or not.
In case your website has any kind of error or issue, then you have to resolve it.
PHP compatibility checker gives a report or results in three possible manners, compatible, warning, and error. Compatibility gives a green single and you can proceed with the update.
In case of the warning, there are a few chances of compatibility issues with the new PHP version in the future. If it represents an error, then you have to worry and fix the errors first.
Step 4: Run An Update
After completing all 3 steps, you can focus on updating the PHP version. Here, you can get help from a professional WordPress developer for avoiding mistakes and completing all things perfectly.
Step 5: Website Verification
When you have done with the PHP version update, then you need to verify the complete website. Here, you should run all functionalities and features of the website by which you can figure out errors if any appear.
Sometimes after updating the PHP version, there are some minor issues that take place.
In case you detect some errors, then you should disable the theme and all plugins. Now you can enable everything one by one. After enabling every plugin, you should test it. In this way, you can easily find out the defective plugin.
All these things will help you to gather complete data about the PHP version update process and some other essential information. To avoid mistakes and keep everything perfect, you can hire professional and experienced developers.