Huge changes to WordPress imminent – have you tested in advance?
Elsewhere in this blog we’ve discussed the issues associated with using the popular, but maintenance-heavy, WordPress platform for your dental website. The issues associated with hacking, incompatibility of plugins and hence the need for very regular maintenance intervention, are well-known.
That said, many dentists still end up with a WordPress based website and then hope that their designer stays on top of it to keep it updated and secure. Unfortunately, this often is not the case as the maintenance issues and incompatibilities become more onerous as the core platform updates. This is why there are so many WordPress websites out there which fall into disrepair and eventually get hacked. That said, if you do go the WordPress route and are prepared to invest in its maintenance, you can still get a viable site for your business – but please understand the implications if you do.
Unfortunately that’s not the full story and periodically, the day-to-day maintenance issues associated with WordPress actually increase dramatically. This happens when they release a full version update rather than and incremental update within a version. Sometimes, the update is so large that it introduces wholesale structural changes into the way that WordPress works, bringing with it a tsunami of problems where even the best maintained websites break. Such a change, WordPress 5.0, is just a couple of weeks away from launch and the impending shock wave has web design agencies which specialise in WordPress sites, very concerned. If you have a WordPress based dental website, you should also be concerned.
Why is WordPress 5.0 so different?
The upcoming version of WordPress is designed by default to incorporate a completely new editor know as ‘Gutenberg’, named after the German printing pioneer from the 1400’s Johannes Gutenberg. This has apparently been done so that the commercial side of the WordPress business can remain competitive with the wide range of third-party visual editors which already exist. So it looks like WordPress are trying to develop a “one-stop-shop” for their content management system.
Whilst this all sounds good and potentially very useful for website owners, the transition from the older versions of WordPress will not be without issues, in some cases a lot of issues! It is already known that many plugins (the bits of software which extend core functionality) will cease to function, as well as the themes which are used to change the front-end appearance of WordPress. So all round a lot of upheaval.