WordPress is arguably the most popular Content Management Systems around, and for good reason. That being said, it does carry with it its own development difficulties. However, as soon as the Sunlight Media development team started using WP Engine’s staging area, there was a near-immediate reduction in complaints from our team. WP Engine had made it easier for them to complete development tasks, and the staging area was one of the top factors that kept coming up.
Here are six ways that this feature provides more to our development team than what other hosting providers had to offer:
Troubleshooting Theming Issues
WP Engine’s staging area makes it easy to test theming issues. Now if something does go wrong on the live site, we can revert to the last backup and start troubleshooting on the staging site, all without affecting the live site.
Simplifying Plugin Conflict Resolution
While plugins certainly have their place in the WordPress ecosystem, there are also good reasons to limit their use. With the staging area, though, we can troubleshoot conflicts and remove/update individual plugins, without worrying about the live site being affected.
Stop Worrying About Server-Side Caching
Server-side caching is a great tool for the end user, but for a developer it can become a nightmare, slowing down both initial development and testing.
With the staging area, we never have to worry about caching. When a page or element is ready, we can show the client right on the staging site without worrying that they might see an older version of the page.
The Ability to Test Import Files
It’s always a scary moment when importing files such as blog posts, products, or other types of data onto a website. Now we always test file imports on the staging site first so that we don’t have any unpleasant surprises..
Risk-Free PHP Editing
Sometimes you just have to edit PHP files or functions in WordPress. These are often files crucial to a site’s functions, and incorrect editing of them can cause severe if not permanent damage. With WP Engine’s staging site, we are able to work with these files without any risk of damage.
Redefining Test Pages
We’re always paying attention to the analytical data of our clients websites to see how we can improve performance. One way we do this is by looking at a client’s analytic data and then make suggestions that adding a page or editing a page’s functions could improve the way people interact with the site.
WP Engine’s staging area allows us to create a test page and then do user testing to make sure we are making a good decision.
To conclude, WP Engine’s staging area helps our business to run more efficiently and to minimize risk to our clients’ sites. It’s just one of the reasons we recommend WP Engine to anyone who is running a WordPress site.
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While always deeply interested in technology since childhood, Nicholas has been involved in web development in a professional capacity since 2012, as both a front-end developer and project manager.