WordPress continues to be the leading platform for site hosting across the web. A report earlier this year notes that it is the preferred content management system for 63.1% of brands online. Not surprising considering its ease of use, large selection of customization options, and sizable and very active backend community.
Despite all these benefits, WordPress is not an infallible system. Indeed, even the most user-friendly interfaces can suffer from hiccups that can severely impact site performance and user experience. Web designers should take note of at least four key WordPress issues that they have to address to keep their websites working properly.
Analytics 4 Integration
Google has officially transitioned its Google Analytics platform into the new GA4 standard back in July. The updated platform boasts improved metrics tracking to ensure that web owners have a better understanding of what their site visitors are. Official communication from the search engine stated that they aim to assist site owners by transitioning the analytics properties to the new standard automatically. However, this may not apply to all sites due to certain circumstances. As such, it is recommended that you check your backend and ensure that the Analytics profile is updated to the GA4 standard to continue being updated about your site’s performance.
Core Web Vitals
Core web vitals are performance factors monitored by Google to determine a website’s overall quality with regards to overall usability. These cover load speed (how fast a page fully loads its content), page interactivity (how fast a page registers a user’s click or interaction), and page stability (sudden changes to the page caused by tertiary page objects like pop-up ads). Many older sites fail the CWV test because they do not update their content to meet recent standards, which change frequently. To ensure that your site stays within the minimum CWV standards, keep an eye out on these factors:
- Loaded images
- Quality of the web hosting service
- Utilization of a content delivery network to reduce load times wherever in the world the site is loaded
- Caching systems
- Front-end setups like theme and fonts
- Comment pagination
Links retain a key part in driving traffic to other parts of your website, especially to pages buried deep within your sitemap infrastructure. In the process of updating your website to meet current standards, you may accidentally break many of your older hyperlinks due to changes in URL formatting and the like. In order to avoid future errors related to this issue keep an eye out for
- Links in need of redirects
- Link targets (opening a new tab after clicking a hyperlink, etc)
- Broken links to pages that no longer exist
- Contextual anchor texts
Due to the increase in mobile users in recent years, many web developers have shifted to the mobile-first mindset to cater to the large consumerbase. While this has led to innovations in interactions and user experience, this has also caused the deprecation of many website features, such as sidebars. While mobile devices don’t really support such features because of the reduced interface space, they still offer valuable internal linking options to help provide visibility to deeper relevant content for a page. Consider optimizing your sidebar even if you don’t expect mobile users to pay attention to it.
WordPress is not a trouble-free platform for your website. Nonetheless, once you learn to leverage its strengths and deal with its weaknesses, you can effectively use it to market your brand more effectively.