Are you an eCommerce merchant? Then you know that updates to your eCommerce platform, extensions, plugins, and payment gateways are a part of life.
With the updates released for WordPress 5.0 and resultant compliance patches for WooCommerce, the world has become a wee bit easier, at least for those of us who have wagered our lives on WooCommerce. The new updates have brought about a bouquet full of changes, new fixes, improved security, and better storefronts.
Ensure that you update your WooCommerce before you upgrade to WordPress 5.0 for a worry-free life.
Before you do anything else, take backups!
Backups are essential to safeguard your store’s online assets in any event of corruption. WordPress saves a part of its data in a database and another part in the files. The themes, plugins and any uploaded content like images and all are located in the wp-content folder. Another is the database, which organizes the products, orders, posts, pages, user login data, and many more. In order to fully backup any store which uses WordPress and WooCommerce, we should take a backup of both the database and the files.
There are two types of backups, manual and automatic.
- Automatic backups are the most reliable ones. Automated, regular backups of your entire site including your database, all content, plugins & themes, settings, and more.
- While creating manual backups for your store, backup your database and your WP-content folder. This ensures that you have a backup of your theme and plugin files, especially when there are any customizations.
Getting and Testing Updates
Once the backups are created it is time to move on to installing the updates. Never test the updates on your live site before trying them on your dev (or local) site. If you are unfamiliar with this process, it may be a good idea to get help from a WooExpert.
Never start the new update installation in the live site.
- Start with a Local install. The Local site is an isolated personal computer, generally not accessible from the web. It’s highly recommended to use version control so that it will be easier to deploy the site to staging and production.
- The Staging site is where you test updates. This should be a replica of the live site. To test a replica beyond the Local site, it’s better to create a second WP install and restore a backup of your live site to it. At FlexiCloud, we offer you with a staging site for testing your updates before deploying them live. This staging site can also be shared with others to help test it. Ensure that you test on multiple devices, different browsers, multiple locations and so on.
Message us to set up the staging site for your WooCommerce update.
- The Production site or the Live site is where customers and purchases happen in real time. Once everything on the Staging site works smooth, the version is ready to go live. It’s safer to switch your site into ‘maintenance mode’ to prevent any transactions and orders during the update. [Always have a copy of your site’s backup handy in the unfortunate situation where something unexpected happens.]
Remember: Any lost functionality costs customers and money.
Testing is never a waste of time; it saves a lot of stress and saves money in the long run. Never delay testing all the functionalities of your site after deploying the updates. Test your live site to ensure that it works great!
Updating Extensions and Payment Gateways
1. From WooCommerce.com extensions
Go to WooCommerce > Extensions > WooCommerce.com Subscriptions to get updates and plugins from WooCommerce. Read more about Managing WooCommerce.com subscriptions.
Always ensure to connect your store to your WooCommerce.com account as this lets you to,
- View the status of WooCommerce, your extensions and also your payment gateways
- Filter by Installed, Activated, Downloaded, and Update Available
- Decide the compatibility of extensions and payment gateways with WooCommerce version/release.
2. From third-party developers’ extensions and plugins
Store/site owners must contact the third-party developers directly for support on any extensions, plugins, themes and payment gateways developed and maintained by third-party developers.
If you are interested in knowing more about the technical specifications of the new update, you can access the detailed document here. FlexiCloud supports WordPress 5.0.x and WooCommerce. Our high spec servers are fine-tuned to provide fast-loading, highly secure and versatile eCommerce hosting. If you enjoyed reading this article, you’ll also enjoy hosting with us at FlexiCloud.