What is a ‘staging site’ and when is it ideal to use one?

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Over the course of a website’s lifetime, it is sometimes necessary to make significant changes and updates. While making these changes, it is important to maintain and keep the live version of the site up and running with minimal downtime. This is why it is best practice to set up a ‘staging site’ which you can use to work on these updates and only publish your changes once everything looks good to go on the staging side of things.

When it comes to WordPress, creating a staging site is more important than ever. Perhaps there is a new theme that you would like to try out or a couple of new plugins that you’d like to test drive. If experimented with and installed right away to the live version of your site, you run the risk of bringing your website down due to incompatibility and other site errors that could come up. As a website owner, this is a nightmare.

Here are some things to consider and to be aware of when setting up a staging site for your new or existing website: 

  1. Amount / Extent of Your Changes: How significant are the changes that you are looking to make? Are you looking to just update the text on one of your pages or are you planning on overhauling the design of your website? These are factors to consider when setting aside the time to create a staging environment. For a site that will only require smaller changes from time to time, it may not be worthwhile to set up a staging site.
  2. Experiment and Update with Peace of Mind: With a staging site in place, you can work on a revised version of your site without worrying about crashing your site or bringing it down due to any errors. If you don’t like something or end up liking the current version of your site better, nothing else needs to be done. A staging site gives you a copy of your existing website that you can play around with and manipulate until you are satisfied without the fear of losing what you already have in place.
  3. Pushing the Staging Site Live: Once your staging site has been updated and you have all of your changes and fixes ready to go, the next step is to push these live. Depending on your host, this can be as simple as a click of a button or something that needs to be done on manually. Being able to get your live site updated quickly and efficiently is very important to the overall growth of your brand.

Here at Site Rockstar, we are proficient with WordPress websites and will be able to get you set up and running with a new website or help you get your current one up-to-speed. We are firm believers in the benefits and practical purposes of staging sites and can help you get one set up and manage it for you. Our deluxe hosting plan includes a staging site for your WordPress site and the peace of mind that comes along with. Start managing and updating your website the smart way, let us help you get started!

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