A website can’t run without a specific code. Almost all WordPress websites run on PHP, and if you’re using the platform, it is already using a new version of PHP. But, if you haven’t updated the PHP version, WordPress has made the update feature easier for you.
You don’t need to know the technical PHP, although updating it on time prevents your website from hack attacks. WordPress is more vulnerable to attacks as it is an open-source platform. If your account is hacked, Google is quick enough to blacklist it and suspend your account. You don’t want that to happen to your WordPress website, right. An improvised version is better than a penalty.
Reasons you need an updated version:-
- Once you update the PHP version, your website will see performance improvements in enhancement and load speed.
- A website that loads in more than 3 seconds will affect the bounce rate of the site and will turn users away. PHP updates will make sure your site loads faster.
- With outdated security versions, your website will have a security patch for exposure. Once you update, the vulnerability patch will go, and your website will be secure.
- Outdated PHP version can affect the plugins and core files. If you don’t upgrade or update on time, most of the plugins will become incompatible with your website.
Ways to Check Your WordPress PHP Version:-
1. Use hosting management panel
You will first need to check with your hosting provider. Then move to the hosting management panel of the site. In the backend of the account, there is a menu PHP setting or PHP version manager.
Try checking the version of the site, the one you’re currently using. In most cases, you can upgrade to the latest version with a click or edit php.ini. This file is important to make edits to server functionality. You will need some technical expertise to alter the changes in the file. If you’re not sure about the update, talk to the customer support team of your hosting provider.
2. Use the WordPress plugin
WordPress has so many supportive plugins that make the update tasks easier for you. Some people know about these plugins and keep them on an auto-update so that no update goes missing. One most popular plugin you can use is the Display PHP version. You have to install the plugin on your website and activate it.
You will be able to see the current version of your PHP under the glance section. You can find this feature in the WordPress dashboard. If it turns out that your site is ready to run on the latest PHP version, there is nothing left to do. However, if you see that the version is not updated or not the current one, you will need to update it. For updating, your provider has to provide a switch option.
3. Use the WordPress site health tool
Now, this is the quickest way to check for your PHP version updates. Go to your dashboard on the WordPress website and navigate to the tools option. You will find the options site health under tools. Here you can view the health status of your WordPress website with the available updates.
The outdated version of WordPress will be listed here. Select the info tab and click on expand to the server section as it will provide you with complete details of server setup, which also includes your PHP version.
4. Using the different Cpanel
Access to your web hosting control’s Cpanel option. Here you will find a selection of software. Find the select PHP version under this option. Once you click the link, it is redirected to a new page. The page will let you know what PHP version your WordPress website is running.
The page will mention the current PHP version. Once you know what version you’re using, updating will become easier. If it’s the current version, don’t worry about the update feature. But, if the version is old, you will have to update it to the new version. The current PHP version is above 7.2 on most websites.
Steps to take before updating your website:-
Updating your WordPress website may cause your site to malfunction or break. To prevent this, follow the below-mentioned steps:
Take a complete backup
Create a complete backup of your site before you start with the update process. If something goes wrong in the process, you can restore your website in minutes. Many WordPress plugins will help you with the backup.
One such popular plugin is the Boltvault plugin, and once you add it to the dashboard of your website, it will automatically take a backup of your whole WordPress website. It enables your website with a single click.
Update your WordPress
You must update your WordPress while updating your PHP version. If you’re running an outdated version of WordPress and you update to the latest version of PHP, it may cause compatibility issues.
At times, this could also render your website unusable. You can update your WordPress website by going to the dashboard area and check if the new version of WordPress is available. It may notify you if it is not updated with an update now.
Check all the plugins and themes
The next step is to check all the plugins and themes. If updates are pending regarding the two options, do it before updating PHP. Some plugins might not be compatible with the new PHP version. Also, check if the plugin is incompatible with the new version of PHP, disable it first, and then move forward.
Check PHP compatibility
PHP compatibility plugin will help you check for issues or problems after you update your website. If there are compatibility issues, disable all the plugins and themes before you update your website.
If you’re stuck somewhere, contact developers and ask about the issue. Try finding an alternate option if plugins and themes are incompatible with the new version of PHP. Once you complete this process, there will be no problem regarding the update.
PHP is a crucial part of your website, and it ensures that your website remains efficient. Running your website on PHP will help you to drive more traffic and increase sales. Each web hosting provider has their unique method of updating PHP.
You can use Cpanel or a hosting control panel, depending on the web hosting provider. Regular updates ensure that there are no issues with your website. With the new versions, there won’t be any issues regarding speed. Whether you do it manually or use a plugin to update your PHP version, do it to make sure your site works perfectly.