Are you thinking to build your own website? Then think WordPress as it is a very popular way to get a site up and run rapidly. Still, in their haste, multiple WordPress developers end up creating disaster which seems very common and can be avoided if taken care of in the beginning during the WordPress development.
Whatever mistake you commit, read on to find further the most common errors you make and do not get despair as every mistake is an opportunity to learn.
We have seen the websites making use of the premium themes by incorporating all of its custom code into one single file namely custom.js or main.js. If you are also doing the same than better stop it right now. As the time passes, the file gets bigger and bigger or sometimes larger than 1 MB which makes the web pages to take a longer time for downloading and slow down to render by blocking the code within the head section of your web page.
When you merge everything into one file, it becomes difficult to use a wp_dequeue_script() function for unloading some code in the pages in order to improve the page speed. However, you need to split the code into multiple ones as if in case your web admin performs an update on main.js file, you have to begin from all over again.
#2 Leverage the Core WordPress functionalities to its limit
WordPress is secured across the globe by throwing regularly updated libraries that can be extended to your website in the form of plugins and themes. We have noticed that apart from the core file, the files from plugins and themes get to download again just to make the file bigger and function slower.
Hence, you have to ensure that all the third-party libraries should be updated on a regular basis and leverage the maximum core WordPress functionalities for a lightweight and much easier to maintain the project. Regular updates help you to stay ahead and also make you aware of the new features that are trending in the market.
#3 Avoid printing any PHP warnings
The WP_DEBUG constant is by default set to ‘false’ in order to avoid any PHP errors or warnings on a live environment. It is recommended to hide the private scrips and paths from the public view for better security reasons. Still, during the development phase, it is better to set it ‘true’ as it does not only gets you to notify about the errors but also lets you write better code,
Also, it makes sure that the plugin or theme you are using currently does not possess any PHP error during the installation. No matter how important your job is, you should always try to maintain the international coding standards with best PHP practices.
#4 Keep a Track of Professional Changes using GitHub
All of the custom coded files like child theme or a custom plugin should be regularly updated by releasing version controls. GitHub is recording what changes are made to allow developers to work on the same project or revert back to the previous version if something goes wrong with the site. Addition to this, the clients can use Git for tracking all the work history done by the developers who were hired for a particular project for long and complex projects.
In the initial stage, it can be intimidating to understand how the Git functions and how it can be beneficial for handling the projects. You can also make use of SourceTree which is one of the Git GUI software features that lets you interact with the repositories and drawing a smooth learning curve. After understanding how it works, you need to check the Best Practices and Tips from professional developers to work out with your project needs.
#5 Opt for a proper Code Organization
You need to set up a right architecture depending upon the size of the plugin be it a standalone or a plugin extension one. If you have developed a single-purpose WordPress plugin with a limited interaction then it will not be effective to other complex classes until and unless the plugin is expanded. By using an OOP (Object Oriented Programming) coding approach, the plugin is going to be featured with loads of code and classes as well. Rather than mixing up the HTML and PHP code, it is better to keep them separated by implementing the MVC pattern into themes and plugins.
As per the Plugin Handbook from WordPress, you can widely group the architecture patterns into different categories:
Single plugin file – Contains functions
Single Plugin file – Contains a class, instantiated object, and functions (Optional)
Main plugin file – With one or more class files
Each mistake is an opportunity to learn something new and gives you a chance to improve yourself. We can see how fast the WordPress developers are pacing out and there is no right way to do things. Hence, the more you practice and learn the better you will become. Do you agree or disagree with any of these common mistakes figured out in the article or you feel like anything has missed out? Let us know in the comments for further discussion. Keep Learning!
Olivia Diaz is working at eTatvaSoft.com, an Enterprise level Web & Mobile Application Development Company. Being a tech geek, she keeps a close watch over the industry focusing on the latest technology news and gadgets. Follow me on Twitter
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