Why Developers Must Create a WordPress Staging Environment

Photo by Claire Thompson (CC BY)

WordPress is so cool and so powerful that many web developers defer to using it for their website development projects but one thing that many devs neglect is creating a WordPress staging environment. The bad habit of making changes to a live site is so prevalent I personally find it scary.

I have only one reason why a web developer in his right mind must utilize a staging environment in his development cycle.

IT’S A LOT SAFER! Like really! I hope you get the point.

It’s a lot safer for two main reasons:

  1. You don’t modify live code. Imagine uploading and activating a new plugin that suddenly breaks the site. This is going to be a disaster if you’re doing it on a live site.
  2. You don’t modify live data. You don’t have to worry if you accidentally forget the “WHERE” clause in a MySQL “UPDATE” statement i.e. “UPDATE wp_users SET user_pass=’dumbpassword’;”

But setting up a staging environment can be a daunting task… Well… unless you’re on WP Engine. Creating a staging environment on WP Engine is so easy it makes perfect sense to make it a part of your development cycle.

Click here to learn more about WP Engine’s Staging Environment.

I’ve used it a lot when trying to fix a bug, adding a new feature, switching to a new theme, testing a new plugin and more.

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