Don't Update Your WordPress Blog? Don't Expect A Blessing From the Search Engines

August 10th, 2011 by

When dealing with search engines it’s important to remember that their job is to serve the consumer, the person searching for content online.  In doing so they want to provide them with the most relevant, most trusted, and most reliable source related to their query.  Part of that trust and reliability comes from knowing that the consumer won’t be harmed when visiting a website.  It’s because of this that Google has implemented tools in Google Webmaster Tools to notify you if your site is infected with Malware and more recently notifying webmasters that they need to upgrade their WordPress version.  But could it hurt your search engine rankings?

Wordpress Update Notification in Webmaster Tools

While I won’t say that having an outdated WordPress blog is going to tank your rankings, it’s definitely a concern in the eyes of the search engines.  Why else would the Google Search Quality Team send out notifications like the one above?  Wordpress sites are known to be popular targets for hackers and this is known by the search engines.  If they have the option to display a site that is running current, secure software over a site that is running outdated vulnerable software, which do you think will come out on top if all other factors are equal?

By not updating your blog software you give search engines the impression that your site isn’t maintained or that you don’t care about the usability and security of your site and it’s users.  Though a perception, it could be a problem for you in the long run.  Especially as the search engines look to trust factors more and more.

How to Keep Your WordPress Blog Up To Date

WordPress notifies you in the WordPress Dashboard if a new version of WordPress is available.  From there you can download WordPress and update your blog manually.  Another option is WordPress Automatic Upgrade, which is installed on all blogs designed by Plastic Surgery Studios.  This plugin allows you to easily backup your existing blog files and download and install the latest version of WordPress simply by following the on page prompts within the WordPress Dashboard.

Sometimes updating a WordPress blog can run you into some problems, even if you are using a plugin like WordPress Automatic Upgrade.  For those of you who just don’t have time to mess with it, or are afraid of breaking your blog Plastic Surgery Studios offers blog maintenance as a means of keeping your WordPress blog up to date.  For more information contact your Internet Marketing Consultant.

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