The Dangers of WP Super Cache

One of my recommended Plug-ins for WordPress is WP Super Cache.  For any one not familiar with this plug-in, it speeds up the response time of your website by keeping (caching) a HTML version of each of the pages on your site.  This produces a tremendous speed increase because WordPress normally creates each page on the fly as requested using information stored in a database.  The multiple reads from this database and the server time required to format them does take a bit of time.

The danger in this plug-in (and other caching plug-ins like it) comes into play when you are making substantial changes to your site.  The normal day to day operations of adding posts or pages to your site are not a problem because the plug-in has not cached them yet.  The problem comes in when you change what is on a page by:

  1. making a change to your theme
  2. adding a plug-in that changes what is displayed on the page
  3. moving or editing widgets
  4. editing posts or pages
  5. including the live feed of information from another site (eBay for example)

If any of these situations happen, the change to your pages will not be seen by visitors until the cached versions of the page expire.  This duration depends on the settings within the plug-in.  The bottom line is disable the plug-in whenever you are doing any of these things to your site.  And then, remember to reactivate it when you are done.  The speed increase it provides is important for both visitor satisfaction as well as Google ranking (Google reduces your rank if you are slower than otherwise equal sites).

Please use the comment box below to share your thoughts on this.

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Comments

  1. Reply

    Thanks for the tip Lynn. Had no idea this could affect changing things on our site. When things have not worked generally I have tended to go onto something else. This is really good to know.
    Bonnie

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