WordPress Development Mistakes

7 Common WordPress Development Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

in wordpress on August 24, 2023

Applying best practices when changing anything in your WordPress website will make you more efficient. But another way to make you more efficient is by learning to avoid common WordPress development mistakes. This article is here to help you understand what they are so you can avoid them.

7 Common WordPress Development Mistakes:

1. Keeping debug mode turned off.

When everything is live, the debug mode is usually turned off by default. However, when developing a WordPress plugin, you want that turned on. By turning on debug mode, you don’t have to fix perfectly avoidable mistakes in the development process.

Debug mode in WordPress allows developers to identify and resolve issues more effectively. By enabling debug mode, you can figure out where errors in your software are coming from instead of having to root them all out individually, which is unnecessarily time-consuming.

Keeping debug mode turned on can identify syntax errors, deprecated functions, or compatibility issues with other plugins or themes. If you don’t have this valuable feature, you’d have to narrow it down one by one, and even then, you’d have to do a separate test for compatibility issues between one plugin and another.

If you’re developing a custom plugin for your WordPress site, turning the debug mode on will help avoid issues after the live release. Just make sure to turn the debug mode off for a live website.

You may encounter security issues if you don’t leave your site’s debug mode turned off after development. Malicious entities might have access to administrative environments through code, and they can add their code that could damage and compromise your website, so make sure to turn that off.

2. Not choosing an appropriate theme

According to Sytian Productions web developer philippines, if you don’t choose a suitable theme when you develop a website on WordPress, it can lead to a waste of time and effort on your part. It’s common to overlook this part of your WordPress development process since it seems purely aesthetic, but it matters more than you’d think.

One of the main reasons why not choosing an appropriate WordPress theme is a mistake is because of how it affects your website’s functions and its effects on your website visitors.

A well-designed or incompatible theme can slow your loading process, break the theme layouts, and limit how you can customize your site. For example, if you have custom code you want to add to the site, an incompatible theme can skew your intended results and cause a frustrating website experience.

To avoid this mistake, it is essential to take your time weeding through the available WordPress themes.

Consider factors such as responsiveness, compatibility with plugins, ease of customization, etc.

Additionally, as a developer, remember your project requirements when choosing a theme. Selecting a theme that aligns with the intended purpose of a blog, e-commerce site, or portfolio showcase will help the website make sense to your users.

3. Using too many plugins

There are a lot of functional and excellent plugins in WordPress that developers have made that are worth adding to your website. However, if you add too many, that can end up bloating your website. While plugins offer a wide range of functionalities and features, relying on an excessive number can lead to several issues.

One of the main problems with using too many plugins is that it creates a ripe situation with compatibility issues and functionality conflicts.

Each plugin has its set of dependencies and requirements, which can clash with other plugins or even with the WordPress core itself that you may not know. This incompatibility can slow down your site, induce crashes, and many other issues.

Also, over a few plugins slow down your site’s loading times.

Each plugin adds code and scripts that your website would need to load each time a web visitor uses your site. This extra code can significantly slow your website’s speed, leading to poorer user experience and even a hit to your site’s search engine optimization efforts.

To avoid this common WordPress development mistake, it is crucial to carefully evaluate the necessity of each plugin you consider adding to your website. Ask yourself if the plugin’s functionality is essential for achieving your website goals.

Additionally, consider consolidating functionalities by opting for multipurpose or all-in-one plugins that offer multiple features in one package. These plugins reduce the overall number of installed plugins while providing necessary functionalities.

Don’t forget to check in with the plugins on your website because you might have plugins doing the same thing as each other. If you find duplicates, then uninstall one of them.

4. Overlooking accessibility

Making your website a friendlier user experience, even for differently-abled people, is one thing that web developers shouldn’t overlook for the WordPress site.

Luckily, there are even plugins in WordPress that you can add to your site to increase and improve your website’s accessibility. That way, you can make your website accessible immediately. Again, make sure there is no conflicting code between that plugin.

5. Not taking WordPress security seriously

If you’re developing a website for a client or your own business, then make sure that you take WordPress website security seriously. That’s why if you turn on the debugging, you have to turn it off. However, you should also ensure other security measures are in place.

For example, don’t install suspicious plugins that may be outdated or no longer get security updates. Ensure you limit access to the administrative section of your WordPress site. These are just a few of the WordPress security measures you should apply.

6. Choosing poor function names

Poor coding hygiene is something you want to avoid; one way to do that is by being better at function names. It’s especially crucial if you’re incorporating your modifications or inputting a custom plugin into your WordPress site.

You should be brief and to the point for convenience, but it could be the same thing other plugin developers do. To distinguish yours from the others, being less generic with your function names is a good practice.

7. Not making use of WordPress core functionality

It’s best to make the most out of WordPress core functionalities if you’re developing your website on it. If the feature you need is something WordPress already has, then you might as well use theirs. Otherwise, you’re adding code to your website that is an increase in load to the processing of your site.

Therefore, try to keep it simple wherever and whenever possible and use the currently available WordPress core functions. Don’t forget to keep your WordPress up to date so you can expand that functionality.


By being more aware of these WordPress development mistakes, you can avoid making them for the betterment of your website. Therefore, next time you’re planning on tweaking or making significant changes to your WordPress website, make sure that you keep these mistakes in mind so that you know not to do them inadvertently.

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