As an Internet Business Coach, I have people calling me in a panic all the time. “My website is down!”

“Something’s wrong with my website!”

I look over the website and fix the issue.  After all, that is what an Internet Business Coach does.  Helps people with their Internet struggles. Every day someone, somewhere has an issue with their website, social media or cloud application.

Who do I call when my Website is not working?

WordPress Expert

Today I found out I’m the one who needed the help. Some web expert I am!  Is there an Internet Business Coach for the Internet Business Coach?  My blog posts were coming up 404 not found!!  Very big deal. That means no one can see ‘My Internet Voice’.  I was not properly reaching my audience.

Then it occurred to me.  The reason I know how to help other people is because the same issues have happened to my business website.  Most of the time I flip into autopilot and fix the issue before I realize there is one.  We all do that at work.  We spot something and attack it before it gets worse.

Unfortunately technology is technology. Doesn’t matter how technical you are, you will always run into a problem.  A famous quote from Mel Brook’s “Space Balls” sums it up. “Even in the future nothing works.”

A website is more delicate than one might think.  Breaking a website is easy.  In this case, plugins conflicted in WordPress.  I know, you might not understand that.

Let me explain:  This website is based on WordPress.  For easy of  use WordPress has core features.  This is what it starts with when you install a new website.  Any thing you want to do that isn’t installed with the core functions needs a  plugin.  WordPress plugins make building a website easy.

Plugins Behaving Badly

At times Plugins can take a dark turn.  A couple of things can happen:

  • One Plugin and Another Plugin have a fight –  They Conflict.  
  • Plugin is outdated and can be hacked.  You should make sure your Plugins are updated!
  • The author of the plugin hasn’t worked on it and it becomes outdated.  Time to switch to a new plugin!
  • WordPress Update (the core) breaks the Plugin.  Updates are usually for security reasons, the old way of doing things wasn’t secure. Your plugin does it the old way, the updated WordPress does it the old way.

How do you fix this issue?

Call an Internet Business Coach… If you want to contact me look to your right.   But you should first try to fix it yourself. If you still have a problem afterwards then contact me or another Internet Business Coach.  Of course I believe you can fix it.  If you updated something on your website then it broke, it should be very easy to find out which plugin is the issue.  You should always be updating your Core WordPress software and all Themes and Plugins.  But if something does happen:

  • Find the broken plugin.  Even if this means deactivating each plugin to something works again.
  • Know what each plugin you installed is doing.  Do you need it?
  • Update your Core WordPress and all Plugins and Themes.
  • Google the plugin name, WordPress and the issue – (ex: WordPress SEO 404 Page)
  • Goto the Plugin homepage – In the Plugins list on your WordPress you can link through to the Authors Plugin home page.
  • Deactivate un-needed plugins
  • Delete and uninstall un-needed plugins – If you know your not using this plugin you are better off deleting it.  Warning, when you delete a plugin any data with that plugin maybe deleted too.

The Internet Business Coach Says…

In the end as much as plugins help, they hurt too.  Plugins can slow down your site. If you have too many Plugins it’s like swimming with tuxedo. Slow and over dressed.  Anytime you are about to add a plugin to your website, ask yourself if your website needs this function.  Do you really need your website to do this?

My website was back up and running quickly. I was able to fix the problem quickly.  However, many website owners who have similar problems could be down for days, weeks or even months without even realizing it.  It’s important to look through your website and click on your blog posts just to make sure things are working great.  Internet Business Coach rule number one, make sure the world can hear your Internet voice.

Tools for the Trade – Google

A great tool to use is Google Webmaster tools.  If your not using it, STOP READING THIS NOW, and go get an account. (Just use your Google Account- Gmail.)  This tool shows you how your website  looks through Google’s eyes.  Basically the age old question, ‘Does Google love you?’  I’ll go into details in another post on Google Webmaster Tools, but for now go over there and look at your Crawl Errors.  These are the pages that aren’t found on your website through Google’s Eyes. Listen to all the web experts out there and use Google’s Tools!