What the Heck is Caching & How Do I Deal with It’s (Negative) Impact

Most of the time we look at caching as a positive thing.  It speeds up the load time for our websites, which both our visitors and the search engines love.

But then there is the dreaded issue of making changes to our website and either not seeing the changes right away on our end or having someone else see something we don’t really want them to see…things just don’t look quite right.

Unfortunately, there is not much we can do about caching in today’s world.  The storing of data in a temporary space has become pretty standard for internet providers, device providers, wifi systems, computers, browsers, hosting companies, and website tools.  They all do it to manage the amount of data traveling between locations.

So what can you do if your website looks a little off, either randomly or after you’ve made some changes?

Here are a few tips:

  • If your site seems off when you visit it (or any other site you are visiting), first refresh the page.  On a PC, you can use the F5 to do this or simply reload the page. You can also use CTRL + R.
  • If this doesn’t resolve the issue, try visiting the site in an incognito browser.  I’ve even started doing all my updates in an incognito browser to make it a bit easier to manage my work.
  • If you are hosting with me, our most recent servers have a cache built-in but also include a PURGE option in the ADMIN BAR that runs across the top of the back end when you are logged in.  You can also click on this to empty any cache on the server.
  • It may also be helpful to, when logged in, to go to the page that looks off and resave it.

While I know this is a pain, as I said, much of this is out of our control and, at the end of the day, we really do want to make friends with the caching systems in our world.  It is because of them we are able to get content so quickly and not feel like we are back in the 90s with the nice dial-up noises and waiting games…ain’t nobody got time for that.  Remember those days?

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