Solutions For The Most Frequently Seen WordPress Errors

Gary Green
Gary Green
September 18, 2023

Discovering an error on your WordPress site is never much fun, but the good news is that there are solutions for all of the most frequently experienced issues. Here, we take a closer look at some of the easiest ways to resolve common problems so that you can save yourself time, effort and stress! 

Syntax Errors

Syntax errors or Parse errors occur when your site code has a problem. Usually, it’ll be an issue with the functions.php file. Rather than loading the page, a message appears telling what the problem is and where it’s occurred. 

To resolve the issue, just use SFTP to access that file using an open-source free tool like FileZilla. Enter your web host provided SFTP credentials then access the backend of your site. Find the specified file and choose View/Edit. The error message will tell you which line the issue has occurred on, so just look for that line, fix the issue, then save the file. 

The WSoD (White Screen Of Death)

This error will replace your whole website with a white, blank space without any further assistance or error messages. This issue can arise for several reasons, but there are a few troubleshooting options to try.

First, try disabling the plugins to see if it resolves the problem. If not, try disabling the theme and replacing it with a default WordPress theme. If this still doesn’t help, activate WordPress’s debug mode which may help you to pinpoint the problem’s cause. Two other options are purging the cache and raising the site’s memory limit. If none of these work, get in touch with the support team at your hosting provider. 

Internal Server Errors

This occurs when the server experiences an unknown problem, generally to do with the .htaccess file or the site’s memory limit.

Try disabling the .htaccess file by renaming it in SFTP to see if it resolves your problem. If it works, generate a bug-free new .htaccessfile by accessing Settings and Permalinks in the admin dashboard. Click Save Changes and this should resolve the problem. 

If it fails, try increasing the PHP memory limit or upgrade your hosting plan. 

404 Errors

This error means the server can’t find the page you’ve requested. Usually, it’s associated with changed URLs and broken links. You can resolve the problem by fixing the broken link or changing the URL to the correct one. Sometimes, though, it occurs even when the page is supposed to be available. Try regenerating the .htaccess file as above to see if this fixes the problem. 

Connection Timed Out Errors

This error appears when a site tries loading unsuccessfully for a period of time. The cause of this could be a lack of resources for your site to function correctly. If you use a shared hosting, for example, another website may be monopolising the server’s resources. Perhaps your website has exceeded the maximum permitted bandwidth. Upgrading the hosting plan may be a solution to this problem. 

Failure To Upload Images

Images may break on your site, appearing incorrectly following upload, or even being impossible to upload in the first place. Usually, the issue is an incorrect file permission. Fix it by accessing the site with SFTP, find your uploads folder, right click on it then click on “File Permissions”. Enter 744 as the Numeric value and click ok. 

Repeat this process for every file in the folder, setting 644 as the value and checking the option for Recurse into subdirectories, selecting Apply only to files. Save the changes and you should find the problem is resolved. 

Missed Scheduled Post Errors

One of the best WordPress features is its ability to choose when to schedule your posts. It’s possible to line up your posts well in advance and just leave your website alone, with the content being published automatically at your selected times. Unfortunately, though, this system can sometimes fail. When it does, you’ll see the Missed Schedule error by a post. 

This issue is caused by “cron jobs”. These are tasks used by WordPress for automated specific processes. When the relevant cron job isn’t triggered when the post has been scheduled, it won’t be published. Instead, it’ll stay on the admin dashboard waiting for you to publish it manually. 

You can avoid this problem by using one of the WordPress plugins such as the Scheduled Post Trigger which is lightweight and free. It ensures the cron jobs that have responsibility for publishing your scheduled posts on time operate as they should. When you activate this plugin, you can be confident your posts will be published on time in the future. 

Failed Auto-Updates 

It’s crucial to ensure your WordPress website is up to date at all times. If you’re using a managed hosting plan, typically you won’t have to worry about doing this yourself as new updates are automatically applied, but sometimes, things go wrong and your automatic update fails. Usually, this is because of glitches in the connection between the server and the WordPress files, a dodgy internet connection, or an incorrect file permission. 

When WordPress doesn’t update automatically as expected, you could find that you experience the earlier problem of The White Screen Of Death. Alternatively, you may see a warning error whenever you access your website. In order to resolve this problem, you have to update WordPress manually. You can do this by simply downloading the software’s latest version then installing it using SFTP.

Finding The Right Solution To The Problem

Fortunately, it’s relatively rare for you to experience problems with your WordPress website, but errors can occur from time to time. When they do arise, it can cause stress, frustration, and worry. Luckily, it’s relatively simple to fix the majority of problems that you may encounter simply by following the advice in this article.  Taking a trial and error approach to resolving issues is often the best course of action if you find an issue with the way your site is operating. 

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