A School of Medicine Primary Care Website Update
I started this site rewrite with a site update plan that did not include an Elementor & Astra Site Rewrite. This is a site that I took over as WordPress Developer about 2 years ago. At that time, I was asked to write the code to be able to show posts from either a custom field or a category. The site had been created with custom fields that created a summary of Posts pages based upon the custom field. Summary Posts pages based upon a category could also be created but not where you could pull from a custom field and a category where the summary was composed of posts that had either one or the other. I described how I did that in the blog post, WP_Query: Show post from a category OR custom field.
Then over the last two years I had been tasked with may site updates and further customizations, including the merger of a separate healthcare website into the main site using a vertical sidebar menu for that sites pages after the merger.
This update included another site merger. This time it was a Podcast website. I chose to merge it using a Custom Post Type. That, itself was an interesting task but that is the subject for another time.
Deep into the merger, it became clear that a lot of the custom code that the original site developer had written was causing a huge number of basic key WordPress functionality to simply not work. It was looking both very messy and time intensive to have to find the conflicts in that child themes functions.php code and fix the.
Here are the site update requirements that were accomplished within a 10 day window from start to live!.
Primary Care Podcast Website
To collect all Primary Care Podcast Website content and deploy same under Primary Care’s website at:
Gather credentials for copying site (FTP and WordPress)
Dedicated contact page for podcast subscriptions on new hosting server
Set Primary Care Google Analytics in Podcasts new pages
Ensure continuation of podcast hosting with Blubrry.com
Ensure continuation of podcast subscriptions with Apple Podcasts, Android, via email and RSS.
Add Podcast Authors as Editor on Primary Care WordPress
Set a calendar for code freeze window
QA Podcast pages
Post-launch – set redirects from Podcast Websites most popular pages to Primary Care website appropriate pages.
Redesign and recode Top Horizontal Navigation as follows:
Events | Family Medicine | Podcasts | Involve
Create subnav, drop down menus
Create ‘Carousel” deployment for home page
Set three Primary Care contact pages – a Contact Us with option to receive Newsletters, a confirm Newsletter Subscription and a dedicated contact page for podcast subscriptions
Delete old/unused subject categories in the WordPress CMS
Tune-up website Text.CSS, clear line-space after <h3>
Create new “read me” on how to update homepage modules and Carousel
Set Calendar code freeze window
Create backup copy of existing (before changes) of Primary Care and Podcast Website for archival purposes.
Build new site on staging server for review, testing and approval.
Transfer live host to dedicated host server and acquire new SSL certificate.
Transfer site to live host.
Post-launch – test all functionality, analytics and post redirects.
The key to moving from the Custom Loop was making the project an Elementor & Astra Site Rewrite! I used the Elementor Posts Widget for 8 different pages based upon post type and category. Not only was it a lot easier than the old hand coding but it was also easy to explain to a non-coder.