Content vs Functionality Site Updates

website content vs functionality

Some website updates are simple – involving only a limited number of edits, while other modifications are technical in focus. The agency should communicate a release plan to the client in either scenario to set the proper expectations in content optimization. 

Content vs. Functionality

If a request consists of editing copy, updating images, etc., it’s a content update. On the other hand, changes requiring a new page layout or new features are considered a WordPress functionality update. 

The difference in content vs. functionality lies in the WordPress resource needed to complete the task. For example, a content author can update text and images on an existing page layout – this person is not a developer but knows HTML and CSS. Their job is not to create new functionalities but rather to work within established guidelines. 

A designer and developer typically review functional changes to ensure the requests fit within the theme’s UX and code framework. Finally, the design is submitted for agency approval, and then development work is done on a staging server. 

This staging server is a cloned version of the live website where development can occur without interrupting the end-user experience. We can’t stress enough how important it is not to update a website without testing remotely. 

We’ll submit the updates for client approval on staging only after passing our quality assurance testing. Then, with the agency’s permission, the development team will “push” the staging site to the live server with no interruption to your client’s site. 


On average, content optimization updates are done within 48 hours of being assigned in Trello. Development-focused updates are part of a development sprint and delivered into two-week cycles – unless an expedited request is discussed in advance. 

Establishing a regular rhythm of releases encourages everyone to think intentionally about priorities and to plan. “Urgent” updates short of regulatory changes or marketing conditions signify that a release roadmap is needed. 

Are you implementing content releases with your clients? How is it working out? If not, get in touch with us, and we’ll set up a call to discuss it.

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