What Is Caching?

What is caching?
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Written by Simon

Last Updated 21/12/2023

What is Caching?

In this article, we hope to answer the question of what is caching. This may have happened to you in the past, you’re using a digital product and all of a sudden it stops working. You ring tech support and the first thing they say is “Have you cleared the cache?”. But what does that mean and what is happening here?

Caching is the term used for computer hardware or a software component that stores data. It stores this data for a fixed period so the service can serve (load) it to you more quickly.

Types of Caching

In web development there are several types of caching:

These services store website information in their database when visited through a browser. The system saves a copy of the information from your last visit. With this, servers and your browser can recall data faster – loading your website more quickly. The data is stored for a fixed length of time before the system flushes its cache.

If you repeatedly visit a site, your device will recognise this and keep that site’s information stored in your browser for longer.

When Caching Goes Wrong

Caching data temporarily allows web developers to construct increasingly complex and resource-intensive websites by enabling efficient data retrieval. The drawback, however, is the information held becomes out of date as soon as it’s cached. This is not necessarily a bad thing, the result is a snapshot of your website from the time it cached. This can result in the caching service delivering an older version of your website.

9 times out of 10 when your WordPress website doesn’t appear as you expect, it is either a caching issue or a plugin conflict. Resolving these issues is very simple.

Recommended Reading: Troubleshooting

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