The wait for GoDaddy customers wanting the performance improvements for PHP 7.0 is apparently over. Although technically the rollout is in BETA as of this writing, chances are you already have access. If you’ve read my other article on the performance advantages of enabling PHP 7.0, then you know it’s the easiest and cheapest WordPress upgrade you can do.
Not so fast
Before you make the switch, I recommend performing a backup (you are doing those, right?) and then using a compatibility checker. The last thing you want is your site becoming unusable because your theme or plug-ins won’t work with a newer version.
For doing a full backup of WordPress I’ve had great luck with BackupWordPress, and for checking compatibility I used PHP Compatibility Checker. If you get any errors or warnings from the results I would recommend addressing them before switching over.
In case you’re a stats nerd like me, I would also recommend performing a few site speed tests and recording the data. Once you have made the switch, run the tests again and see how much your results have improved! I’d love to see your numbers, so post ’em below in the comments.
Enabling PHP 7.0
Login to your GoDaddy account and navigate to your cPanel Hosting Control area. Type “PHP” into the search bar to filter your options, and then choose “Select PHP Version”.
Now that you’re on the PHP options page, select the drop down menu and choose “7.0”. Next hit “set as current” right next to the menu, and then finally click “save”.
That’s it! You’re now running PHP 7.0 on your server and ready to take advantage of all the performance and security benefits on your WordPress site.
*note* Although version 7.1 is available from the list, not as much testing has been done with 7.1. Therefore you run the chance of your site being less stable. As far as I’ve read, 7.1 is not the optimal choice at this time.