Blog

Refreshing your cache

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If you have ever worked on a website project with us, you know that by the end of the Build phase we invite you behind the digital curtain so that you can provide feedback before the website launches. But there may come a time when, despite requesting changes and being assured that they were made, the site doesn’t look any different from the last time you checked it. If that’s the case, don’t worry! We haven’t ghosted you. Most likely, all you need to do is refresh your cache!

So, what is a browser cache?

As you visit different sites on the internet, your browser downloads web pages you access and keeps this information locally on your computer’s hard drive—in the “cache.” The purpose of storing this information is so that when you access the website again, your experience viewing the website is quicker, since the browser—instead of downloading everything a second time—can display the website with the locally-downloaded information.

However, relying on the locally-stored information is no longer helpful when trying to view a website that has had any form of changes made recently, because the information stored in the cache is now out of date. To solve this, we “refresh the cache,” which tells the browser to re-download all of a web page’s content from scratch so the newest changes can be seen.

Why it’s important to refresh your cache when viewing a website in development

When we are near the end of the Build phase, the bulk of the front end development work is complete, so the focus is on improving small, specific details. Because of this, we often remind our clients to refresh their cache when they check out the website, as these incremental changes happen so often and so quickly. We just want you to be up to date with the latest changes, no matter how subtle these changes may be!

How to refresh your cache

Google Chrome

  • On Windows and Linux, hold SHIFT and click the Reload toolbar button
  • On macOS, hold Command + SHIFT + the R key

Firefox

  • On Windows and Linux, hold SHIFT and click the Reload toolbar button
  • On macOS, hold Command + SHIFT + the R key

Apple Safari

  • Hold SHIFT and click the Reload toolbar button

Microsoft Edge

  • Hold the CTRL key and press the F5 key

Internet Explorer

  • Hold the CTRL key and press the F5 key

If you are using other browsers or encountering any issues, this wikipedia page goes into a lot more detail for how to clear your cache.

In conclusion

It is a good practice to refresh your cache, especially when accessing a website still in development—doing so means you are always viewing the most up to date content. As always, if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out. If you are a small business or non-profit, we are also offering free consultations to help you thrive during this crisis. Book a time to chat today!