How to Clear Your Caches
Are different users seeing different things when visiting your website? Caches might be storing old data
Have you ever been out with your mom and she starts showing random strangers your website, but you notice the way it looks on her phone is different than when the waiter just opened it up on their phone? Confusing and frustrating, we know. If your website looks different for different users, it is probably due to caches.
What is a cache?
A cache is essentially a subset of data that is being saved or stored. Caching is a common practice used by web browsers to ensure a faster reload time the next time you visit that same site. You can kind of think of a cache like the information you remember about an acquaintance; You do not remember everything about them, but there is some information that you will always have stored like their name, their job, etc. If we did not have caches, it would be like meeting a person all over again for the first time, every time.
However, because web browsers are relying on caches, you might be seeing outdated information. It’s like running into an old friend and asking how their job is. You are relying on stored information–a cache–and they tell you they shifted careers. You have outdated information, just like a cache can sometimes have. But don’t worry, caches can be cleared to make room for new information.
How to clear your cache on:
- For desktop, open Google Chrome and in the top right corner of the browser, click the three vertically arranged dots. In the dropdown menu, select More Tools > Clear Browsing Data… You’ll then be given a menu page to select a time range and make sure all of those boxes below are checked. Lastly, click Clear data in the bottom right corner.
- For mobile, open Google Chrome and in the bottom right of the page, click the three horizontally arranged dots. A menu screen will pop-up and you’ll want to select Clear Browsing Data. You should make sure that Cookies, Site Data and Cached Images and Files are checked. Lastly, tap Clear Browsing Data at the bottom.
- For desktop, open Microsoft Edge and in the top right corner of the browser, click the three horizontally arranged dots. In the dropdown menu select, History. From the new menu that pops up, click the three horizontally arranged dots in the top right corner. And then click Clear browsing data. On the new page, select your time range and make sure there is a check mark next to Cookies and other site data as well as Cached images and files. Lastly, click Clear now in the bottom left.
- For mobile, open Edge and in the bottom center of the page, tap on the horizontally arranged dots that are encircled in an oval. A menu will pop up and tap on History. In the top right, tap the trash can icon. Select your time and make sure there is a check mark next to Cookies and other site data and Cached images and files. Lastly, click Clear now at the bottom.
- For desktop, open Firefox and in the top right corner of the browser, click on the three horizontal lines. In the dropdown menu, click History > Clear Recent History… Select your time range and make sure Cache is selected in the items list. Lastly, click OK.
- For mobile, open Firefox and in the bottom right corner, tap on the three horizontally arranged lines. In that pop-up menu, tap History. Then in the bottom left corner, tap on the trash can icon. Lastly, select your time range.
- For desktop, open Safari and in the top Menu Bar, click History > Clear History… at the bottom. Select a time range and then click Clear History in the bottom right corner.
- For mobile, open Safari and tap on the opened book icon in the lower left of the page. Select the clock icon on the left and in the lower right tap Clear. Lastly, select your time range.
If your site is looking different for different users, tell them to clear their cache history as old data is being saved.