It’s a common theme, you spend thousands creating a website and then…nothing. Your promise of hundreds of new leads fizzles out after you announce the new site, and all those new sales you expected do not appear.
At best, your site looks great, has been created technically perfectly & is appearing under a couple of keywords in Google. However, without maintaining your site properly you may run into heaps of issues, including links breaking, things not appearing as they should, your google ranking decreasing and a heap of other problems. Depending on what platform your site is built on will really depend on the type of maintenance you need. For the purpose of this article I will focus on WordPress.
1. Updating your site
Not updating your WordPress site and plugins is the number 1 reason for security issues and things breaking on WordPress sites. Depending on your hosting provider, they may well run backups of your site that you can restore to should a problem arise however CHECK THIS.
Make sure you are running the most updated version of WordPress, your theme is up to date and all your plugins. This should be a weekly endeavour – and make sure to back up your site before doing so! On this note, daily-weekly backups are a MUST. If anything should go wrong, being able to restore your website to the previous version is essential.
Keep a close eye on any potential security issues. Ensure you regularly change your passwords as well as any other users that have access to the site. There are plenty of tools and plugins out there that can assist you in keeping your website secure. Ensure your website has an SSL – and quite often these will need to be purchased on a yearly basis (although some of the better web hosts offer these for free).
Additionally install a login limits plugin such as, Loginzer. With Loginizer you can limit the maximum amount of retries a user has before being blocked from the site. This can prevent brute-force attacks. I install this plugin on all my website packages.
3. Domain name expiration
You would be amazed how much this one comes up. One day you try to access your site and BAM, it is no longer there. T
he most common reason for this is that the domain name has expired. Most domain registrars will send you and email to remind you to purchase, but what happens when the member of staff that bought the domain name no longer works for you? Make sure that the domain name and information is stored securely and is accessible to whoever may need it.
Oooh SEO. Where do I start? Google LOVES regularly updated websites. The more regular and updated content you post the higher you are likely to rank. Make sure you are using keywords to your advantage and posting relevant blog posts regularly. As well as this, having someone continually monitoring and maintaining your SEO will ensure you continue/improve your Google ranking. There are some great plugins to consider, for example, YOAST.
Things to consider:
- Changing content so it is better optimised
- Input into new content and how it should be written
- Going back to old articles and changing content slightly
- Focusing on a smaller number of keywords with less competition
4. Keeping your site looking good
Just like your physical store, your website occasionally needs some TLC; Moving around a bit of information, adding content here and there, a new image or so – or uploading your latest video.
It keeps your website interesting if things occasionally get updated or changed. Not getting any conversions on the site? Look into why. Try a bit of A/B testing and work out what approach or designs might work best. This can be as simple or as complex as you need it to be.
After any updates, or on a regular basis it makes sense to test whether your contact form is still working, and that all of your links on the site are working. Make a note to do this regularly.
Are there any other items you would include here?
This may sound like a bit of a minefield if you have not maintained your own website before, however I have some Website Maintenance Packages to take the stress away from maintaining your site. Check them out or alternatively contact me.