Just like anything in life, if you don’t look after something it will eventually break or stop working. A website is no different, they require maintenance to keep them working as they should be. Avoiding website maintenance is like neglecting to upkeep regular oil changes and servicing on your vehicle. You wouldn’t drive your car for very long if you didn’t get it serviced and maintained, would you? You’ll probably end up with a blown head gasket broken down on the side of a road at the most inconvenient time. Believe it or not, this is exactly the same for any website.
I like to think of website maintenance as more like insurance that gives you peace of mind. It’s like getting insurance on your car but not only making sure you always have a solution if for some reason it breaks or gets damaged but its upgrading the car at the same time. What happens if your website gets hacked and is not backed up or being looked after? Not only could you lose all of the hard earned money you’ve invested into your website and marketing but you could be losing money while the website is down.
The worst scenario that we’ve come across
We had a very similar situation just over a year ago. A company approached us after their site (from another provider, we won’t mention for obvious reasons) had been hacked and had malware injected across their whole website. The company was top of Google for some really competitive keywords and relied on these positions for their main income. Unfortunately, it took us weeks to repair the damage and to rebuild a good part of this large website. Not only did they have a large bill for the repair but Google noticed that their site had malware and that it was a security risk for anyone going onto it. They disappeared off all of the top spots in the search engines. All their hard work they had invested over the years was lost. In turn, they lost thousands and thousands of pounds all because someone wasn’t taking care of their website.
Your website should be live 24/7 365 days a year. Ready for customers to view and be representing your business at its finest.
The Biggest Mistake Businesses Make
“Great I’ve got my new website now time to relax”
Websites are not “Set & Forget”
If you don’t have website maintenance in place, you could be throwing your hard earned money out of the window. If a customer goes to a website and experiences problems, they often lose confidence and don’t stick around for long. Most website owners won’t check their website and all of its functions to see if it’s working correctly. Missed website issues or downtime could lose you potential customers and potential sales.
We always encourage you to publish new content on your website and manage your website if you can, but that can be covered in website maintenance too. Fresh new content will always help you in the search engines and updates to your site will also help your site to stay fresh and up to date.
What are the Benefits of Website Maintenance?
Many people don’t actually understand the main benefits to having website maintenance so here’s just a few:
The website’s performance, loading time, up-time and downtime can all be jeopardised. This can happen if WordPress software isn’t functioning as it should be and plugin versions aren’t up to date.
The growth of any website is paramount, keeping the users engaged and showing search engines that your site is active and current. Fresh content, analytics monitoring, design improvements and updates are all dependent on someone making sure all updates to the website are done in a smooth and error-free fashion on an ongoing basis.
Our Suggested Maintenance Workflow to help your website
At Design Box Media we take the upmost care to ensure we always backup the website. We have ongoing back-ups to ensure nothing is lost or broken when updating the website. Once the site is updated we always double check for any issues.
Our software will keep a complete record of all of the plugins we update. If there is ever an issue with a function on the site we can see what plugin version was changed and we will revert back to the last working version and then investigate the issue.
We also include in our monthly website maintenance packages reports of the sites performance and constant security scans. If in the event there is an issue with a plugin on the site, we set it up as an urgent support ticket and we address the issue promptly before you even know there’s a problem.
The Dangers of DIY Website Maintenance
If you’re maintaining your website yourself, it could cost you much more than you may realize. For example, you just press that update button on your website because it tells you there’s a new update (everybody loves a new update, right). What if the site breaks or stops working after you update it? You most likely won’t have a backup of how it was before you clicked update. How do you even back the site up? If for any reason an update for a plugin created an issue on the site a few weeks later, it’s going to be hard to know when it went wrong, how it went wrong and how you should revert back without restoring a very old backup (and possibly losing content changes, sales orders, contact entries, you name it).
It will cost you more to fix the site than it will to maintain it.
Neglect or inexperience will damage the look and functionality of any website. When that happens, you’ve got to make a decision.
Option 1. You try and fix it yourself, in which case you may do further damage.
Option 2. You can then pay the (sometimes hefty) price for someone experienced to fix it when it breaks. Just like your cars servicing, it costs more to change a blown engine than it does to service and change the oil. Regular servicing will help keep your car running properly, regular site maintenance helps keeps your website running properly.
Call in a Professional
Why not spend your valuable time doing what you do best and let us deal with what we know best? Would you try to fight a court battle without a lawyer? Then why try to maintain your own website if you’re not a web professional?
By securing an experienced web professional to update and maintain your site properly, you are actually saving potential lost sales and visitors.
If you’re interested in securing a maintenance contract for your website, contact us to learn how we can keep your site in proper working order.