Have you been taking your car for regular services to the mechanic?
How about your phone? And your computer? Have you been updating the operating systems for them?
Just like any software or a car, your website requires maintenance to keep it working properly. It is like having regular oil changes on your vehicle. You wouldn’t drive your car very long if you didn’t look after its maintenance, would you?
Well, the same process is true for your website. Your website should always be live, ready for customers and presenting your business at its finest.
WEBSITE IS NOT A “SET & FORGET”
Many people think once you launch a website, you can just forget about it. There are so many things that can go wrong when you don’t have website maintenance carried out monthly, here are some of them:
- Outdated software & plugins will affect its load time, downtime and uptime. It might cause your website to be down or slow, or broke.
- Outdated websites are easy targets for spammers & hackers to find their way to the websites. If you run your business through your website, you definitely don’t want this to happen!
THE BENEFITS OF MAINTENANCE
- Well, first all, slow websites or even worse dead website means lost revenue or leads, right? 80% of people now look up information online before they make the purchase so you are missing a big opportunity if your website is slow or broken.
- Security – even though there is no guarantee that your site will be safe from hackers, but keeping your software updated minimise that risk a lot.
- What happens if you get hacked? By keeping website backups, you will be able to revive your website back to its clean state by using one of your saved back-ups.
What Are The options?
Our recommendation is to get your website professional to take care of your site, rather than going the DIY route. Why?
At Lollipop Creative Studio, we take great care to first backup the website and check the website after our updates for any issues. Our software keeps a record of plugins we update so if there is ever an issue we see what plugin version was changed and revert back. Also included in our monthly maintenance report are the performance and security scans. If in the event we ever catch a plugin issue, it becomes a support ticket and we address it before you ever know there’s a problem.
DANGER OF DO IT YOURSELF MAINTENANCE
Most of hosting providers offer automatic back-ups, but they don’t update your WordPress, plugins or optimising your website.
WordPress plugins are created by multiple authors, and are consistently updated to newer versions to comply with the latest version of WordPress, or to address security issues and bugs. It is not guaranteed that the mandated updates to WordPress will not break the website, nor that plugins will continue to function if not updated.
For this reason, we recommend having a trained web specialist on hand to monitor the website to update plugins, rollback plugins, replace plugins or even adjust the theme to continue optimal performance.
Maintaining your site yourself could cost you more than you may think. If you just update from your WordPress admin, you wouldn’t have a record of what was done. If an update to a plugin created an issue a couple weeks later, it would be difficult to know what changed 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 Costs More to Fix Than to Maintain
Just like repairing your car would be more expensive than changing the oil regularly, your website will be cheaper to maintain than to fix.
You might think – “I can just try to fix it myself” but if you do more damage, your website professional will need more time and effort to fix it.
RECommended actions for careplan
Still think you want to manage it yourself? That is entirely up to you. These are things that we recommend for the careplan:
Website and Your database should be backed up daily. It is also a good idea to have it backed up on your hosting and offsite (eg. Amazon WS, google Drive ect)
Plugin / Theme Updates – Once you update your plugins and theme, make sure you do visual inspection to make sure your website is working properly
Malware Scans – ensuring that is no malware lurking that might compromise your website
Monitor Traffic & Search Engine Rankings – Check how your traffic goes and if there is anything you can do to improve this
Clean Database – Cleaning your database will help speed up your website
Test Loading Time – and minimise it by using what is recommended. We use GTMetrix and Tool Pingdom to check client’s website’s speed.
Search for Broken Links
Check for Search Console Errors/Issues