Website Maintenance Plans
When a website is launched there are a number of tasks that need to be actioned to keep it safe, secure and relevant. You can perform these tasks yourself, or you can outsource. This is where a WordPress website maintenance service can help.
A maintenance plan is a paid monthly service performed by your website designer. It can assist you to keep your website updated, saving you time, and ensuring these important website maintenance tasks are undertaken in a timely manner.
Most website maintenance services cover similar services, but they will differ from company to company. Here are some of the area’s that can be part of a website care plan:
- Website backups
- Testing your website
- Updating your themes and plugins
- Data analysis and reporting
- Content reviews, suggestions and updates
- Email and hosting troubleshooting
Having a full backup of your website is essential. If your website was to be hacked, corrupted or you accidentally deleted something, having a backup means you are able to quickly restore your website.
Part of a website maintenance plan includes regular backups – your website provider can restore your website for you, meaning only a limited downtime for your online business.
Ensuring your backups are done regularly, and are working is a key part of a website care plan.
There are many security plugins, such as Wordfence, that can be used to protect your website. A security plugin will protect your website by blocking bots and hackers from entering your website and uploading malicious code.
These security plugins also will limit logins, send you a notification when someone log’s onto your website and will also inform you of any plugins that may have security breaches.
As part of your care plan your designer will ensure that all notifications are monitored and any vulnerabilities are patched. They will ensure your website is as secure as possible and any security breaches are followed up and corrected as soon as is possible.
Testing Your Website
As your website ages, your website can develop errors. There are different tools that can be used to scan your website looking for errors. Google search console, which can be linked to your website, will also report certain types of errors. A website care plan can include reviewing these errors and fixing them.
These errors can affect your SEO (search engine optimisation / google rankings) and it is good housekeeping to review them and correct them. Depending on which tool is used to scan your site, some of the errors and that might be identified include:
- Broken Links – links in your website that are not linking properly to another page. Instead these links go to a “404” broken link page. This is bad for user experience and bad for google.
- Viruses and malware
- Database errors
- Error logs – various software conflicts on your website
- Mobile responsive issues – your website not working on mobile
- Page speed issues
Once all the errors are identified, your website designer can work on correcting them. This is good housekeeping and ensures your website runs as fast and efficient as possible and prevents future problems on your website.
Update your website’s themes and plugins
A WordPress website consists of themes and plugins, these are mini software programs that help your website look good and function properly. Each time the creator of these themes and softwares makes changes to them, they then need to be updated on your website.
Often, these updates are security patches. If they aren’t updated in a timely manner, your website becomes open to being hacked. If you don’t update your website’s themes and plugins at all, then over time, it can slow your website down and your website might not function as it should. You also miss out on all the extra features these updates include.
You can make these changes to your website yourself, however you will need to test your website yourself after the changes have been made. Sometimes the upgrades can cause changes to the styling and functionality. Sometimes there may be a conflict between two plugins causing your website to “break.” Your website designer will test the website on your behalf and rectify and issues.
Most website care plans include updating all plugins and themes and will include basic testing of your website after those updates are performed.
Data Analysis and Reporting
Knowing how much traffic is coming onto your website and being able to analyse that traffic can be very useful figuring out what is working on your website and what might need a little bit of attention.
A monthly report can show you statistics like:
- How many users visitors your website in the past month?
- Is this an increase or decrease? Is your website traffic growing?
- Where is your traffic coming from? Social media? Organic traffic from Google?
- Are you increasing the backlinks to your website? These are links from other websites to your website and it helps
- What keywords are you ranking for? Are your website rankings improving? Is there opportunities to write content for keywords you are not ranking for?
A data analysis of your monthly website visitors can be really useful in deciding identifying what lead generation strategies you are using are working and what strategies are not. It helps you to identify what marketing efforts are worth while spending time and money on, and what strategies aren’t working and therefore need tweaking or a change in direction.
The information on your website will need to be updated from time to time. Your trading hours might change, you may change your pricing or list of services, or you may have some new images to add to your website. If you don’t have the WordPress skills to make these changes yourself, some care plans allow for minor content changes each month.
A good way to improve your website rankings is to add website pages, or “blog posts.” Each blog post is an opportunity to rank on google and add value to your website. If your care plan includes a data analysis report, it will show opportunities for improvement. This will include suggestions for what keywords or topics to for you to use for potential blog posts. If your care plan includes some content updates, you can write some blog posts and get your website designer to upload them on your behalf.
Adding and updating content on a regular basis to your website will add immense value to your online presence. It becomes an asset to your business. Unlike social media, where you make a post and the post is only relevant for a short amount of time, a blog post is static and remains on your website indefinitely. It will be working for you passively – I have clients where one blog post they wrote 3 years ago drives 30% of all their website traffic. This is a small investment for a potentially large return in the long run.
Email and Website Hosting
Both email and website hosting can be costly and things can go wrong with your website host. There are times you will need to fix errors, that your website server goes down, or that your server’s versions of software needs to be updated.
It can be time consuming and difficult, if you do not have a technical background, to figure out what is going wrong and communicate to your website host on your own if something goes wrong. You may not even realise that there are updates that need to be completed or other tasks that need to be performed.
If you are covered by a website care plan, your website designer will do all of this for you.
A WordPress website maintenance service can save you time, money and grow your business
By letting your website designer keep an eye on your website and digital presence, you can do what you do best and run your business. You can feel secure knowing that all your website maintenance tasks will be performed for you, in the background while you work on your business.
If you are interested in signing up for a website care plan for your business, please reach out.