Your website is an asset - as long as you maintain It

Your website is an asset but only if you maintain it

For a website to benefit your business, work needs to be regularly carried out on it. This includes things like:

  • Regular updates to site files
  • SEO and keyword research
  • New and engaging content

Most business owners don’t truly understand the full value of their website and therefore they see it as a liability. An item that constantly costs money. The truth is a website is like an iceberg, what people interact with is the ice that we see above the water, but for a website to be successful it is everything under the water that you can’t see that is important. A website might cost $5000 - $10000 to be built and then many owners hope to never spend a dime on it again. Unfortunately, this mindset will eventually be harmful to your business. 

Over time your website becomes outdated, your content becomes stale and it no longer meets the needs of organic SEO algorithms and you drop in search engine rankings. Not only that, but your site doesn’t keep up with design trends and no longer appeals to your customers. Your site traffic drops and it does a terrible job of converting traffic into customers. This is the reality for a large number of business websites.

The power of search engine traffic cannot be overlooked. It is the best way to get eyes on your services and products and if done organically, likely the cheapest. Websites are dynamic, living creatures that must adapt to the ways of the Internet. By investing a small sum of money each month, you ensure that your site is kept in a condition that pleases your customers and reduces the risk of downtime and security breaches. It also ensures that your site stays compatible with third-party integrations such as Google Analytics, Facebook, Instagram, CRMs, etc. The web changes very rapidly and that includes the tools that work with your website.

How is a website an asset?

The main goal of a website is to generate leads and sales. Both those outcomes result in more income for your business, making your website an asset. It doesn’t matter what type of business you are running, at a base level you are in the business of sales. Your website must support that purpose but unfortunately, many websites do not do this. Websites that are unmaintained fall into a state of decay and no longer promote the well-being of your business. These websites do not help convert viewers into customers and they do not please search engines. Without doing those 2 things your website becomes a liability as it only costs you money to run and doesn’t generate any revenue.

What is likely to happen if a website is not looked after?

There are a number of negative consequences for not looking after your website. These could include;

  • Dropped SEO ranking
  • Website security issues
  • Decreased website speeds
  • Stale and unengaging content
  • Decreased leads and sales

Dropped SEO ranking

Google and other search engines are smart. So smart that they know when you update your site content and adjust SEO metadata. They scan your website every 4 - 6 weeks and if they notice that your site isn’t being updated and kept relevant in your industry, you will drop in the rankings.

Website security issues

WordPress websites are made on software and just like all software, there are regular updates that patch security issues. If your plugins and WordPress core aren’t updated regularly, your site is open to potential attacks that could leak database information or stop your site from functioning as intended. In the worst-case scenario, your site is brought down completely, meaning you no longer generate online leads and sales.

Decreased website speeds

Over time, websites that are built with a database and utilise plugins will slow down. This is because the volume of data needing to be transferred on unmaintained websites increases over time and therefore takes longer to load. Slow website speeds will directly impact how long visitors stay on your website (bounce rate) or if they decide to return.

Stale and unengaging content

Your website content is what helps you rank well and sell your products and services. Content needs to be regularly evaluated and updated to ensure it’s fulfilling its purpose. If your website content has not been updated in years and you have a high bounce rate, it’s stale and not appealing to your audience.

Decreased leads and sales

Any of the items above will ultimately result in fewer leads and sales for your business. Business reputation and credibility are directly influenced by the quality of your website. If your website also doesn’t function properly it creates a poor user experience, resulting in your visitors leaving you for your competitors.

All the above examples are damaging to a business as they will influence income, traffic, and reputation.

What is the solution?

Ongoing monthly care is what every website needs. If you nurture your website it will create positive returns for your business. A WordPress maintenance plan is purposely developed to give your site the best possible care and will assist in all the areas addressed above. Maintenance plans cover all the important aspects of running a website. This includes;

  • Maintenance hours
  • Priority support
  • Reliable site backups
  • Security monitoring
  • Uptime monitoring
  • CMS core updates
  • Plugin updates
  • Database optimisation

Maintenance support hours

Maintenance hours are used to carry out tasks outlined in each website maintenance package, as well as other required site changes. For example, with the basic package, we will spend 2 hours a month on your site updating core files and installing security fixes. This time is generally split up across the month to ensure your site is always current.

Priority support

Have your questions and requests answered first. When subscribing to a website maintenance plan you get access to our priority support desk service. This means you jump to the front of the queue when you need us. You will get access to a dedicated email address only available to the maintenance plans we have available.

Reliable site backups

Our maintenance packages come with a full website backup service. This means we take a snapshot of your server, including all site files and database, and store it both on the server and on our hard drives. This process occurs daily to make sure you never lose your data. If you would like to read more about our WordPress backup strategy, click here.

Security monitoring

Due to the popularity of WordPress, there are many potential threats that need to be monitored. Security monitoring scans your website’s source code for malicious entities and notifies our developers so we can fix it quickly. Security monitoring is one of many important steps to keeping your website and data safe.

Uptime monitoring

Every minute your website is down is potentially costing you money. When on a website maintenance plan, we track the uptime of your website 24/7. If your website crashes, we are notified right away and our developers will correct any issues to get your site back up as quickly as possible.

CMS core updates

All maintenance packages come with CMS core updates. This is vital for websites running a content management system, as regular security fixes are published when new threats arise. These updates may also introduce new functionality to your CMS that might make general tasks easier.

Plugin updates

Just like core files, plugins must also be updated for security and compatibility. Outdated plugins may not work correctly with your CMS, which is why it’s important to perform updates regularly. All maintenance packages come with plugin updates. Please be aware some commercial plugins may need to be re-purchased for updates.

Database optimisations

After some time, your site can store a lot of unneeded information in the database, causing it to run slowly. Our Professional package includes database optimisation to improve your website speed and ensure it always performs at its best. This process occurs twice a month alongside a database backup.

Website maintenance should be a part of every business strategy. It’s an essential part of owning a website and ensures your site is always backed up, protected from being hacked, and works properly for your website visitors. Website maintenance plans start at $200 a month. If you’re unsure if this will be valuable to your business, remember that the cost of websites being hacked or going offline is often in the thousands.

Conclusion

Your website is your 24/7 sales representative and its up-time is incredibly important. For every day your website is down you are losing potential leads. If you invest in your website, not only do you ensure good up-time but you can create a platform that supports your future business goals. When combined with solid marketing strategies, any monthly investment you make in your website maintenance will pay returns in the long run.

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