Running a business is not unlike running a WordPress website. One of the most important things to a business is maintenance. You ensure your information and service is up to date with the current methods. You maintain all the tools and equipment needed to run your business smoothly. If something isn’t maintained, it can break and cause business to slow or even halt.

You’re the expert at knowing how to keep your business alive and thriving and we are the experts at keeping your website up and running smoothly so you can convert your web traffic to happy clients and customers.

When you visit a website, you want it to load right up and to look fresh and relevant. Let’s discuss the important things you need to do to keep your website running every day and keep the business coming your way.

Loading Time

We know that consumers have short attention spans. The internet works well and it works quickly. Today, if your website takes longer than 3 seconds to load, chances are the viewer will hit that back button and move on to the next website that pops up on Google.

What can you do to ensure your page is loading as quickly as it can? The number one most important thing is to make sure that your website is updated to all the latest things. If you haven’t logged on to your page in 6 months, there will be plenty that is out of date and not functioning correctly.

Additionally, Google is seeing how many people are leaving your site before it even loads. This is referred to as bounce rate. The more Google sees people leaving your site, the less it wants to recommend your site. Keeping load time down will ensure that your bounce rate is minimized.

Security

Just as with your computer or mobile device, when you don’t keep your WordPress website up to date, you could be leaving the door wide open for hackers. Hackers can hurt your business and your customers. This is extremely important if you are storing the customer’s personal information in any form on your website. Hackers can take over your website and post their own information or links. They could steal information from your clients and use it for nefarious reasons. Your reputation will be harmed if you leak your customer’s information. When you lose the public’s trust, it is very difficult to build it back up.

Plugins

There are some great plugins out there for your WordPress website. They can make things much easier for your and give your website the latest, greatest look. They are great, so long as they come from reputable sources and are kept up to date regularly. Old plugins make your website suffer. They can slow your site down, they can provide backdoors for hackers to access your information, and they can simply break because they don’t work anymore until updated. Visitors of your website don’t want to see broken links, missing images or jumbled code. Keeping the plugins up to date or switching to newer more relevant ones when the time comes is essential in maintaining your website.

Software Updates

WordPress is a wonderful platform for building your website. It allows the user to do so much and have a beautiful, professional and polished website. In order to keep doing that and to stay fresh and relevant, they have regular updates themself. Knowledge in updating the WordPress (or Woocommerce for those users as well) is essential for having a well maintained WordPress website. Lots can happen when new versions of WordPress come out. A lot of plugins will anticipate a release of a new version of WordPress and have an update out right away, but others may not.

Will the plugins on your site break? Will your theme work ok with the new version. There are a lot of aspects to it. Having a professional maintaining your website is great here as they are likely anticipating the update and keeping up on bugs that go along with the update and will be right there to fix any issues that may arrive.

Theme Updates

Your WordPress website’s theme is what is responsible for the majority of the appearance. Those pretty colors and fonts are all connected to the theme. The layout and structure are too. You want to choose a theme that continues to make changes and improve to keep your website relevant to whatever the popular aesthetics are. This means it is another aspect to your website that you need to maintain.

New Products and Services

If your website is an ecommerce website used to sell products or services, you need to maintain those products just as you do the backend of the webpage. If you have new products and services offered, they need to be on your site. If a customer stops in and sees a product, but wants to think about it, they may try visiting your website to check out more about it. If your products are missing, you could be losing a sale. If a potential client heard second hand about a new service you are offering, but it isn’t mentioned anywhere on your site, they will look elsewhere. If prices have changed, but your website hasn’t, you may find someone in your store looking to buy a product for the price on the website and will create a hassle for yourself. These things can generate negative reviews for your business as well if customers get confused or feel they were wronged in some way.

Comments

If you allow your pages and posts to have comments, you will run into another issue of maintenance. There are people who will attempt use your website for their own gain. While you want to welcome interaction on your website through comments, there are those that will take advantage of this to spam your comments section with links to their own website. This can hurt your site in multiple ways, but most importantly being the image you are sending to your viewers. If you leave these up, it can appear that you don’t care about your website and aren’t maintaining it. This needs to be done frequently to ensure others are not taking advantage of you.

Backups

Even the most diligent WordPress website owner can run into issues. Sometimes technology crashes. If you have ever lost work to a crash, you can understand how terrible this would be. Can you imagine losing all the hard work you put into your WordPress website? The solution is fairly simple. Backup your website. Your content, your images, the layout and structure of your site. These are all things that can be downloaded and stored safely incase something happens. And you can’t just back up your site the once. You need to be routinely making backups so that every change and addition to your website is captured. Further, you need to make sure that this information is stored properly. Storing a backup on your website itself is useless if you lose the whole thing. You need to store it a safe location to access when needed.

How to Keep your WordPress Website Up to Date

Many WordPress website users intend to keep their site up to date and running smoothly when they enter into it. Even though you may understand how important the process is, and generally how to go about it, sometimes maintaining your WordPress website gets pushed to the end of your todo list. It doesn’t take long for your website’s performance to suffer. The maintenance of your website is responsible for the performance, security and appearance of your online presence.

Additionally, the process can often entail more than you realize when taking on the project. Are you staying up to date on the latest themes? How about the latest news about WordPress? When WordPress 5.0 came out, it made a huge change to how pages were edited. When casual users of WordPress signed on after the update, the backend of the site was completely different. What would you do if, after a series of updates, your page suddenly wasn’t loading?

Can you do it yourself? The average internet user, should be able to handle the majority of maintenance themselves. The question is more, what is more valuable to you? Do you want to use your time researching and staying to date on web design and maintenance or would that time be better spent thinking about updates to your business, or some downtime after work is done for the day?

If you are looking to make the switch to a professional, SpiderSavvy offers a WordPress Maintenance, Backups, and Security plan. There is a lot included in this plan including WordPress updates, encrypted off-site backups, 24/7 security monitoring, performance optimization, WordPress support and tracking services to ensure your website it running to the best of its ability.

We also offer migration of your website to our hosting services so that everything is running smoothly through the transition and onward. Contact us today to find out how we can make your life easier and your website top notch.