In today’s digital world, your website is one of the most essential parts of your business. It provides potential clients and customers with an opportunity to learn more about your company, purchase your products and services, and contact you.
To ensure that your site is working correctly and continues to provide you with opportunities for new leads and sales, you must maintain it. In this post, we will tell you all you need to know about website maintenance and its crucial role in the success of your business.
What is web maintenance?
Web maintenance is a term that people use to refer to the tasks you do to keep your site up-to-date and working properly. Some of these tasks include performing security updates and regularly checking your website for any issues.
Reasons why regular website maintenance is essential
Your website will always be a work in progress. It needs routine maintenance and regular updates for it to keep performing optimally. The following are some of the main reasons why website maintenance is essential.
Allows You to Update Your Content
Be sure to regularly update the content on your website so that your visitors keep coming back. Besides keeping your site interesting, current content can also help your website rank higher in internet searches.
With regular website maintenance, you can ensure that your site’s content stays up-to-date. You can fine-tune your posts, review phrases and keywords, and ensure that they grab your visitors’ attention.
Offers You More Security and Protection
Hackers are always looking for sites with vulnerabilities or security gaps they can exploit. Website maintenance gives you an opportunity to detect bugs and address them. Regular website maintenance will also help you update security patches, remove outdated backups, and set up strong passwords.
The internet evolves quickly, with new technologies and techniques continuously being rolled out. If you want to maintain a strong online presence, be sure to review the compatibility of your site and ensure it aligns with the latest technologies.
Saves You Money
A website that you don’t maintain regularly is vulnerable to attacks and crashes. Should this happen, you might have to spend even more money hiring a website development expert to build your business a new site.
In addition, a website that doesn’t work well could be costing you money in lost sales. If users don’t enjoy browsing through the site, your online presence could take a significant hit. This can impact your ability to get new leads, sell products, or retain customers.
Improves User Experience
A poorly functioning website presents a less-than-ideal image to new customers and makes it more challenging to retain old customers. Having a top-notch user experience on your website will ultimately lead to better lead generation and improved conversion rates.
Through website maintenance, you can address any issues you find, including:
- Broken links
- Loading errors
- Poor grammar
- Disorganized content
Enables You to Track and Monitor Performance
When you dedicate enough resources and time to your website maintenance efforts, you can efficiently track performance and monitor your online marketing goals. The process allows you to stay up-to-date on your site’s metrics. This can give you valuable insight into the progress of your marketing campaigns.
You can then make any necessary tweaks or implement new strategies, depending on your marketing goals and current situation.
What happens when you neglect website maintenance?
These are some of the things that might happen if you neglect your website and don’t give it regular updates.
Loss of Business
For most people, your website is the first point of contact they have with your brand. Before customers make a purchase, they will visit your site to learn more about your products or services.
If you do not have an optimally functioning site, very few people are likely to purchase your products or services. Many people will use the quality of your site to judge the quality of your business’s products or services.
A poorly running website will also affect your rankings on search engine result pages. The lower your ranking, the less likely it is for new customers and clients to find your business – even if you have the goods or services they’re searching for.
Leaves You Vulnerable to Security Threats
It is essential to keep maintaining and updating your site to avoid being vulnerable to security threats like hacking and denial of service. These issues can have a huge impact on your business and your bottom line, so it’s smart to take steps to avoid security breaches.
Website Maintenance Checklist
There are several tasks you need to do to ensure that your site is running smoothly. However, there are specific tasks that are more time-sensitive than others. This site maintenance checklist will help you determine how often you need to do certain web maintenance tasks.
Things to Do Weekly
- Check that all the pages are loading without any errors.
- Check that all the forms are running as they should.
- Update your plug-ins and website software.
- Ensure that a previous version of your website is safely stored.
- Search and address any 404 and broken link errors.
- Remove spam comments from posts and pages.
- Upload blog posts to engage your online community and encourage SEO traffic.
Things to Do Monthly
- Analyze site statistics for the month.
- Check your site’s load speed and ensure nothing is slowing it down.
- Check your blog for posts for any necessary updates.
- Review your security scans and ensure nothing is out of place.
Things to Do Quarterly
- Review your website’s structure and design to determine if it needs improvement.
- Review meta descriptions and titles and ensure that they are effective.
- Test and tweak calls to action, forms, and pop-ups.
- Check images and graphics and determine if you need to update.
- Test your site on different browsers and devices and confirm that it displays correctly.
- Restore a previous version to confirm your backup’s health.
- Review your marketing and advertising campaigns to see if there is anything that you need to update or change.
Things to Do Annually
- Review every page for content relevancy, accuracy, typos, and grammar.
- Update the references to the current year.
- Ensure that you renew your website domain.
- Check your active email addresses to determine if you need to delete some.
- Review your top-performing articles and determine if you need to update them with new content.
- Consider whether you need a design update.
How much does it cost to maintain a website?
The maintenance of your site should be a consistent part of the running of your business. However, staying on top of your site’s health will require finances. The website maintenance cost will vary depending on various factors like the type and size of the website.
- Personal sites will have low maintenance costs, often ranging from $5 to $25 every month.
- Maintaining a site for a small business could cost up to $100 each month.
- The cost for maintaining a corporate website could be anywhere between $200 and $3,500.
- Ecommerce website maintenance costs typically range from $1,500 to $2,500.
There are a few additional costs that might increase the amount of money you will end up spending on your site maintenance. The following are some common additional costs you might incur.
Domain Name Renewal
You might be paying for your domain name on a monthly or yearly basis. While domain names are not expensive, usually costing $1 per month, you have to keep up with the payment to prevent someone else from buying the domain name.
A Secure Sockets Layer certificate helps keep your website secure. It enables your website to transfer and receive sensitive information securely, thanks to features like higher encryption rates.
If you are using a hosting site, you can get your SSL certificate for free. However, you will have to pay for your certificate in most cases, which costs between $0.80 and $125 a month. Keeping up with your SSL certificate payments ensures that it stays active and your website remains secure.
This is another maintenance cost to consider. While you can host your site yourself, you also have the choice of hiring a hosting provider.
One option is shared hosting, where your site shares a server with multiple websites. Costing up to $120 a year, this option is the least expensive.
You also have the alternative of a virtual private server. With this option, you will share a server with other websites, the provider splits the server, and gives your site a dedicated portion. Virtual private servers can cost you up to $600 a year.
The most expensive option is paying for a dedicated server. While you get complete access to your server, this option can cost you up to $24,000 every year.
What to look for in a website maintenance service
We understand that running a business isn’t easy. When you add the responsibilities of maintaining your website on top of that, it can be overwhelming. Fortunately, there are several website maintenance services from which you can choose.
If you are interested in hiring a maintenance service, the following are the main things you should look at when making your choice.
The Type of Services You Need
Different companies have varying maintenance packages that offer different services. The first step to picking which company and maintenance package to choose is to be clear about the type of services you need.
Ask yourself questions like:
- Do I want to update links, texts, videos, files, and images on the website?
- Do I want to handle website hosting myself, or will I let the company handle it for me?
- Will I need any help writing blog posts, or will I have the time to do them myself?
- Should I focus more on growing my business or dedicate a few hours every week to maintaining my website?
Know What Type of Services the Company Is Offering
When you are clear about the type of services and support you will need, you can narrow your search to companies that provide those services. On top of that, there are additional services that your ideal maintenance company should offer you. Some of those services include:
- Checking for broken links and 404 errors
- Updating website software and core plug-ins
- Testing your website’s loading speed
- Mobile optimization
- Modifying themes, templates, and layouts
- Updating web design, photos, and graphics
- Analyzing website statistics and security scans
- Renewing the website’s hosting plan and domain name
Ensure that you understand the company’s pricing before investing in its services. Certain factors like your website’s size, functionality, and complexity will affect how much your website maintenance costs. You should also ask about the company’s different pricing models and what services each option includes.
The more experience the company has, the more likely it is to do an excellent job maintaining your site. Furthermore, additional experience enables the company to assist you in developing an effective website maintenance plan that fits your needs, budget, and resources.
Consider asking the company about its employees, the training they have received, and the projects on which they have worked. Doing so will help you determine how much experience the company has before picking it.
Conduct an internet search to check the company’s reputation. Ideally, the company should have many happy clients and positive reviews and testimonials. It should also have enough references to guarantee you of its professionalism.
The first step is checking the company’s site for any inconsistencies. Next, look at consumer review sites like Yelp, Google My Business, and Angie’s List for reviews written by clients who have used the company’s services.
Finally, look at social media sites like Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook to find out what people are posting about the company. You should also look at the company’s response to those posts to determine how good its customer service is.
Get the website maintenance plan your business needs
At Connective, we provide you with a team of seasoned experts who leverage cutting-edge technology to give you the best website at the best price. This lets you focus on growing your business and your profits while leaving the technical tasks to us.
Everything you need to know
Frequently asked questions
Some of the most crucial maintenance tasks include:
- Testing your browser compatibility
- Checking for and updating software
- Testing your forms and checkout process
- Backing up your site
- Reviewing essential metrics
The following are the steps to follow during the regular maintenance of your site:
- Review site analytics
- Backup data
- Update plug-ins
- Review and fix broken links
- Ensure device compatibility
- Test website speed
- Update content and contact information
The time it takes to maintain your site can be anywhere between a few minutes or hours every month and full-time support. What’s most important is that you set up appropriate systems that enable you to maintain your site regularly.
Managing your site can be a time-consuming task, especially if you handle the entire process on your own. Depending on the size of your site, consider allocating at least three hours every week to website maintenance.
Websites are like cars in that they require regular maintenance to ensure running properly. A website is not just a business card on the internet, it tells an entire story about your company and how you operate. Regularly updating and maintaining your site ensures security for both visitors as well as yourself while also increasing traffic through new visits or returning ones; thus boosting sales numbers which will increase productivity within the workplace.
Costs for monthly website maintenance range between $35 and $5000 per month. For example, if you have a small business with an average-sized site that doesn’t need many updates in the course of one year then your costs will be lower on the scale than someone who has a large company running multiple sites or uses their webpages heavily throughout the day to generate sales.