Take control of the how, when and where your website updates.
Is your website—and all its parts—up to date? Do you have a website maintenance plan in place for making regular updates? Do you allow automatic updates to run and hope for the best? (Please say no to that last question!)
Subscribing to a website maintenance service allows you, the website owner, to be in control of how, when and where the pieces that make up your website are updated. Read on to learn the full benefits and why website maintenance is essential for your business.
Best of all, website maintenance is possible to manage in-house or with a website developer. With the right tools in place, you can reap the benefits of a well-maintained website yourself. Alternatively, you will know what to look for when hiring a professional to handle your website maintenance.
To begin with, you’ll spend less time in the short term that really adds up in the long.
Think of the work that went into launching your website. Planning, writing, organizing, approving designs, building, testing—it took weeks at best, likely months. Whether you purchased a pre-existing website theme, hired an agency or freelancer, or let your sister’s kid do it for free, you’ve invested. Not just financially, but a big chunk of your time as well.
Now that your website is launched, are you looking forward to start again at square one in a few years?
No one is. Instead, it’s much less work to build on what you have. Website maintenance does just that. You spend a few hours each month greasing the wheels, tuning up the engine, and even tweaking the UI to better reach your customers.
Moreover, the life of your website will far surpass those left running on autopilot.
In addition to less work, website maintenance values the work that’s already been put into it.
Your website will not be an overnight success. Despite all the careful planning and work put in, the very best way for your website to build success for your business is by nurturing it. You’ll get to know your customers better after your website launches.
In other words, website maintenance is the key to a successful online leg of your business.
Through monitoring your website metrics and building improvements into your website’s maintenance plan, you will effectively bring your website closer each month to hitting your goals. Contrast that to planning, designing, launching…and then wondering why your website hasn’t brought immediate success (again). Rinse and repeat and it won’t take long to notice that the redesign-in-a-few-years strategy doesn’t serve your business—or your customers—in the best way possible.
Instead, website maintenance takes advantage of the value already in your website. This means that value is not gambled away during an expensive redesign, but added to in real-time.
By building on your website over time, it grows naturally with your business.
Your business will look very different in a few years than it does today. By keeping your website up-to-date regularly, you can avoid an inevitable redesign when your website hasn’t changed and has grown stale.
Furthermore, you will avoid redesigns of necessity because your website doesn’t work.
Regardless of what platform your website is built on, it is susceptible to new technology. This includes browsers, devices, frameworks, themes, plugins, databases, servers. In other words, literally every component that goes into your website’s existence—from where it is stored to how your visitors view it—is going to change after your website launches. In an environment that is always evolving, it is important to assert control over the things you can. For your website, this means manually updating and testing updates before they are live for your visitors.
Remember, updates made as part of a dedicated maintenance cycle help you avoid those middle-of-the-night emergencies.
Finally, your website takes an active role in serving your visitors and customers.
Monitoring your website metrics and making adjustments regularly helps your website move the needle closer to your business goals. In particular, you’ll know what’s getting in the way of those goals. By finding them, you are given the opportunity to address the issues and will know for certain when you’ve fixed them.
How can metrics and maintenance do this? Take these two quick examples:
- Bounce rates, in combination with device information, tell you what devices your visitors are using and which of those provide a poor experience.
- Content drilldowns, in combination with event tracking, tell you where calls to action work well and where they need improvement.
Most importantly, website maintenance makes experimentation possible.
Knowing what is and is not working on your website alone won’t serve your customers better. Acting on it, re-evaluating, and fine-tuning is the only way to make the experience better and better.
Whether you build DIY maintenance into your monthly routine or hire a professional does not matter. In the end, what matters is that you actively manage your website in order to make the most out of it.