Website Maintenance – What are the Risks?

Website Maintenance – money grab or good business?

The average website has come a VERY long way since the first one we created in 1999. (yes – that’s right near the beginning of the World Wide Web as we know it). A website used to be a basic on-line brochure for visitors to see what your company did.

But the modern website is so much more. Every organization needs to ask itself some key questions.

1. Is your website living up to your expectations?

2. Is it driving traffic and revenue to your company?

3. Do you get or are you getting a return on your website investment?

Things do not stop once the web design company completes your new site. Any worthwhile web design company will tell you that a site needs to be cared for, added to… be maintained ….. Don’t be too concerned, you are not alone. Most companies have their site built, love it and then… leave it alone. Sadly, the site soon loses the thrill it once had. New technologies emerge and cause it to seem old and behind the times… There is a solution though.

Website Maintenance… this is WHY it’s a great thing to have in place.

1. Use your site to leave great impressions:

When visitors arrive at your site does it give the same impression that you did in your meeting. Is it relevant and up to date? Some things to check:

• Is your site copyright date current or 2 years behind?

• Are your specials current?

• Do you have recent News or Blog entries?

Without being current your company runs the risk of looking uncaring and out of touch. That will not maintain or attract clients.

2. Leave them wanting more….:

A current website with great and often updated content give the visitor a reason to return. A repeat visitor is a newly developing relationship that can lead to more sales.

3. SEO and fine tuning regularly:

Put simply – search engines love new and relevant content. The more often you update your website, the more often the search engines will visit your site and this can boost your rankings. Sadly (if you don’t update your site) the reverse is also true. If a website becomes old and stagnant search engines will stop indexing and you will see your site lose places in search results.

4. Updates and Patches:

Virtually all the sites we build use a content management system. This utilizes programs and ‘plugins’ that require updates that ensure security for both your site and your visitors.  It is important to keep websites updated with the latest security patches and bug fixes that can be released almost daily depending on how many your website uses. Hackers will try to access your site even if you do not have ‘secret’ information or e-commerce on your site. Hackers will break into a website and add virus or malware for use in their other on-line attacks.

Outdated software gives these hackers a foothold. As security patches become available, hackers will try to take advantage of websites that are not updating the software on their sites. Sites found to have malware on them will be delisted from search engines and this can affect their clients.

5. Grow and Evolve to keep up with Current Technology:

As technology advances your site should as well. Best to not look out of date. Site visitors will label you as ‘out of touch’ and potentially ‘irrelevant’ in your business. That can have devastating effects. A new site every 2-3 years is the answer to many companies. Updating and gradually advancing can be another approach.

6. Safety for you:

Due to the complexity of modern websites, it is critical that they be backed up on a regular basis. Site files, media and the site database need to be backed up so that, if the unthinkable happens and your site goes down, is hacked, is lost from your hosts servers or simply get’s corrupted by accident, then you will be able to re-set the site from the most recent backup and keep moving forward. The other way to approach it…. hope for the best and be prepared to re-do everything should it happen.

So what should a company do?

Time is the key. As a company The Image Stop ltd. offers both consulting and maintenance Services to it’s clients to assist in keeping their websites successful and relevant. We’ll show you HOW to do it or simply do it FOR you. With packages to fit virtually any budget – check us out and contact us today.  (Download – iS Maintenance Packages pdf)

No, this isn’t all about us selling you something. Ultimately, even if you do not use The Image Stop for your maintenance, please do have it done regularly. The points above are all too real and play a key part of your business success.