A healthy website is a well-maintained website
Remember back when your website was first built?
You loved it! It looked so beautiful! Everything felt so… shiny!
But now, it’s been a month or three (or five…) since you even looked at it…
Your website is NEVER “set and forget”.
Just like you have to maintain your car regularly to keep it running properly, you need to maintain your website to ensure things don’t go awry or even break your site.
Links get broken because other websites disappear, or you change the title of a page… plugins can cause conflicts which means your website can get glitchy, or worse – actually break it… software that hasn’t been updated means a longer time for hackers to find your weak spots and bring your site down… broken forms means you’re not getting messages or adding people to your list – and that means lost opportunities to connect…
The list goes on.
Maintenance on your website is one of the most forgotten (or ignored) things… until there’s a problem. It affects your online home – where people go to connect with you, and to pay you.
Ignore your website maintenance at your own peril.
Don’t wait until disaster strikes and then say “If only…”
So to make it easy for you, I’ve created a checklist of what you need to do every week, month, quarter, and year.
- Check through your broken links / 404 errors, and fix them.
- Check your backup system is working correctly. Weekly or fortnightly OFFSITE backups is best, depending on how often you update content.
- Check your security system for any warnings.
- Delete your spam – if you’re getting more than a couple a week, it’s time to reconsider your spam protection system.
- Reply to legitimate comments on your posts
- Check your forms are still working correctly – contact forms and optin forms.
- updates for themes and plugins
- site speed check. If this has dropped substantially, then check the basics – images and code.
- re-optimise your images and minimise code
- SEO basics – check alt and title tags for your images
- Check site still displays properly on a variety of browsers and a variety of devices, as both browsers and devices are updated frequently.
- Check uptime logs. You can keep this in a spreadsheet if you like to see how it tracks over the year; if it’s less than 99.9% (downtime of 43.83 minutes per month, or 8.77 hours per year), then consider changing hosts.
- check through your content (blogs) to ensure they’re up to date with relevant information that still fits well with what you do
- check through your offerings to make sure the prices and copy are still correct and relevant
- SEO advanced – refine your keywords as necessary; check key content on your site to suit.
- Review the plugins you’ve installed and delete those you’re not using
- add in new testimonials, and/or new items for your portfolio or case studies
- update the copyright year in your footer
- (re)consider your website goals and KPIs. Tweak your content to suit.
- Make sure your domain and hosting are auto-renewed so you don’t have to worry about expiring and lost websites
These tasks above are all the mechanical things you need to take care of. But there’s also some golden marketing opportunities you can investigate if you look at how well your content is being accessed and how it’s being used!
Check the following for some brilliant opportunities to engage your audience better, and to create loyal fans of your business.
- Check your Google Analytics for what terms people are using to find your site. Use this knowledge to tweak your content, to write new posts on topics of interest, or even tweak your headlines
- Review your statistics and usage on a usage tracker like Hotjar and tweak your content to suit. Hotjar is a great visual tool that shows you how far people scroll down your page, what links and buttons they click, and a whole bunch more information. It has a free version where you can monitor up to three of your key pages (eg Home, Services, Portfolio).
- Review your website’s images – do they fit with your branding and the brand feel you want to project? Do they feel fresh? Or outdated and it’s time to change them up?
Yes for sure, some of these tasks are MUCH more important than others – for instance, you should not ever NOT have a backup! And your site won’t physically break if you don’t keep on top of your SEO (but in terms of marketing, this is still an important task).
Make it a number one priority to get a maintenance routine happening, AND save your backups offsite somewhere too, so that if ever anything happens to your hosting – you can still restore all your hard work.
Here’s cheers to your website’s health!
Got only a few niggly things you need fixed? Want to know how to set up a scheduled backup? Need to talk through how to improve your site speed? Jump in for a 1:1 with me for the special price of $66 for 30 minutes – we can get through A LOT in half an hour.
If you need longer-term assistance and you’ve got to the stage where your site feels like a drag and you would much rather just get on with what you’re best at, get in contact!
We can set you up on a monthly maintenance package, or you can even purchase a whole year’s worth of support if you really want to “set and forget”. Packages can start at $50/month – it’s not as expensive as you think.