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A website is a critical component of any business in today’s digital world.

Whether you’re using it to build a reputation for your brand, strengthen your strategy for customer relationships, or you simply want another avenue through which to sell your products – you need a good website.

The problem that most companies have is that they set up a website, and then simply leave it to run by itself, without any maintenance or updates. Unfortunately, this leads to a number of online portals that quickly become outdated, broken, or simply inefficient. On the other hand, committing to a regular schedule of website maintenance leads to better site performance (including enhanced loading times and functionality), as well as a strong brand reputation.

Improving the experience that customers have with your website builds trust and credibility with your audience and potential clients or customers.

Let’s look at what website maintenance can do for your company.

1.   A Well-Maintained Website Helps Companies Grow

A key element in growing your company is making sure that your customers have a reason to keep coming back to your website.

It’s hard to convince your clients that they should trust you when you don’t even take the time to keep your website current. As one of your most valuable digital tools, your website is a critical part of building a relationship with your investors, clients, and followers.

Regular website servicing keeps you ahead of the curve, shows your professional nature to your customers, and ensures that you have the right impact. The result is a company that’s primed for growth.

2.   Updates Keep You Secure

While the right host and a good security strategy can keep your website safe for a certain amount of time, vulnerabilities are common in the digital world. Many website platforms online today are open-source, which means that anyone can see their code. This means that a lot of sites are vulnerable to hacking.

Regularly maintaining and caring for your website means committing to backups that keep data safe and secure in case something goes wrong with your system. It also means that you take the time to implement security updates and changes that might leave your website vulnerable to attack.

3.   Maintenance Makes your Site More Valuable

Updating and managing your website on a regular basis also means that you can frequently implement new strategies that will keep your customers interested and engaged. For instance, you can keep up with current trends like videos to entertain your audience and convince them of the value of your products. You can also ensure that your website design looks and feels more immersive than the designs your competitors use.

Whether you’re simply trying to build your profit margin, or you’re planning on selling your company, a well-optimized and managed website indicates that your company is reliable, valuable, and professional. Your maintenance strategy might even include keeping track of SEO and marketing analytics, so you can constantly improve your lead generation and conversion strategies.

Areas to Track During Maintenance

Now you know why regular updates and maintenance are so important to your website, you can begin to build your own personal checklist of things to track when caring for your website. Looking at the following things regularly will help to ensure that you have a secure, attractive, and valuable site.

1.   Updates

Today, the vast majority of companies run their websites on WordPress. While WordPress is generally quite secure as hosting sites go, about 25% of the compromises that take place on this platform are attributed to outdated plugins.

Updates aren’t just a way to make your site more interesting and “modern.” When companies roll out updates for plugins, widgets, and other important site elements, they often include patches that help to protect against vulnerabilities that might have appeared in the code. Staying up-to-date keeps you secure.

2.   Backups

Speaking of keeping your information safe and secure, routinely saving copies of your website to a backup drive or disc is an important part of website maintenance. There are few things worse than facing the horror of losing all your hard work and having no way of getting it back. Putting an automatic backup strategy in place will help to reduce the amount of work you need to do to care for your site.

3.   Design

Your website design is a representation of your brand. It’s a way for you to show your customers what you stand for, what your values might be, and what you want to accomplish as a company. As such, it’s important to make sure that you use logos, colors, and other elements that speak to the nature of your business. Simply changing your site every time, a new trend comes along isn’t a good idea, but that doesn’t mean it’s not important to keep on top of website design changes.

Compare your site to your competitors’ every so often and ask yourself whether it’s time for a makeover or refresh. You don’t need to completely transform your site every few months, but you might want to spruce up your headers and product pages occasionally.

4.   Speed

As the popularity of mobile devices continues to grow, and the patience of the average customer continues to dwindle – site speed is a critical topic for many brands. Not only will the speed of your website help you to impress your target audience, but it could also be a critical component of your SEO strategy too. If customers arrive on your website and it doesn’t load straight away, they’ll be more likely to look elsewhere for the information they need – this increases your bounce rate.

Clean up your content regularly and get rid of anything that might be slowing you down. There are plenty of tools online that you can use to check the speed of your site.

5.    Content

Your content is easily one of the most important things on your website. However, it’s not enough to simply churn out blogs and articles from time to time and hope for the best. If you want your website to be as valuable as possible, then you need to keep measuring the impact of your content, and how it helps you to connect to your audience. Use google analytics to check which content performs best for your brand, and which isn’t having the right impression.

Additionally, when you’re posting new content, make sure that you take the time to double-check your posts for grammatical errors and problems that might harm your reputation.

6.   SEO

Speaking of content, one of the main reasons to create content for your website is to attract new visitors and potential leads. However, if you want to gain as much organic traffic as possible, then you’ll need a way to manage your SEO or search engine optimization. When you’re caring for and maintaining your website, make sure that you’re checking your SEO rankings, by looking at things like the keywords you’re using in posts, your backlinking strategies, and your solutions for better customer experience.

7.   General Cleanup

Every so often, a website simply needs a little clean up for it to perform at its best. Keeping your pages as fresh and presentable as possible means that it’s more likely visitors will want to spend more time on your site. Performing general maintenance every day will help you to get rid of any broken links that might decrease customer satisfaction or problematic posts that aren’t having the right impact on your audience. Even taking a few minutes each week to comb through your site can be enough to make a huge difference in the long term.

Don’t Overlook the Value of Maintenance

These days, almost every business needs a digital presence if they want to be successful.

Unfortunately, as the web becomes more saturated with competition, you can’t afford to let your website stagnate. If you want to tap into the true value of your virtual storefront, then you need to commit some time and effort to regular care and maintenance. The tips above will help you ensure that your website is secure, effective, and ready to knock the competition out of the water.

Bio: An entrepreneur who acquired his first digital company when he was just 19, Jock Purtle is an industry leader and innovative mind with expertise in valuing innovative internet companies. He’s achieved a great deal over the years as the mind behind DigitalExits.com, and his tips have been featured in publications like Business Insider, Entrepreneur.com, and CNBC.

Article Supplied by Caroline Black : www.digitalexits.com