First impressions are everything, especially when it comes to your website. Given that, it’s important to make sure your website is always looking its best.
You cannot simply create one and forget about it forever because this may lead to potential customers losing interest or even leaving your site altogether.
To avoid such situations from happening, here are some tips on how effectively maintain your website:
1. Keep your site updated
A website is like a car; it needs regular tune-ups to keep it running smoothly. The same is true for your website.
Keeping your site up-to-date is important for several reasons: it helps improve your search engine ranking, attracts new visitors and keeps existing ones coming back, and ensures that your site is compatible with new technologies.
Updating your site regularly also shows that you are active and engaged in your business or organization.
If you have a blog, post new articles frequently.
If you offer products or services, make sure your pricing and availability are current. If you have an event coming up, promote it on your site.
Making updates to your website doesn’t have to be time-consuming or difficult. Just set aside a few minutes each week to add new content, update old information, or make other small changes.
2. Check for broken links
Besides the content, you also need to check for broken links on your website for a few reasons.
First, they can be frustrating for users who click on them and encounter a dead end.
Second, broken links can give the impression that your site is outdated or poorly maintained.
And most importantly, search engines may penalize sites with broken links.
How do you avoid this?
Well, there are a few effective ways to check for broken links.
One is to use a link-checking tool like Xenu’s Link Sleuth (for Windows) or Integrity (for Mac).
Another is to manually check each link on your site periodically.
And finally, you can set up alerts that notify you whenever a link on your site goes down.
If this doesn’t cut it for you, consider using a broken link checker chrome extension. All you have to do is go to the Chrome store and download the extension to your browser.
And whenever you browse your site, the tool will show broken links.
3. Monitor your site speed
And not just broken links, slow website speeds can cost you dearly in terms of lost visitors and revenue.
Here’s why site speed is important, and some tips to speed up your website.
Slow website speeds cost you visitors. In fact, 47% of consumers expect a web page to load in 2 seconds or less, and 40% will abandon a page that takes more than 3 seconds to load.
That means if your site is slow, you are likely losing customers.
And it is not just potential customers that are turned off by slow sites.
Search engines like Google also take site speed into account when ranking results. So if your site is slow, you are not only losing visitors, but you are also missing out on potential search traffic.
There are a few simple things you can do to speed up your website.
First, make sure you’re using a quality web hosting provider. A good web host will have servers that are optimized for speed, as well as features like caching and content delivery networks (CDNs) that can help improve performance.
Next, take a look at your website’s code. If you are using a lot of large images or videos, consider compressing them to reduce their size.
Finally, keep an eye on the plugins and scripts you are using on your site. Some plugins or scripts may be poorly coded and bog down your site’s performance.
If you suspect one of these is causing problems, try disabling it to see if it makes a difference.
4. Optimize your images
This can also tie to boosting your site’s loading speed.
When you hear the term “optimized,” what does it mean to you in relation to images on a website? If you are not sure, you’re not alone.
A lot of people don’t realize that there is such a thing as optimizing images for web use.
Optimizing images means reducing their file size while still keeping the quality high enough that they look good on a website. This can be done in a number of ways, but the most effective way is to use an image compression tool.
There are many different image compression tools available, both free and paid.
We recommend using a paid tool like Adobe Photoshop or Smush. It is because they offer the best quality compression with the least amount of file size reduction.
However, if you don’t want to spend any money, there are some free online image compression tools like JPEGmini that work quite well.
Once you have your images optimized and compressed, make sure to upload them to your WordPress media library.
We recommend using the WP Smush plugin which will automatically optimize all of the images you upload from now on.
5. Review your content regularly
As a business owner, you likely already know the importance of having a website.
But did you know that it’s just as important to regularly review your website’s content?
You might think it is the same as point #4, but it isn’t.
See, by taking the time to review the content, you can ensure that your site is effectively connecting with your audience.
When reviewing your website’s content, ask yourself if it is still relevant and accurate.
If not, make the necessary updates.
You should also consider how well your content is organized and easy to navigate. If it is not, make changes so that users can find what they’re looking for more easily.
Finally, take a close look at your content itself.
Is it engaging and informative? If not, consider making some changes to ensure that visitors will stick around and keep coming back for more.
6. Keep an eye on your competition
Website maintenance goes beyond the things you can change internally.
In fact, in business, it is essential to keep an eye on your competition. There are a few reasons for this.
The first reason is that you can learn from them. You can see what they are doing well and try to emulate their success. You can also see what they are doing wrong and avoid making the same mistakes.
Another reason to keep an eye on your competition is that it can help you stay ahead of the curve. If you know what they are up to, you can adjust your own plans accordingly. This way, you are always one step ahead and can maintain a competitive advantage.
Finally, keeping an eye on your competition can simply give you a better understanding of the market overall.
By understanding what others are doing, you can gain insights into consumer trends and figure out where the industry is headed. This knowledge can be invaluable in making strategic decisions for your business.
For example, since you are targeting the same audience, there could be a reason why they change their website designs or landing pages.
7. Maintain your security
Security is part of maintaining your website. And here are a few reasons why this is crucial:
- To protect your visitors’ information. If your website is hacked, sensitive information like credit card numbers and passwords could be compromised.
- To prevent malware and viruses from infecting your website and spreading to your visitors’ computers.
- To maintain the integrity of your website. If hackers are able to make changes to your website, they could damage your reputation or even redirect visitors to malicious websites.
Here are a few ways you can keep your website safe:
- Use a strong password and enable two-factor authentication for all users who have access to the backend of your site.
- Keep all software up to date, including WordPress, plugins, and themes.
- Use a security plugin like Wordfence to scan for malware and block suspicious activity.
- Use a reliable web hosting service that provides security features like firewalls and intrusion detection.
Security threats your website is facing are constantly evolving, so it’s important to stay vigilant and keep your site as secure as possible.
8. Use Google Search Console
If you are going to do most of the things we’ve already talked about here, you will need access to GSC.
Google Search Console is a free service that gives website owners a wealth of information about how their site is being seen and used by Google.
GSC can be incredibly useful for website maintenance.
For example, the Search Traffic section provides data on how often your site appears in Google search results, which can be helpful in troubleshooting site issues.
If you see a certain page dropping positions, you can jump on it and make necessary changes.
The GSC can also help you ensure that your website is mobile-friendly and improve your click-through rate.
Overall, using GSC can help you maintain a healthy website that Google will continue to crawl and index.
9. Set up Google Analytics
This is another tool you can combine with Google Search Console to help with website mainteinance.
Google Analytics (GA) is a web analytics tool that helps website owners track and report website traffic.
By understanding how visitors interact with your website, you can make changes to improve your user experience and increase conversions. GA can also help you troubleshoot website errors and track goals and conversions.
If you own a website or are thinking about starting one, then Google Analytics is a tool you should definitely consider using.
What’s more, GA is free to use and relatively easy to set up. In just a few minutes, you can start collecting data that will help you make better decisions about your website.
10. Make sure you have a backup plan
Again, as a business owner, you know how important it is to have a website. But what happens if your website crashes or is hacked? That is where having a backup plan comes in.
Having a backup plan for your website is crucial because it gives you a way to restore your site if something goes wrong.
Luckily, there are several ways you can backup your website, including using a WordPress plugin or backing up your files manually.
Here are three of the best website backup tools to ensure that your site is always up and running:
- CodeGuard – CodeGuard is a cloud-based backup solution that offers both automatic and manual backups. It also provides real-time monitoring to detect any changes or issues with your website. CodeGuard’s plans start at $5 per month for up to 500MB of storage.
- VaultPress – VaultPress is a premium backup service from WordPress.com that offers real-time backups and security scanning. It starts at $5 per month for 1 site with up to 10GB of storage.
- UpdraftPlus – UpdraftPlus is a popular free WordPress plugin that offers both scheduled and manual backups. It also has a premium version with additional features, such as site cloning and migration, starting at $70 per year.
Backing up your website regularly is the best way to ensure that you can always restore it if something goes wrong.
So make sure you have a backup plan in place and you’ll be prepared for anything.
11. Always be testing
And, finally, the best way to maintain a website is to always be testing.
By constantly testing, you can ensure that your website is always up-to-date and running smoothly.
Additionally, testing allows you to find and fix any potential problems before they cause major issues.
To effectively test your website, you need to have a solid plan in place.
First, identify what you want to test and what goals you hope to achieve. Next, create a schedule for when you will test and stick to it. Finally, make sure to document everything so you can track your progress over time.
Here are some of the tools that can help you test your website:
- Google Analytics: Google Analytics is a free tool that allows you to track your website’s traffic and performance. You can use it to see how people are finding your site, what they do once they get there, and where they come from. This information can be extremely helpful in figuring out what changes need to be made to improve your site’s performance.
- UsabilityHub: UsabilityHub is a paid service that offers user testing services. With UsabilityHub, you can create surveys and tests that allow you to gather feedback from real users about your website. This feedback can be invaluable in identifying areas of improvement for your site.
- Optimizely: Optimizely is a paid service that allows you to A/B test different versions of your website. With Optimizely, you can create multiple versions of your site and then track which one performs better. This information can be extremely helpful in figuring out what changes need to be made to improve your site’s performance.
- Google PageSpeed Insights: Google PageSpeed Insights is a free tool that allows you to test your website’s speed and performance. This information can be extremely helpful in figuring out what changes need to be made to improve your site’s performance.
- Pingdom: Pingdom is a paid service that offers website monitoring and performance testing. With Pingdom, you can track your website’s uptime, speed, and overall performance. This information can be extremely helpful in figuring out what changes need to be made to improve your site’s performance.
In conclusion, maintaining your website does not have to be a difficult task.
By following the eleven easy ways listed in this article, you can effectively keep your website up-to-date and looking its best.
Keep your website fresh and inviting by regularly making updates and keeping the content relevant.
Your visitors will appreciate your efforts and be more likely to return in the future.