These days most businesses realize that in order to remain competitive they need a website. However, what many businesses don’t fully understand is that the ongoing website maintenance, upkeep and management is just as important as its design and functionality.
Investing in a great website is all well and good, however websites aren’t just ‘set and forget’ entities, they need ongoing TLC to keep them efficient, effective and engaging. Your house, car and electronic gadgets all need regular maintenance don’t they? Your website’s no different.
But why is it so important to perform regular website maintenance?
Your website is critical to your business
Your website is an integral marketing and communication tool for your business, and engaging professionals to help with website support and regular maintenance is a critical part of managing it.
Ongoing website maintenance can lead to better site performance, including page loading time and functionality. There’s nothing more frustrating for customers than pages that are slow to load or even worse, not working at all (don’t we all hate the dreaded ‘error’ message)!
Improving the ‘user’ experience builds trust and credibility, and also gives you as a business owner peace of mind in knowing that your website is available to your audience 24/7. A well functioning website can grow website traffic, increase your customer base and convert prospects into paying customers (and therefore increase income), and it’s also a platform where your suppliers, customers and key stakeholders can communicate and engage with you and your business.
Website care plans lead to business growth
A key factor in growing your business is to keep your customers interested in your website. After all, why would you care about them if you don’t care enough about your own brand to keep your website current? Because it’s one of your most valuable digital marketing tools, regular website maintenance will also ensure your customers obtain value from your site, and therefore perceive that your services and product offerings are valuable as well.
Regular website servicing should also include updating content so that it remains fresh and relevant, and engaging a professional to do this will ensure it’s done efficiently and hassle-free. Outdated websites can have a significant impact on your site rankings, and those that aren’t well maintained perform much more poorly than those that incorporate the latest SEO requirements.
Here at Soak Creative our customisable website maintenance packages can not only include the latest in SEO and SEM advancements, but we can also give you access to a range of unlimited content changes, which are usually completed by next business day!
Regular security updates are a no-brainer!
Many website platforms these days are ‘open source’, meaning their code base is basically visible to anyone in the world. And while it’s great for creating large communities and offering access to plugin libraries that offer great add-on features, it does mean that many websites are vulnerable to ‘hacking’. In fact, no website software anywhere is really exempt – even the big players like Facebook and Twitter have been hacked before.
Backups should be routinely performed, website data stored in a safe place, and all websites need to be constantly maintained in terms of security updates, which helps preserve the integrity of your customers’ data.
Preventative care is probably one of the wisest strategies you can adopt in terms of website maintenance, and here at Soak Creative we work extremely hard to ensure that security issues don’t occur. However, in the unfortunately event of it happening, we provide top-notch emergency care, and will communicate with your web hosting supplier on your behalf.
Website maintenance adds value
Enlisting the help of a digital agency to manage your website support will also add value to your site as they can manage the updating process which will keep your site relevant and engaging. Installing new updates yourself can often lead to performance issues, particularly if third party plug-ins or extensions are required that are not compatible with the latest version of your software.
Our team always test and perform backup procedures before launching any new plugins to ensure all update transitions run smoothly, and we are constantly on the look out for new features and technological developments that will improve search engine ‘crawl-ability’, optimise website performance and enhance the user experience.
We also offer advice on improving your site with the use of website analytics, which can track the performance of your website’s pages and give you invaluable insights into how your customers are behaving when they view them. We’ll then highlight the areas that are working (and analyse why they are), and improve on those that aren’t, to ensure your site is working as optimally as possible.
Can I perform website maintenance myself?
Yes you can, however do-it-yourself website maintenance can be a time consuming and somewhat tricky process. Keeping your website backed up, secure, and up to date can also lead to disastrous results if you’re not familiar with the complexities of your software’s features.
Technologies, strategies, plug-ins and updates change frequently, and if you’re not technically minded, sometimes it’s difficult to pinpoint what’s changed and when. And if you have to revert back to an older version and you accidentally restore the wrong thing, you could lose orders, content changes and ultimately customers.
Neglect and a lack of experience can also damage the look and functionality of your website, and often it’s difficult to repair. This can lead to more financial outlay in the long run and that’s certainly going to affect your own bottom line! Just like a car, it may cost more to fix than it does to maintain regularly and correctly. Regular oil changes keep your car running at its best, regular website maintenance will keep your website running the way it should, and reduce the risk of irreparable disasters.
Ultimately, working with a professional digital agency ensures your business and your website’s needs are met first and foremost. And it makes sense – it’s means there’s one less thing you have to worry about, and it will allow you to concentrate on what you do best – building relationships with your staff, business partners and most importantly, your customers!
What are the features of website maintenance packages?
Here at Soak Creative, we know every single line of our chosen software code, and therefore we know all the intricacies of the elements that make your website work to its optimal level. We use the same software for all of our clients and we’ve been using it for over 10 years, so you could say we’re intimately (digitally) acquainted.
Our Website Care Plans can be tailored to your specific needs, and will ensure traffic and customers are continually driven to your site at a fraction of the cost and time it would take to do it yourself. We do all the nitty-gritty work for you, which will allow you to focus on being an uber-amazing superhero to your audience. Just call us the Robin to your Batman!
Complete website support for growth, results and peace of mind!
Our packages include:
- Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
- Software and security maintenance
- Plug-in updates
- Software updates
- Daily and weekly backups
- Website optimization
- Security monitoring
- Site health checks
- Performance scans
- One-on-one consulting
- Professional training videos
- Monthly newsletter
- Monthly email reports
Optional extras we can include:
- Unlimited content changes
- Premium website hosting on our local, fully managed, super-fast hosting provider
- Link maintenance
- Advanced SEO services, including website tweaking to ensure you get more visitors from search engines
- Monthly coaching calls and advice
- Consulting calls via Skype
If you require anything outside our plans, it’s simply a case of letting us know and we can provide a separate quote for you to approve. Because we evaluate requests on a case-by-case basis, it’s more than likely that we will just charge an additional add-on fee to the plan you’ve already chosen.
When quoting for additional work, we will always provide you with a fixed-price estimate before we get started so you can budget effectively. If the work is particularly customized or the scope of the work not fully known upfront, we can also charge an hourly rate to give you more flexibility.
The flexibility factor also continues with your web hosting services. Although we prefer to use our own recommended providers, we are happy to review your chosen provider and talk with them about how best to satisfy your needs. If you’d prefer to transfer your own hosting service to our Premium Web Hosting services, we also offer a once-off hassle-free migration fee.
An added bonus? Our services defy the inflexibility of locked-in contracts, because the most important thing to us is building a valuable relationship with you and your website. We know engaging in website servicing can be a big commitment, and understand that budget restrictions are part and parcel of running a business these days, so we promise we won’t lock you in! If you need to cancel or suspend your contract for any reason, cancellation is just an email away. (Although we’d hate to see you go).