When you build a house you spend a lot of time, effort and money in making sure it’s perfect in all ways.
You try not to compromise in the quality of the materials used and go for the finest installments.
But what will happen if you don’t take care of the house once it’s built?
A few cracks show up, some fixings start giving trouble and maybe a leakage or two is visible.
If not dealt with promptly, soon all of these minor inconveniences will become major issues.
End result? You’ll get overwhelmed and start hating the house!
How could this situation have been avoided?
That analogy must have given you a clear idea about what needs to be done after you’ve invested so much time and money in building your website.
Yes, once it’s up and about, keep reviewing and improving it.
Website maintenance if done in a systematic manner helps in achieving the goals it was built for. Follow these website maintenance tips if you don’t want a dead website!
1. Assess and test your website thoroughly
You can do this once a year or after you’ve made any updates. Make a schedule and follow it to review all the pages of the site.
Look out for features that need improvement or don’t work or for any broken links. Here are some of the areas you should really focus on:
Errors (grammatical or typos)
Outdated or incomplete content
Missing meta tags or page titles
Any kinds of errors
General user experience
2. Test the forms and checkout procedure
You can do this once in 4 months or after any updates. You don’t want to lose business or clients because one of your forms stopped working due to any reason!
So test all calls to action and points of contact as well as sales pages regularly.
3. Set and measure KPIs (Key Performance Indicators), search engine ratings (SEO), and the general website analytics
Reviewing the KPIs, SEO ratings and analytics reports of your website once a month will help you gauge its performance. Going through this process helps in determining the effectiveness of your website and brings forward potential issues.
4. Update the software and bug fixes
Once in a month or when patches are released, you need to do the following:
Update the software and install updates
Install/upgrade security patches (as soon as they are released else your website might be at risk)
Install/upgrade bug fixes
Install/upgrade any other updates related to the web server, operating system, CMS etc
5. Renew your domain names annually
The domain name of your website is the most valuable possession you have and if you let it expire it’s going to be a disaster! So be sure to renew all your domain names in a timely manner.
6. Backup your website
Once a year, backup your website and the data. Also make sure to check the backups that they are working and that the data is retrievable.
7. Test your website in mainstream browsers
With technological advancements, your website layout may become incompatible with some browsers. Hence keep reviewing and testing your website in various versions of main browsers like Google Chrome, Apple Safari etc.
8. Look out for date-specific text
Make sure to review and update any copyright dates or specific dated text/reference all over your website. There should be no outdated information especially on the homepage.
9. Update the contact information
As needed, make sure to review the contact information on your website and make it up to date and accurate. This includes addresses, phone numbers, team members’ information etc.
Maybe some employees’ designation changes and now emails have to be rerouted to someone else – all such real-time changes require updating the website.
10 Review and update disclaimers/policies
Following this checklist will make your website maintenance job very much doable but there’s also an easier way – contact us at 4M Designers for all your website maintenance and support needs!