Website Maintenance tips
In this digital age, websites are the first point of interaction between a business and its customers. They form the ever-important first impression on your prospective clients. Of course, you need to invest in a good website for your business, but it isn’t enough to set it up. You need regular maintenance to keep your website running smoothly. In fact, regular website maintenance is essential for customer experience and retention, particularly if you do most of your transactions through the site.
Just like in car maintenance, you want to handle issues like website bugs, technical issues, broken links, security issues, and load speeds. That way, there is a reduced bounce rate since every visitor has a jolly good time browsing through and navigating your corner of the internet.
Here are some tips to help you conduct thorough maintenance steps for your business:
Create a schedule!
Website maintenance is never a one-time thing. It is a continuous process of ensuring a website is in its best shape with no bugs and errors. Regular updates ensure compatibility between the website, browser, and plugins.
You need a schedule that helps you stay on top of things. That way, the monitoring will be frequent enough. A maintenance schedule is especially essential with an e-commerce website because customers constantly share sensitive data and information. And it is your duty to ensure data security.
Monitoring your website once a month should suffice. The optimal functioning of your website will rely on regular updates, and a schedule helps a lot.
Let feedback be the guide!
The endgame for any website maintenance quest is to appeal best to site visitors. In addition, the best way to know what will wow your target audience is to listen to what they have to say.
Customer feedback comes a long way in providing essential information a business can use to improve its website. The comment section should be the first place you look at when researching ways to improve your website. You will get insight into what your audience thinks about your website. You will also understand what features to add to your website and which ones you can use less of.
Your users will help you identify the things, which are not working, as they should. That way, your updates will be effective and improve the customer journey on your website.
Understand your audience!
Your website is primarily for your target audience. Ergo, they should be top of mind when doing updates and maintenance. Your website will only be the best match for your audience if you take the time to know who they are. Draft user personas that you will refer to when updating your content and website design. Ensure that everything to do to your website reflects the target audience.
Take care of the loading speed
Page loading is a crucial measure of website functionality. See, most users will abandon a website and never return if it takes too much time to load. One study done by Google back in 2016 found that 53% of mobile site visitors will leave a page that takes longer than 3 seconds to load, according to a Google study. Having a slow-loading website is a risk you should never be willing to take if you are serious about keeping visitors on your pages.
Ideally, your website should not take more than two minutes to load. You can use tools like GTmetrix to check the loading speed of your site and get other performance reports for your website.
A faster website means better retention, which translates to a higher possibility of conversions. Also, the lower bounce rate resulting from excellent loading speeds will paint you in good lighting with ranking in search engine results pages.
Perform security checks!
Carve out time to update your software. Update and install security patches, bug fixes, and all updates relating to your web server, CMS, database, connected applications, and operating systems. That way, your website will be safe from attacks from malicious cybercriminals.
Your hosting services should be secure enough. It helps when your service provider has solid uptime. Another layer of security to introduce to your website is using an SSL certificate. An SSL certificate will ensure an encrypted connection. That way, the user data will be secure. Moreover, SSL certificates are available at a low price a site owner can go with discounted or cheapest SSL Certificate to secure the site.
Prioritize regular SEO Audits
SEO makes your website visible in search results. That means more traffic and more opportunities to turn prospects into customers. Regular SEO audits are, therefore, an essential part of website maintenance.
An audit will help you assess the competition, check your loading speed, know your SERP ranking, and find and fix broken links. Prioritizing your SEO will make it easier to understand issues in your website that need fixing. You can also bring yourself up to speed on algorithm updates and emerging trends to apply to your site to make your website more desirable in the eyes of search engine giants.
Content is the flesh every website needs to feed its audience. However, it is only effective if relevant and with the times. In fact, websites that regularly update their content have a 434% higher chance of ranking well on search engines, according to a study by TechClient.
Fresh and evergreen content retains the regulars and attracts more traffic to your website. You need to keep your content up to date when doing website maintenance. Be sure to include the publication date before every blog so users can find recent content easily. It will also be easier for search engines to filter through content with dates. That way, they can rank your websites more favorably.
Remember to take care of the images too. Place them properly to create an incredible page design. Make sure that all images punctuating your content are high quality. Employ proper image SEO to make your content more discoverable.
Conduct regular web analysis!
You need to crunch the numbers to assess the efficiency of your website and understand customer behavior. That makes website analytics a crucial aspect of website maintenance.
Try to monitor your website analytics at least once a day. You will get instrumental updates about the statistics of the people visiting your site and the conversion rates. You could use tools like Google Analytics to get free website analytics.
A website is never complete. There is always room for more improvements and updates. Update your website regularly to keep visitors scrolling through and encourage them to be back for more.