Why Websites Need Continual Care

Maintaining your business’ website is anything but a set it and forget it endeavor.

Here are six reasons why taking care of your website is crucial:

1. Taking Care of Your Users Is Crucial

You need to assume that your website is good and worth visiting for your users (if it isn’t, hit us up). Returning users need more than what they saw the last time they visited.

A content strategy designed around giving real value to your users means regularly creating new and interesting content for them to digest. Make sure you’re adding photos from your latest company event, new case studies that show how you take care of your clients, new blogs, and white papers that help your client’s industry move forward.

2. Security and Site Health

Security is reason enough to keep an eye on your website. The first step in security is how you set up your site. From choosing a good hosting provider to implementing security features like two-factor authentication and using strong passwords, you can’t have a secure site without starting on the right foot.

But setting up right keeps you safe only at launch. You also need to do regular site maintenance, core updates, plugin updates, malware scans, visual site checks, and a whole lot more.

Some of your security will happen when you choose the right hosting option, but that only gets you so far. You need to make sure that new users are following proper procedures, old users are deleted, and your site is kept up to date and in tip-top shape.

3. Because Your Brand Changes

The title kind of says it all.

Your site should reflect your brand’s current identity, its target audience, its values, its product and service offerings, its business information, etc. If it doesn’t, you’ll hurt your credibility, confuse customers and prospects, and foil your own SEO efforts.

You probably aren’t changing your logo and colors every day (if you are, stop it already). Your brand however grows as your company grows. Have you matured your voice? Have you repositioned an existing service line to appeal to a new audience? Is your team growing and you need to change the way you showcase your employees? Business happens every day and your brand needs to keep up online. 

4. Algorithmic Updates and Regulatory Changes

There are the overarching search-engine algorithm updates – like Google’s decision to factor page speed into its ranking criteria, or when it switched to mobile-first indexing, leaving many publishers scrambling to figure out responsive design.

Then there are globally consequential regulatory updates, like GDPR. There are also local considerations, like the California Consumer Privacy Act – which becomes effective January 2020, and will most likely affect every website publisher in the U.S.

In the case of algorithm updates, failure to proactively adjust can result in severe ranking penalties for your SEO Strategy. Regulatory oversights, meanwhile, precipitate legal penalties.

(If for no other reason under the sun, maintain your website so you stay on the right side of the law.)

5. SEO and Website Performance

Then there’s the strategic marketing need for maintaining your website:

  • Earning backlinks to your site to improve its authority scores.
  • Creating blog content to help you rank for new keywords.
  • Optimizing old landing pages so they have a better chance of performing in search engines.
  • Modernizing UX to better engage site visitors and drive up conversions.

Never assume your website will be found on the web. Every day, millions of new blog posts are published. Website publishers ferociously and calculatedly compete for real estate on search engine results pages (SERPs).

And never presume that once found, your site will do what you need it to. Monitor key search engine optimization (SEO) and website performance metrics to ensure your web presence isn’t falling behind your competitors, and that your pages are converting.

6. Broken Links and Other Technical Issues

Some web addresses get moved without ever getting redirected, or taken down entirely. But that doesn’t mean hyperlinks to those pages just go away. They persist, and if unaddressed, they lead to 404 errors that negatively impact your site’s performance in search and degrade the user experience.

Other technical issues that you should be constantly optimizing your site for include:

  • Browser compatibility.
  • Checkout processes.
  • Conversion forms.
  • UX and design issues.
  • Spam (AKA, toxic, spammy links back to your site that you need to disavow to prevent more ranking penalties).
  • Proper indexing.

Don’t Go Chasing Waterfalls

There are a lot of reasons not to work on your site every day, we get it. But your site will be working every day. So will the hackers, the search engines, and most importantly the users who you need to connect with. Make sure to give your website the TLC it needs and keep taking care of your website. If you don’t know how (or don’t have time) to take care of your site, reach up to Black Raven. We’ll get you taken care of.

Photo by halfpoint.

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