Building a new website takes a lot of time, effort and money; so much goes into ensuring the content and design attract your target audience, not to mention making sure it’s optimised effectively and has adequate security measures in place. Once the project is complete and your new website is live, you can breathe a sigh of relief, right?!
The hard work doesn’t stop there. Building the website is just the first step to reaching your goals. Maintaining your website is how you ensure it continues to operate in the way it should - efficiently and effectively. Your website development agency should offer maintenance packages (we know we do!) so you don’t have to stress about doing this yourself. And, let’s not forget, you’ve put a lot of time, money and effort into building your website; why would you not look after it as best you can?
There are many behind-the-scenes factors that contribute to the maintenance of your website and, when left unchecked, problems are more likely to occur. Not only that, it also makes the process of solving any issues a lot more difficult for developers to fix. Here at Brace Digital, we offer monthly maintenance support to ensure that your website experiences no downtime (we’ve written all you need to know about website downtime here).
Here are 5 reasons why website maintenance should be included in your web development budget:
1. Your website needs to remain secure
If you’ve followed our blog posts for a while now, you’ll know that we’re big believers in keeping your website secure (here’s everything you need to know). In fact, we’d go as far to say that it’s vital to the success of your website. So, if you have a website maintenance package in place, your development team will be able to make sure that your website remains as secure as it was when it was first created. This includes installing any security patches needed, updating your software to the latest version and fixing any bugs. If these aspects are left untouched, your website will be more vulnerable to cyber attacks.
2. Regular backups are needed
The last thing you’d want is for your website to crash beyond repair, or for something drastic to happen to the software your website is built on - and you have no backup available! By having regular maintenance in place, all of your backups will be handled for you. The main elements to be backed up normally include the source code and the website content. Think about how much easier it would be to recover from the loss of a website if all of your files are available as part of your backup!
3. You need to keep up with the latest technology/algorithms
Technology is ever-evolving and techniques are regularly implemented to improve user experience on the internet. But, this just means you have even more to think about and keep up-to-date with. If you had dedicated website maintenance, not only would you be investing in regular updates to your website, you would also be ensuring that any upcoming changes are under control. Whether your website software needs updating or your website needs to be improved to avoid penalisation from search engines, a website maintenance package will have it covered.
4. Customers are always looking for the best experience
If your website’s software becomes outdated, it can have a knock-on effect on how it performs for your customers. With regular maintenance, your website will always be built on the latest version which, naturally, means that it will be a smoother experience for your customers. Routine maintenance ensures that all of the components of your website are working properly, such as contact forms, links, images, shopping carts and payment mechanisms. If even just one of these aspects isn’t working correctly, you run the risk of losing potential customers.
5. Guaranteed SLA’s to give you peace of mind
With an ongoing maintenance agreement in place, you can be rest assured that any change requests or issues are responded to within pre agreed timescales. This way you know exactly where you stand and how long it will take for your web development team to deal with the matter. Imagine having someone on-hand to support you with your website whenever you need it? And, the alternative - well, instead, you can expect to wait for a lead time, while clients on a support retainer have their queries responded to and resolved more promptly. What would you rather?!
If you’re still unsure about whether you need regular maintenance on your website, let us just give you a quick overview of what we can offer:
- A proactive approach to keeping your website performing at its optimum level
- Daily alerts so we can see (often before you do!) if something isn’t working as it should
- Access to the front of the queue for any work needed on your website
- Regular information on the latest security patches available
- Automatic backups
- A ‘source code review’ exercise to ensure your website is optimised and performant
- CMS training sessions if you have new team members
- Stretch capacity to take care of design work, content uploads, implementation of new features
Website maintenance may feel like an extra outlay that you need to find the budget for, and you’ll probably be wondering if it’s something you don't really need in order to save some money, but let us tell you that this really isn’t an advisable option! Regular maintenance is essential, no matter what size or sector your business is in, and it just means that the time and money you invested in getting a new website is protected. If you have an Umbraco site and you’d like to find out more about our maintenance packages, get in touch by filling out the form below.
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