The internet is an ever-evolving landscape… a phrase most business owners have heard dozens of times by now. It’s easy to say that the internet is changing at a rapid pace; It’s not so easy to actually do something to keep up.
These days, websites are constantly being impacted by the way in which the internet is evolving. But not every small and medium-sized business has the time or resources to internally keep track of the constantly changing landscape of the digital world while also trying to be competitive in their own industry. You would be hard pressed to find one. This is why many websites are left neglected.
To really get what you want out of a website you have to work with it on a regular basis. Websites are living in an ever-changing framework and have to routinely be adjusted to thrive and stay secure. So many companies neglect this process, that those who don’t can have a huge advantage. There are many reasons to stay on top of website maintenance but here are some of the most important.
Hackers love neglected sites. Not only are they easier to attack because of their outdated security measures, but they can also assume that no one is paying attention. This allows them to leave behind snippets of code to send future information their way or change permission on website files they can later use as leverage.
Even if your site is relatively small and doesn’t seem like a hacker-honeypot, it could still be targeted for many reasons. In fact, 43% of data breaches were targeted at SMBs as reported by the 2019 Verison Data Breach Investigation Report. If you’re like most website owners and use a system like WordPress to manage your content, this needs to regularly be updated to include the latest security measures along with any plugins currently being used on the site. Along with this, a backup of your website should also be created on a regular basis to make the recovery process easier in the event of a breach. If you want to keep all of your data secure, your cyber-security has to be prioritized appropriately.
Usability is always the number one thing that keeps people coming back to a website, and maintaining a pleasant user experience does wonders for your company image. Regular website maintenance ensures your website properly functions after each WordPress and plugin update, and it also helps improve page load times whenever possible. Since this is often the first interaction someone has with your business, any issue with your website could send the user searching for their next option.
Helps to Maintain Existing Search Results
Google loves to see the signs of regular website maintenance when calculating where to rank your website. When GoogleBot scans your site and sees the newest version for each active software piece and repaired broken links that were present during their last scan of your site you’ll reap the rewards. While the impacts aren’t as significant as generating new, quality content pieces; It’s important to get rid of old, broken links and duplicate pages. Depending on how active your competitor sites are in your market or niche, this could be enough to increase your search rankings.
The longer a website goes without some TLC, the larger the chance of a serious problem emerging. Updating a website that was updated 4 months ago is much easier than updating a website for the first time in 5 years. Servicing old websites becomes a large project rather than a brief maintenance check, which often ends up being much more expensive. Staying on top of your website needs will save you money in the long run along with all the other benefits of efficiency and usability.