As the saying goes, you must “love your home”. In other words, homeowners must be maintaining their property to ensure it will retain its value over time. There is a mandatory and yearly checklist which often starts with a “spring clean”. As the seasons change from spring to winter, basic home maintenance will more than likely involve the proverbial “lick of paint” on interior and exterior walls, fixing leaky taps, clearing drains and gutters, servicing the boiler, cleaning the chimney etc.

As highlighted in previous articles, there is a very clear analogy between a home and a website. Visiting a “domain” name is akin to entering every room in a house, starting with the “Home” page.

As much as homeowners must “love their home”, website owners must “love their website” and maintain it on a regular basis. A website that isn’t maintained will immediately show signs of neglect and give a poor impression to first-time visitors. It might display an old-fashioned template, broken links or simply list out-of-date information such as lapsed upcoming events and old news.

A basic annual website maintenance checklist should include the following:

Weekly maintenance

  • Renew the website domain name and hosting package in time.
  • Perform software, platform versions and functionality plugin updates.
  • Back up your website and run malware scans.

Monthly and general upkeep

  • Test all contact, registration or pop-up forms.
  • Test all the buttons to ensure they are leading visitors to the correct pages.
  • Test all outgoing links, embeds or pictures. Delete or update them if necessary.
  • Always optimise your website for speed.

Annual review

  • The web is constantly evolving and changing. Your website should too. Perform small and regular incremental changes during the year, or a complete overhaul every 2 to 3 years.
  • Every now and then, ask friends or people not usually associated with your business to browse your website. Their feedback will give you a valuable insight into how your website looks to the random visitor and what areas need improvement.

A well-maintained website displaying up to date information about your business – especially if it includes a blog – will be more secure from hacking threats, rank well on search engines and ensure your are found by potential customers.

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