You probably won’t hesitate to answer the question, ‘Is a website the same as a printed business card?’ Well, not exactly. Websites have multiple pages, links, and reach clients all over the world. Business cards, paper rectangles that display basic contact information, are shoved in wallets among various credit cards and forgotten coupons.
If websites and business cards are so apparently different, why would you expect to put the same maintenance into them? While a one-time bulk order of 250 business cards will be sufficient for some time, websites have an assortment of complex details.
Many businesses don’t pay a lot of attention to their websites- until they stop working. In a panic, they conduct a hurried search to find a web developer to fix their issues. After anxiously waiting for responses to email requests, they get this reply: ‘We’d be glad to help you after we finish a few products for other clients within the next two weeks.’ And then another: ‘Okay, we aren’t sure we can figure out the codes your last developer used, regardless we will have to charge our high non-client price.’
Or what if you try fixing the crash yourself? There has to be a Google answer for that, right? Unfortunately, there is not one simple reason for a website crash. They happen for a variety of reasons, even experienced web developers need to put in some effort to find the root of each crash. This is why it is so important to invest in ongoing maintenance. Website crashes can be caused by some of the following reasons:
The network that your website sends data on goes down.
Your website’s coding contains a bug. It very well may have been fine when the coding was created, but over time vulnerabilities are often found and exploited.
Computers powering your website lose power.
Someone hacks your website.
Your website runs out of memory.
Robots decide to create a DDOS attack of sorts and overload your system.
Something makes your website’s computer’s filesystem unreadable, such as permission errors, operating system errors, or it is not mounted properly.
The file system on your website’s computer becomes corrupted.
There is more traffic and new visitors than your website can handle at one time.
Your website uses a database and it’s disk fills up, or the database simple goes away.
These are only the beginning. With the elaborate codes used to make up websites as well as errors with computers themselves and the internet, there are bound to be hiccups.
Reach Every Client
At the very beginning of web design, the only device users were viewing your website on were chunky desktop computers. Then laptops came out. Mobile browsing changed everything and usability on various screen sizes suddenly became a high priority. Many users have started using tablets as well.
Some businesses still haven’t had their websites optimized to reach the multitude of mobile and tablet users! With each new advance in technology, web designs face a new hurdle. Website maintenance gives your business online visibility that will endure new changes in the web.
Don’t Lose Your Cool
There’s a reason why successful companies like Apple and Amazon use Growth Driven Design (consistent small updates and testing) for their websites. If you take a look at a website designed back in 2014, you will notice it is beginning to look outdated.
Within two years, most websites need to go through a revamp to keep the design looking current and reassure their clients they are still up-to-date and running. With ongoing maintenance and updates, your website will never look outmoded and you won’t have to shell out a lump of time and cash for complete overhauls.
Stay on Top of Marketing
Marketing, like technology, is ever-changing and advancing. Instead of commercials on TV and print ads, many businesses have shifted over to Inbound Marketing. The methodology of Inbound is based on getting to know your target audience more, and using what you find to create useful content focused around their preferences.
In order to stay current with their changing concerns and goals, testing and website updates are crucial.
Another element of Inbound, Search Engine Optimization (SEO), is responsible for ranking your website in search engines like Google. Did you know Google’s search algorithm changes from 500-600 times.. A year? While many of these changes are small, the only way to continue ranking on Google’s search results is to consistently update your website and test for necessary changes. Maintenance will allow you to stay on top of the latest and most successful marketing trends. After all, your website is your most important marketing tool and much more effective than a disposable business card.
Peace of Mind
For your own peace of mind (and blood pressure) consider investing in ongoing maintenance. Rely on the same, trustworthy developer that coded your original website design. They will be there for you to solve your site issues promptly, and make updates hassle-free.
The last thing you need to worry about after running your own business all day is the well-being of your website!