WordPress is an online, open source website creation tool written in PHP. It is a powerful blogging and website content management system (CMS). WordPress can be an excellent tool for DIY website projects; but for the majority of business owners hiring a professional is the best way to deal with the complexity of building and maintaining a WordPress website. For the client, a monthly website service package, will provide a lot of convenience, peace of mind and the ability to overcome the WordPress learning curve. Moreover, hiring an agency to service and maintain your WordPress website, can help to increase site speed, decrease downtime and keep you from worrying about your site. Justifying the cost of maintaining a WordPress website is a simple matter which falls into 6 categories.
1. Maintaining a WordPress Website
Many people think about the cost of getting a WordPress site up and running but they fail to consider the cost of maintaining a WordPress website annually. While WordPress itself is free, if you want to be proactive and have a long term successful site, that users can continue to access without errors, you will want to consider other aspects of website maintenance and quality need to be assessed on a regular basis. Time spent performing things like updates, backups, deleting spam, checking for bad links, adding new plugins, changing themes, would be better spent working on your actual business.
2. WordPress Updates
One of the things that go into the cost of maintaining a WordPress website are WordPress software updates. WordPress software updates are released on a regular basis and need to be consistently applied to your site in order for it to keep functioning properly. Making sure WordPress software updates are completed will reduce the risk of having code conflicts and elements of the site becoming out-of-date. Also, by making sure WordPress is kept up to date, allows the user to take advantage of new features and reduces vulnerabilities that hackers can take advantage of your site. It is important to make sure that your site always runs the latest version of WordPress and all its components.
3. Plugin & Theme Updates
Like WordPress updates, it is also important to update plugins and themes to maintain the security of your site and to take advantage of the new features. A major aspect of maintaining a WordPress website is the cost of acquiring and maintaining plugins. Like WordPress updates, one of the costs that goes into plugin and theme updates is the time it takes to acquire updates.
4. Basic Site Maintenance
Maintenance is absolutely essential to running a WordPress website. If you do not maintain a WordPress site, it can become slow and full of errors. This makes your WordPress site a target for hackers.
In addition to basic maintenance, WordPress websites require monthly quality assurance to make sure the website is running properly. This is especially important in regard to WordPress or plugin updates. Monthly quality assurances checks include:
• Making sure the site’s search function is working properly
• Specific plugin functionality works
• Page browsing works and no errors are accruing
• The checkout process (if e-commerce) works correctly
• Site speed is appropriate especially after having upgraded plugins and WordPress
Performing monthly quality assurance can help catch issues before they become a bigger problem.
Backups are a crucial part of maintaining the long-term health of your website. Multiple, regularly scheduled backups that send your website files to different locations are imperative. Backups ensure that if something happens to your site that you can quickly recover. Backups also ensure that if you make a mistake you can reset your site to an earlier form. Automated backups reduce the amount of work associated with this task.
6. Deleting Comment Spam
Comment spam comes with having a website and needs to be deleted on a regular basis to free up resources. Comment spam comes in the form of low-quality comments and, in general, do not relate to your site at all. It is important to delete comment spam to keep your site looking professional and keep it from getting bogged down.
Regular WordPress website maintenance and quality assurance will keep your site running well for years to come. The elements that we’ve highlighted above are the necessary features that WordPress professionals are tending to on a regular basis for the overall success of your WordPress website.
William Churchill Design offers high quality hosting services including updating of WordPress, website themes and plugins. Call us if you would like to find out how we can help you keep your site up to date