Updated: June 15, 2018
The regular website update and maintenance is a must if you want your website to be productive and to get a big number of visitors.
Why is website content updating important?
With a regular maintenance your website will run well. No unimpressed visitors because something on the website didn’t work or a link you provided is busted.
Regular visitors are searching for what is new, so provide them with new and interesting information, products or services.
Also, the websites are the subject to being hacked. Using a proper website maintenance program, you can try and prevent being hacked by maintaining everything up to date. There are all kinds of things that need to be done when maintaining a website. Whether you decide to do this yourself or hire out the work, it still needs to be done.
Simple think about it, if you visit a website that is not updated frequently will you continue to visit it? Why should your own website be like that then?
So, we discuss here:
- Technical Website Update
- Analyzing Your Website Stats
- Website Content Update
- Conclusion and Notes
1. Technical Website Update
There are some frequent website routine maintenance jobs you should carry out on a planned basis to securely maintain your website in working order. These works can be attributed to technical one, as they provide a good technical condition of your website and its stable performance.
a) Check Domain Registration and Host Service Payments
Make all payments on time, so as not to suffer losses. For example, if you do not pay on time for your domain, then you will have to redeem it at the new price.
Also, look up in the WHOIS records to know what information is recorded in your domain name. Make sure it is appropriate, as in some cases, when you initially sign up for your domain you would have used an email address that is no longer valid. This needs to be updated as when there is a problem with your domain or an expiry notice is sent out you won’t get the emails.
b) Update Software (WordPress and WP Plugins)
The third party software, like WordPress or Joomla, are always updating their software. You need to keep on top these updates and install them as soon as they come out. The updates won’t just be the new features, they will include security updates too. You also need to update WP plugins, especially since it’s all done by a couple of clicks.
c) Backup Your Website
Backing up your website is a thing you should do all the time, in particular if you often make changes and add new content. Even though the web hosting company states that they backup the websites on their servers, their previous backup could have been before your last changes. Various troubles can happen. For example, if the server crashes for some reason (or your website gets hacked), your latest changes will be gone if the web hosting company restores what they had backed up. So, you can lose a whole day’s work, just because you didn’t take a couple of minutes to back up your website.
d) Perform Ongoing Website Monitoring
As part of your website maintenance plan monitoring whether your website is up (working) should be an ongoing task. To perform website monitoring you can use a SetUp tool (a piece of software on your own computer).
The SiteUp monitors your websites and signals you when any become unreachable (e.g. when a server crashes). As it checks page content it can even detect when the server is OK, but a website or page is not available.
There is no limit to the number of websites that can be monitored, including secure websites, and the checking frequency can be anywhere between once a minute and once a day. When a website goes down the system tray icon will change to an animated alarm and optionally you are displayed a warning message. When a website becomes available again you can view a log to determine how long the website has been down.
e) Test Your Website Download Speed
Testing regularly the download speed of your website is important, especially if you have added a new feature. More often the Web visitors have a very short focus time, and if your website is slow to load, they are not going to wait around. So, you need to do almost everything you can to enhance the download speed of your website to make visitors stay to read your content.
To test your website download speed and get some tips, we recommend to use the Web Page Analyzer tool (it is a free website performance tool and web page speed analysis). After you enter your URL, the tool will calculate the page size, composition, and download time. Also, it calculates the size of individual elements and sums up each type of web page component. Based on these page characteristics the too, l then offers advice on how to improve page load time. This tool incorporates the latest best practices from website optimization secrets, web page size guidelines and trends, and web site optimization techniques into its recommendations. It is also good to use Google’s PageSpeed Tools.
f) Check Your Website Links
The links become broken over time. With changes within the website and if you referenced someone in one of your articles or content (or somewhere else within the website), links could have changed or are broken. The task to find broken links isn’t too difficult. Just use a link checker to check your external and internal links at least once a month.
To come across broken links on your website you need to use a link checker. There are many ones available, but we’ll advice you to use the free W3C Link Checker.
As soon as you enter your website URL in W3C Link Checker box, you have the option to just check one page or a number of pages. To check a number of pages, put a check in the box in front of “Check linked documents recursively” and then enter the depth of the website to check.
It may take a while to see the finish results, but when finished there will be a list of links checked and which ones are broken. The W3C Link Checker shows you which page the broken link is on, make a note of it. The list of broken links could be links to pages that do not exist anymore, websites that do not exist anymore or links you have coded incorrectly.
You can also use Google Webmaster Tools, as they added a feature where it shows you broken incoming links. You can use this information to correct your own mistakes and see incorrect links others are using to link to your website.
2. Analyzing Your Website Stats
a) Traffic Stats
When analyzing the website traffic, marketers often are interested in:
- The number of visitors per day (week, month)
- Pages entered on and left on
- Time spent on the website
- Bounce rate
- Referring websites
- Countries your visitors are from
- Keywords/phrase that were used to find your website
To find answers to these questions the Internet marketers use at least one web service (to keep track and monitor web traffics). There are many web traffic checkers out there, each a unique of its own. Most of them have something in common though; installation of script is required to generate traffic reports. But remember, installing too many tends to slow the website down and cause inaccuracy in overall results.
The AWStats is probably one of the few good ones that don’t require client side script installation. It’s installed on the server side and provides comprehensive logs of traffics accessing particular websites. It’s free and if your web host doesn’t have, request them to install.
You can learn a lot from web traffic checkers. Take the time to set one up.
b) Search Engine Stats (Ranking)
Google gives greater rankings to websites that are updated frequently simply because they want to present the best quality content to their search engine users.
Website maintenance is critical to search engine rankings. Websites with older content rank lower in search engine listings. Some search engines, including Google, check your website page’s “if-modified-since” HTTP header to determine whether it is worth crawling. Failing to make frequent modifications could cause you to be pushed below active competitors in the listings.
c) Caring About Reputation
Using Google Alerts, you can monitor your website name, your name, your brand and your content on the web.
You will know who is talking about you. This gives you an opportunity to jump into the conversation. Thank those who are praising you. Fix a problem that is being discussed related to your business.
Tracking your website address with Google Alerts will give you the opportunity:
- To see who is linking to you and can pop over there and say thanks.
- You can catch the use of your content without your permission.
All of this will enable you to evaluate and maintain your reputation.
3. Website Content Update
a) Keep Visitors Interested
Be the go-to website for your market niche or industry. The fresh content added frequently keeps visitors coming back to see what’s new. So, regularly add creative new content, text, graphics or images that relate to your niche to catch the attention of the visits.
A well-maintained website attracts new customers and maintains the interest levels of existing customers. Your website should be customer focused and held appropriate by routinely refreshing the content and ensuring that customer contact points are in good performing order. Also, regularly check that contact forms work, email address is updated and products, services and price lists are accurate.
One of the most effective ways for content updating is to publish articles on your website. Visit Article Builder to learn how to do it in the automatic mode!
b) Add New Products, Solutions or Features
Remember, your website is a primary source for information about your products or services. If you have something new to provide and it is not on the website, visitors won’t know about it. If what you have on the website is outdated or no longer available, you will frustrate potential customers.
All of your new proposals should have a detailed description, so that readers can feel their favor. It is also desirable to include user feedback, if you have some.
Also keep in mind that, your website is a public reflection of your corporate image. A poor content and poorly maintained website with lots of errors, broken links, dead pages and outdated information projects a bad corporate image and can cause business to downfall over time. Regularly examine the look and feel of your website content, update it to match your corporate image. Check and fix the broken links, poor grammar and spelling mistakes as quickly as possible, preferably before a customer brings them to your attention.
4. Conclusion and Notes
So, the fastest way for your website to become outdated and lose your visitors’ trust is to lose track of time-sensitive information and leave old information on the website. Information on items such as events, proposals, or meetings should be tracked using some form of a content review process.
What needs to be done from the main things for website update to prevent website outdated:
You really should make a point to update something on your website at least once a week. If you have a limit of ideas, then break larger ideas into smaller pieces. In terms of search, it’s more important to have many posts (articles) on your website rather than just one. Therefore, if you have a big topic you want to talk about, explain it in a series of articles.
Be sure to update information about the products and services that you offer on your website at least once a week. We all get busy on our day to day work and eventually forget that we are showing very old products or outdated services to potential customers.
And finally, website update is more difficult and more time-consuming than creating it, as it requires constantly the new ideas, products and services. Remember, the visitors came to your website because they are searching for information. Make sure you have what they are looking for. A good website maintenance strategy will guarantee you never lose a prospective customer because you didn’t have the suitable information online.
* * *