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How to Maintain a Website
Think of it like getting an oil change for your website
The lack of planning and scheduling security and upgrade audits is one of the most significant issues we see come into the Iron Quality department. These are very important, not only for the overall maintenance, but the well being of the site over time. During this process, we go in and update security-related settings on the site and server, review any plugin updates and WordPress version updates to ensure there are no conflicts, and take steps to improve the overall page load times.
Think of it like getting the oil changed in your vehicle as a preventative measure. The number one cause of malware and security incidents on a site, especially WordPress, is related to outdated plugins or WordPress core versions.
Set it and forget it works for crockpots, not websites
One essential part of maintaining a site is to get on a regular audit cadence. Every six months, at a minimum, you should ensure the website and plugins are up to date, remove anything unused, optimize images, and analyze site speed for improvements. Aside from the technical aspects, you also need to maintain your website from a frontend user standpoint by keeping your site’s content up to date and continuously improving the user experience based on your analytics data.
Never stop improving
You maintain a site once it’s launched by continuing to improve upon and make edits to it. The site should be getting new content regularly, optimizing the content that is there, testing out new page layouts, and more to keep it fresh and aid in helping you meet your primary goals. Bonus: you’ll also want to make sure your CMS is up-to-date and not vulnerable by doing a backend website audit every couple of months.
Keep your security in tip-top shape
Maintain the original look and feel
As a designer, I often check back on sites that have launched to make sure that any post-launch content that has been added or changed still maintain the original look and feel the client signed off on. If there are spacing, alignment, or any other issues, I’ll bring them to the project manager’s attention so that we can rectify it. My goal is to make sure that our sites look as good on day 365 as they did on day 1.
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