In today’s ever-evolving technological world, it is important to not only have a website for your business, but also to know how to maintain it. In last month’s blog, GRIT’s digital team offered tips to consider when developing a website. This month, we offer tricks to keep your business site maintained once it is developed.
The following seven ideas are key to maintaining a website to enhance your business’ digital presence:
- Regular Website Maintenance
- Regulatory Compliance
- Regular Backups
- Ongoing SEO Efforts
- Monitor Security
- Content Updates
- Website Reporting
Regular Website Maintenance
Performing regular maintenance and updates to any website is imperative to ensure site security, increase traffic and grow the number of return visitors. When websites are regularly updated, search engines (such as Google) will raise rankings, which provides higher visibility increasing the chances content will appear when their audience searches for related keywords.
In addition, websites that are regularly updated can be viewed as more professional. Maintaining site content with relevant and valuable information, fixing inactive links and removing duplicate pages all increase the chances of driving traffic to the website. Maintaining a presence with events, images and blogs will also help give your audience an idea about the brand and engage them, increasing the chances they will return.
No matter the size of your business, regular maintenance will improve performance and provide a secure site for visitors.
When considering website maintenance, it is also important to think about rules and regulations that are in place. Two important regulations to consider are the European Union General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and ADA Compliance.
The EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) changes the way data is handled across every sector, from healthcare to finance and more. The goal of the GDPR is to protect citizens from data breaches in today’s technologically advanced world. The GDPR applies to organizations located within the European Union, as well as organizations outside of the EU that offer goods and services. It also applies to all companies processing and holding the personal data of subjects residing in the European Union, regardless of the company’s location.
It is important to follow these regulations when maintaining a company website because there are consequences for those who do not follow them. The maximum penalty is a fine of up to 4 percent of annual global turnover for breaching the GDPR.
In addition to the GDPR, businesses also need to make sure they are ADA compliant. In just the past few years, ADA compliance has become a larger issue on websites and companies throughout the United States have been sued for lack of ADA compliance on their websites.
How do you know if your website is ADA compliant? ADA compliance means that your website is user-friendly for individuals with disabilities. For example, under ADA compliance, a company website needs to include labels on all navigation elements in code or including “alt-tag” values on images. Most of these practices are in place so that if someone who is visually impaired visits your businesses’ website, their screen reader application can read every element of the page to them, including instructions on what will happen if they click on a given element, like a menu item or image.
The best thing you can do with ADA compliance is to get started with an audit. Audits can give you a baseline understanding of how bad the problem might be, and what must be done to fix it.
The digital team at GRIT can perform these audits to ensure your website is compliant and user-friendly. If you are ready to make sure you are up-to-date on the latest ADA compliances, contact the GRIT team today for an estimate.
Regular backups are essential to making sure your business always has a copy of your content and data on hand. There are many reasons content and data could be wiped from your website including hackers, malware and human errors. When a website is properly backed up, if any of these unfortunate events occur, the information and data from your website will still be available to use later.
Ways to back up your website and content include using cloud storage, seeing if your web host offers backup services, or zip your data to keep it safe.
Need assistance backing up your website? Contact our digital team today to see how we can help!
Ongoing SEO Efforts
Does your company website utilize search engine optimization (SEO)? If not, SEO is recommended to be included in every digital marketing plan. SEO is the process of using key phrases to improve the way a company’s website ranks in search results.
Updating SEO keywords and content is important, especially for Google’s organic rankings. Google uses an algorithm to determine the more relevant results for any given search. This means it is important that when you create and update your website page, that the search engine believes it is worthy of directing their users to it. Therefore, if you update your SEO keywords and content regularly, it will help continue to drive traffic to your site well after it is created.
In addition, creating SEO content can help put your company ahead of the competition. SEO has become widely accepted in the marketing world, and most marketers are taking steps to increase their online presence. Maintaining a strong SEO presence can help your company stay competitive in the industry.
Security is one of the main reasons that website maintenance is so important. Keeping your website updated and secure protects your customers and your data. If your organization is using a Content Management System (CMS) such as WordPress, you will want to be sure the site is keeping up with software and security updates. Failing to keep your website secure will give hackers and the opportunity to steal your data and could also ruin your businesses’ reputation.
To ensure that your business website is secure, work with a hosting company that also understands website and server security. This company would also work to keep their hosting up-to- date and secure.
Did you know GRIT offers website hosting services and understands the importance of making sure your website is secure? Reach out to us today to learn more!
Regularly updating your site with sharable content such as upcoming events, image galleries, and blogs gives your audience an idea about who you are and what you do. Maintaining an engaging website with call to actions, such as newsletter sign ups and social media links helps to promote your business. A well-maintained website increases your businesses brand and displays your work.
It is important to update your website to remove information that is old and be sure to conduct site audits to make sure there are no issues with your website. Do this regularly so that you can provide your visitors with the best possible user experience.
Monthly reporting tells you how your website is performing including how many people visited your website, how long they stayed and what content they engaged with. Monthly reporting is also a good way to measure the success of your SEO efforts and find ways to make improvements to your website to provide the best digital experience for your audience.
GRIT recommends checking out tools such as Google Analytics, Facebook audience pixels and LinkedIn analytics and audience pixels. These services not only provide insight to audiences, but also enable remarketing.
If you think your business could benefit by developing or maintaining a website, reach out to our digital marketing team today to learn how we can help!