1. Regular Maintenance
Backup Of Website And Data
You and I have learned from experience that creating a backup is the only way
to keep your data safe on a phone, a PC or any other electronic device.
In like manner, websites need to be backed up too. We live in an era where
cyber-attacks are common and several other issues like server-side mishaps
and network breakdowns can occur. A site backup can help:
Avoid The Risk Of Data Loss
What if a member of your staff deletes some important data by mistake?
Instead of blaming each other and getting all stressed out when that
happens, you can make use of a pre-created backup.
Reduce Revenue Loss
Most websites gain revenue via sales, which is why each passing second
when the website is down impacts your profits badly. The downtime can be
easily reduced if you have a backup of site data.
Prevent Downtime Loss When You Revamp The Site
Websites have to be updated regularly, but they also require a complete
or partial renovation occasionally. Creating the website in the first place
would have been an intensive process, with unique ideas blended into pages,
images, and written content. Losing all these to a rebuild will be a tragedy.
A backup will be the only option here. DO NOT let years and years of effort
go to waste. Check these website backup services, which are some of the best
picks used by professionals right now.
2. Database Optimization
Does your website have a subscription add-on to it? Or is it an
ecommerce web design where you sell products or services? Either way or other ways,
the database of a website is what holds every morsel of the information
that you add to it.
Database optimization includes the ways you should keep the site’s
performance unscathed. But why in the world is this needed? (image below)
Database optimization can be done in many different ways,
the most convenient of them being ‘using software’. Some of the best so far are:
3. Landing Page Checkup
Your social media promotions and paid ads will lead users to the
landing page of your website. Thus, it can make or break their first impression
about the site. Keep the landing page fully optimized and functional
all the time.
Common Problems Landing Pages Face
- Slow loading and lagging (Mainly because of traffic)
- Unclear information in the loading page
- Glitches in the server
- The product/service displayed on the landing page could be out of stock
All these problems will only occur if you neglect the landing page.
To make sure you don’t, regular checkups are needed. How hard could
that be with all the easily accessible tools available?
- AdWordsRobot – GoogleAds-related landing page optimization
- UnBounce – Strategic report on increasing landing page conversion
- VWO Landing Page Analyzer – A comprehensive report on how to optimize appropriation, expressiveness and goal-driven approaches for landing pages
4. Preparing and Managing Downtime
Sometimes, websites can face sudden breakdowns. This will
cause inaccessibility. Downtime is the length of time a website
stays that way.
Causes For Downtime
This is the one of the most widely observed reasons for a downtime to occur.
Hardware malfunction is responsible for 50% of the downtimes happening in small
and medium-scale businesses. The major causes of hardware malfunction can be
server-side overheating, dislocation of ISP network cables or general power shortages.
Problems Of Web Hosting
Even though the website is yours, servers that host websites are not.
The ISPs (Internet Service Providers) who own the servers will charge
you for that. ISPs might promise that your website will have 99.99% uptime,
which actually sounds more than perfect. But do their claims really live up
to your expectations? Let’s find out.
0.01% of 24 hours = 8.64 s
8.64×7= 60.48 s or 2 minutes
8.64×30= 259.2 s or 4.32 minutes in a month
Annual downtime - 8.64×365= 3153.6 s or 52.56 minutes
However, these statistics may vary based on the circumstance. For instance,
your website might have a downtime of a couple hours a day and have none
whatsoever for the entire year. Or else, it could be down for a few seconds every day.
Experiencing downtime is pretty normal, and there is no way any server could completely eliminate it.
Digital attacks are not an oddity, but there is certainly a diversified
collection of ways cyber attacks happen. Two types that should be a concern
for small business owners are;
DDoS attacks (Distributed Denial of Service attacks)
– This attack takes the form of showering requests directed to your server.
When the number of requests goes beyond the usual number a server can handle
without problem, the server will crash.
Malicious bots – This is a type of malware that is able to self-disseminate.
These will be sent through security breaches to your website by black hat hackers.
Overtime, your site will come down as a result.
5. Preparation For Downtime
1. Confirm First
Before you act out, you need to confirm that the site is really down.
Use a website like isitdownrightnow.com to figure out whether it is a technical problem
on your side or a real down.
2. Contact The Web Hosting Service
The hosting provider might know what the problem is, because there
is a fair chance that the website might be down due to a technical
problem or a maintenance issue on their side. Prior to contacting,
make sure you check email to see whether they have sent a notice informing
you of it.
3. Is It None Of The Above? Then It’s Probably You!
Mistakenly or out of ignorance, your website maintenance service provider could be the criminal!
Your web developer might have included an addition, reduction or a modification
is made that is not compatible to the website (plugin updates, features, versions etc.)
When you suspect something like this, you can refer to the back-end activity log
to locate the action that resulted in a site breakdown. Identifying the issue
will also help your web maintenance service to steer clear of it in the years to come.
Instead of getting all riled up when site breakdowns happen, you can opt to
maintain a healthy strategy of website maintenance. Do not wait for something to
happen and find solutions when you can prevent it from happening in the first place.
How can you prevent a website from going down?
Get Separate Companies For The Website And Domain Name
The domain name is the address your website goes by. When you host the website
with one company and get another for the domain name, things will be a lot more convenient.
In simpler words, your website that is down can be taken up by the second host.
Work With A Company That Uses A Monthly Plan For Hosting
The problem with annual plans is that you will have to stick with the company
for a year, paying them for the package. Instead of settling for an annual plan,
you can find a company that offers monthly plans for web hosting. This will help
you figure out whether the particular web hosting company stays up to their claims.
Pingdom, ServiceUpTime and UpTimeRobot are some of the effective tools you can use
to supervise the hosting quality of your website. If the company proves its quality,
you can decide to change your monthly plan to annual.
Backups Are Vital
A wise move is to keep a second company to host the backup of your website.
The benefit of doing so is that you will have a second version to which you
can direct your visitors to. This way, the main website’s downtime will not affect
the customer experience in any way.
Excess of plugins
When plugins are used too much, the number of lines of code will increase
in proportion. More lines will cause more requests to come, making the site
take more time to load them.
Some websites, mostly ecommerce web designs, are stacked with images.
A large collection of graphics results in more HTTP requests. In the
process of responding to each of them, your site will load slower.
Performance of the server
Shared servers in particular host more than one website on each of them.
The server needs to have a maximum performance to manage every HTTP request
coming its way. If it does not, that contributes in slowing the load-time.
Traffic Volume Increase
High traffic is exactly what business owners strive to gain, but
it is paradoxically one of the reasons for slow loading too. Higher
traffic results in multiple requests that are quite difficult for the
server to manage at once.
Even if you may have a lot of visitors with a lot of traffic, most
of them will bounce out because of the slow loading. Eventually, this
will affect badly on the traffic and conversion rates. The best thing
is to use GTMetrix, Pingdom, PageSpeed Insights, or UpTrends to keep
in track of the loading speed of your site.
Checking the speed will not be adequate, though. These tools will create
a report that will help you identify the causes behind slow loading.
Once you figure it out, you can consult a professional to fix the issues.
6. Ditching Superfluous Elements
Not everything in a website is actually needed for its performance or quality.
You can remove unnecessary elements from websites to keep them functioning smoothly.
For example, spam comments, surplus of graphics and unneeded content can lengthen
the loading speed. Clean the surplus with these tools to give your visitor
a hassle-free experience.
7. Checking For Vulnerabilities In Forms
Most business websites have a search bar and a subscription form,
you possibly do too. If you own an online shop, you have a form for checkout as well, indeed.
What most hackers follow is the method of “SQL Injection”, which grants them illegal
access to the website database of someone else. Check your website forms every day
before things get worse and they gain access to the data, both yours and your customers’.
Use these vulnerability checkers:
8. Review Analytics
Website analytics include the traffic channels and rates, visitor locations,
number of clicks, bounces, searches, and traffic and search volumes. This is
basically the activity log of your website and its interactions with the users.
A regular evaluation of analytics can guide you towards the necessary
changes and optimizations. As analytics sum everything up in a quantitative analysis,
you can use it to identify the loopholes of your pages in a qualitative approach.
Google Analytics is very raw, with numbers defining its whole essence.
If you are not an expert in web development, wrapping your head around
the quantitative details will be difficult. Without trying to read Google Analytics
as they are, you can opt to use some visualization tools. These are not only
super easy to work with, but also give a comprehensive and intelligible overview
of your website’s performance.
9. Checking Whether The Site Works Well Across Devices And Browsers
One of the key concerns of a website developer is to check for compatibility across
different browsers devices. Of course your website might have tested positive back then.
But it did not stay the same way afterwards, did it?
New plugins, fresh content, new code lines and other changes that are added
to a website makes it an ever so changing place. Some browsers and devices
may not be able to synchronize with these changes, causing the particular browser
or device to either display the website with flaws, or not at all. This will result
in giving some of your customers an unfavorable browsing experience.
To avoid such issues of browser compatibility, there are some useful tools that will come handy.
To avoid such issues of browser compatibility, there are some useful tools that will come handy.
10. Management of Customer Situations
The initial goal of building a website, and the only reason to keep it
functioning are your customers. As business owners, you have to value the quality
of the customer experience over anything else. Every issue related to customers
needs immediate addressing.
Be Quick To Respond
Continuous positive optimization and additions to your website
will be a great customer magnet. However, the unavoidable truth
is that your sales will gain reviews in return. It will not only feel great
to receive a positive review from a customer, but also other visitors
will be encouraged to buy from you too. Therefore, responding to customer reviews
is a crucial part of a business strategy.
Respond to reviews regularly. Answer their questions,
be thankful for their appreciations, and address complaints
Is Your Website “Under Maintenance”? Be Creative With It
Like we discussed before, there will be times your website is down. Be prepared and face it in style.
Instead of just adding a page that says “Website under maintenance” and nothing else,
you can include creative elements. For instance, you can let the visitors know that
your site is down without irritating them.
- Customize the announcement using styles, designs and text specific to your branding and business identity
- Add some useful links that you think the users might be interested in
- Use a joke or a funny image to tone their disappointment down
A similar strategy is used by Google Chrome. Upon connection disruptions,
Chrome lets you play the Dinosaur game while you wait for reconnection.
All we have to do is help the cute dinosaur run without hitting the obstacles.
Customer-oriented approaches like this will take an extra effort, but will always work.
11. Manage The Elements Of A Website
Website elements include everything from text to infographics and to plugins.
These elements can be properly managed in many ways.
It is vital for a website to always stay head to head with the
evolving trends and updating information. Never let your content stagnate
or state wrong, disproven details. Fresh and engaging content helps
gain better conversion rates, and your visitors will be pleased too.
Delve deep into your research and include valuable, non-contradictory
Individual Plugin Updates
When your site has more than one plugin, each of them needs to be updated individually.
Plugins fulfil tasks like automatic site backups, image compression
site performance satisfactory and reduces cyber attacks.
12. Security Enhancement And Management
To outsmart hackers, you need a strong security management system protecting
your site. Apart from hiring a professional to check for security breaches
and ambiguities in the website, you can follow these simple steps.
Unlike some time ago, having a strong, long and unpredictable password is not the only way to dodge hackers.
Use a tool such as DashLane,
or LastPassto generate intricate passwords
- Never use the same password twice
- Constantly change your passwords to block the hacker’s access (At least once every week)
- 2-factor authentication adds a supplementary cover of security to your site, thus keep it installed
Other Ways Of Security Management
Renew your SSL certificate so that the site will not be hoaxed
Keep in touch with your web hosting provider to know about new features and suggestions for security enhancement
Remove backend access from post-employees or those who should not necessarily have it
Security professionals can help you track hackers down
Use tools like IndusFace,
or NoGoToFail for security checks. Or get an expert!
Business websites, especially ecommerce sites, tend to gain higher traffic
in sales and festive seasons than usual. Too much traffic might cause your servers
to crash, resulting in a dramatic decrease in conversions. Keep this from happening
by going for a hosting company that offers extensible services.
Also, remember that in such cases of traffic overload, high traffic testing
is mandatory. These high traffic testing tools will identify the glitches
and downfalls of your website structure in such situations.
To cut the long story short, here is a compact list of the
best methods of website management we already discussed.
1. Backup of site and data
2. Database optimization
3. Landing page checkup
4. Preparing and managing downtime
5. Keeping site load-time under check
6. Ditching superfluous elements
7. Checking for vulnerabilities in forms
8. Reviewing analytics
9. Checking whether the site works well across browsers and devices
Management Of Customer Situations
1. Be quick to respond
2. Being creative with the “website under maintenance” page
Manage The Elements Of A Website
1. Content Updates
2. Individual Plugin Updates
Security Enhancement And Management
1. Password management
2. Other ways of security management
To Ensure Productive Website Management
As the owner of the business, you probably have very little time
to spend on a comprehensive process like this. The easiest way
to tackle this problem is by hiring a professional website management
Finally, do keep in mind that website management strategies,
just like everything else, keep evolving. Find an expert that is versatile,
open-minded and skillful.