Website maintenance is critical to any business, big or small. It’s important for personal sites as well. That is if you really want people to find your site and view it, contact you through it, leave comments to your blog posts, or buy your products.
Maintenance can apply to many aspects of a website. This 2-part article will touch on several key areas of concern. This first article discusses content maintenance while the second article will discuss website Security.
SEO & Search Engines
Keeping your content fresh by updating regularly, checking for broken links, and eliminating duplicate content will help your search-engine rankings. Old stale content ranks lower in search listings. Too many broken links not only tells viewers that you don’t care about your content, but search engines will rank your site lower or possibly de-list it.
Updating your content regularly and using tools like Google Webmasters Tools to check your site is easy to do for almost anyone. If you have basic computer skills and can easily navigate a Word Processor like MS Word, then you have the skills to keep your site current.
Corporate Image and Brand
Your website is a public reflection of your business or yourself. A poorly maintained website with spelling, punctuation, and coding errors, dead pages, broken links, or out of date information projects a sloppy image and can cause your business to decline over time. (One of my pet peeves is when a site has an old phone number or last winter’s hours of operation still showing.)
Routinely examine your website and check for and fix problems with links, spelling, or grammar. Verify that your content is still current. Update your site’s appearance or theme at least every two to three years. Some of this you can do yourself, assuming you have basic computer skills; other more difficult tasks such as refreshing your site’s appearance might require professional help from a web design/development agency.
Keeping Your Viewers Interest
Give your viewers a reason to revisit your site with fresh content.
If your website includes a blog, posting new content is easy and necessary. Set a schedule that works for you, whether is twice weekly, once a week, or monthly. Stick to your schedule. And don’t forget to announce your new posts on Facebook, Twitter, or your other favorite social media. Social media is the tool that drives new viewers to your site and really helps your SEO ranking.
If your site does not have a blog, consider adding one. Make sure your blog content is relevant to your site’s purpose. A blog with relevant content helps to show that you are an expert about your subject and can provide value to your viewers.
If you don’t want a blog and the extra work that entails, it’s still important to keep your website’s content fresh. If your viewers come back to the same old content over and over, they’ll stop visiting all together.