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How do we care for our window to the world?

Isabel Johnson

Deputy Managing Director at Shaw

When it comes to marketing, I think we are all agreed that a website sits at the very heart of any business. It’s a shop window, the shop itself, the call to action, and the information resource.

Yet, all too often, this vital tool is the one we most neglect. Why? There are many reasons.

It’s rarely at the top of any action list. As long as there is a site in place that’s functioning adequately, has relatively up to date content, and hasn’t attracted too much criticism, there are always more important things to think about – day to day operations, financial issues, personnel, expansion, you name it – it definitely takes priority over the window to the world!

There’s a chorus of groans that go round when someone steps up to present the case for a new website. Yet the argument is compelling – the old site is slow, the content is dated, it no longer represents the evolving business brand, there is new technology to be integrated, and so it goes on. So, a project manager is assigned, a budget is set, tenders are sought, a web developer appointed, a shiny new site emerges, and all is well. The project is parked. We dust our hands and go back to the business of running a business.

And what of looking after this new online presence? It’s brand new. Cutting edge technology. Surely it will look after itself for the next two or three years? And herein lies the problem: we don’t take the time to build a successful business, to then walk away and let it take care of itself for a few years, only coming back to reinvent it when it’s falling apart. So why do we think we should do that with our core marketing tool?

Investing in ongoing maintenance and updates to your website not only keeps it secure; it keeps it fresh and functional.

A good maintenance plan covers:

Plugin, Theme, and Updates – Daily checks for CMS core, plugins, and theme updates that are scheduled at an appropriate time.

Daily Backups – Daily database backups ensure that no data is lost if the site is compromised and has to be rebuilt.

Uptime monitoring – Automatic monitoring identifies and notifies technical support of any outage.

Support – Ongoing telephone help and support takes care of any issues as they arise.

Review – Regular SEO optimisation, content review, and development recommendations.

So forget frequent rebuilds – with a little care and attention, your site can continue to inspire, demonstrate that you care about your brand and your communications, and evolve with your business.