Part of maintaining your website is keeping it updated so it runs smoothly. Knowing which website maintenance tips should be done per month is essential to running a successful online business. In addition, it can help you with search engine optimization and overall user experience.
Websites are a vital part of our lives – whether we use them at home, in our jobs, or even just to keep up with family and friends. However, maintaining your website isn’t always easy, and there’s usually a lot to do. For example, you might be thinking about software updates and technical maintenance tasks as part of your monthly maintenance checklist. These tasks can be quite daunting, but we are here to help you.
Let’s talk about ways to keep your website running smoothly. In this article, we’ll cover how to ensure you get the best out of your website by providing essential monthly website maintenance tips on performing technical maintenance or identifying key performance indicators.
What Is Website Maintenance?
Website maintenance refers to ongoing support or upkeep of existing sites. This refers to all activities related to keeping websites running smoothly. These include things like updating relevant content, fixing broken links, optimizing images, and making sure everything looks great across browsers and devices. It can be done by either yourself as part of your regular job duties as a business owner or through outsourcing with a maintenance company. In both cases, there will be some fees involved to cover costs like hosting fees, domain registration, etc.
It also ensures that your website works well for visitors who use older versions of Internet Explorer, which still accounts for over half of global browser usage today.
Your Monthly Website Maintenance Tips
The first step in any maintenance package or plan is to ensure that your site remains available. This means ensuring you have enough resources, such as bandwidth, disk space, etc., to handle peak traffic periods. It also includes ensuring that all critical components are functioning properly. For example, if one component fails, it could cause other parts of the system to fail. If this happens during an important period for your business, then downtime may result.
Regularly Check Your Website
The first out of the 11 website maintenance tips is to check your website regularly. If you have a blog or other content that is regularly updated, check it for broken links. Broken links can cause visitors to leave your site without reading anything else. You should also ensure that your images are correctly linked to appear in their correct places when people view them online.
Make sure that there aren’t too many pop-up ads appearing on your page. Pop-ups may be annoying, and if someone clicks through one, he probably won’t want to see another. You should also add some content that nails your online presence to your audience.
Run a Backup
Creating a backup is one of the website maintenance tips you should not forget. If you install an automatic backup feature on your website, it is imperative that you must have a monthly maintenance checkup. This is to ensure that this feature is working properly. If you do this manually, you should do the maintenance checkups at least once a month.
Having this is especially important if you have an online store or e-commerce platform, as it will help prevent any loss of business should something go wrong with your site. Backups mean safety. Backing up your files ensures that no information gets lost due to hardware failure, malware attacks, etc. A regular backup schedule can help prevent downtime caused by these issues. You can use third-party services such as BackupBuddy and BackWPup for this purpose.
Perform a Security Check
Website maintenance tips such as security checks should be done on a monthly basis. This involves scanning your server for vulnerabilities and fixing them. These checks are essential because hackers often target servers first. They want to gain access to sensitive information stored on the server, which means that you must take steps to protect yourself against such threats. Website owners assume that since they use WordPress, nothing can go wrong.
Even though WordPress has some great features, it doesn’t mean that no other vulnerabilities exist. So, you need to perform regular security tests on your site to find these loopholes. Many people neglect these aspects because they believe that hackers won’t target sites that haven’t had recent updates. However, this isn’t true at all. Hackers can easily find vulnerabilities in older versions of WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, Magento, etc., and exploit them. Relatively, performing security updates is a priority.
Perform Content Updates
To make the visitors return is by making sure that the information on your website is up-to-date. This means you need to make regular changes, such as adding new products or services and updating old ones. You can also add a blog section where you post regularly about what’s happening in your business. If there’s anything new about your company, products, or services, make sure that people know about them by updating your blog posts regularly. In addition, if you have an eCommerce site, it should be updated with any special offers or discounts available at different times of the year.
Visitors don’t always tell the whole story. Your website itself can hold important clues. When auditing your site, make sure that the content on your website still matches your goals. Also, check that the images on your site are still correct. Make sure that every image has an alt tag. Check that there isn’t any really old content on the site. And make sure that every link leads to the right page.
Site monitoring is the process of collecting information about the condition of an asset such as your website to make informed decisions regarding its future use. This includes identifying problems, assessing their severity and potential impact on the asset, and recommending solutions.
The most common site monitoring tasks include:
- Checking the status of your server and network connections, including checking if there are any errors in your log files
- Monitoring how many visitors you have received from search engines
- Testing whether your site works properly on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets
- Tracking which pages get more traffic than others
- Finding out what keywords people use when searching for information about your products/services online
Monitoring your site’s performance involves checking how fast it loads pages and whether users experience delays when accessing certain content. The goal here is to identify bottlenecks so that you can fix them before they become major problems. There are numerous tools for monitoring various aspects of your site’s performance.
Test your website loading speed. You should talk to your developer about how they will fix this problem if loading time takes more than three seconds. If visitors have to wait too long before seeing content on your site, then they will leave without reading anything at all. This could mean losing potential customers who may not return in the future.
Update Your CMS Software
If you use WordPress, Joomla!, or Drupal as your content management system software, you must update these regularly. This will ensure that any security updates have been applied and also keep them up-to-date with new features being added by their developers. If you do not update your CMS software often enough, this could leave your site vulnerable to attack.
CMS software is an important part of your business. It should always be updated, as it will help you keep up with changes in technology and best practices for running websites. Furthermore, these also ensure that the software is working optimally and with the right security updates to boot. When there are updated patches, be sure to install them immediately.
Optimize Images and Graphics
Images play a big role in creating a good-looking website. They add visual interest to text and give your site a professional appearance. However, some images take longer to download than others because they contain large amounts of data. In addition, some browsers limit the number of simultaneous downloads per domain name. As a result, your image file sizes might increase unnecessarily.
To avoid this happening, try optimizing your graphics first. Here are some tips to follow:
- Use PNG instead of JPEG format. A lossless compression technique, PNGs compress better than JPEGs.
- Make sure that your graphic has no unnecessary background color. Background colors slow down the downloading process.
- Remove unused elements from your graphic. For example, remove logos, watermarks, etc., unless they serve a purpose.
- Reduce the size of your graphic. Reduce the quality settings on Photoshop or GIMP until only essential details remain visible.
- It’s vital to optimize your images so that they load fast and display correctly across different devices. Here are some tips to improve image quality:
- Use high-resolution photos but make sure that your images aren’t too large.
- Images should be at least 300 dpi. The best resolutions are usually between 600 – 1200 pixels wide.
- Large files take longer to download than smaller ones. So try to use small file sizes whenever possible.
- Avoid using GIFs as these tend to compress poorly. Instead, opt for PNG format.
Remove Outdated or Unnecessary Codes
The HTML coding language used to create web pages was originally designed back in 1994. Since then, many things have changed, including browser capabilities and how people access information via mobile phones and tablets. Therefore, you must check your current website against industry standards as part of your monthly maintenance plan.
Here are some ways to identify obsolete or unnecessary codes:
- Look through all of your CSS stylesheets and see whether anything looks wrong.
- Search for keywords like “display” or “position”. These may indicate old-style tags that were removed years ago.
- Make sure that everything inside those spans matches the same formatting rules.
- Inspect the source code of every single page on your site. Look for any errors, such as missing closing brackets or extra spaces.
- Find out whether your site uses tables for layout purposes.
Fix issues as soon as you found them before they become problems. This way, you can save money by avoiding costly repairs later on.
Check Your Site Speed
A well-designed website is more likely to rank higher in search engines. But what about speed? Does your site perform well enough to attract visitors? To answer this question, we’ll start by looking at two key factors – loading times and server response speeds.
- Loading Times
Visitors to your website expect to get results quickly. Loading times affect user experience directly. Slow loading times mean that users won’t stick around long enough to read your content. And even worse, they could leave altogether!
- Server Response Time
How does your site respond to requests made by other computers? Are you able to handle traffic spikes? Or would you struggle under heavy loads? You’d probably prefer to know the answers to these questions ahead of time. That’s why it’s crucial to monitor your site performance regularly.
Check out Google PageSpeed Insights, which gives an overview of what needs improving with regards to page speed. It also provides suggestions as to where improvements can be made. You can use these recommendations to improve your pages.
Updating Plugins & Themes
You need to periodically check whether any new versions of plugins or themes exist. Upgrading ensures that everything works together seamlessly. You can use a plugin manager tool to upgrade your plugins automatically.
When updating a theme file, you only download the zip archive containing the relevant files. Do not unzip this archive because doing so may cause problems when installing the theme later. To install a downloaded theme, simply upload its folder into the /wp-content/themes directory. Make sure that you copy over all subfolders too.
If your WordPress site is using a popular plugin such as WooCommerce or Gravity Forms, then it’s likely that there will be new versions available at any time. You can check if these have been updated by visiting their respective websites. To ensure that your theme stays up to date, simply log into the WordPress dashboard and look for updates.
The easiest way to check out new releases is through the Plugins page on the official WordPress repository. Simply search the plugin name you want to use and click ‘Install Now. This should bring up all the latest version numbers. Clicking on each one brings up more information, including details regarding compatibility with other plugins. If there aren’t any available, contact your developer or hosting service provider so they can install the latest version for you.
Why Your Website Needs Regular Updates
Without the regular maintenance of the website, your site could become slow and unresponsive, making it difficult to find what they’re looking for. It’s also possible that your site could get banned by Google if you don’t keep it updated.
For Customer Satisfaction
Before they buy from you, consumers typically do their own research into your brand. They want to know who you are, how well you serve th