3 Website Maintenance Tasks
that are Commonly Overlooked
It’s a fact, most people don’t like doing maintenance on anything they own – be it a car, their office building, lawnmower, yard, or their website. When we first get something new, we’re all about keeping it pristine, making sure it’s operating smoothly and taking extra precaution to protect our investment. Over time we lose motivation, interest and tend to let things go; it’s just human nature! Life takes over and priorities change, however not maintaining a website can have dire long term consequences on its traffic, appearance and functionality.
I like to use the example of a website being compared to a physical office building for many reasons. The most important connection in this example is that you wouldn’t allow the grass and weeds to become overgrown or fail to fix a main door that wasn’t allowing customers to enter would you? So why, I ask, should a website be treated any differently? I understand that a website is the victim of “out of sight, out of mind” however it is that mentality that can cause a lot of stress later on. Below you’ll find three website maintenance and management areas that are easy to take care of; however are often never done or forgot about over time.
Optimizing Images for the Web
Nothing is worse to visitors than a slow loading website; it’s the quickest ticket to clicking back and finding another source for their information. High quality images are a must have on any website, however if they are implemented at their full size, pages may load slowly and over time the entire website will begin to come to a slow drag; especially if you’re on shared hosting.
This is true for blog owners, businesses and others who have image heavy websites. You need to be optimizing your images for the web, which can be done on some preloaded OS editors and of course a photo editing program like Adobe Photoshop. Photoshop has a ‘save for web’ function under the file drop down menu when going to save. User experience is everything and you must consider mobile device visitors as well. If you’re not optimizing your images for the web, you better start, and I recommend you go back in and inspect any images that you currently have.
Making Sure Your Website is Backed Up
This should be one maintenance task that doesn’t even need to be said, but because so many website owners become the victim of hacking attempts and other lost data troubles, it still ranks as one of the most important and overlooked areas. It is often assumed that your website will be safe no matter what and that your hosting company will be able to fix any problems that arise, but that’s not always the case. Hosting companies get hacked all the time, especially if they are not one of the leading providers who are constantly monitoring for security threats.
I’ve come across business owners and bloggers who have lost everything overnight, all content, images and design work; and it’s a shame because it could have easily been prevented. You’ll never get the time you invested back, or the money, because your investment wasn’t fully protected. Taking backups is easy, whether you use a plugin on your CMS to do it, or you manually login to the backend of your website and download one yourself. Having an up-to-date backup in a safe place is like having an emergency fund in the event that you lose your job. Plan for the worst, and hope for the best!
Proofreading for Grammatical Errors
You really don’t want to get arrested by the Grammar Police, but you also don’t want to look unprofessional. I can spot blatant grammar mistakes faster than finding Waldo in a snow covered scene with everyone else wearing white. It doesn’t matter if it’s a big well known brand, or a local restaurant blog, it happens all the time and it drives me nuts. Proofreading is mandatory on all information that will hit the eyes of the public, and if it’s not your forte’ then find someone else who can review it for you.
Having grammar and structure errors is the easiest way to look unprofessional and it can also be attributed to a lack of attention to detail; two things you don’t want to project online. Don’t ever assume that just because you paid extra special attention during the content generation process that you shouldn’t go back and take a second and more thorough look. We all make mistakes from time to time, and so do I, but limiting those mistakes is what’s important. Your extra time and effort will pay off in the long run, I promise you that.
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