Our clients often ask us if we can maintain their website post-launch and what needs to be maintained, since it doesn’t have moving parts like a car.
Like anything technical, to stay up-to-date, functional and secure, your WordPress website needs to be maintained.
WordPress is continuously improving as its community of online developers innovate and develop the platform, so there are always core updates that need to be implemented. As a result, if your site uses plugins, these too will need to be updated to support the latest version.
You can update this in-house if you’re technically minded. However, you do need to be cautious. In some instances, a core update to WordPress will render a plugin redundant which can cause elements of the site to break, which can be challenging to rectify if you’re not familiar with the development aspect of it.
When we update websites, we always ensure we have a backup, then we implement the update and if anything breaks, we’re able to reverse the process, address the issues and then create a plan to update the site without causing problems elsewhere.
There’s a common misconception that WordPress is not a secure platform which isn’t true. The problematic element of WordPress is that due to its popular nature, it is a natural target for hackers; however, by following best practice, you can avoid this.
A maintenance package ensures that your website is always up-to-date and in turn, more secure, making it harder to target. Plugins such as Securi also make this much easier to manage by giving the ability to monitor and patch security threats.
Roadmapping is also a form of website maintenance which looks at continually improving your site through the development of features, updating content etc. Regular updates are also critical to search engine performance as they like to see websites that provide relevant, up-to-date information.
If you work with a website agency, you might work to a retainer whereby you pay ahead for a specific amount of hours each month for content updates, marketing strategy, digital marketing and development time.