Website maintenance tips from Wiliam

Designing a website is one thing - but maintaining a website is definitely in a class of itself. Unless you are using a content-managed solution, like that provided by Wiliam's sitedock content management system (CMS), website's can be hard to maintain, and especially keep alive in a world of ever-growing competitors.

It's important to make sure the website keeps serving its purpose as the online face of your business - one which is available twenty-four seven, rain or shine. The following are just a few ways you can help to ensure that your website stays accurate, and more importantly, keep representing you or your company online.

1. To begin with, a relatively simple tip – which can at the best of times go un-noticed. Make sure you update the copyright message at the end of or beginning of every year. No one wants to see a "Copyright 2002 Business Inc." in the year 2008 – it looks unprofessional, and gives off the impression you aren’t current!

2. On the subject of current content, make sure the front page has an element that you can update at particular intervals. Good examples of this include a 'Latest News' widget/section off the homepage. By utilising regularly-changing content off your homepage; you not only come across as current, but you ensure that search engines like Google and Yahoo! pick up your site on a much regular basis!

The reasoning behind this is that every time a search bot crawls your site, they will pick up updated content, thus making the search engine believe that your site must be current, fresh and deserving of higher rankings in search engines results page, or SERP's (or so we hope!) – Which could mean a good return on investment!

3. Make sure your site does the hard work for you by opening lines of communication between yourself and your target audience/potential clients. A well-designed, usable contact form has the power to generate leads - and if maintained (in terms of product offerings or 'reason for contact', etc.), leads it does generate!

Check to see that the form actually works by sending a test contact. The best contact forms will send an email with the filled-in mandatory fields, off the actual form – as a minimum. Do not collect the user’s IP address without advising them (in a privacy policy or disclaimer) as part of the contact process – and more importantly, do not share their information with any third parties unless, once again, you have completely stated you’d be doing so; to which they have agreed-to through a checkbox, for example.

4. Finally, make sure you stay up to date on who exactly your audience is, and define how successful your website is by how well you meet your business objectives and requirements!

It’s all fine and well to have a good website, but unless you are getting support from professionals, it is very important to make sure your site doesn’t let you down; for at least the three-year period it should serve you or your business!

If you need any support with running your website, or have any questions related to this blog, feel free to ring Wiliam on (02) 9978 8888 for a non-obligation meeting to discuss your business needs and how we can help you achieve your online goals!