Maintaining a website is like maintaining your car. If you don’t do routine oil changes to the website, it will start to break down. Don’t let this happen to your website after all the hard work you have done developing and running it. Go through the below website maintenance checklist to keep your website running smoothly.
1. Analyse and test the entire website
Take out time especially to go through the entire website code by code. Test every functionality and navigation page of the entire website. You may come across features that don’t work, areas that can be improved, and some broken links. Pay specific attention to the overall user experience, missing or outdated content, missing page titles or Meta tags, inconsistent fonts or styles, grammatical errors or typos, and certain compliance standards.
2. Test website forms or checkout processes
Ensure that you check all the forms and test the checkout process of your website for all possible use cases. You must go through all call-to-action buttons and re-check all forms like “Contact Us” forms to make sure all the forms are responding correctly. Nothing is worse than discovering that your forms stopped working after a website update and your business took a blow due to such a small hurdle.
3. Evaluate your KPIs, SEO and analytics reports on a monthly basis
If you want to gauge your website’s performance accurately, then you should check and set your KPIs (Key Performance Indicators), general website analytics, and search engine ratings for at least a month. This process will show your website’s effectiveness and help you get to know if there are any problems with it.
4. Carry out security updates and bug fixes
Make sure that your hosting provider and web developer keep updating the software and install security patches, bug fixes or any other updates that may compromise the web server, operating system, CMS, database, etc. Generally, security patches should be installed as soon as they are released. Delay in installing security patches might make your website vulnerable to an attack.
5. Check backups
Make sure that your entire website is entirely backed up — the website itself and the data it stores for you. Get your web developer or web hosting company to thoroughly check the backups to guarantee that they are working and that the data can be retrieved any time you want.
6. Review copyright dates and notices
Assess and update any date-specific text or any copyright dates or references throughout your website. Your homepage must contain no old or outdated information (for example, a year-old press release).
7. Check Contact Information
Whatever contact information you put on your website, which includes phone numbers, email addresses, and the name of the team members should be updated from time to time. Some changes in staff designations may mean that the emails should be redirected to other team members.
8. Check and update legal disclaimers
Just like other business tools, a website requires regular maintenance and check-ups. Make sure that your website maintenance plan has gone through every check-up there is. Also, ensure that your website developer and web hosting provider is in constant communication with you, in case you need an upgrade.