Keeping it Running – Why WordPress Support is Vital

You know that for your business to be successful, you’ll need a strong online presence. At this point, every sensible business owner takes that for granted, and ensures that they have a budget for the design and development of a website.

But are you keeping a portion of your online marketing budget aside to cover WordPress support costs?

Working together: You need a trusted and experienced guide to help support your WordPress website and systems

In this post, we’ll be looking at the bigger picture and exploring whether or not your business should be considering your website as an ongoing project with a regular budget, as opposed to a one-off expense that can be left to do its thing.

A Website Isn’t a One-Off Expense

When we talk with start-ups or expanding businesses, they’re usually run by savvy people. They have budgets, and they’ve been sensible about how those budgets are allocated. But for some reason, ongoing support for their WordPress website is often a blind spot.

Part of this is because many companies see a WordPress site as a one-time expense. Unlike property, or insurance, or inventory, or one of the dozens of expenses which lead to a regular invoice landing on your desk, it’s entirely possible for your interactions with a website designer and developer to be a one-off project.

You ask for a website, they build you a website, you pay for the website, and then you part ways.

While it is possible to treat your site as a one-and-done effort, it’s really not the best way to think about your web presence. Because the online market is a fast-moving place, and a website that’s cutting edge tomorrow may start to show signs of ageing sooner than you might think – especially when it comes to security.

New threats to websites are constantly being discovered, from DDoS attempts to phishing, to the ever-present spam enquiries and comments. And while a site might be safe and secure, leaving your security measures standing still while threats change and evolve is a risky tactic.

WordPress is Constantly Updated

One of the reasons we’re proud to be a WordPress agency is that the WordPress platform is constantly evolving. The whole framework is constantly being improved so that it’s faster, more secure and ever more flexible.

WordPress 5.0 (released in 2018) significantly changed the way WordPress worked

But a WordPress website doesn’t just rely on the platform itself. Many of your site’s functions and features will be powered by a range of plugins and add-ons, and these are also constantly being updated. While it’s unlikely that an update will lead to one of your site’s core functions failing to work properly, this constantly evolving plugin ecosystem means there’s always an opportunity to upgrade to a different add-on that’s faster, more efficient or more powerful.

Having a regular support budget protects you from the off-chance that an update does affect your site’s functionality, and it also gives you the flexibility to improve the way your WordPress website works as newer, more powerful tools become available.

Google and SEO Never Stands Still

Chances are, you’re in the substantial majority of UK businesses who use Google’s search engine to drive visitors to your website. Ensuring that your site is visible on Google can be crucial to your lead generation efforts.

But Google’s constantly making new demands from website owners. So far in 2019, Google has released four major updates, all of which change the way websites are featured on their search engine. That’s on top of 15 major updates in 2018, and a similar amount in 2017. Some of these updates required businesses to change the way their sites displayed information, some required content edits, and some even required re-development to ensure full functionality on mobile devices.

An ongoing flexible support package, or a support contract would allow businesses to react to these Google updates without needing to suddenly magic up an expanded budget, giving them the best possible chance to keep search engine rankings high and ensuring a steady flow of new business.

Sometimes, Your Business Changes

Of course, it’s not only external factors that mean your website needs a little bit of a change. Think of everything that’s happened to get your business to the point you’re at now. The changes in personnel, the price changes, additional services, focuses on new niches…

Many of these will have required changes to your website – whether it’s as simple as a new profile on a team or about us page, or as complex as a new online booking system. Either way, changes like these require expert assistance from your development agency, and that added assistance will inevitably have led to additional costs.

You wouldn’t be the first business owner to have an idea to drive more sales for your company, only to find that a lack of available funds to promote the idea means you need to shelve it for a quarter or even longer.

Having an ongoing WordPress support contract, such as Make Do’s maintenance services, retainers and SLAs lets your business be a little more agile. By thinking ahead, planning, and allocating a portion of your budget to ongoing website development, you’ll be able to react quickly. Not just to updates from the tech giants you rely on, but to your own ideas and the demands of your clients.

Ongoing support isn’t just a good idea for your business. It’s absolutely vital, if you’re going to succeed.

Ongoing support isn’t just a good idea for your business. It’s absolutely vital, if you’re going to succeed.

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