Most business owners know how important it is to keep their website up-to-date with current information, as well as updating the website’s software.
(If you aren’t aware of how important it is, don’t worry, we’ll discuss this later in the article.)
However, most business owners are not aware of the risks associated with making updates or changes to their website.
Whether you’re a skilled webmaster or just learning how a website works, you are prone to these risks!
The key difference is having a plan to prepare for these risks BEFORE they happen.
So, what could go wrong when updating your website? Keep reading to learn more!
Accidentally Deleting Content
The likelihood of accidentally deleting website content will depend on the platform you’re using to edit your website, but in general, this is always a risk.
If you’re not completely familiar with how to change your website, it can be easy to accidentally delete content or website elements. In some cases, you may not be able to undo a mistake!
To mitigate this risk, do the following:
- Become familiar with your website editor before making changes
- Backup your website before making any changes (even small ones!)
Causing a Major Site Error
The most common way that your website will experience an error is when activating a new plugin or processing software updates (such as plugins or themes).
This is usually because of compatibility issues between plugins, themes, or other software.
- The newly activated plugin is not compatible with one or more existing plugins
- A new plugin or theme update is not compatible with other software that is not ready to be updated yet
You must make a backup of your website before updating any plugins, themes, or software. In addition to that, you must have an action plan to recover the website if something goes wrong.
Losing Search Rankings (SEO)
Search engine ranking is a huge factor for many businesses. Some businesses, especially local ones, rely on search rankings for the majority of their new business.
When making changes to your website’s content you risk losing ranking on high-performing pages, especially if you remove content.
Google ranks your page high in the search results because it has determined that it is a good fit for a particular search term. It’s difficult to pinpoint exactly why you gained the ranking you did, so if you remove some content that Google favors, you may lose search ranking.
It’s discouraged to remove content from pages that are performing well in the search results. Rather, it’s recommended to add to the content instead.
Of course, if you need to make an essential change such as updating your business hours or removing menu items (in the case of a restaurant), you should do it!
What we’re saying is that you should be very careful when removing content (especially text) from your high-performing pages. Only do it if it is necessary.
Why You NEED to Keep Your Website Updated
As we’ve mentioned, there are several risks when updating or making changes to your website.
So, are we saying you should avoid making changes and updates to your website?
Not at all!
It’s very important to add new content to your website and change information to keep it relevant.
Here are a few reasons why…
1. It Protect’s Your Business’s Reputation and Authority
Imagine a potential customer visiting your website and seeing a banner promoting an event that passed months ago.
What might go through the potential customer’s head in this situation?
“Is the wrong date posted for this event?”
“Are they still in business?”
“If they neglect their website, will they neglect their customer service as well?”
Those are a few examples of what the potential customer might think when visiting your outdated website… Nothing good!
Keeping your website’s information updated frequently shows that your business is active and lively.
Ultimately, your website is a digital representation of your business. If your website is not flourishing, the customer may believe that your business is not flourishing.
Many businesses struggle to keep their website up-to-date and flourishing, which is why we offer full-service website management plans at a price that any business can afford.
2. It Keeps Your Website Secure
Updating your software (usually plugins and themes) will help keep your website secure.
Many software updates are released to address security vulnerabilities in your website. Failing to install a security update will leave an “open door” for malware attacks. This puts your entire website at risk.
Keeping up with these security vulnerabilities is essential to keeping your website safe.
3. It Prevents Expensive Fixes and Redesigns in the Future
One of the biggest reasons why businesses sign up for our website management plans is due to a major website error.
These website errors usually happen because the website was not properly maintained or a plan was not in place to restore the website in case of a crash.
When your business’s website goes down, you’ll be in a rush to get it fixed as soon as possible. Since you won’t have to research many website support companies, you risk overpaying! You’ll also be missing out on new customers while your website is offline.
This is why we maintain websites for small businesses at an affordable monthly rate and fix errors at no additional charge. No surprise repair fees!
In addition to preventing website errors, keeping up with your website’s design may save some future costs.
Design standards and trends are always changing, so keeping your website’s design up-to-date with new trends may prevent you from needing a full website redesign in a couple of years.