Why Every Website Needs a Maintenance Plan: Protecting Your Digital Assets

Having a website is a lot like getting a puppy; if it is left unsupervised, there is no telling what could go wrong. While your website won’t chew up your slippers, an unmanaged website is likely to experience failures, get hacked, become slow, or, at the very minimum, provide an unpleasant experience for users due to out-of-date content. That’s where a website maintenance plan comes into play! 

A website maintenance plan performed by website masters allows business owners or managers to sit back and relax, knowing that their website is protected, efficient, and continually being improved. Today, we will dive into the intricacies of a website maintenance plan, including the benefits of having one, what aspects you need for your business, the advantages of hiring a professional team, and best practices you can use to supplement your maintenance strategy. Let’s dive in!

The Benefits of a Website Maintenance Plan

benefits of a website maintenance plan - keeping your website updated Spotted Fox Digital

1. Keeping Your Website Updated

    A website is like a spiderweb of complicated systems. You will have frequent update requirements between the hosting platform and plugins alone. Keeping an updated website, you benefit from faster loading times and improved search engine optimization, and you get the opportunity to identify and fix any problems.

    However, updating a website involves more than just hitting the “update” button. For example, sometimes, an update to a plugin beats your browser to the punch, making the two systems incompatible until the browser also updates. This can leave you vulnerable to cyber-attacks as well as backend system issues like broken links. Having a professional team update and monitor your systems ensures seamless operation.

    2. Proactive Defense Against Hackers

      Speaking of keeping your website updated, that aspect of a website maintenance plan works conjunctly with protecting your website from hackers. Sadly, cyberattacks against small businesses are on the rise, as they are typically easier prey to hackers. 

      Recent data reports that 46% of all cyber breaches impact businesses with fewer than 1,000 employees. When these attacks happen, 51% of small businesses reported 8-24 hours of downtime, with 40% stating they lost crucial data. In 2020 alone, there were over 700,000 attacks against small businesses, totaling $2.8 billion in damages.  

      A website maintenance plan is your security strategy’s second line of defense. Regular website updates help to eliminate possible holes for hackers to get through. In addition, the plan removes spam comments from your website, often the starting point for hackers to target employees or customers. This way, you can rest assured that you are doing everything in your power to protect your company. 

      3. Minimization of Expensive Downtime

        Have you ever experienced website “downtime,” whether on your website or someone else’s? “Downtime” is essentially when technological services are unavailable to users for some reason or another. You’ve likely heard of massive failures like when a popular store’s website crashes during a Black Friday sale. Unplanned downtime can strike at any moment, coming from anything like provider outages to coding errors to cyber attacks. The result? Lost revenue, data loss, reputation damage, opportunity costs, and possibly so much more. Essentially, every minute you are down is a loss for your business. 

        Unfortunately, downtime does happen, even to the most secure and protected systems. It is at this time when having your website backed up is critical. When a failure occurs, you have a higher chance of restoring your website with minimal damage if your information has been recently backed up. A website maintenance plan addresses this by backing up all of your data on a consistent schedule to a secure server. 

        4. Enhanced User Experience

        website maintenance plan enhance user experience Spotted Fox Digital

          Did you know you have just 8 seconds to get someone’s attention online? If your website suffers from downtime, slow loading speeds, or outdated content, users will not be impressed and click out immediately. 

          A well-maintained, protected, and updated website ensures smooth navigation, quick loading times, and fresh, engaging content, making visitors more likely to stay, explore, and convert into loyal customers. 

          On top of that, consistently updating and improving your website also shows your audience that you are invested in providing them with the best possible online experience, which leads to building trust and credibility for your brand. By continually updating written content, visuals, specials, and more, you are showing an active interest in their needs.

          5. Availability of Technical Support

            As a business owner, your realm of genius likely isn’t website management. You are an expert in your field and running an amazing business, but that doesn’t mean all aspects of your website come easy. If you ever get to a part of your website and stare at the screen blankly because you don’t know what to do, or you try something that leads to a “whoops” issue, it can be supremely demoralizing and negatively affect your business. 

            A website maintenance plan includes technical support by a team of people whose realm of genius is website management. The ability to reach out to these people and have them support you through an issue can make an incredible difference in running your business, saving you time and money, and from wanting to pull your hair out. 

            6. Cost and Time Savings

              In the last five benefits, we’ve discussed how things can go wrong and how a website maintenance plan can help prevent or fix those situations. While we have hinted at the cost and time savings, we want to emphasize this now. 

              When you choose to utilize a website maintenance plan, you will likely be investing a few hundred dollars a month for these services. What this doesn’t show you is how much time and money you save. As a business owner, you are a busy person. Your time and effort are money. If you were to spend the equivalent amount of time (assuming you have all the skills and desire to do so) on website maintenance yourself, what would that cost? That doesn’t only include your hourly wage but the opportunity costs – the time spent when you could be enhancing your business where you work best. 

              When looking at this information, even the smallest of businesses recognize that it is more cost-efficient to hand these tasks off to the experts; plus, it saves them the hassle and brain power!

              Spotted Fox Digital Marketing’s Website Maintenance Plans Catered for You

              regular website update - Spotted Fox Digital Marketing's website maintenance plan

              At Spotted Fox Digital Marketing, we want our clients to ensure that their website always performs in top condition. To achieve this level, there are four essential components that are required of a comprehensive website maintenance plan

              #1: Regular Updates

              When it comes to maintaining a website, a constant slew of updates are required to keep content fresh and your website performing well. Our website maintenance plans provide simple updates as needed (such as changes to existing text or images), WordPress core software updates, plugin updates, and theme updates. Overall, these updates will keep your website’s content fresh and the backend running smoothly to initiate an excellent user experience. 

              #2: Consistent Backups

              No technology is perfect, and there is always the chance your business could experience a crash or failure. When these events occur, you want to get back up and running as quickly as possible. Our backup services provide a proactive approach to risk mitigation by consistently backing up all aspects of your website, from the framework of your website to all of your content, including critical elements like sales records. This will ensure that when something terrible does happen, you can get back on your feet quickly. 

              #3: Spam Cleanup

              our team of technical experts provide support - website maintenance plan Spotted Fox Digital

              When you have a blog or other interactive element on your website that allows users to comment openly, there is always a chance for spam. Those spam comments can be harmful to your website and other users, often including unsavory remarks, phishing content, or shady links. Our website maintenance plan includes reviewing comments to check for spam and removing spam comments as needed. This not only saves you time but protects you from falling prey to hackers. 

              #4: Technical Support

              When it comes to running a website, there is a lot of backend tech involved. Unless you are well-versed in every aspect of website management, including coding, plugins, graphic design, and so much more, you are bound to run into a problem eventually. Our expert team can handle any website problem that comes your way with ease, efficiency, and grace. 

              Spotted Fox’s 3-Tier Website Management Offers

              We understand that each and every business is different. That is why we offer three tiers of maintenance plans, allowing you to choose the option that best fits your business’s specific needs. 

              Tier 1Tier 2Tier 3
              Email Support1 hour2 hours3 hours
              Website Content Updates☑️ ☑️ ☑️ 
              WordPress Core Software Updates☑️ ☑️ ☑️ 
              Plugin UpdatesMonthlyWeeklyWeekly
              Review of Spam CommentsMonthlyWeeklyWeekly
              Website BackupMonthlyWeekly / MonthlyDaily / Weekly / Monthly
              Access to Product Licenses☑️ ☑️ ☑️ 

              To learn more about how each of these elements can help your business stay safe and efficient, please book a consultation with us!

              How to Determine What Aspects of Website Maintenance Plan is Right for You

              Now that you have assessed the benefits of a website maintenance plan and the options available, you may be wondering which plan would best suit your needs. 

              We recommend our Tier 1 plan to small businesses that use their website essentially as an information packet. Tier one is enough if you do not interact with clients or store much data. 

              Our Tier 2 plan is geared toward businesses with busier websites, like those with blogs, scheduling calendars, and other active elements requiring a stricter maintenance regime. 

              Tier 3 plans are designed for our most proactive customers who want to be on top of protecting their website and customers. We recommend this for businesses with all the qualities of tier two and customer data to protect. 

              Of course, it’s hard to give cookie-cutter answers on what type of plan to get. That is why we recommend speaking with one of our website maintenance experts to gauge what your unique business will need to thrive the most. To book a consultation, click HERE!

              How to Supplement Your Website Maintenance Plan with Best Practices

              While adding a website maintenance plan to your business strategy is an excellent way to tackle the significant elements you need most, there are still steps you can take to supplement your plan with best practices in web security and content management. Here is what we suggest to all of our clients to do in addition to our website maintenance plan:

              1. Strengthen Your Cybersecurity

                The U.S. Small Business Administration suggests that the best method for small businesses to protect themselves from cyber-attacks is to train employees on cyberattack prevention. This includes spotting phishing emails, avoiding suspicious downloads, enabling authentication tools, protecting sensitive vendor and customer information, and simply using good internet browsing practices. 

                2. Consistently Update Your Content

                  Fresh content is key to keeping your audience engaged. If your website contains non-evergreen content, such as promotions, specials, or time-relevant blogs, you want to consistently update that content to reflect your business’s current strategy. Remember, no one is going to read a blog titled “Top 5 Roofing Tips for 2019.” They want content that applies to the now, and it is up to you to keep on it. 

                  optimized for mobile devices, laptops Spotted Fox Digital

                  3. Optimize for Mobile Devices

                    Over 60% of Google search queries in the US come from mobile devices. Due to this, optimizing your website to be mobile-friendly is imperative. With hosting platforms having this capability built right into their system, it is easy to create a responsive design that will improve the user experience. 

                    Ready to Get Started? 

                    Secure, update, and optimize your website with a comprehensive maintenance plan from Spotted Fox Digital Marketing. Get in touch today to safeguard your digital assets and ensure your site continues to support your business goals.