WordPress websites are relatively easy to set up, but can pose problems if they are neglected or don't get regular updates. A website that's too slow, is peppered with broken links, or doesn't load properly could cost you time and money. There's also the risk of downtime and lost customer revenue. Sound familiar? Then consider getting regular WordPress maintenance: It can be your best bet to make sure your site is up-to-date and running smoothly.

WordPress is always changing

I know what you're thinking: why would I want someone updating my site when I already know how to do it? There will inevitably be security issues as new versions of WordPress core, plugins, and themes are released (daily!), plus they all must interact with one another on your particular site. Updates can negatively affect your site's functionality, and you need to be able to roll back to previous versions to counteract this.

Too, you want to ensure that the design aesthetic and functionality of your site are right, no matter what. To do all of this properly you need someone who knows WordPress inside and out—not just the basics. Your website is a reflection of who you are as an individual or company—it needs constant upkeep!

wordpress maintenance fail

Hackers are ever-present

Hackers are everywhere, and they're persistent, and WordPress is a perfect target because it's such a popular platform. To ensure your website is safe, you need maintenance on a regular basis.

Or if the unthinkable has happened and you've been hacked, how do you fix it? This is where many find themselves paying exorbitant rates just to fix their sites, and you should have follow-up on how to keep this from happening again. I've noticed many hosts and developers don't share this information, but rather ask you to sign up for a pricey security package that may not offer much.

Your site needs to be backed up—offsite, daily

Backups are ideals when something goes wrong, so we can revert back to a working version. I set up an automated backup, hosted off-site and made daily. I host off site, which means it's on a different server than the website, so that there is no chance of the backup also being compromised. Utilizing backups is much easier than trying to fix your WordPress site if something goes wrong, but you'd be surprised by how many large entities don't even have a simple backup!

You want to work with a WordPress expert

You want to work with someone who is an expert in WordPress—we spend day-in and day-out in WordPress, and are well-versed in fixing errors, optimizing and securing the site. I'm always reading insider blogs and attending WordPress conferences to keep up to date on all the latest news, trends and changes, so website maintenance is second nature to me.

Consider also that you need a fresh eye who can suggest ways to improve user flow, or a better plugin, or search engine optimizations you can make. A WordPress professional can usually offer many, if not all, of these suggestions, so that your site doesn't stagnate. It's far cheaper to improve your current site than to do a redesign, so your can have a longer shelf life.

You can work on other things

It's an age-old business adage: You need to focus on the things that you are good at. If your site is running smoothly, you can focus on building relationships or improving your product. And as an always-on part of your brand, it's important to keep your website working well so you don't have to think about it.

I've often told my clients that websites are living, breathing things. Neglect them and you will quickly see them fall into disrepair. Working with a WordPress professional who spends their days working in the platform will give your site an edge, and it'll also be healthy and looking great. Check out my relaunched Chicago Web Support as an option!