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Maintaining your site helps you avoid potential security issues, increase sales, and improve your rankings. Website maintenance isn’t a one-time thing; it’s something you need to perform consistently to see decent results. Following are the top 8 benefits of website maintenance for businesses.
1. Avoids Security Issues
Website maintenance helps you avoid security risks that plague the healthcare industry. Not maintaining your website keeps you open to hacking attempts and other cyberattacks.
Why? It’s simple. Software products, including website-building platforms like WordPress and plugins, are constantly releasing new versions. Sometimes, those new versions introduce additional features.
Other times, however, the new versions fix security issues in the code. The developers may have noticed a security flaw in the code that makes your website vulnerable to hackers.
Perhaps they discovered this flaw themselves, or maybe someone let them know about it as part of their bug bounty program (developers often reward ethical hackers who search for and find faults).
Updating your software, including your themes and plugins, is a crucial aspect of website maintenance. If you don’t update your software as new versions come out, you may have harmful code that hackers can exploit.
As the flaw in the code becomes more well-known, hackers may intentionally look for websites that did not update their code and are still vulnerable to attack.
Don’t think you aren’t a target, either. Whether you own a small clinic or a large healthcare service company, patient and customer information is precious to hackers. In 2021, two out of three healthcare organizations were hit by ransomware attacks, double the previous year’s rate.
Ransomware is a terrifying type of malware that secretly encrypts your patient or customer data and locks down your systems. Only the hackers have the key to decrypt your data and systems, and they demand a ransom in exchange for doing that.
2. Takes Advantage Of New Features And Updates
Maintaining your website and updating your software also allows you to take advantage of new features and updates that go beyond improving the security of your site.
These updates are often focused on increasing functionality and improving conversions, helping you get more out of your website in the long run. It also allows you to find new plugins and add-ons that could enhance your website.
3. Makes A Backup Of Your Entire Website
A crucial aspect of website maintenance that you may not have thought of is making a backup of your website. You can create backups manually, but it’s recommended to schedule backups every night or at least a few times a week.
Healthcare providers and organizations need to back up data. Backups allow you to safeguard client records and ensure you can continue providing quality services even if you suffer an accident, such as a fire.
Besides, backing up your data regularly is one of the pillars of ransomware prevention. If you don’t have a website backup, recovering your data will be almost impossible without paying a ransom.
On the other hand, if you do have a backup, you can simply restore that instead of giving in to the hackers. However, it’s essential to safeguard your backup from ransomware as well. That means you must keep your backup offline or in a safe cloud environment. Otherwise, the hackers would be able to access and encrypt your backup as well.
4. Prevents Costly Disasters
Not maintaining your website could lead to several costly disasters. Ransomware isn’t the only type of hacking attempt that could ruin your business. If a hacker manages to get hold of patient or customer data and sell it, it could ruin your reputation. It’s hard to recover from that.
There are other ways poor website maintenance can cost you. For example, you might not notice a bug that prevents people from checking out your website, which could cost you a substantial short-term loss. In the long run, not improving the customer experience can lead to lower daily profits, something that adds up over time.
The longer you go without maintaining your website, the higher the chances are of something going wrong. A minor bug can become a big issue as destructive code starts interfering with new pages or plugins.
5. Solidifies Your Brand Image And Authority
Having an old website that is poorly maintained isn’t good for your brand image. When people visit your website, they expect to see a modern, professional website with a clean theme, an excellent navigational experience, and functional pages.
If people visit your website, and it isn’t mobile-optimized, has pages that don’t load well, or has functions or buttons that aren’t working correctly, they won’t trust you as much. The same applies if your website is not secured with an SSL certificate.
Maintaining your website will strengthen your brand image and authority. There’s no way to present yourself as an authority in your niche with a poorly designed website.
Maintaining your website will also help it load quickly. Poorly maintained code can cause your website to load slowly, especially as you install new plugins that don’t work well with your flawed code.
A slow-loading website leads to a loss of conversions. It causes people to leave your website and visit a competitor’s website instead. People don’t have long attention spans online, and being able to keep their attention is essential. Even if your homepage loads quickly, your product and service pages and your checkout page must also load.
On the other hand, a quick-loading website helps demonstrate your authority and ability to provide a good user experience.
It’s not just your clients that will respect you more. A well-maintained website that looks authoritative will help you in your link-building blog outreach campaigns; people will be more receptive to you and more willing to link back to you.
6. Optimizes Your Website’s Performance
Maintaining your website helps optimize its performance in many aspects, including in search engines.
There are several reasons a poorly maintained website will perform poorly in search engines. For one, it will be hard to navigate, leading to a high bounce rate. Your bounce rate is the percentage of your visitors that leave the first page they land on without visiting another page or blog post.
Your bounce rate may affect your SEO rankings, as a high bounce rate shows Google that your website is not relevant to the people searching for the particular keyword you are targeting.
Similarly, not maintaining your website can cause it to load slowly. Page speed is a significant factor for Google, which consistently ranks fast-loading websites higher.
7. Improves User Experience
One of the most important reasons to maintain your website is to improve the user experience. Think of your website like a car, with you being the mechanic.
You want your visitors to have a seamless experience navigating pages, finding the information they are searching for, discovering your products and features, checking out, and more. You want them to have an easy time creating their patient or customer portals and managing their online accounts.
Part of maintaining your website is figuring out which features your visitors like and adding them. One way you can do that is by adding a short survey form on your website or emailing it to new subscribers. Ask them what would make your website experience more enjoyable, and work on incorporating that feedback when performing further maintenance and upgrades.
8. Helps Generate Leads And Conversion
Finally, proper website maintenance will bring you additional leads and increase your overall conversion rate due to improved user experience and ease of navigation.
One of the best ways to improve your conversion rate for lead signups and sales is to incorporate A/B split testing into your website maintenance. Test out different features, such as different styles of CTA buttons, and see which ones work better.
Analytics should also be a part of website maintenance, as a good analytics report will show you the issues your visitors are facing and allow you to improve them. Heatmap analytics is instrumental, too.
A heatmap shows you where your visitors are clicking on and where they are scrolling. If you test out a new CTA button on one page, and a lot of people are clicking on it, consider using that particular CTA button style on your future pages.
If you find that people stop scrolling at a specific point on your landing page, consider adding a new headline that further intrigues them and keeps them engaged.
It’s important to come up with a website maintenance checklist that you can use every time you perform a maintenance check.
You might want to include things such as updating every plugin, ensuring your menu buttons still work, ensuring your contact forms work, and making a complete backup of your site. You can also perform additional tasks, like removing spam comments that make your website look unprofessional and neglected.
Perform this check at least once a week for optimal results. Over time, you’ll see an improved conversion rate and higher SEO rankings.
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