How to care for your WordPress Website

Your website is a business asset and it needs to be cared for. Neglected websites are prone to errors and hacking. They affect your brand and can make you look disinterested and careless.

The truth is, I know you love your business but caring for your website isn’t something you are born knowing how to do. In fact, almost all of my clients have never even backed up their site properly. Time, work and family get in the way of caring for our websites.

This guide is in three parts;

Part 1: Helps you identify if you need a care plan.

Part 2: Explain the basic steps you need to take to bring your website up to scratch.

Part 3: Outlines a simple care plan you can follow.

Who am I?

Before I get into the interesting stuff, Let me tell you who am I and why you should listen to me. My name is Karen Weider, owner of Weider Web Solutions. For 8 years I have building and maintaining WordPress websites. I have witnessed many stressed clients who seek me out to fix their site. Often, when its too late! They have neglected their site for far too long and this has meant no backups, errors that have taken a long time to fix and a bad looking website that has effected their online brand.

Overall, they have lost time and money.

Once there website has been fixed I move them onto my website care plan where their website gets monthly TLC and an annual spring clean.

I have created this guide to help you take action in protecting and caring for your site so it doesn’t use you problems in the future.

I also want you to be aware of my Website care package incase you want someone to provide the website TLC for you.

Thank you for reading this guide and I hope you learn something useful. If you have any questions feel free to reach out to me karen@weiderweb.com

 

Part 1: Are you neglecting your website?

There are a few ways you can tell if you are neglecting your website. Follow the steps below to raise your won awareness about the state of your website and identify if you have neglected your site or not.

1.Check the loading speed of your website. Go to https://tools.pingdom.com/

If it over 3 seconds it’s time for TLC.

2. Look at your plugins. Do you know what they all do? Are they all necessary? Are some so old you forgot their purpose? Are too scared to remove some plugins case your whole site is destroyed?

Yes? It’s time for TLC.

3. Run a website technical check here at SEMRush www.semrush.com

Got more errors than you know what to do with?

It’s time for TLC.

4. Check your WordPress update notifications. Do you have lots of messages telling you to update WordPress or your plugins?

Yes? It’s time for TLC

5. Check your backups. Do you have a place that is not on your server where you are storing regular backups?

No? It’s time for TLC

6. Browse your website. Do you have any errors or unsightly things appearing that you don’t want to be there?

Yes? It’s time for TLC

Part 2: Your annual spring (or whatever season) clean

Ok, so now you have decided your website needs a little TLC here are the steps you need to take to give it a good clean out. Some of these steps are technical and take time to complete properly so if you prefer for me to do it for you then email me at karen@weiderweb.com and I will happily take care of the TLC for you.

Website TLC step 1: Keep your site safe.

Make sure your website is safe from harm! Ensure you have a good security plugin enabled, you have regular backups (not stored on your server)

Website TLC step 2: Remove unnecessary files.

Identify the purpose of all your plugins and delete the ones that are not providing value. Also remove any plugins that are no longer supported.

Remove any themes you are not using.

Website TLC step 3: Bring it all up to date.

Update your Themes, plugins and WordPress core files.

Website TLC step 4:  Delete useless stuff.

Delete old post revisions to keep the size of your website down and keep your database optimised.

Delete images you are not using.

Remove unused tags

Delete pending comments

Delete spam comments

Website TLC step 5: Compress images and files.

Improve your site performance and load times by getting your images and other files to load faster.

Website TLC step 6: Technical SEO improvements

Fix / remove broken links

Fix issues raised by SEMrush audit


Website TLC step 7:Bug and layout fix

Fix those pesky bugs

Fix the layout issues you have been having for ever

Part 3: Easy to follow care plan

Now your site is all clean and working as well as it can, you need to keep it that way.

Every month you need to;

  1. Update your theme, plugins and WordPress files – take a backup just before you do this.
  2. Check your backup process is working.
  3. Run a security scan to make sure nothing evil has made it’s way onto your site.
  4. Delete spam and pending comments.
  5. Visually check your site for errors.

Even with the best will in the world you may not be able to follow your care plan. In this case, get in touch with me so I can prove the TLC your website needs! karen@weiderweb.com

Enter your email below to see how I perform my monthly WordPress care routine on my clients websites. This takes me no more than hour but it could take you a few more, even longer if you need to restore your site if something gets broken or you have bugs on your site after an update.

 

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