A website is a necessity of business that can’t be ignored. If you are running an accounting firm or creating products for pets, you need a website to help get the word out there about your business.
Having a simple and easy website for customers to navigate is crucial, especially when most people just scan the page for information. These are busy times we live in, and catching someone’s attention right upfront can be more difficult than it seems. Moreover you have to have the right tools to even get the website up and running in a way that won’t cause hair-pulling frustration along the way.
Many business owners don’t have time to build a website and create or manage a business simultaneously? Choosing to go it alone when it comes to building your business website can be a time and labor intensive task, not to mention the necessary ongoing website maintenance and search engine knowhow. If you don’t specialize in web design (you’re in good company if this is all new to you as most business owners don’t), you may put your website at risk for viruses, downtime, and even hacking attempts.
Today, we will take a look at seven ways to make your website hassle-free.
#1. Put your domain name on auto-pilot
A domain name is where your website will live, so to speak, on the internet – it’s one of the first things you should do when you decide to build your website. You want your domina to be as close to your business name as possible — easy to remember, even easier to brand.
To keep the domain as hassle free as possible buy as many years as you can at a time. By buying multiple years you’ll save yourself the time of remembering to renew your domain yearly. Often domain sellers will offer discounts if you pay for more than one year at a time which is a win-win all the way around.
Another way to keep your domain hassle free is make sure your contact information is up to date. If you change your address or email and lose access to your domain, you’ll have to jump through hoops verifying your identity and ownership.
#2. Be sure to choose the right website platform for your needs
There are many different website platforms to choose from. So, how do you know which platform is the best for your website? Here are some things to consider when choosing a website platform:
- Cost: Some website platforms are free, while others have a monthly fee for website hosting.
- Ownership: Many of the DIY builder website providers are rentals and can never be moved. When you stop paying, you lose everything. Some platforms, like WordPress, are websites you own and control outright and you can move it to a hosting company that better meets your needs.
- Features: Each website platform has different features, so be sure to choose one that has the features you need for your website. Some platforms have limited options, so it’s important to think about your future needs as well, otherwise you may find yourself rebuilding your website all over again on a platform that meets your needs.
- Ease of use: Some website platforms are designed to be easy for website owners to learn, and some are easier than others. It is also essential to consider its website and online tutorials.
- Security: Some website platforms may not have a security system in place, making website owners more open to security breaches. Most of these fall within the “free” category of the platform which does not offer HTTPS without a paid upgrade.
- CMS: Some website platforms allow website owners to edit their websites easily, while others do not.
When choosing a website platform, it is important to consider your needs and compare the options to see which framework will meet your needs or you may outgrow the website and have to go through the entire process again on a different platform. Plan carefully, most options will get you 85% of the way there, but it’s that last 15% that’s typically most crucial, so save yourself a ton of hassle and make sure all of your needs will be met before making a decision. As of 2022, WordPress is still the preferred choice for most companies, with over 455 million websites registered and 37% of the world market.
#3. Keep the technical aspects of your website up to date.
Keeping your website up to date on an ongoing basis means less hassle for you in the long-run. Keeping information fresh on your site will keep your customers and potential customers up to date on any changes to your company. Keeping your site up to date with security- and bug-fixes is imperative to protecting your data and that of your customers.
You can keep your website hassle free by:
- Setting plug-in subscriptions to auto-renew
- Set your hosting plan to do automatic updates
- Set your hosting plan to do automatic backups of your website
- Set aside time each week to update website plugins
You may not visually notice these changes, but that does not mean they aren’t important to keep up with. There are several best practices to keep in mind when updating your site, and ongoing efforts in the realm of search engine optimization will pay dividends in making sure your site is seen when your audience is searching for products and services in your niche.
#4. Set Up SSL (Secure Socket Layer) Encryption
Having an SSL certificate for your site is a must. If you are planning on taking any kind of payments on your website, a secure socket layer (SSL) certificate verifies that your site and its data are encrypted and creates trust with customers and visitors. This is denoted on the search bar by the lock symbol to the left of your site’s URL.
SSL encryption allows sensitive or personal information such as social security numbers, passwords, and credit card numbers to be transmitted securely from your website across the internet. This info is normally sent as plain text and is vulnerable to hacking attacks. SSL encrypts this data and keeps hackers away from your sensitive information as it’s being transmitted.
By having your SLL set up, you won’t have the hassle of dealing with lost traffic due to the big ugly warning sign your visitors will get telling them the site is not safe and that they should turn back. You’ve worked so hard to get traffic, you don’t want to lose it now.
One other thing you won’t have to hassle with once your SSL is installed — no one will be calling you or sending you countless emails warning you of the insecure website. Instead, they’ll happily be spending time browning your site — hopefully turning from a lead into a sale!
#5. Back Up Your Website Data
Backing your website up regularly is one of the most important things you can do during and after it’s built. If the worst were to happen, such as hackers destroying your site or a server malfunction, crashing your site and corrupting your data, all of your data could be lost. You must back up your website at least once a month or more if you’re active on it. A good practice is to also back it up before and after you’ve made any major changes to your website. If the worst happens, instead of a stressful, costly and time consuming fix, it could be as simple as rolling the site back with a click of a button.
Better still, save yourself the hassle and look for hosting that includes backups. If you’re really keen you can also include your own backups as well with a plug-in like Updraft or Backup Buddy.
6. Create Checklists
Creating a website can be a daunting task. There are many things to remember, and it’s easy to miss some of the smaller details. A checklist can help make the process less hassle for you.
If you make changes to your website, consider what steps you need to take before you can mark the job “complete.” For example:
Back up website:
- Make website changes.
- Look at the changes from the eyes of the user who will be looking at it. Will it make sense to them? Does it motivate them properly?
- Test the changes in Chrome, Firefox and Edge.
- Test on a PC and a Mac.
- View the changes on a desktop computer, tablet and phone.
- Back the website up again.
- Delete the website’s cache.
This is only a very simple list and yours may vary depending on your website platform, the types of changes that you’re making, etc., but a checklist like this can save a lot of time and hassle, especially if you don’t edit your website often.
Most importantly, checklists make it easy to ensure that nothing gets forgotten. This is crucial when it comes to website creation and management.
A checklist can be a great way to make a secure website. If you follow the checklist, it will be much harder for hackers to exploit any vulnerabilities. Your checklist could include things like:
- Back up the site – as we’ve listed in #4, this is a crucial task
- Use strong passwords for usernames, FTP, etc..
- Install a firewall and or security plug-in
- Update your framework, theme and plug-ins regularly
A checklist can also be used to help keep your website organized:
- Organize your files and folders (not all websites give you this option.)
- Use descriptive names for things like images, pdfs, etc..
- Create separate categories and tags for posts
- Name your images and videos properly
You can also use a checklist to ensure your website is accessible to everyone:
- Use a font that is easy to read
- Use color contrast to make text readable
- Make sure all links are working properly
- Use headings and subheadings to organize your content
- Use multimedia to break up the text
- Run your website’s colours through a Website Accessibility colour contrast checker.
- When the site is complete, run it through a Website Accessibility tester to ensure it meets the standard you require.
Creating a website can be a lot of work, but it doesn’t have to be. Use checklists to make the process more efficient and less stressful. Marking off tasks one-by-one helps keep the scope in check and helps keep track of small goals and milestones.
#7. Invest in a Website Care Plan
A website care plan is an all-inclusive website care package that includes website health checks, website audits, website updates, website backup, and more. Website care plans are growing in popularity because website owners can delegate the more technical website upkeep to a professional, which allows the focus to be placed on the website’s content and mission rather than spending time troubleshooting website problems.
The cost of a website care plan is a fraction of the cost of having a website built from scratch, and (while we do recommend having your website built by a web design agency) it is an investment that will undoubtedly pay off over time, whether by eliminating downtime, ensuring protection against preventable cyberattacks, or simply ensuring that your ecommerce portal is functioning properly.
These website care services are performed by web design and development experts who know what to do when browsers or frameworks update and part of your page doesn’t load or features break, plugins don’t update, or backups need to be restored. Website maintenance agencies are website developers, website designers, and digital marketing experts who work together to ensure that website content is up-to-date, that website design is compliant with web standards, and that your SEO is effective, depending on the package you choose.
A website care plan is the website owner’s website care safety net, and it helps businesses stay focused on their day-to-day, rather than on fiddling with website settings and updates. Website care plans are available in a variety of price ranges, and website owners can choose the website care plan that is best suited for their needs, so they can get back to doing what they do best.
Trust HPX Media To Keep Your Website Safe and Updated
When you trust the experts at HPX Media with your website, you can rest easy knowing that your website is safe and up-to-date with all the latest bugfixes and updates. We have provided reliable service and advice to customers for almost a decade.
Our WordPress Integrity Plans include 24/7 uptime monitoring, real-time security protection, malware scanning, and WordPress component updates. You will also receive monthly reports to keep you in the loop with any issues we may have found and fixed. We will also back up your website regularly, and we visit each of our client’s websites monthly to ensure that your site is working the way it should.
Don’t wait. Schedule a free consultation today, and let us secure your website so you can get back to what you do best.