What are my day-to-day responsibilities in running and managing a business website?

Learn how to properly manage and maintain your website for business success.
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Most of us take a reactive approach to a lot of things in life. Our car breaks, we take it to the mechanic. We get sick, we go to the doctor. We react to the situation. Most of us know for a fact that if we simply maintain our car and take care of our body by watching what we eat and exercise, our car and body will last a lot longer without having to see a medical or car specialist. Now, that's the proactive approach to the same situation. Preventive care maintenance.

The same goes with your business or personal website(s). It needs proper and regular maintenance. Whether you have an HTML, WordPress, Drupal or Joomla based website, the list of website responsibilities we provided here are applicable. We will continue to update and add to this list as technology changes. What we described below is a list on how to maintain, manage, monitor and market your business website. The day-to-day responsibility part will be whichever one or more items listed needs the most attention on that day. If none require any attention, then you go through the list and check on as many as you can at any given random time. You can try to arrange this list of responsibilities to conform to a schedule you feel will work best. You can try. The bottom line, however, is that all listed responsibilities will need your attention at one point or another. You should do each listed responsibility at least once per month or have a professional webmaster do it for you. If you do continue with the list on a regular basis, you will end up with a healthy and prosperous website. It's inevitable. We guarantee it.

  • Update your WordPress
    • Update your WordPress Version: WordPress versions are released several times per year and can happen at anytime. These updates happen because vulnerabilities were probably found on current or previous versions of WordPress. They usually take immediate action as soon as they learn of these vulnerabilities. Advanced notice is hardly given so if and when version notices do arrive, action must be taken immediately to avoid any possible disruptions to the website functionality and security of the website.

    • Update your WordPress Theme Version: From time to time, the WordPress theme developer will update and add functionalities to the WordPress Theme to conform to the latest version of WordPress. These theme updates are not as critical as a WordPress update but just as important. So from time to time, when your theme developer releases the latest theme update, its best to proceed with the update, just to be sure that the website remains responsive to all screen sizes and devices, at the very least.

    • Update your WordPress Plugins: Everytime a WordPress Version is released, all WordPress Plugins used on your website (and there can be several), will need to be updated as well.

  • Update your Website Content and HTML Codes
    • Update your website text content: Check for grammatical errors, spelling, deletions and additions. Re-reading your website content from time to time will provide you the opportunity to insert and remove the latest changes to company policies, procedures, product and service information.

    • Review, Update and Enhance your Media Content: Make sure they are all compressed to be web ready and sized accordingly. A lot of times, employees will upload a photo image directly from their camera and inserting it directly onto a web page or blog post, without resizing or compressing the photo image. Large file images can take long to download, especially when viewed through a smartphone device. Take the time to reformat these images to be web ready.

    • HTML Title Tags, Meta Description, Meta Keywords and Alt Tags of recent and previos pages: Update these HTML tags as you update your website page content and blog posts. These tags play an important role in Google's PageRank system. Make sure that your meta tag information matches and is related directly with the web page content.

    • Review and update your Online Promotions: Check that your online promotions are still valid and applicable. We sometimes forget that we have specials posted on the website that is no longer applicable. Make sure that your offline promotions are in synch with your online promotions.

  • Review and Update your Website Webmaster Tools
    • Review Fetch Status: Whenever you update an HTML web page or add a new HTML web page, it is best that you submit your new and updated web page via fetch program, typically found within webmaster tools. Note that it will take a search engine about 3-weeks before it lands back on your website to read the new content but with the use of the fetch program via webmaster tools, there's no waiting. You are literally submitting your website for immediate consideration by the search engine.

    • Disavow Links: How many websites link to your website? Who are they? Are they legitimate websites? Does their link to my website affect how my website is ranked on organic search results? All of these questions and more can be answered by reviewing, monitoring and qualifying the websites that links back to you. If you don't, your website could be deemed associated with hackers and spammers, thus hurting your website reputation in the long run.

    • Update Sitemap.xml: Whenever you add pages or media to your website, a slight modification to the sitemap.xml file is required. When done, it needs to be resubmitted to search engines for review and update.

    • Review Robots.txt: This should be reviewed and updated whenever you've made modifications or added private content to the website that you want search engines to stay away from these pages lessening the chance of the file or web page from showing on search results. However, this will not prevent visitors from viewing the private file or content. This file controls what we want and don't want the search engines to consider for indexing.

  • Review and Update your Online Reputation
    • Type your domain name in Google's search box and review the results: Review each link to make sure that they are legitimate and approved by you or your company. Go deep on each search link and investigate who, what, where, why and how they are associated with your business website and whether you approve their use of your business content, media and likeness. It's recommended that you do the same thing on Yahoo, Bing, etc., and whichever search engines you know of and use.

    • Respond and Update your Online Reviews: As you review your search results above, you will most likely run into online reviews of your company from directory listings you're familiar with or not. If the reviews are from a reputable company and person, then you should address these reviews with a proper reply.

  • Review and Update your Online Marketing Campaign and Strategy
    • Review and update your Pay-Per-Click Campaigns: Review your ads, keywords, negative keywords, target area, budget settings, click through ratios, ad groups, etc. at least on a weekly basis. Gauge its results based on how much email and telephone inquiries and online sales you've received and to make sure that your active promotions are inline with your online promotions. It happens too often where a business promotion is already over but the website says different and vice versa.

    • Review and update your special landing pages and supporting documents and web pages: The reason why pay-per-click can work is because of special landing pages. Make sure your landing pages are up-to-date. If you've received inquiries about your product, you might consider providing that answer within your landing page to help viewers make better and faster decision. It could be the one small change that could make a big difference.

    • Review and update your online directory listings: Search your domain name on any search engine of your choice and you'll see links to online directory listings with your business name and address that you probably never heard of before or a directory listing that you signed up with years ago with an old address or outdated phone number. If the directory listing is reputable, then claim it and take ownership. Then make sure the address, telephone and email are up-to-date. Do this to as many directory listings you feel are reputable and disregard those who are not. You will handle those directory listings we do not want to be associated with by disavowing their backlinks to your website. Please be selective when choosing online directory listings. Do some due diligence by at least searching for their domain name on search engines and reviewing its results.

Enrique Tan, Website Developer, WebsiteCenter.com
December 17, 2016


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