So you got your new website done. Whether you did it yourself or had it designed for you, what do you need to do next? What security should you have on your hosting, what essential marketing do you need and what support services should you have in place? Unlike just a simple template website built on an all-in-one hosting and marketing plan, WordPress websites need a more robust hosting platform, marketing to make sure your business is found and technical fixes to keep your site current and running smoothly.
What does your WordPress website need today?
Secure hosting – secure, fast and up-to-date
Support services – content management and maintenance
Marketing services – SEO; content, digital and email marketing
Things have changed in the online world in the last few years, with your WordPress website needing more resources and security. If you’re building a house, it requires a strong foundation and so does your website. Today you need to start with more than shared hosting as it may slow down because of other resource intensive neighbours. Due to recent changes with web browsers, your website needs an SSL certificate (https) to make sure customers’ data is sent safely and to insure better rankings with searches. In the back-end, several things need to be in place: daily backups should something happen to files or data, updates to ensure current themes, plugins and WordPress core plus malware scanning and removal to keep hackers from going into the backend corrupting the files. In the last year or so, many people, including our team, have opted to use Managed WordPress to address the above concerns.
While WordPress is known to be a CMS (content management system), that statement was true several years ago when WordPress was just a simple theme and few plugins. Today with responsive sites using a blocking system, a new Gutenberg version of WordPress and most people using builders over themes, you will likely need content management for text and media changes. Along with a better looking and more functional website, the new WordPress site is a more complex website requiring more current updates and technical support for fixes and breaks. Both content management and technical support services are usually better with your support company using a contract as your will likely get a better rate than hourly and provide first priority service compared to those on a break/fix basis. In other words, you will save some money and get a better quality service.
Your marketing should start with proper SEO (search engine optimization) settings that are considered to be essential services. Building a website without SEO is like buying a new car and not adding any fuel. You must make proper on-page settings, submit the right content to search engines as well as complete local SEO settings. To help your organic marketing efforts, content marketing requires making regular social media and blog posts to help your branding and SEO search results. Using digital ads with either Google, Facebook and Instagram requires a more substantial budget, but should provide more instant results for branding and better search results. Email marketing and automation is one of the most cost effective marketing tools, but you need a customer base. Permission email marketing today requires building a list. That can be a slow process, but well worth the effort. If your website has an online store, then email marketing is a must. Marketing can be a daunting task and requires some learned skills, so it’s usually better to hire these services done. As a word of caution, there are plenty of scammers who claim to know marketing, so be careful, avoid any guarantees or something too good to be true and don’t sign up for long terms.