Have you ever thought, “Gee, it’s nice running this business and all, but I really want to torpedo the whole thing into the ground and see what happens.” Good news! Ignoring WordPress maintenance is a creative way to go out of business – way more interesting than insider trading.
The best part is how easy it is. You don’t have to do anything because WordPress is constantly changing. You’re guaranteed to fall behind on security updates and have features that aren’t compatible with the current version of WordPress.
Regular WordPress maintenance leads to a website that performs optimally, has a great user experience, keeps data safe, and ranks well in search engines. Bo-o-o-ring, right?
Here are the top three ways businesses struggle when they don’t maintain their WordPress sites.
- Stuff breaks. Just like having a physical store or renting office space, websites require monthly maintenance. Your new website might be stable on day one, but an image may inexplicably fail to load on day two, or your contact form stops working a week later.
- You get hacked. Your site could get hacked or infected, and most browsers will block users from visiting dangerous websites completely. It’s like someone smashing a window in your store and you tell customers it adds “character” — it doesn’t inspire much trust.
- Your site goes down. Worse, your site could suddenly go down. Downtime means your business is effectively closed for the day (or longer if you don’t notice your site is down), meaning customers can’t reach you. This costs your business trust, confidence, and revenue.
When Amazon’s site went down in 2013, the 40-minute outage cost them $4.72 million in lost sales. A 5-minute website outage cost Google a half-million dollars the same year. If outages can happen to the largest technology companies, they can happen to your business.
Story time: A textiles company learns the hard way about the dangers of not maintaining WordPress.
Last year, after a staff member updated WooCommerce, a small code conflict caused a bug in their checkout. When customers clicked to pay, they were no longer getting a confirmation message that their order had been placed successfully. So they clicked, again and again, charging their credit card multiple times.
They had no idea this was happening because testing their checkout was a low priority. It wasn’t until customers started complaining weeks later that they identified and fixed the problem. But by then it was too late – 17 high-value customers were affected, in turn impacting 16% of gross revenue.
A year later, the company is still recovering its losses – and most of those 17 customers haven’t come back. Don’t be this company.
Why the heck should I pay someone else to maintain my WordPress site?
WordPress and its plugins are usually easy to update and pretty reliable, right? The whole platform was developed to be end-user friendly, so why should you pay someone to maintain it for you?
When you’re running a business, it’s not uncommon to want to do everything yourself, including maintaining your own website. Maintaining your website yourself might seem like the cheaper option, but it typically costs more time and money in the long run.
When you compare the relatively small cost of website maintenance to the impact on your business and losses that you may incur due to unexpected downtime, it quickly becomes obvious that the cost of maintenance is a wise investment and not just a throw-away expense.
LOOKING FOR A WORDPRESS EXPERT?
If you’re interested in learning more about maintenance for your website, get in touch to learn how Barrel Roll can keep your site performing at its best to support your growing business.