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Maintaining Your Web Site

Updating Your Site

Maintenance of your web site begins the day it is uploaded to a server. We can't stress enough the importance of maintenance. In today's fast-paced world, changes all around happen very quickly, and return visitors to your web site want to know it is being maintained and updated on a regular basis. This however does not mean to make changes just for the sake of change.

Be Mindful of the Feedback

Maintenance starts by examining your site on a regular basis, and we would suggest it be at least weekly. Some of the areas you will want to examine will come from your site visitors. It is a good idea to have a way for visitors to give you feedback, either through a feedback form on a page, or encouraging visitors to send email with their comments. One of the advantages of the Internet is the feedback you will receive. If you have used a newspaper or tv/radio ad where customers did not gain the information you expected they would, it is unlikely they gave you any feedback on it. However with a web site you may receive this information and can use it to your advantage in making your site more successful.

If your visitors are indicating your site was not easy to read, you should examine the choices you made for colors, font face and size in the personality or theme of your web site. If they tell you they liked the site once it finally loaded, then you need to check the amount and size of your graphics files. Possibly you will need to break up a graphics-heavy page into two pages to help with load time. If visitor feedback mentions difficulty in finding the information they were after, then it is time to look at the navigation of the site. What seemed obvious to you may not be so obvious to your visitors.

External Links

If you have external links on your site, make sure they are still current. The fewer external links you have will save time with your maintenance, but keep in mind you will want reciprocal links to your site. There are some online services that will check links for you.

The Firefox browser also has an extension called "Link Checker" that is very helpful in handling the task of checking the links on a page.

"Specials" Page, Product Tips, or Newsletter

Your ultimate goal will be to have your visitors come back to your site again and again. Updates do not need to be an entire site overhaul. You can have a 'specials' page where you offer some sort of monthly special on your products. If you provide services instead of products, you can have a 'tips' page where you offer tips or updated information. If you choose to do a regular newsletter to customers, this information can then be placed on your web site for visitors that do not receive your newsletter. Just as you don't use the same newspaper or tv/radio ad over and over, you will want to keep your web site looking fresh.

Too many businesses have invested a considerable amount of money or time into a web site and then not done anything with their investment. Your web site will quickly become a valuable asset for your business when it is promoted and maintained properly.

Last Updated ( Dec 18, 2006 at 02:42 PM )
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