A Faster Website
This is where we originally had the idea for starting our WordPress Concierge Maintenance plans. Our founder was working closely with a furniture company with a product list of about 15,000 items. Which if you have an Ecommerce store you know it can slow down your site when you have that many items. So he started researching how to increase the speed of WordPress websites, especially sites running that many items. After many test, tweaks, trials, and errors, he finally found what was needed to get the speed of that site on any page to load in under 3 seconds. The original page load was upwards of 15 seconds and the final page load was 2.3 seconds. How about that for a huge speed increase. Guess who loves fast speed on an ecommerce site? Google. The sudden rankings showed that to be true when that was the only thing that changed on the site!
Why is this important to you? The industry research shows that the majority of users will not wait more than 4 seconds for a page to load. This is on desktop or mobile devices and some people will say more than 3 seconds and you lose most mobile searchers. Yikes! If you are running ads or have a lot of offsite traffic you are trying to get on site and you have a high page load time, you will lose 80% or more of that traffic. How many conversions are you losing?
One of the first things we do with potential clients is look at their page speed. If it is more than 4 seconds, then we get excited because we know we can help them. So, let us help you!
Amazon AWS Implementation
One of the factors you will see in most page speed tests is whether you have a CDN. When we started implementing Amazon AWS across our sites and client’s sites, we saw an immediate drop in speed. When you really want to go from 4 seconds to under 3, this is really where a CDN can come in handy. If you don’t know what a CDN is, don’t worry about it, let us show you the benefits when we implement it on your site. Let’s save some time for your customers on their page load times and save you some time by showing you the results of having a CDN.
Why is this important to you? Speed, speed and more speed! Ultimately, we want things to be faster when people are trying to get to your site. What about 10,000 people at once? We want them to all get your webpage as fast as possible, this is one of the ways we make that happen for you. What about 100,000 people? This handles that as well…
Your images are slowing down your site! Your designer spent a lot of time utilizing images to make your site look amazing. The problem is that it slows down your site in a major way. So we utilize a Pro plugin to make sure your images are as compressed as they can be and the pages are showing the best version of them to help your pages load even faster. It amazes us whenever we get a site, run just this one piece of the speed puzzle, and watch the page load time drop.
Why is this important to you? Speed of course! This is one of the areas that we take care of for you to help get your site running fast. We want you to have as many beautiful pictures on your site as you want, this is how we can do that and keep your page load time down.
Protect Your Website
If you read about our Malware Scans, you already know that the industry separates these 2 issues. We have implemented a server side antivirus system that scans and alerts to any potential issues. Technically we have 2 different virus scanners, because we all know that sometimes one may miss something that the other will pick up. We always prefer a multilayered approach to things that have to do with security. Being infected with a virus is a major security issue as you may be spreading it to every visitor of your site. This is bad for business…
Why is this important to you? Just like with any other security related issue, trust, and time. If you get an infection, you can lose your customers trust. Which can equal a ton of lost revenue. If your site is infected, it can take time to clean it, but also to come off the black lists that scare people before they get to your site. How much money does it cost you if your site if offline for a week? It is a scary thought, it is even scarier to live.
The industry now defines malware and virus as separate issues to be dealt with. So, we have integrated a daily malware scan to make sure your site hasn’t been infected with malware. This is a huge issue that is a constant battle for hosting providers. The sad part is that a lot of providers don’t offer this services and prefer to sell you into a 3rd party product. We want you to be safe through proactive measures that help to keep you clean. The problem we have found is that once your site becomes infected, there are a few providers that take months to remove you from their “black list”. However, if you are on our plan, we will handle this for you and work with the slow to respond 3 party to get your site cleared of all malware flags.
Why is this important to you? Time saving, should you get black listed, as we handle all of that for you. Proactive scanning helps to find issues before they become major issues. Malware infections on a website is a big pain to deal with on your own. We handle it all for you! Time saved and one less headache, sounds like a win win to us!
Plugin updates are similar to the core updates where it keeps your site safe and secure. Here is another thought, each of your plugins were probably created by different developers. Some of you may not even know that you have plugins, much less how many plugins are running on your site. As part of our update process, we make sure the plugins, even the paid for plugins are up to date. We also monitor the plugins against a vulnerabilities list to help ensure that none of them have been compromised. A compromised plugin can open your site to being hacked, which would result in downtime and potential loss of revenue.
Why is this important to you? Besides the already discussed down time, we make sure that you don’t have conflicts with plugins. We want you to be running as optimally as possible and sometimes we must go in to make manual adjustments with plugins. Other times we may have to work directly with a plugin creator to troubleshoot your specific issue. This saves you time and headaches because we speak the same language at the programmers. Which means we can get your problem resolved at a faster rate than if you should go back and forth with the programmers yourself. Would you rather deal with the programmers or let us handle it for you?
We have covered the importance of Core and Plugin updates, let’s just carry over those reasons here. Security from getting hacked, this is an area where we see the most vulnerabilities. The scariest part of having your theme hacked is that the hack may be lying dormant deep inside of the theme files. So, you think it is cleaned up if you do it yourself, only to find out that it keeps reinstalling or corrupting your files. We dealt with this issue on one site and found the issue was coming out of a file that looked legit and even with our normal scans came back clean. Needless to say, we implemented 2 more layers of scan security after that and haven’t had that issue again.
Why is this important to you? Prevents downtime, prevents conflicts, prevents headaches for you and gives you peace of mind knowing that you shouldn’t have an issue. Should you have an issue we are quick to get them resolved. What we see most of the time when we move people over to our WordPress Maintenance Concierge service is that there are infections that must be cleaned once the migration to our server is complete. How horrible would it be to have an infection on your site that you are passing to your clients and no one even knows? Let us secure your site and keep you up to date.
In addition to our server level security, we utilize Wordfence for all of our clients. Wordfence is one of the top on site security plugins for WordPress. There are some great configurations that you can use inside of Wordfence that most of the other plugins don’t allow you to configure. In our server environment, we have found that it works amazingly well and we configure it on your site to provide security, but not slow down your site. The slowness is something your research will show most people complain about with Wordfence, but we have the configuration that prevents that slowness from happening.
Why is this important to you? Security is something we talked about with our updates, this adds an extra level of security. Helping prevent brute force attacks, helping to spot issues with files that are on your system that show up out of nowhere. Yes, this happens and yes, it is an ongoing issue that will always have to be monitored. We like to stay vigilant with our clients, this is one of the ways we help keep you secure. Do you like having extra layers of security so that you can have that extra peace of mind?
WordPress Core Updates
We update your WordPress Core on a regular basis to help ensure you don’t end up vulnerable to hacks based around your WordPress Core. A perfect example of why everyone on WordPress needs updates are the findings for WordPress 4.6.1 and 4.7.1 that allowed WordPress Core to be compromised rather easily. At one point 30,000 websites had been hacked due to this one vulnerability alone.
Why is this important to you? Outside of securing your WordPress Core to prevent hacks. It also helps to prevent downtime. Some of these hacks took days to be found, as the sites weren’t monitored, and can sometimes take days to be fixed. How much does it cost your business when your website is down or if it were hacked?
Amp (Accelerated Mobile Pages) Setup
We are wrapping these all together here because they are essentially the same thing, but on different platforms. The purpose of these platforms is to get information to users in a faster manner. So they allow your information to be pushed to mobile devices and to load in a fast manner. Which means more potential interaction with your customers. This is early technology and it may one day go away, but for now, if we can help get you in front of your customers in a faster manner, then we want to do that with this.
Why is this important to you? When users do searches for information on any of these platforms, if your site isn’t included then you will miss a lot of traffic. Google itself has been ranking in the top 3 spots, websites who have AMP running with their content. A lot of searchers will click on the AMP articles because they stand out a bit more, but also because they know it will be fast. Pay attention over the next week how many times you see stuff on Google AMP, Facebook Instant Articles & Apple News. It will surprise you how much you view this content. Want a competitive advantage? Jump on technology like this early.
Google Analytics Setup
Hopefully this is already in place and you have access to the account. If not, then we will take care of setting this up for you and making sure you have access to the data you need to make smarter website business decisions. We utilize the data from your analytics to give you ideas and suggestions for your site. Not to mention we can help you understand your analytics data a little better. Your Google Analytics data is included in your reporting that you will receive from us, so we make sure you have access to all of the data you will need.
Why is this important to you? Your data is a huge resource for knowing what is happening with your customers on your website. If you have ever wondered anything about your website traffic, most of the time the answer can be found inside of your Google Analytics account.
Google Webmaster Tools
Webmaster Tools is probably one of the most underrated sources of information for websites. When you combine the data from Webmaster Tools with Google Analytics data, you can see a clear picture of how people are getting to your website and where they are going. One of the other neat things from this is that Google will tell you about issues with your site, if they can see it and if they can’t then what the issue is. As your WordPress Maintenance Concierge, this is valuable information for us to help fix issues, should they arise. Plus, if you want to see what keywords people are searching for that land them on your website, this is the place to view all that valuable data.
Why is this important to you? There is an old saying, more knowledge equals more power. This power helps you make business decisions easier when you have the knowledge and data to make decisions. Plus, should you ever have an issue with Google, this is the place to start when you are trying to sort out that issue. We all know how important Google traffic is to us, this is the place to start.
SEO Basics Setup
We utilize Yoast SEO plugin to help get you on your way with SEO on your website. If you are already using a plugin, you can keep what you already have in place. Our preference is Yoast as it allows us to configure automatically a few things that will help your on-page SEO. Plus, it sets you in a good position to knock out some great SEO changes on your site and get some feedback on your existing pages. We have seen sites that had no SEO on their site get a slight increase after adding our basic setup with no other changes. Does that mean you will have the same jump? Not always, but it will help you in your long-term SEO success. Which is what we want and why we offer our SEO reports as well.
Why is this important to you? Our entire platform is built on the premise that you need your SEO working correctly. We take care of the speed and lay the foundation for you to build on. A great foundation helps to get you to the top of Google faster, as speed is a ranking factor. Now keep in mind, this is the foundation, you will need to have the content in place for the foundation to help support. Not to worry though, we can help you with that, once you are on a WordPress Concierge Maintenance Plan.
If you have never heard of this tool, then you may not know how valuable it is. What we do is set the tool up to run a report for you. This report will show you how well you are doing against some of your competitors. Want to look at a sample report? Click here to view a sample report
We want you to have as much information as we can give you, so that you will know how well your content and website is doing, especially against your competition. This tool is a valuable resource when you are looking at where you are vs where you need to go with your content and rankings.
Why is this important to you? Knowledge is power, like we discussed in Google Webmaster Tools. This gives you some insight into how well you are doing plus how well your competition is doing. Want to get a leg up on your competitors, sometimes you must see what they are doing in order to get that advantage. What if your competition is already using this tool to outrank and outmaneuver your online business? What would it be worth to you to have the same knowledge as them or even more knowledge? This is your starting point!
Broken Link Monitoring
This is oddly still an issue on a lot of websites. Especially if you have a lot of links to sites that aren’t your own or you pull images from a 3rd party to display on your site. This is also an excellent way to keep track of the health of your website. Making sure you don’t have any broken links on the site shows Google that you are taking care of your site and keeping it up to date. This is important for all websites and almost never talked about from what we have seen.
Why is this important to you? How many times have you been on a website and started looking for something only to find that the one thing you were looking for was a dead link? If you have ever spent any time on Pinterest, then you have seen this a lot. It is an issue with Ecommerce site that have thousands of products as well. As you remove a product, you may have a link that was pointing to that product, the problem is that the link is never updated, so it becomes broken. This is never a good thing as most people won’t call you and say, “hey this link to this product is broken, but I want the product.” What most people do is close the window or hit the back button, then buy from your competitor. We want them buying from you, so we want to make sure your links are working!
This is an area of weakness for a lot of WordPress host providers. The bad part about this is that a lot of servers aren’t backing up. This was one of the first areas we addressed in our services as we wanted to make sure all our clients have backups to pull from, in case an issue ever happened. Now should an issue arise, we will take care of it for you, so that is one less hassle. At the same time, we monitor our backups, so that if an issue is happening and the backups are not running, that we address this as soon as we learn about the issue. Backups are essential pieces to the puzzle of your website, especially if all your client data is saved in your website.
Why is this important to you? Most of you already know the importance of a backup plan. However, for those of you that don’t place much weight in it, think about this. What if you woke up tomorrow and your cell phone was broken, not just a little broken, broken to the point that you can’t get your contacts or pictures. Hundreds or even thousands of your family pictures, gone… But wait, there was a backup, right? Well let’s hope so because if there wasn’t a solid backup to the cloud of your phone then all your contacts and pictures are lost forever. It is a scary place to be and sadly it happens a lot more than anyone really talks about. The same thing can happen to your website and this is an area where backups fail more than any place we have seen. Therefore, we have a monitoring service attached to our backups, we want to know if there is an issue as soon as it happens. We want your site and its data backed up on a regular basis so that you don’t lose anything.
Updates Monitored & Errors Troubleshooting
If you have had a WordPress site for long enough then you have run into this issue at least once. You update your site and find it no longer works. Most of the time you are left wondering what just happened and why. Depending on your current host you may not even have a backup to restore your site to. This is never a good thing as you are left to sort out your issues due to an update.
Why is this important to you? First off, we handle all your updates for you, so that you don’t have to worry about them. Secondly, should an issue arise due to an update we will restore your site to before the update. Then we will find out what happened and why it caused an issue. Sometimes we can fix it ourselves, other times we have to open a trouble ticket with the theme or plugin creator that has caused the issue. Then we work with them to solve your issue, so all you should worry about is reading our update emails. How about that for saving you time and stress when things go wrong?
How often is your site not working? This is pretty important when you have traffic going to the site and you want to stay in front of your customers. Downtime is inevitable no matter what host you are on, what you want to make sure of is that you have that 99% uptime going on with your site. We just moved a site that had a 63% uptime. Yikes!
Why is this important to you? Most website owners have no clue what their uptime is, much less what may be causing the down time. Typically, you see that 99% and not 100% of uptime, due to backups of the database. This is ok, but you don’t want to see is anything below a 95%. There is some margin for error in that, but let’s be realistic here, sometimes when you are making changes to your site it causes the site to completely stop responding. That is ok with us, as we will help you get it fixed, backup and running. If you are below that 95% of uptime, then there are some serious issues happening on your site. From there being a script causing the issue, all the way to the server you are on is having issues. Should you have to worry about those? No! Let us worry about that on your behalf so that you can rest easy knowing if there is an issue that we can resolve it for you.
Gravity Forms & Add Ons
Gravity forms is one of the best form generating pieces of software on the market. What we have done is purchased a developer license so that you we can give our clients access to this amazing plugin.
Why is this important to you? If you have a form plugin on your site, there is a chance that it is not capturing all of the form submissions. Much less the forms that are half way filled and then abandoned. Wouldn’t it be nice to know what those were? What about to automatically sign people up for your email list? This can be done with Gravity forms add ons, plus a ton of other really cool features.
Terms and Conditions Plugin
Did you know that Google wants you to have a proper Terms and Conditions page? Well if you aren’t an attorney or don’t have one, then we will add this to your site.
Why is this important to you? As the web grows more complex and integrated there is a need for legal documents. This is merely a stepping stone towards helping you get your Terms and Conditions under control. Our suggestion is to ultimately hire an attorney to write your T&C based on your needs.
WordPress Training Videos
Let’s say that you want us to handle all of your technical stuff, which we love doing. However you want to update your pages and blog posts yourself? But honestly you kind of flounder a lot of times due to the not fully understanding what you need to do. We have videos to help you learn more about the backend environment!
Why is this important to you? We have heard that one of the frustrations with WordPress is that website owners aren’t sure what they need to do to make a new page, much less a new blog post. What about adding images? We have a video series for you to use to learn what you need in order to be a WordPress posting expert!