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  • 5 Ways to Turn Your Blog Into an Online Brand in 2018

    Monday, August 13, 2018 by
    go from blog to online brand

    5 Ways to Go from Blog to Online Brand in 2018

    When I look back at the past two decades, a lot of websites, blogs, and social media platforms play through my mind -- especially those that I personally created and worked with. From the most simple days of basic HTML and static websites, to the now advanced days of mobile usage and social media, it’s all above adapting with the times and providing value to an audience. In my past 22 years of making money online, one of the most pivotal moments  would have to be when I launched my blog at ZacJohnson.com back in 2007. Not only was this a huge business and brand shift for myself, but it was also the first time I started using WordPress and didn’t need to rely on design software and HTML to create my sites. WordPress has changed everything and made the process of creating an online content-focused business or brand a whole lot easier. Since there are no technical skills required, and being that the software is free, everyone may soon have a blog. However, just because it’s easy, it doesn’t mean you are going to find success. Every day I get emails from readers of my sites, asking me why they aren’t making money with their blogs. To answer all of these questions and more, today I wanted to cover some of the most effective and important ways to actually turn a blog into a real brand and business. best WordPress hosting

    1. Building Your Blog, Brand and Business from the Ground Up

    Before you even get started with a website or blog of your own, you need to know why you are doing this in the first place. For the sake of example, throughout this guide, we are going to focus on creating a blog to make money. In most cases, a blog should be very niche specific, provide a need or information to an audience, and also have some form of monetization as well. Getting a ton of traffic to your site is great, but without a clear focus or calls to action (for monetization) in place… it’s just another blog taking up space on the already saturated internet. While there are many ways to make money with a website or blog, many of them are by sending visitors away from a site or making a quick commission or sale for someone else. This is fine, but turning your blog into a brand and respectable source for information is even better. To invest in your online business and brand, you should have a professional logo design and a way to resonate with your audience even after they leave your site. This doesn’t mean you are going to need to spend a lot of time and money. Thanks to online design tools like Tailor Brands, it’s easy for anyone to create a professional looking logo, without the need to hire an expensive design agency or go through hundreds of freelancers to find the best design work. Below you can see a quick example of a few brand designs created in just a few seconds.

    tailor brands online design tool for bloggers

    Once you have a brand identity and image in place, you can build a great first impression and brand following online. This means posting the image not just on your site and blog, but also within all your social media profiles and email signatures if possible. Keep in mind that these same best practices can be used by freelancers and sole entrepreneurs as well. The long term value in your logo branding and online following can greatly influence the amount your site can charge for reviews, content contributions, display traffic, and affiliate marketing campaigns, and as well as how much you might be able to charge for consulting or related services. If you don’t think a professional logo identity and brand makes a big difference, go see how much it costs to buy banner ad places on a site like ESPN, versus that of another high-traffic sports blog that no one has really heard of. This is also why someone might pay more for a pair of Nike shoes or a Starbucks cup of coffee -- it’s all about the brand association!  

    2. SEO is Dying, but the Long Tail Value is Here to Stay

    As much as I hate to say it, SEO is kind of making its way out the window. This is always going to be an argued debate, but we can clearly see that more people are moving away desktop usage and focusing more on mobile usage, social media, and online video to get their information. mobile vs desktop usage There will likely always be a place for searching websites and content online, but it likely won’t be through the traditional Google search and SEO methods that we are familiar with today. However, even with this in mind, the value in long-tail keywords is still extremely effective and profitable. When someone searches for something very specific on Google, they are likely ready to take action and buy something. The deciding factor in what site is going to get the sale is who is ranking at the top of Google for these terms. So what does this mean? In short, stop focusing on creating a lot of content, and instead focus on bigger, better, and longer content. At the same time, keep an eye on the latest case studies and trends from other top SEO blogs, as these are the sites that are often already ranking well and know what it takes to move up on Google with all of these latest algorithm and user changes in motion. Not only will this allow you to get more focused with your content and who your target audience is, but it will also help with the content promotion and your link building process as well. Keep a close eye on your competition and research not only what keywords and search phrases they are ranking for, but also the different types of content and length they are publishing as well.  

    3. Target Your Best Audience through Social Media

    Everyone talks about social media and the massive two-billion plus users across the likes of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and others. However, not many are actually mastering the art of social media and converting these followers into customers and visits on their site. At the same time, every social platform is different in the way not just content needs to be created, but also how you can reach and promote to such audiences as well. For example, simply by continually using any of the top hashtags on Instagram, you can instantly improve your impressions and exposure to millions of new users. The tricky thing about Instagram is that you aren’t going to be allowed to link back to your site, but it’s amazing for visual content creation, branding, and building a following. If you ever needed an example to follow, Kylie Jenner is the one to keep an eye on right now. With a net worth of over $900 billion, Kylie has built her massive make up empire through the use of social media and getting new attention, followers, and sales at all times. More often than not, if you take the time to examine your competition and see where most of their traffic is coming from, it’s usually from one social platform over a wide spread across all of them. With this in mind, it’s important to know not only which social network is best for attracting your target audience, but also which methods (visual, text content, paid ads) will work best as well.  

    4. Manual Outreach is Still King in the World of Blogging

    Like it or not, but in some cases, throwing money at your website or blog will only get it so far. It’s the time-consuming and annoying manual research and outreach that really helps content sites move ahead of the competition. There are many ways to get manual outreach working for your blog and brand. Instead of listing all of them within this article, I recommend you take a look at this detailed outreach resource guide. blogger outreach example Whether your outreach is for an infographic, broken link building, or guest blogging… it’s all about the tone and conversation you start with. Here are some of the most notable and effective ways to start using manual outreach and promotion to grow your blog, brand or online business:
    • Sending out emails to other websites and seeing if they would like to cross-promote your content on social media, through mailings, or even mentions in articles. These emails should be more personable and not an obvious template.
    • Guest blogging still works extremely well, but it should only be focused on legitimate websites that have traffic and are relevant to your niche. Contributing to other websites and blogs is great for link building, but also for reaching new audiences and growing your brand.
    • Broken link building is a huge opportunity, but again… this can be very time consuming (and rewarding). Analyze other sites within your niche, find where their broken links are, and then reach out through email and see if they will replace their broken link with a working one to your site.
    Depending on how you approach each of these methods, your personal outreach and research methods might vary. The good news is that many of these processes can be outsourced to freelancers who will do all of the manual work for you, or if you want to work on this yourself, be sure to consider your options with SEO analysis tools and software automation. No matter what route you go, the more ‘realistic’ your outreach and content emails look, the better they are going to work. At the same time, don’t just ask for backlinks, promotions, and favors -- try to offer something in return.  

    5. Treat Your Blog Like a Business, Not a Content Distribution Center

    Last but not least, it’s time to talk about blogging as a whole and why there are now more than 300 million blogs in the world today… yet only a very few only get traffic and make money with their sites. We’ve all heard the saying ‘content is king’. While this may be true in theory, it’s actually misleading many would-be bloggers and entrepreneurs in their journey to online profitable. Gary Vaynerchuk also makes a good point, in saying “Content is King, but Context is God! gary vaynerchuck online branding Content is great, but there is simply way too much of it. With more than a billion active sites on the internet today, I think we have a pretty good amount of content already out there. However, anything that can be improved, and anything we can use more of, is great content! If you want to rank at the top of Google, be a trusted resource for information online - and also get free quality backlinks, mentions, and references everyday - you need to be creating better content than what is already out there. As mentioned earlier, people are less interested in text content, and now they want visuals and online video more than anything. To make all of this work for you and your brand, keep the following in mind.
    • Create less content, but better and more resourceful content.
    • Longer content performs better in Google. Stay above 2,000-words in each post.
    • Go after the longtail keyword and cover every topic in full detail.
    • Have an exact form of monetization in place, and calls to action in each article.
    With all of these elements and factors in play, your blog is no longer just a blog. It’s a traffic generating revenue lead magnet that is also providing value to an audience in the process. This isn’t rocket science. Take a look at any of these blogging success stories, and you will find that each of them has their own unique target audience, topic they specialize in, and awareness of exactly why and how they are monetizing their traffic and turning new readers into revenue daily.  

    Your Blog Is Your Business

    “Blogging” has a lot of different meanings depending on who you ask. I’ve already looked at blogging as a way to create content and build your own online platform. Others look at it as a way to get started with a website and having their own voice online. In short, blogging can be anything you want. However, if you want blogging to be a business -- you need to have a business model! Run through each of the ideas above and make sure you have all of these methods implemented into your blog. It's time to turn your blog into a blog business and potentially change your life and brand for the better.
  • The 2018 Online Holiday Shopping Season: Is Your Ecommerce Site Ready?

    Wednesday, August 8, 2018 by

    prepare your online store for the holiday shopping seasonYes, It's Already Time to Get Your Online Store Ready for the Holiday Shopping Season

    No matter how hot it is right now where you live, it's time to start thinking about the winter holidays. That's because you have several weeks to set the stage for strong Black Friday weekend sales. Now's the time to make your site more mobile-friendly, plan your holiday-sale merchandise offers, hatch a gift wrap plan, and find out how your small business can offer same-day delivery. best dedicated server hosting

    Make Your Store as Mobile-Friendly as Possible

    We write a lot here about the importance of mobile-friendly websites because the mobile channel is a large and growing part of e-commerce success. Most shoppers use their phones to browse and they'll complete their purchases on their phones if checkout is user-friendly enough. Otherwise, they'll move on to more mobile-friendly competitors or (maybe) switch to their computer to finish their order. How can you streamline the checkout process to keep shoppers from abandoning their carts? Offer the online payment methods your customers like most and don't make them key in a lot of data during checkout. PayPal is the best-known payment method for this type of convenience and popularity, but Amazon Pay and Google Pay are other options to consider. Now's the time to research and compare payment methods in terms of processing fees, ease of use, and popularity with your customers so you can get everything set up, tested, and ready for Black Friday sales.  

    Create Exclusive Black Friday Weekend Promotions

    Black Friday weekend and Cyber Monday are the biggest US shopping days of the year. What do people buy? Everything. Electronics, toys, clothes, and video games are always popular. But your customers are going to be looking for deals from your store, so you need a custom game plan. Think about what sells well all year long and what's been most popular with your customers during past holiday seasons.
    • How much of a discount can you offer—or do you even need to offer—on popular items?
    • Can you create limited-time-only product bundles?
    • Is it possible to debut a new product similar to your bestsellers for Black Friday weekend or offer a bestselling item in a new color or style only during the sale?
    Plan your offerings in detail now so you can have your products and promotions ready to go well before Black Friday crunch time arrives.  

    Consider Adding a Gift-Wrap Option

    When your customers snap up your Black Friday deals, they may want them gift-wrapped. Offering gift wrap for a small charge, or for free on expensive orders, is a way to set yourself apart from the competition. Both online retailers and brick-and-mortar stores have been dropping their gift wrap services, leaving shoppers to deal the task themselves. However, before you commit to offering gift wrap, it's important to understand why so many retailers have bailed on it. First, gift-wrapping orders takes time and can create holdups in fulfillment—no small issue when so many shoppers want same-day delivery (and we'll look at that below). Also, gift wrap isn't free, and it can be hard to estimate how much you'll need. Run short and you might disappoint customers. Overbuy and you're stuck storing it. If you have the budget and space to proceed, think about how you can wrap orders as efficiently as possible. For local orders that you'll deliver the same day (see below), consider gift bags and tissue paper rather than paper, tape, and bows. Or you can bake the gift wrap into your packaging, delight your shoppers, and skip the wrapping stage—a search for “holiday product packaging” will turn up more than enough ready-to-order and DIY options. Whatever gift wrap option you go with, remember to promote it along with your Black Friday deals. Show shoppers what their gifts will look like when they're delivered and show them that you're ready to help save them time.  

    Find Faster Deliver Options

    In 2017, Amazon raked in 40% of all US e-commerce revenue, according to Forbes. One reason? Fast delivery, including same-day service in many cities. Because many shoppers are now used to same-day delivery from Amazon and grocery delivery services like Instacart and Shipt, they expect that option whenever they shop. One local-delivery startup found that 78% of shoppers plan to look for same-day delivery when they do their holiday shopping this year. And it's now possible for local businesses in many cities to give these customers what they want. same day delivery for online holiday shopping Companies like Deliv and Dropoff were founded to help local businesses provide same-day delivery. These companies serve dozens of US cities and help level the playing field between giant e-retailers with their own delivery infrastructures and small businesses. If these companies don't operate in your area, research local courier services or consider hiring a seasonal employee to make daily deliveries. Before you write off the idea of same-day delivery as too costly for your business, remember that major carriers may add holiday surcharges again this season, as they did in 2017. The difference in cost between same-day and rush shipping may be smaller than you think. Whatever shipping options you go with this holiday season, be sure to build the cost into your pricing if you offer free shipping. When you have a same-day delivery plan in place for the holiday season, make sure your customers know about it well in advance of Black Friday.
    • Create a same-day delivery map and notice for your site. Share the news on social media.
    • Craft an email for the local segment of your customer email list.
    • Have a brick-and-mortar store? Post the news there, too, so your in-store shoppers will know they have options during holiday crunch time.
     

    Prep Now for 2018 Online Holiday Shopping

    The more planning and prep work you do now, the more value you can offer your customers during the holiday season. Want more e-commerce holiday tips? Get inspired by these marketing campaigns.
  • 5 Ways To Redirect A Website URL

    Wednesday, August 8, 2018 by
    5 Ways To Redirect A Website URL

    5 Ways To Redirect A Website URL

    When you just get started online, everything is simpler. You only have a few pages of content. Your URL is straightforward, and you’re building some initial momentum. But, over time, your site grows more complex. You have more pages, posts, and URLs to deal with. You create pages and posts that no longer exist, or you decided to simplify the URL structure of your content. Maybe you even purchased a few domains you want to redirect to your site, or you want to switch domains altogether. As you can see, there are a lot of reasons you’ll need to redirect a website to another. Below you’ll learn what a website redirect is along with the most common scenarios then you’ll want to implement a website redirect. register domain name

    What is a Website Redirect?

    A website redirect will take one website URL and point it to another. When anyone types in or clicks on that original URL they’ll be taken to the new page or website. Even if you don’t need to implement a redirect now, it’s probably something you’ll need to do eventually. Knowing how to implement a redirect will a valuable skill moving forward. You can implement redirects on a URL or page-by-page basis. There are a few different types of redirects you’ll want to be aware of. As you’ll see below, the 301 redirect is the most common and useful, but there are some other redirects available as well.  

    1. 301 Redirect

    A 301 redirect is a permanent redirect. This is the most commonly used and powerful redirect as it passes on nearly all of the link juice of the existing domain. This type of redirect takes place on both a browser and server level. In time, the search engines will index this redirect.  

    2. 302 Redirect

    A 302 redirect is used when you want to temporarily redirect a URL, but you have the intention of moving back to the old URL. For example, you’re redesigning your site, but want to direct users to a different domain while you finish building your site. 302 redirects aren’t used very often. If you’re considering using a 302 redirect, think carefully: you might be better off just utilizing a 301 redirect.  

    3. Meta Refresh

    A meta refresh isn’t used very often. But, you’ve still probably seen this type of redirect before on page loading screens. Have you ever landed on a page and been greeted with a message that says, “The original URL has moved, you’re now being redirected. Click here if you’re not redirected in 5 seconds”? Then you’ve experienced a meta refresh. This type of redirect does pass on a little link juice, but not as much as a 301 redirect.  

    Reasons Why You'd Implement a Website Redirect

    Now that you’re familiar with the types of redirects you can implement, it’s time to go into the reasons you’ll want to redirect a URL in the first place. Here are some common scenarios where you'd want to redirect one website to another.  

    1. Redirect a Subdirectory to a Page on Your Site

    Maybe when you created your site you decided to create your blog page on a subdomain of your site. So, instead of your blog URL being “mysite.com/blog”, it’s been “blog.mysite.com.”. Only now you’ve decided that it makes sense to switch your blog off of the original subdomain structure. In this case, you’ll want to implement a redirect. The same goes for any other reason you’ve created a site or section of your site on the subdomain, and now you want to switch up the URL structure.  

    2. Redirect Duplicate Content to the Original Page

    Having duplicate content across your site can really mess with your rankings. If you have a large site, then the chances are high you have some pages with duplicate content. When you have more than one version of the same page it makes it hard for Google to figure out which page to rank. You can avoid common duplicate content issues by redirecting the duplicate piece of content to the original. This will not only reduce confusion with your visitors, but it should improve your search engine rankings as well.  

    3. Redirect Multiple Domains to a Single Domain

    It’s common practice to buy up multiple domain names related to your main URL in order to protect your online brand. But, instead of just buying these domains and letting them sit there you can redirect them to your main website. Whether they’re common misspellings of your existing domain name, other domain name extensions, or something else entirely, they’re worth redirecting back to your main site.  

    4. Redirect Your Old Domain to Your New One

    Did you originally build out your site on a domain that wasn’t your first choice, only to buy your dream domain later on? It happens more than you think. Maybe you went through a massive rebrand and changing your domain name was necessary. Whatever the reason, you need to implement a redirect of your old domain to your new domain. Now, migrating an entire site is more intensive than a simple redirect, but it’s a good starting place.  

    5. Redirect an Old URL to a New URL

    Sometimes you’ll have to change the URL of existing pages and posts. Maybe you’re cleaning up your existing URL structure, or you moved some pages around and the old URL no longer makes sense. If this sounds like you, then you’ll want to implement a 301 redirect from the old URL to the new one. This is especially true if your older posts are already indexed in the search engines, or you have links out anywhere online.  

    Conclusion

    As you can see, there are many reasons you’ll want to redirect a website, and a few different website redirects you can use. Hopefully, you have a better understanding of their value and why it’s something you’ll need to learn, eventually.
  • The Basics Of Domain Redirects

    Monday, August 6, 2018 by
    The Basics Of Domain Redirects

    The Basics Of Domain Redirects

    Domain redirects have a variety of purposes. If you’ve moved your website to a new domain, or have changed the URL structure of some of your pages, then it’s time to utilize a domain redirect. Knowing how to redirect a domain to another can be a very valuable skill in your webmaster toolbox. Below you’ll learn what a domain redirect actually is, the types of redirects you have available, why you’d want to use one, and finally how to implement a domain redirect. register domain name

    What Is a Domain Redirect?

    When a domain redirect is in place the web browser will direct one domain name to another. For example, if you type in the domain name relentless.com in your browser you’ll be redirected to Amazon.com. Domain redirects can be implemented for a wide variety of reasons. Perhaps you changed your brand name and you’re redirecting an entire domain name to a new site, or, you’ve updated your link structure and want to redirect any existing traffic to the updated URL. Let’s look at the example of HostGator.com. We have the main domain name, but you could also pick up domains that are common misspellings or variations, like HstGator.com, or Hostgator.net (Try typing either of these in. You'll note they both redirect to HostGator). Then, your new domain redirects to the main domain name. Or, you could even purchase an domain name that’s related to your niche to be redirected to your site, like what Neil Patel has recently done with Kissmetrics. Redirects are used to inform the servers that the content has moved from one URL to another one. If you want to send traffic from an existing domain name, or pass on the existing domain authority, then you’re going to need to setup a domain redirect. Redirects can also be put into place if you have any existing 404 pages, or older pieces of content that are no longer relevant. Instead of visitors landing on a non-existent page you can redirect that traffic to a related page on your site. For example, eCommerce stores can use redirects to direct users to similar products, once they no longer carry a certain product. Instead of the user landing on a 404 page, they’ll be sent to a page that has products similar to the one they were looking for.  

    Types of Domain Redirects

    There are a few different types of domain redirections you’ll want to be aware of. The 301 redirect is the kind you’ll probably be using most often, but there are a few others you might use sparingly.  

    1. 301 Redirect

    A 301 redirect is the most common type of redirect. This type of redirect will pass almost all of the existing link equity of the domain, so it’s commonly used for SEO purposes. This is the type of redirect you should be using, both on a page, and domain basis. In most cases it’s the best redirect fit for the job.  

    2. 302 Redirect

    Why use a 302 redirect when a 301 will do? 302 redirects are very rarely used and don’t serve much of a purpose. There are instances where a 302 redirect will be treated in the same light as a 301 redirect, but it’s almost always recommended to use a 301 redirect. A 302 redirect will let the search engines and browsers know that the page has moved temporarily. This could have use if you’re planning on changing the page back to the original URL, but most often, this style of redirect is rare.  

    3. Meta Refresh

    A meta refresh is a redirect that’s executed on a page level, instead of the traditional server level. These redirects are slower and not used very often, as they won’t pass on any existing page authority. You’ve probably seen these used before when you land on a page and you see a message that says, “This page has moved, if you’re not redirected in 5 seconds, please click here.” This type of redirect isn’t used very often as it doesn’t pass much link equity, and it creates a poor user experience. Chances are your visitors don’t want to wait five seconds for you to redirect them to the proper page.  

    What Kind of Domain Redirect Should I Use?

    The most common reason domain redirects are used is to preserve the SEO value of an existing site and pass it onto a new site or domain. Let’s look at the following scenario: You need to redirect a URL to a new domain permanently. That way whenever a user types in ilovedogs.com they’ll be taken to ilovecats.com. You’ll have a few different types of redirects you can use, but the type of redirect you’ll be using most often is the 301 redirect. This type of redirect will let both the web browser and the servers know that the site has been permanently moved. This lets the search engines know that the pages on that domain have not only changed location, but the original content (that picked up the rankings and links) is now over at the new URL. That way any link juice and authority that domain had previously picked up will be passed onto the new site. If you’re doing this for purely SEO purposes, keep in mind that this process can take some time. The indexing and replacement of the new page will depend on how often the search engine bots visit the page. Overall, using a url redirection on a page basis will take less time than redirecting an entire domain. Spammers have abused the process of 301 redirects in the past, so the search engine bots will take longer to verify that an entire domain has indeed moved. You do have other options of redirecting a domain, including 302 redirects and meta refreshes, however, these aren’t recommended. Especially, if your goal is to pass on the existing value of the site on to a new domain.  

    How to Implement a Domain Redirect

    Setting up a redirect is probably something you’ll have to do as your site grows. Luckily, with the help of the bundled tools within cPanel setting up a redirect isn’t too technical of a process. Below you’ll learn how to setup a 301 redirect from within the HostGator cPanel: First you’ll need to login to your cPanel. Once inside, find the link called Redirects. implement domain redirects on hostgator On the next screen you’ll choose the type of redirect and what link or domain you want to redirect. add redirect to hostgator domain Once you’re done click ‘Add’ and your new redirect is now in place. Hopefully, you have a better understanding of what a domain redirect is, when you’ll want to use one, and how to setup your first redirect. If you’re interested in purchasing a domain name you can do that right within HostGator. Or, if you want to transfer over an older domain name you can do that too!
  • Your 7 Step Guide To Website Maintenance

    Monday, August 6, 2018 by
    guide to website maintenance

    Your 7 Step Guide To Website Maintenance

    Websites aren’t something you create once and then you’re done. You need to continue caring for them and do ongoing website maintenance to ensure they continue to do the job you need them to do. Once you’ve built your website and it’s up and running, make note of a few main web maintenance tasks that you need to remember to do moving forward. To help you out, we've organized these tasks by how often you should perform them: yearly, quarterly, monthly, or weekly. HostGator Website Builder

    Annual Website Maintenance Tasks

    1. Perform User Testing.

    You worked hard to build a website that’s intuitive to users and drives the kind of actions you want them to take. Frustratingly, the way people use the web frequently changes. A website design that felt natural and intuitive in 1998 wouldn’t work for users today. To make sure that your website continues to make intuitive sense for users and work well on all devices people view it on (including those you can’t anticipate now – who knows what people will be using in 2-3 years), mark a time on the calendar to set usability testing once a year. Bring in people that aren’t associated with your business or brand who can give fresh eyes to browsing your website. Make sure your testing includes all browsers and device types visitors may use so you get the full picture. And create a maintenance schedule for making any updates your testing determines are necessary – it’s not worth much if you don’t turn the insights you learn into action.  

    Quarterly Website Maintenance Tasks

    2. Make Test Purchases.

    As far as eCommerce website features go, the most important type of functionality on your website is the purchasing function. If it stops working, or even if it's glitchy for any reason, you could lose out big on profits until you catch the problem and fix it. So at least once every couple of months, have someone in the company make a few test purchases to see how the process works. Have them do this on different devices and in different browsers so you can figure out if there are any snags in the process that only happen in some cases and not others. If there’s anything about the process that isn’t seamless, you'll want to find out and update it ASAP.  

    3. Test Out All the Forms on Your Website.

    If your website includes any contact form plugins you want visitors to fill out, you want to be confident these all work properly as well. At the same time that you make your test purchases, go through the process of filling out all the forms on the website. In this case too, make sure you try them on all the devices and browsers your visitors might use. If any of your forms aren’t working right, you could be missing out on valuable leads, so make sure you catch the problem sooner rather than later.  

    4. Fix Any Broken Links.

    Every time someone clicks on a link that leads to a 404 page, it’s disappointing. When that dead link is on your website, it makes your business look bad and leads people away from the page you want them to be on, which is why you need to perform preventative maintenance.  No matter what you do, you’ll end up with broken links on your website from time to time as other websites you link to move or die or change domains. You may not be able to avoid them completely, but you can make sure they don’t stay on your website long by making it part of your regular website maintenance. Every few months, check for broken links and either remove them or replace them with updated links. Finding broken links is actually easier than you might think. There are a lot of free tools available that automatically check websites for broken links, such as Google Search Console (which offers plenty of other useful features to boot). Because these tools make the process so simple, you should easily be able to fix any broken links you find quickly. find broken url errors in google search console

    Monthly Website Maintenance Tasks

    5. Check for Security Updates.

    You hear about high-profile security breaches all the time and you can only assume that there are even more low-profile ones you never hear about. Securing your website from hackers has to be a major priority for anyone that runs a website – and it's even more important for eCommerce businesses who deal with customer's private data.  One of the most important website maintenance practices you should plan on for security is checking that all your platforms, plug-ins, and scripts are up to date. Usually when developers release updates for these, it’s to improve the security or patch up a vulnerability they’ve found. Don’t procrastinate making those updates, or you could be putting your website and visitors needlessly at risk.  

    6. Regularly Back Up Your Site.

    It's happened to all of us: you work on a project all day long, and then something goes wrong with your computer and you lose your entire project. If this has happened to you, you probably got really good at staying on top of your computer backups to save you from future trouble. If you’re not careful though, the same thing could happen to your website. If a hacker does somehow get through, they could wipe you out in one fell swoop. But if you have a current backup solution, fixing the problem will be much easier. You can invest in a backup system like Codeguard, to save you the work of treating this as a separate website maintenance step. If you don’t though, make sure you put it on the calendar to create an updated backup of your website at least once a month.  

    Weekly Website Maintenance Tasks

    7. Review Your Key Metrics.

    Google Analytics provides a ton of useful information about how people are finding and using your website. Make sure your website is accomplishing what you want it to and figure out what about it’s working well and what still needs improvements by logging in to check your analytics at least once a week. Some businesses will benefit from checking it more often than that, and brand new businesses can expect traffic to be slow to start, but it’s important to keep an eye on your website’s growth and success as you go. Google Analytics is the best place to do that and a crucial resource for finding ways to improve.  

    Don't Skimp on Website Maintenance

    Just like car or home maintenance, website maintenance is crucial. But it’s important and can save you time, money, and unnecessary trouble in the long run. Get these website maintenance steps on your calendar and stick with them. Your website will thank you!