A website isn’t exactly an organism, but sometimes it behaves in a similar way because it is encoded by living creatures. People make mistakes, pure and simple. They can also develop some interesting applications which can organically develop as visitors come and go on a given site.
Either way you slice it, with a website you’ll need proactive maintenance just like you’d need to take care of an animal. The good news is, a website is more like a cat than a dog. With a dog, you’ve got to walk it every day, play with it every day, give it treats, and generally treat it like a four-footed family member.
You can pamper your cat, but you don’t really need to. Food, water, a litter box; boom. Your cat is good to go. With a website, you just need a few regular monitoring sessions to ensure that everything is functioning as it should, and the occasional upgrade. This can be a little work and so it is best handled by a professional. But it’s not completely unmanageable.
Still, even a cat requires some maintenance. Even the most automated, self-upgrading website will require a bit of effort. If you just leave it to itself, even should it be expensively designed, it will eventually become antiquated as developments change the internet landscape.
Look at these websites from the nineties, and compare them against similar product and service pages today. Certainly some of the sites have held up better than others, but all of them are noticeably dated. This is because the conventions of several decades previous are technologically and stylistically different than those of today.
A Smartphone Revolution
Today’s mobile revolution is quickly changing the way websites are designed, and how people think of them. There are quite a few people accessing the internet through mobile means. Tablets, smartphones, smart watches, and even IoT (Internet of Things) devices are regularly surfing the web.
What this means for your business is that it’s not enough to merely have a website designed for use on a desktop computer. Your website must be usable on tablet and smartphone operating systems as well. While some smartphones can use “desktop mode” to view sites that haven’t been configured, it’s usually a pain for the user.
Then there are bugs. Just like a pet will sometimes get worms or fleas, your website will sometimes acquire computer viruses. It will additionally have certain reactions to increased traffic that could be unexpected. If you aren’t paying attention to it, upgrading it regularly, taking care of it, and all the other necessities a site needs, these could cause big trouble.
As internet mobility increases, proper website auditing becomes essential to operations—especially as regards mobile website solutions; according to Brown Box Branding: “…over 50% of users [are] accessing the internet via a mobile device, [making it] absolutely essential…your website display properly for mobile [applications].”
Your Digital Tuxedo
It may seem a concept that is slightly obscure, but the way your website functions, and the way it communicates to prospective clients, is itself a kind of marketing. It’s like your digital wardrobe. Dress frumpy and in a way which is outdated, and you may find potential clients are discouraged from working with you.
However, if you dress in a snappy suit that looks expensive and is stylistically configured for maximum relevance and impact, you’re more likely to secure the clients you seek. A well-designed website is like a snappy dresser. So maintain yours in such a way that the “wrinkles” and “stains” of poor design or viruses don’t mar the final product.