Last week, I wrote about some of the signs that indicate you might be in need of a website makeover. These included a lack of leads, no blog function, no social media links, no bells and whistles, and pages heavy with sales copy.
I hope the information in that post has encouraged you to take a closer look at your own site and give the website makeover idea some serious thought. In case you missed it, you can find it here. And, just so you know; having an out-of-date website goes way beyond aesthetics.
Why? Well that’s what I’m going to talk about in today’s post. Starting with security.
First of all, you have a serious security concern on your hands with an out-of-date website.
Disclosure: We’re talking WordPress here. WordPress is pretty much the norm for websites these days, and it’s what our team uses for website design. So that’s what I’m speaking to in this post.
If you have a WordPress website (a self-hosted WordPress.org website, not WordPress.com) and it is running an old version of WordPress, you are leaving your entire site open to a security breach. Nobody expects their website will ever be hacked, but guess what? It happens ALL THE TIME. Since WordPress is open source, the developers are constantly keeping an eye out on vulnerabilities and making free updates available to WordPress users.
If you’re running an older version, do yourself a favor and update to the latest version of WordPress. While I do recommend waiting a bit after a major update has been released before applying the update – just to make sure they take care of any kinks and bugs, you should always update your site each time there is a new major WordPress security release. Hackers can get into older versions of WordPress because they know the weaknesses.
You should also update your plugins whenever new versions are released. These updated plugins contain bug fixes, and often have new features and updates to existing features. Hackers just love site-owners who don’t update plugins with security and bug updates! It makes it easier for them to access your site.Hackers love site owners who don’t update their plugins! It makes it easier for them to access your site.Click To Tweet
In addition to keeping WordPress and other plugins updated, there are a few security plugins we highly recommend installing to prevent bots and hacks and intruders from taking over your website. If you’re interested in learning more about WordPress, SEO, security and plugins, you might want to visit the BlogAid Blog – it’s an excellent resource!
WordPress is wonderful, but you have to do your part by keeping your theme and plugins up-to-date and as secure as possible.
If you have an old out-of-date version of WordPress, it is possible your website will simply break. Plugin developers work hand-in-hand with WordPress developers to make sure their plugins will continue to work and do their job. With an out-dated WordPress version, plugins can stop working, and features on your site will break as a result. Then you’ll have a big mess on your hands. This can be easily prevented by keeping everything on your site updated regularly.
You might be surprised to find out how few website visitors actually look at your site on a computer. Now that almost everyone has a smart phone, more and more business owners are viewing your websites on their mobile device. The ability to access the Internet and view everything on our phones is something we didn’t have to consider five or ten years ago. We only had to worry about how websites looked in Internet Explorer and other web browsers on bigger monitors. But now that smart phones are here, we have to take the mobile age very seriously. Consider how many people check social media on their phones … and then they see a link to your site while browsing their Facebook and Twitter feeds. That’s when they click over to your site. Not when they get back to their computers.
If your website isn’t mobile responsive, Google deems you NOT Google friendly, and it severely hurts your SEO. You can easily find out if your website is mobile-friendly by taking Google’s Mobile-Friendly test!If your website isn’t mobile responsive, Google deems you NOT Google friendly, and it severely hurts your SEO.Click To Tweet
There are a couple of plugins that might work as a temporary fix, but your best course of action is to update your theme with one that is responsive. One that will look great no matter what type of device it is viewed on.
If your website is up-to-date and humming along, great! If not, you can always keep things as they are and risk being hacked or losing website features because your plugins break. Or, you could schedule a chat with us to discuss how a team like ours can set you up with a spiffy new site that is safe and secure.
Also published on Medium.