Before you have a go at me (actually I know you’re way too nice for that) for calling you an ass, I’m calling me an ass.
You see I thought that WordPress webcare plans are all created equal. They do the same kind of stuff right – backups, updates etc.
Reading a FB group recently I realised that no, not all webcare plans are created equal.
I’m the ass for making assumptions.
I know how I do them so I had assumed that others would do a similar process. Woah, I was so wrong.
I’ve had also had one client to say to me well everything is automated, when actually it isn’t so here is a list of assumptions about webcare plans. I wonder which ones you have?
Assumption 1: Website backups are automated
Correct. This is the only part of my webcare plans that are automated. What is a backup? It’s a copy of all your website files and images that is stored somewhere else so that if you ever needed to restore your website then you have all the information you need. Regardless of the plan automated backups are taken every day, either very late at night or very early in the morning. Although they are automated you still have to be notified if for some reason that they do not. When you need a backup, you don’t want to assume that you have one when you don’t.
Assumption 2: WordPress core updates are automated
Yes and No. So that’s clear then!
For most WordPress core updates for security and minor updates, yes that’s done automatically. Usually those kind of updates will not cause an issue and it’s important that your website is kept secure.
When WordPress releases major updates, when one version number changes to another, or WordPress say it’s a big update then I manually perform the update. I check that there are no issues with the new update, I make sure that the automatic backup has been run. I check that the plugins are all compatible with the new release, that the theme is compatible with the new release. Only when I’m certain that the major upgrade will work and not cause issues with your website do I perform a manual update. I check the look of the website before the update, and then I check it again after the update and I test the functionality of the website too.
If you have an online shop (e-commerce website) I may even take another manual backup before the update in case an order has been placed since the last backup.
Why go through all this? To make sure that your website stays secure, and functioning.
Assumption 3: WordPress plugin updates are automated
No I don’t automate this. I perform this manually so I know which plugins are being updated. If there a lot of plugins to be updated then I do the updates a few plugins at a time. I want to make sure that if anything did go wrong I would have a good idea where to start looking for the issue.
Assumption 4: Website virus checks are automated
Yes this is automated. However I manually read the emails and the results from the virus checks. Most of the time the checks are fine but occasionally something unusual may appear that needs to be investigated further. If I wasn’t reading the emails a lot could be missed. When people are doing their own websites I find that they either don’t bother to read the emails, feel too overwhelmed by the emails or feel that the emails are too technical for them. If that’s the case then you can check out my answers to FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) on my website since that may help – https://www.mountgambierwebsitedesign.com.au/faqs or of course you can contact me personally.
Assumption 5: Your WordPress website looks after itself so a webcare plan isn’t needed
If you’re happy to do all the webcare yourself then certainly you don’t need to pay for one. Performing the webcare functions themselves are not difficult. You do need some technical expertise to understand the results and what to do if things don’t go according to plan. I find that a lot of clients don’t know that they have to do a backup at all (because their host does it for them), or it’s not been explained to them.
Not having a webcare plan at all would be like having a car and not doing any maintenance on it at all. No water, no checking the tyres, cleaning the windscreen, and certainly not worrying if it makes a weird engine noise. From personal experience weird noises from your car can be VERY EXPENSIVE. It’s the same with WordPress websites. The longer you leave the maintenance the more expensive it can be. Keep it regularly maintained is sooo much easier and less time consuming, and less expensive than leaving if for years and keeping your fingers crossed that things will keep ticking over.
Assumption 6: My website is too small for hackers to bother with it
Some hackers actually prefer smaller websites because they are looking for outdated software and sloppy password and login practices. This is why they often use the username Admin as a first attempt. It’s the WordPress default, so it’s very important that it’s not used.
Saying that my website is too small to be hacked is like saying my house is too small to be robbed so I’ll leave all the doors and windows open.
The issue with hacking is that there are so many different forms of it nowadays that you really need some software on your website to help keep them out – or at least know when they’ve been around.
Assumption 7: You would know when your website is down
If you’re not looking at your website every minute of every day (if you are doing that you really need to find something else to do with your life – like watching paint dry!) then you don’t actually know whether your website is being shown to your visitors or not. You make the assumption that it is. As part of my WordPress webcare plans, your website is regularly checked so that I know that it’s all there, present and correct. If not, I get notified and then I’ll start investigating what’s occurring. Usually the first you’ll know about it is when I send you an email saying that there was an issue with your website and now it’s been sorted.
Assumption 8: You know what’s happening with your website
You know what’s happening with your website right? After all it is YOUR website. I send a monthly email letting you know what’s been happening with your website. If you want to ignore it I won’t be mad, it’s your choice. However, it’s your website so I feel that you have a right to know what’s happening with it.
Webcare plans are not all created equal. Make sure you know what you’re getting and if you have any questions or assumptions about webcare plans drop me a line on firstname.lastname@example.org
I know it’s easy to let things slide when you’re busy. I get it.
You should see the piles of paperwork that can build up until they finally fall over and then I think I really should file them away. At least I have actually read them.
You need to focus on what you do best in your business so let me help you by taking away the stress of the techy side of your WordPress website.
If you know that you need a webcare plan then take a look at my WordPress webcare plans, and hit the apply button if it’s a good fit.