Every website design and development studio in the country offers website support as an add-on to their core service delivery, be it a brand new website or a redevelopment of the existing website. Time and again however we hear of how website maintenance falls between the cracks once a new website goes live. It’s a predictable predicament. The success of web design studios and website development companies is dependent on new projects as theirs is a creative service, fundamentally built on making money from digital production.
Digital agencies offer full-service management, encompassing creative, development, advertising, campaign management and reporting. Client retention hinges on results. Yes, the web and social platforms must be produced to a slick, professional standard, but it is the advertising ROI on which the agency/client relationship is maintained. If campaign KPIs aren’t met, be they media impressions, advertising engagement, lead generation, web sessions or user interaction events, the investment is deemed more a cost than a benefit.
Neither of these web support or full-service digital agency models put the welfare of the website first . Both recognise that the website, the nucleus of the production or advertising drive, must work, but provided the site is functional and works according to its’ production or campaign specification, the focus quickly shifts elsewhere.
Website maintenance services companies are common in the US and to a lesser extent the UK. With 1 in 3 websites (27% and growing fast) powered by WordPress, a new market has emerged in servicing WordPress websites. Dedicated WordPress maintenance businesses offer an insurance policy for website owners who have invested in a digital property. Monthly maintenance service typically entails regular backing up of the WordPress application, updating core files, themes and plugins, checking for security loop-holes or vulnerabilities to hackers and reporting on uptime.
Essentially they hedge against the risk of loss, as any good insurance cover should, and they charge up to €100-a-month for the safety net. Maintenance is a zero-sum gain. It is protective rather than progressive, guarding a legacy rather than investing in growth. Maintenance is only called in to question when it fails to maintain the status quo.
Sample of web analytics reporting flat-line referral visits from Google search
A WordPress monthly management service sets the standard for continuous performance improvement. Website owners who invest in WordPress management recognise that they need to keep moving to stand still and they need to up the ante even further if they are to get ahead.
Sample of web analytics reporting monthly increases in referral visits from Google search
Competitive analysis of the market highlights WP SiteCare as a front-runner in forward-thinking solutions for WordPress websites. They, like their competitors in the US, provide a low-cost, low-impact maintenance service that promises to keep WordPress running smoothly and out of harm’s way, be it unwanted external attention from spam traffic or hack bots, or internal conflicts of interest such as plugin update conflicts.
Where WP Site Care get smart is on their $999+ “partner plan”. At this level, customers start seeing the benefits of their monthly investment because at this price-point, WordPress webmasters actually create value in their website optimisation and WordPress management activities. WP Site Care are at pains to point out their USP is their people, claiming that others can “imitate but never duplicate”. Our WordPress Management Services offering is not a clone of theirs. In fact, it’s difficult to know what exactly WP Site Care do for their thousand dollars a month, but the bottom line is that they deliver a value-add in the form of growth, and if we were to copy anything, we’d like to grow our web traffic numbers to match theirs!
The WordPress management service market is growing worldwide as the footprint WordPress makes on the digital landscape grows and WordPress users demand more for their money beyond an insurance policy to protect them against the downside of obsolescence and under-performance. As we outline in our mission statement, SURF MERCHANT outperforms stock standard WordPress maintenance packages with a monthly performance optimisation plan that continually builds business presence online and improves WordPress performance month-on-month.
Our fully mananged WordPress optimisation service includes the following:
For progressive WordPress website performance, talk to us about our monthly management service.