Foundations Are Important...
Why should you build your website on a solid foundation? Your website is where your existing and future customers interact with your brand. Whatever happens to them on your website translates directly to how they perceive you. As far as marketing is concerns, perception is reality.
So if your website is offline when they visit your brand, this might translate in your customer's mind as your business being unreliable...the same way when someone visits your store and you are closed unexpectedly. It doesn't look good.
For people who live and breathe web development, we know that websites can be hacked, go offline, break in weird places and so on. Good web developers, who are seasoned with taking care of their client's websites, build their websites on a solid foundation to reduce the ongoing cost of repairing and maintaining a healthy website.
Here is a quick overview of the places where it is important NOT to cut corners.
Your Email Provider
The number one thing people tend to want to save costs on is emails. Don't! We are trained by Gmail and outlook to think that emails are free. But when you have your own branded email such as "[email protected]", there is a cost.
If your emails always end up in the spam box or emails are not delivered that may mean that you will lose potential clients or existing ones.
For more information on what La Station Web recommends, please read "Why we recommend GSuite for emails".
Your Server Infrastructure
There is a lot of low-cost options for hosting your websites but they are not all created equal. There are certain technologies that have to be in place in order to prevent disasters down the road. At La Station Web, we manage the hosting from the bottom up. This allows us to include things that make your website faster, more reliable and we are not at the mercy of a third party to solve issues.
WordPress Done the Right Way
WordPress is an incredible piece of technology to manage content. It powers more than a third of the internet and a large community of people is building tools and improving the software.
But with great power comes great responsibility. Inexperienced web developers will uses plugins for every single new feature they are not able to code themselves. This means websites can easily become bloated, prone to plugin conflicts that break the website and a real open door for hackers.
Good developers are careful about the plugin they use and try to minimize their use as much as possible while paying for the one they really need. Paid plugins come with ongoing maintenance and important security updates that a free plugin may lack.
Timely Update & Maintenance
Now, some may look at a maintenance package like ours and wonder why they should pay up to $79/mo to have their websites maintained. That's because the internet is a rapidly evolving place.
Here are some of the things to consider when you are paying that fee. If you were to do it all yourselves to save that cost, you would have:
- Manage your own hosting account
- Take care of PHP updates when necessary
- Update plugins daily/weekly
- Schedule server-side backup to make sure you can roll back if an update breaks the website.
- Manage staging environments
- Learn the technicalities of WordPress
- Deal with the headaches of website being hacked
It may seem a lot at first $79 is a normal hourly rate for a web developer. This basically pays for 1hour of service per month...and when things go sour, a developer can spend 5-6hours trying to find the problem with your website.
Not all web developers are made equal and cutting costs may seem like a smart move at first but in the long run, people end up paying up the difference in headaches. Make sure to do business with developers who know what they are doing and that builds your website on a solid foundation.