For many marketers, the end of the year is a great time to go over the company website with a fine-tooth comb, identifying the changes needed to align website performance with business goals for the new year. We’re all for that, and we’ll have posts in place next week to help you do it. But if this is a super busy time of year for you, here’s a quick list you can send to your web team.
There are a handful of actions just about everyone needs to think about at this time of year.
- Update your copyright notice. This is probably at the bottom of your website, in the footer. We’ve recently visited sites that had copyright notices for 2010. This doesn’t limit your legal rights when it comes to copyright, but it makes your website look outdated, so don’t skip the update.
- Make sure you have the most current versions of your software. For WordPress sites, be sure you have all the updates done for security reasons and also to avoid breaking things — that is more likely to happen if you update from a version 3 to a version 6 than if you keep everything updated. Your WordPress website will show you what needs updating. Just click on the icon at the top left of the dashboard, as shown in the screenshot below.
- Check for broken links. There are WordPress plugins that will do this, but they have some real disadvantages. Many will remove the link but they won’t replace it, so you’re left with a sentence that may not make sense without a link. Many of these plugins also are resource hogs. Consider using an online tool like BrokenLinkCheck instead.
- Check basic information. It’s amazing how many websites feature outdated addresses, inaccurate team pages, and products that are no longer being offered. Check those basic pages and list the information that needs to be changed. When you send this along to your web team, be sure to specify the pages where you found the information that needs to be updated. You don’t want to pay for time spent searching for the issue.
- Back up your website… to some other place. While a good web host will automatically back up your website, it doesn’t hurt to have a copy in another location, just in case. If you haven’t downloaded your files before, this is a great time to do it.