Working with a CMS

One of the great things about working in the website industry is seeing business owners save money on their web costs by updating their site themselves. Instead of budgeting 5 to 10k every year for website updates, savvy businesses forecast their web related fees (like hosting and SSL costs) and then simply have their own staff do site updates.

By having me create their site in a CMS – a Content Management System like WordPress or SquareSpace – my clients save a great deal of money in the long term because they’re able to update the site themselves. However, there’s a few things I’d like to stress as far as working with a CMS long term. These 2 tips will ensure that your site will last and keep your public image and branding accurate and effective.

#1. Your site will almost always be built with an automatic backup process in place. Keep that backup system up to date and working. If for some reason, the backup stops saving on a regular basis contact me immediately and I’ll determine what the issue is free of charge. Your site backup is the only thing that will save you if there’s any issue that takes your site down. Do not rely on your internet host’s backup systems as they’re often done less often than your own and getting access to their backup of your site can be troublesome.

#2. Do not change the site’s template. I’ll repeat that – do not change the site’s template. I know it can be tempting to see how your site would look if it was laid out differently, however I have seen sites ruined beyond repair by well meaning staff who just wanted to “check out” a new look but wound up actually saving their explorations. Designing your site was a very linear process, with your goals and target audience in mind and the layout we used specifically supports your business needs. Keep the template you have at launch. If you decide that you want a brand new layout I’m happy to work with you to redesign the site but please don’t change your existing site’s template willy nilly.

And that’s it. The 2 main issues I’ve come across using Content Management Systems that allow clients to update their sites themselves. If you have any questions or have experience yourself using a CMS please feel free to post it below.

As always, I’m here for all your website needs.

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