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Required Website Updates for 2017

2017 Website UpdateLast year (2016), we rolled out some updates that needed to be done, which included making sure your website was voice search compatible. This was due to more people using voice search like Siri, Google Voice, Alexa, Cortana and others.

This year, there are a bunch of updates that should be done to make sure your website is keeping up with the latest standards and technologies - to stay ahead of your competition.

If you don't do these things, know that your competition will.

They will use these advantages - leaving you in the dust, needing to play "catch up." The better position to be in is leading your competition and making them catch up to you.

We at Webstix post these kinds of updates to keep our clients informed of what changes they need to make to their website to keep up and adapt. Our clients ask that we keep them up to date, so here is our update for 2017 (so far).


This important update includes:

  • Force SSL on All Pages
  • PHP 7
  • WordFence

You'll need to do the first two at some point anyway and getting WordFence installed will save you lots of headaches and trouble - so much that it naturally just fits right in with the other two.

In addition to these important updates, you may want to take advantage of these other updates if you haven't done them yet:

  • Website Hardening
  • Voice Search Optimization
  • The Webstix Website Care Program
  • Fast Website Hosting

Forcing SSL on All Pages Earns Trust

SSLGoogle wants to see SSL (HTTPS) being used on every page of every website. Every new website we launch now has every page secure. Shortly, seeing a web page that is not secure will be something of the past. They all will be secure.

The time to make this change is now. You do get an SEO (search engine optimization) boost by doing it. You'll also ensure that nobody sees a "Website Not Secure" type of notice when your website is listed on search engines or when they get to your website. Seeing that makes your website not look trustworthy and people will leave.

Don't wait - do it now.

Oh, and if you run WordPress, you will soon NEED to have SSL installed for your website to work. Read more about that here.

The cost to do this is just 1 hour of work (2 Maintenance Blocks) (one time) + $120/year for the certificate.


PHP 7 is Fast!

PHPWordPress websites use a programming language called PHP. The latest version (version 7) is more secure and runs a lot faster. The result is a speed increase for your website. Google says they want this and it will cause your website to rank higher because you're providing a better user experience.

What's So Good About PHP 7?

  • PHP 7 is twice as fast as version 5.6!
  • It can handle twice as many requests as 5.6.
  • Reduced memory consumption.
  • New language features.

This is a no brainer... if Google says a faster website helps you rank better, then get on that - make your competition catch up with YOU!

The cost to do this varies per website. Contact us and we'll get you a quote.


WordFence Firewall Blocks Unwanted Traffic

Block!Unless you actually have your own website hosting company (this is a service we offer), you really wouldn't believe the amount of attacks on websites. It's constant and it's only increasing.

Most attacks come from countries like Russia, Ukraine, China, France and Turkey. For most of our clients, they don't have customers in countries like this, so blocking them makes total sense. Installing the Premium WordFence plugin can block hackers from other countries from even seeing your website.

The truth is, hackers are lazy. They're scanning the Web looking for websites that are not up to date with no security in place. They then install their software to do what they want. If they come across a website that's up to date with WordPress updates and a firewall like WordFence in place, they'll just move on.

The smart thing to do is to get WordFence Premium installed - to protect your investment in your website.

The cost to do this is just 1 hour of work (2 Maintenance Blocks) (one time) + $99 for the plugin.


Website Hardening = Advanced Protection

Tough!Our website hardening service is for websites that are hacked or have been hacked in the past.

With this service, we do a thorough check, adjust permissions and get your website protected so that hackers pass right by it.

This process includes:

  • Website Scan: See if you website is infected
  • Clean Up: Clean up any files that have been infected
  • Hardening Step #1: File permissions
  • Hardening Step #2: Your .htaccess file
  • Hardening Step #3: Improve WordPress core settings
  • Hardening Step #4: Install / configure WordFence Premium
  • Hardening Step #5: Install / configure Securi Scanner
  • Hardening Step #6: Take care of any issues
  • Finish: Perform a final website check and write reports

This service is $599. Get more information here.


Voice Search Optimization is the Future Now

VoiceThis is a part of our 2016 Website Update that can still be done if you haven't done it yet. At least 20% of searches now are via voice search and that's only increasing. Getting your website compatible with this kind of search is critical.

What you get:

  • Schema Markup Set Up (for search engines like Google)
  • OpenGraph Set Up (for Facebook and Twitter)

You also get these custom reports worth $200:

  • Google PageSpeed Report / Recommendations
  • SEO Overview Report / Recommendations

This service is just $299. Get more information here.


The Webstix Website Care Program is Peace of Mind

CareWe've seen an increase in website hacks and hack attempts. The clients we have on our Website Care program (for WordPress websites) do not see nearly as many of these attacks as websites that are not kept up to date.

Think about it - some vulnerabilities are found on WordPress websites (since no software is 100% secure) and there's an announcement along with a patch released. Hackers keep up to date on these announcements, too, because they want to take advantage of them and use them. They then roll out an attack on any website that hasn't applied the patch.

If your website is hacked, you might not even know it for a while. Your website could be sending out spam or phishing scams, destroying the reputation of your domain name. People's computers might get infected by going to your website. Rankings might drop and you don't know why.

It's really just that simple and how you prevent that is to keep your website up to date.

Our Website Care program gets your website updated WEEKLY - for about $11 per update!

We check and update:

  • Core WordPress software
  • All plugins
  • All themes

You get a report that the work was done and you sleep better at night.

Find out more about our WordPress Website Care program.


Fast Website Hosting Rocks!

FastFast website hosting helps with SEO (search engine optimization) and getting your website ranking higher.

That's just a fact.

Why?

Because a fast-loading website contributes to a better user experience. Your website is easier to use and Google will rank it higher if it load quickly.

To get a website loading faster, it needs to be optimized but the hosting definitely plays a part. You need a fast server and one that's tuned for WordPress.

Our website hosting is blazing fast and it is tuned for WordPress websites.

Cheap website hosting is costing you - in many ways.

If you're on a server with a shared hosting plan where you don't know who your neighbors are and what they're doing, you could be affected. For one, you're just in a bad neighborhood. Think of it as seeing buildings with broken doors and windows. You're trying to set up shop there and maybe you're good at keeping your website secure and up to date but the bad neighborhood you're in is blocking traffic and making it hard to get to your location. This does happen.

The solution is get onto hosting where the neighborhood is monitored. Our boutique website hosting is more like a gated community. We know everyone there and we watch what is going on. If they're not keeping their website up to date, we move them to another server. If they break the rules and cause trouble, we move them.

If you invest in your website and keep it up to date, you should be rewarded. Our website hosting does that.

Don't get stuck in a bad website hosting neighborhood - move to Webstix website hosting now.

Find out more about Webstix website hosting.


Ready to Start?

If you have questions or just want us to start on all of this, contact Webstix today and we'll walk you through it.

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