Website Maintenance – Things to take care

In this blog, we delve into post-website development phase emphasizing the ongoing maintenance necessary for a continuous optimal performance. In our experience, many small eCommerce businesses believe their websites will function flawlessly post-development without ongoing budget allocation. However, this is a misconception. This blog highlights the crucial areas needing regular updates to maintain optimal website performance.

  1. Software Updates: One of the most critical areas for eCommerce companies is to ensure that they keep their sites up-to-date by installing security patches on a regular basis. This way, they can keep their site ‘hacker-proof’
  2. Plugin and theme updates: If your website is using a theme and a plugin then it is a must that you update these software on a regular basis so that your website is compatible with various browsers and devices.
  3. Back Up: In our experience, it is very important that the websites are backed up on a regular basis (Fortnightly if possible) so that if something goes wrong and your website goes offline, you have a recent backup available which can be installed and the business continues near normal.
  4. Performance monitoring: It is an established fact that slow websites moves users away and so it is imperative for an eCommerce business to ensure that website’s performance is optimal. This involves improving web page loading times as well as optimizing images and code.
  5. SEO monitoring: In today’s age of digitization, it is important that your website is visible in search engines. This includes tracking your website traffic and backlinks. By undertaking SEO monitoring, it helps a business identifying potential problems and be able to fix it.

What are the next steps

The importance of website maintenance is clear, leaving the question of frequency. At Island Wizards, we recommend setting a monthly budget and consulting agencies offering maintenance services for optimal results.

Feel free to reach out to us at: [email protected]

WordPress Unboxing: The Custom Development Advantage

At the end of 2023, there were approximately 1.98 billion websites worldwide, with over 810 million developed using WordPress. As the most popular Content Management System (CMS), WordPress offers a range of options for website development.

In this article, we will explore the advantages of custom WordPress development compared to using ready-made themes, emphasizing the importance of speed, security, and user-friendliness for a successful website.

For the success of any website, it is essential to prioritize factors such as speed, security, and user-friendliness. These elements ensure that customers can easily navigate the site, find the products they are looking for, and make purchases if they are satisfied with the offerings.

However, businesses often encounter challenges when using WordPress themes, which can hinder the optimization of these crucial website aspects.

Some of the issues businesses face when using WordPress themes are

  • Enhanced Customization: Using pre-made themes often limits the level of customization you can achieve. Whether you want to personalize the colors, styles, fonts, or design of your homepage and contact forms, ready-made themes may not provide the necessary flexibility. By opting for custom WordPress development, you can shape your website precisely according to your preferences, creating a unique and memorable experience for your visitors.
  • Maintaining a Competitive Edge: Choosing a popular theme may make your website look similar to others using the same template. This lack of uniqueness can negatively impact your branding efforts and fail to set your site apart from the competition. Custom WordPress development ensures that your website reflects your brand identity and stands out, leaving a lasting impression on your audience.
  • Optimized Performance: Pre-made themes often come with bloated code or unnecessary functionalities, resulting in slower load times for your website. In today’s fast-paced digital landscape, customers expect websites to load quickly and efficiently. If your site fails to meet these expectations, you risk losing potential customers and revenue. Custom WordPress development allows for streamlined code and optimized performance, ensuring your site delivers a seamless browsing experience.
  • Mobile Responsiveness: With the increasing use of mobile devices for online activities, having a mobile-responsive website is crucial. Ready-made themes may not always offer the level of responsiveness needed to provide a smooth user experience across different devices. Custom WordPress development allows you to prioritize mobile responsiveness, catering to the preferences and needs of your mobile users, ultimately improving your brand image and revenue potential.
  • SEO-Friendly Structure: Search Engine Optimization (SEO) plays a vital role in driving organic traffic to your website. A poorly-developed theme can confuse search engines, hindering your website’s chances of achieving high rankings in search results. Custom WordPress development enables you to create an SEO-friendly structure from the ground up, incorporating best practices and ensuring that your website has a solid foundation for optimal search engine visibility.

In summary, opting for custom WordPress development offers significant benefits for your website. By prioritizing customization, uniqueness, performance optimization, mobile responsiveness, and an SEO-friendly structure, your website will not only meet your current needs but also be well-prepared to adapt and grow in the future.

So, if you’re ready to elevate your online presence and leave a lasting impression, consider the power of custom WordPress development. Your website is more than just a digital storefront — it’s a reflection of your brand’s identity and values. With WordPress website developers, you can bring your vision to life of digital success.

New Features on WordPress 6.3 and their benefits

WordPress released it latest version 6.3 on August 8,2023 and following the tradition, it’s named Lionel after famous Jazz musician Lionel Hampton.

This article talks about how this latest WordPress version benefits an eCommerce business which is using WordPress and whether, it is worth updating to this latest version.

  • The most important feature is that this version makes the loading of your website a lot faster. So, a customer who is visiting your eCommerce store won’t have to wait long for the site to load and hence, this leads to a smooth user experience.
  • The other important feature is that they have optimized ‘Lazy Loading’. Lazy Loading is a technique that informs the browser which images and content are not critical and so can be skipped for first viewpoint screen. In other words, this technique informs the browser what images, iFrames, content to load which is important at the start thereby reducing the waiting time of the End User.
  • In this version, WordPress has optimized this feature to accurately detect which images to be abandoned for the first viewpoint.
  • Last but not the least, in this version, several past bugs have been fixed and as a result, there should be no hinderance in optimizing a LCP score. For those who do not know about LCP score, it is one of the very important metrics as it measures how quickly the main content of a webpage is loaded. So, a higher LCP score will result in Image optimization and SEO improvement.

Overall, upgrading to WordPress version 6.3 will improve the overall performance of the website via faster loading speed, improved SEO and optimized lazy loading.

Difference Between Webflow and WordPress

Webflow WordPress
Building experience Visual coding tool. It may be difficult initially but other one of the better UI of any website building tools. You can drag and drop various structural elements with ease. All in one platform Developers have to do a lot of toggling between screens so can be a little cumbersome at times. Need to use plugins to integrate various features.
CMS Provides the end user to make content changes without any help from designers.

Can be used to create reusable template designs.

Most popular CMS in the world. Blogging functionality is already built in. UI needs to be more user-friendly.
Maintenance and Security All in one place in (Hosting, Security) Webflow which clearly is an advantage.

Lesser developer assistance is required to update the site.

Need to buy hosting and purchase to plugin to customise the site along with the security aspect.

Need a developer to upgrade plugins.

E-Commerce Lacks all the features required mainly around payment processing and user accounts at this stage. Hence, if you are building a pure Provides a free eCommerce plugin called WooCommerce and hence, WordPress is a clear winner in this aspect
Cost Saas-based platform that charges you either monthly or yearly and hence, is a little more expensive. However, this includes the builder. Free to use and hosting is cheaper however, need to buy a subscription to use Builder.

Our conclusion at IW is that both these platforms have pros and cons and it depends on what is your purpose of building a website. If you are building a pure e-commerce store, then our recommendation is to go with WordPress. However, keep in mind that you will need the help of a WordPress developer to maintain the site.

In Webflow, all the maintenance is pretty much taken care including the hosting and security by the platform and hence, there is no need to integrate any 3rd party tool thereby, simplifying the building process.

Top 6 Benefits of Using A Custom Theme in WordPress

WordPress still remains one of the most popular Content Management Systems (CMS) for many brands and marketers across the globe. WordPress is a dynamic platform that can be used for powering numerous types of websites – from individual blogs and non-profit organizations to feature-rich online stores. Many internationally renowned companies, such as Microsoft, Mercedes-Benz and Bloomberg favor WordPress, so there must be something behind its immense popularity, right?

WordPress is an open-source CMS platform that is easy to setup and offers vast community support. It also has a variety of custom themes and plug-ins to cater any type of business. For any website to stand out, it should be unique in all aspects. Having just a website is not enough, but it should be user-friendly, responsive and well-designed. It should be visually appealing that can have a positive impact on a success of a business. Let’s dig into how custom WordPress themes can benefit your business.

#1 Unique look and feel

The internet is overcrowded with hundreds and thousands of businesses operating under the same niche. Among this noise, many businesses tend to lose their identity, which is why it is important to create a unique website that reflects your brand identity. With WordPress theme customization, brands can give a new face to their website, creating unique landing pages and other visual elements. You can completely customize the look and feel of the website based on your needs, allowing you to offer a truly unique user experience. A unique theme will also help your business stand out among others, and get noticed by target audience.

#2 Faster load speed

Often theme comes with fancy features that your business may not really need. As a result, your website will not only look crowded and confusing, but it will also run much slower. For any website, page loading speed is a crucial factor. If it doesn’t load in less than two seconds, users are likely to move away to your competitors. Along with the reduction in sales, this will also blow your SEO rankings. But, with custom themes, it is much easier to manage and optimize. A custom theme contains only your business related features and nothing else. This allows your WordPress site to run much faster, resulting in better user experience. Moreover, you can rest assured that your site theme has been rigorously tested to ensure it is free of bugs.

#3 Easy to Update

A website cannot stay the same forever. It needs to be updated on a regular basis to keep up with the business growth and address the needs of the customers. Without custom themes, it becomes quite difficult to bring new features and updates to your WordPress site. But, if you choose to implement a custom WordPress theme from a WordPress expert, you can have all the latest features and security patches applied to keep your website up-to-the-date. All you need to do is inform your developer when you wish to update the theme. Your business grows and evolves every day, and therefore, your website should be able to cope with it.

#4 Improved Security

Security is a major concern for every business. The internet is full of cyber criminals looking to exploit vulnerabilities in your site. And, unfortunately, 90% of all websites that are targeted by the hackers are powered by WordPress. So, how do criminals get into a WordPress site? Simply by purchasing a theme and breaking down its code to explore loopholes. That is why the majority of WordPress developers choose to go with a customized theme. No attacker will be able to get into your custom theme code. Although a custom theme doesn’t guarantee complete protection from hackers, but there will be fewer bugs and your site will be more secure than other readymade templates.

#5 Better Support and Maintenance

While using readymade templates, you may encounter a number of issues, such as certain elements incompatible with your design, which can altogether make your website inoperable. On the contrary, you can expect prompt, high-quality support with a custom theme. If anything goes wrong, the theme developer will readily available to fix issues. Furthermore, it will be easy for the developer to maintain the website and keep it functioning as he himself is the creator of the custom theme.

#6 SEO-Friendly

SEO plays an important role in getting your website on the top of the SERPS and get it noticed by potential customers. While most WordPress ready-made themes come with basic SEO features, you will still have to put a great amount of efforts to optimize it according to your business goals and fully leverage its potential. When you build a custom theme from a scratch, you have the control of developing its structure, which also plays an important role in achieving better SEO results besides keywords. The search engine crawlers can better index your content if your website structure is simple and organize. Moreover, the limited source code used in creating a theme also adds an extra edge in SEO compliance to reach a wider audience.

Final Thoughts

Above are some benefits of WordPress that are worth considering. We admit that creating a custom theme is an expensive outlay, but given the benefits it offers, a custom theme is worth every penny. Your custom WordPress theme will have its unique feel and look, and always offer the latest features for your users to enjoy. It will also be more secure, giving your prospects a peace of mind that their crucial details are always protected. This one-time investment will go a long way in reaping substantial returns.