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WordPress Maintenance can be a headache most marketing agencies like to avoid.

The inconvenient truth is, if you’re a digital marketer, you’re going to need to pay attention because hacked websites can get really expensive, really fast.  Spend less time maintaining your clients’ websites, and more time celebrating their wins with these free and premium WordPress plugins.

Preface:  In addition to the software recommended in this blog, routine preventative maintenance should be conducted in the form of WordPress Core & plugin updates.  Additional features of your maintenance package could include monitoring site speed, implementing file caching and patching any necessary security holes uncovered by the software mentioned below.

WordPress Security

Implementing and properly configuring security software will block out a majority of malware attempts to infect your website. We take preventative measures by installing and configuring anti-malware software to keep your website secure and backed up.   I personally fell in love with the free version of iThemes Security and since upgraded after things got serious.

The folks at iThemes security have done a great job putting together a software which patches most of the security holes you or I would typically not think about. 

iThemes has a host of other great plugins which all play nice in the sandbox – like Backup Buddy.

Backup Buddy

Your website host should automate backups of your websites, but it’s always best practice to have redundancies in the rare event of catastrophic failure. That’s where Backup Buddy comes in. You can back up your database to places like DropBox, Amazon, Google Cloud or even have your files emailed to you or stored locally on your hard drive. Restoring your files is super easy.

Backup Buddy also has an automated malware scanner to help you detect and prevent any messy bugs from getting into the system. 

Search Console

Lastly, implementing Search Console is the official, Google Supported Webmaster tool of choice.  It will automatically scan your website and email you if there are any warnings, or errors on the site which could affect usability or keyword rankings.

Here’s a video by Neil Patel explaining more:

W3 Total Cache

Whether you build your clients site or not, they are going to expect FAST load times for their users. There are a ton of caching plugins out there, W3 Total Cache is one of the most widely supported and effective plugins available. And it’s FREE!

W3 Total Cache

Smush Image Compression and Optimization

Installing a caching plugin will help load your website by storing it in the cloud at multiple locations, but the bulk of your client’s sites are most likely media files – namely images. There are a ton of compression plugins out there but most of thetime they reduce the quality and render your images grainy – and who wants that! Install Smush and try it out for yourself. Oh, it’s also free. The premium version doesn’t offer much of a benefit – so go nuts. You can thank me later.

Smush Image Compression and Optimization

With a little automation and help from software providers, you’ll be able to sleep sound at night knowing your websites are secure and protected.

Oh by the way, YOU’RE WELCOME. (Little nerd humor courtesy of Nick Burns, your companies computer guy)