If you’re not someone with a lot of experience in web development, you likely think that website design and development is a “one-and-done" experience – you approach a dev shop (like us) to design you a beautiful new website that solves your business challenges and then you’re on your way (at least that’s what we hope your experience is like!) Or, you might be a busy marketer on a small team that’s already pushed to the max when it comes to responsibilities and don’t have the time, expertise, or tools to maintain your website past content management or basic updates.

You deserve to have a web development partner that takes care of the other details you might not even be aware of when it comes to maintaining a website long-term. After all, having a dedicated partner that supports the other areas of your website ultimately saves you time, money, and the headache of trying to do it all yourself.

But, if you’re not experienced in the field of web development, what are the things that a potential partner should be able to maintain so you can get back to your other responsibilities? Let’s look at 5 key services your website development partner should be offering beyond just building a great website:

1. Ongoing Monitoring, Maintenance, and Improvements

It’s critical to find a partner that has a long-term maintenance and support plan in place to support your site long after its completion. Can your site handle various amounts of traffic and scale automatically to accommodate for extra bandwidth to ensure a good experience for your visitors? If you’re not sure, it’s important for you to find a web development partner that can take care of cloud-based hosting, bug fixes, enhancements, and new feature development. Keeping your site up-to-date with ongoing improvements means that you can stay ahead of your competition and capture as many customers as possible. Run (don’t walk) away from anyone offering to build you a website and not support it afterward.

2. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Strategy

Driving a greater number of potential customers to your site via Google searches is a common goal for many marketers. After all, Google captures 71% of search traffic clicks and only 6% of users click on second-page search results. So, it’s important more than ever to ensure your site shows up in the first page of search results. A web development partner that has a deep understanding of search engine optimization (SEO) best practices can help you maximize the potential for your site to rank higher in search results. It’s important to find a partner who will conduct a SEO assessment to review the quality of your site and its content and can help identify the areas of greatest opportunity. Coupled with your digital marketing goals, these opportunities can help you boost brand recognition, make your website more intuitive to visitors, attract a higher-quality audience, and much more!

3. Accessibility

The American Community Survey (ACS) estimates that 12.8% of all users have accessibility needs that make using a non-accessible website difficult or impossible. People with certain disabilities often require accommodations to use a website such as text-to-speech, the ability to enlarge fonts, high contrast colors, and keyboard navigation. Learning, vision, and mobility difficulties can all stop a potential customer from interacting with your site. Also, don’t forget that website accessibility is the law, so it’s important to avoid potential legal problems and ensure your site is compliant.

4. Security

Think your business is too small to be targeted online? Think again – hackers now employ automated scanning tools to detect and exploit vulnerabilities, often targeting small to medium-sized businesses. Especially if your site collects customer data like email addresses, credit card information, or mailing addresses, it’s important to ensure that your site’s security vulnerabilities are found and fixed on a quarterly basis. Unless you have a dedicated web developer on your team, most companies don’t scan their site for security risks as often as they should. A web development partner can take this task off your plate by conducting these security scans ourselves, providing you with the results (which can sometimes be as simple as installing a Web Application Firewall (WAF), and fixing the gaps in your site’s overall security coverage.

5. Marketing automation

Is your site generating valuable leads? Are you able to understand a buyer’s journey from prospect to customer? Personalizing your marketing efforts with the help of marketing automation tools not only helps you to be efficient, but also helps you to build valuable and lasting relationships with potential customers to understand their needs and ultimately, generate sales for your business. Because many marketing automation platforms often tie into your website, your web development partner should know how to set you up with top-of-the-line tools and help you create a strategy to build your sales pipeline and generate quality leads.

At Emergent Software, we strive to go above and beyond comes to you web development project. Our focus on building a long-term client relationship with you means that we want to continue to support you, your business goals, and your site long after its completion.

Interested in learning more about how we can help your team? Contact us today for a FREE consultation!