When you register your car at the DMV every year you are required to prove your vehicle complies with certain safety and emission requirements, right? These standards are intended to better ensure the safety of both you and all other drivers with whom you share the road. If your car fails to meet specified standards, then you aren’t permitted to drive it. Well, a shared web hosting environment is a lot like the roads we drive on: lots of customers share a given server. So, similar to the DMV, we at Bluehost have a Terms of Service/Compliance Department to ensure websites we host are safe for both their owners as well as everyone else using the same server.
A Stitch In Time Saves Nine
If you neglect or procrastinate maintaining your car, you might have to spend a lot of time and money on repairs when it comes time to register it again. It is better to regularly maintain your car to avoid problems at registration and to ensure it runs well all year. This same principle applies to websites. Proper website maintenance ensures it operates smoothly all year and helps you avoid all kinds of problems. Here are some tips to keeping your website tuned up so you can maximize uptime:
Check Yourself Before You Wreck Yourself
Before you ever begin to optimize your database or update your scripts, create a backup of your site and download it to your home computer. Then, after you’ve finished any optimizing or updating, check the site thoroughly to make sure it is functioning properly. If everything looks good, create and download a new backup to include the recent changes you’ve made.
Update Your Software
Most websites use a combination of scripts, plug-ins, themes, etc… The internet evolves rapidly and so does software, so you want to make sure you are constantly updating any and all components that make up your website. This helps ensure your website remains both functional and secure.
“The #1 reason websites are hacked is because they are running outdated website software. Sometimes these updates are very involved and require expert assistance, but putting it off is the same as putting off critical maintenance of your car; eventually it comes back to bite you, and the expense and trouble will be multiplied.” -Kevin S. Level 2 Scripting Tech
Optimize, Optimize, Optimize
Cars with high emissions pollute the air for everyone else on the road, right? Well, think of unoptimized websites as server polluters: they hog resources and slow everyone else down. Optimizing your website ensures it is lean and fast and helps you avoid any Terms of Service/Compliance issues. Here are some great articles to help you:
p.s. Optimizing your website is an ongoing process. Most sites on shared web hosting servers should be optimized at least once a month, with larger sites that receive a lot of traffic often requiring several optimization checks a month.
Following these tips will help you keep your website fully-functional, secure, and safe for both you, your visitors, and all other customers sharing your server. Here’s to a lean, clean, optimized, and updated information superhighway!
Camille (Billing) & Justin (Terms of Service)