What Is A WordPress Support Plan

By Adam

What Is A WordPress Support Plan

You wouldn’t get on a boat without a life jacket, so why would you launch your website without a support plan? A WordPress support plan is a lot like a life jacket, if you fall overboard it’ll keep you breathing easy. If you get hit by a tsunami, well that life jacket really isn’t going to do much. Using a life jacket, much like a support plan, is more about safety and preparation than it is about disaster-proofing. Disasters happen but many smaller disasters are simply avoidable. That’s where a support plan really shines.

In this new era of the wild wild web, having your website up for your customers to visit is essential. Making sure your customers feel safe while browsing is the utmost important task of your website. WordPress is great in many ways How WordPress Makes Our Sites Better but with anything that’s popular and awesome, it becomes a major target for hackers all over the world. Having a WordPress support plan in place is essential to ensuring your website is up and running, your customers’ experience isn’t hindered, and you can sleep easy not worrying about these things.

  • The Bad News: Annually, hundreds of thousands of WordPress websites are hacked.
  • The Good News: Most website hacks are entirely preventable by updating plugins, themes, WordPress core, and backing up your website regularly. This is where a WordPress support plan comes in.

A WordPress support plan is for anyone who owns a WordPress website, and it doesn’t matter what industry or organization or business you’re in. In this post, we’ll be covering what a WordPress support plan is, why you need one, and 5 Must-Haves In A WordPress Support Plan Jump straight into the list! for your business. After all, it’s October – National Cyber Security Month – so it’s a perfect time to talk about this stuff!

GIf of the joker saying do I really a guy with a plan
"Some men just want to watch the world burn." - Alfred Pennyworth

What Is A WordPress Support Plan?

In a nutshell, a WordPress support plan is a series of regularly scheduled tasks performed by a webmaster to ensure your website is secure, backed up, and functioning properly. These tasks are typically conducted daily, weekly, and monthly — varying from task to task — and are completed regularly on a schedule set out in the plan itself.

Why Do I Need A WordPress Support Plan?

Has your website ever been hacked? Has one of your beloved customers ever emailed you just to say “hey, I tried to go to your website and it looks like it’s down”? Have you ever been in a meeting where you typed your website into the browser just to find that you couldn’t access it?

If any of these scenarios sound vaguely familiar, that’s probably why you’re reading this post. WordPress is the most popular CMS (content management system) on the market today and with that becomes a beacon for hackers all over the world. Having your website down can have massive business implications like loss of revenue, brand distrust from your customers, and difficulties running your day-to-day operations just to name a few. To top that off, here’s an uninspiring statistic from Securi’s Website Hack Trend Report 2018. Read Securi's full Website Hack Trend 2018 WordPress has moved up to 90% (from 83%) of all hacks recorded in 2018 amongst the 4 popular platforms on the market. This stat doesn’t imply if one platform is more or less secure than another but rather reflects the overall popularity of the CMS.

Seeing a stat like this can be scary, to say the least, but it illuminates the importance of a WordPress support plan.

Securi's CMS Infections Comparison Graph 2017 & 2018
Hacked WordPress Websites (Image source: Sucuri)

So how do you stand up to these threats? How do you get armed and ready to fight the good fight on the digital battlefield?

For starters, you need to get educated on the topic and accept that you have to be prepared for anything.

At this point you might be asking yourself “is WordPress even secure”, and it’s safe to say it is. WordFence, a major player in digital WordPress security, wrote a thorough post on WordPress security Read WordFence's Full Post and how they handle WordPress-related vulnerabilities actively. In the image below, WordFence outlines how a vulnerability is typically handled and how their firewall protects your website against known hack attempts. So you’re a bit more armed, we’ve created a list of 5 Must-Haves In A WordPress support plan below.

WordFence's Zero Day Vulnerability Timeline
The lag time between discovered vulnerabilities and when a fix is released. (Image source: WordFence)

5 Must-Haves In A WordPress Support Plan

1. Monitoring

It’s important to know when your website is down regardless of the time of day. Unless you’re an insomniac, watching your site all hours of the day is next to impossible. We’ve created a WordPress support plan called the CareKit Learn More About The CareKit (shameless plug here, don’t mind me) that automatically monitors your website minute by minute, so we’ll know your website is down well before you do and can take action.

2. Updates

With our CareKit, we ensure websites receive the latest, well-tested updates. We check for plugin updates, theme updates, and WordPress core updates on a weekly basis to make sure we address any vulnerabilities discovered. The majority of updates, especially WordPress core updates, are security fixes. Neglected updates are one of the main reasons WordPress websites get hacked so often, and older versions of plugins, themes, and WordPress core can pose major security concerns for your website.

3. Human Checks

Some WordPress support plans opt to ignore this key component of making sure your website is safe. In those plans, webmasters and robots alike will blindly perform updates without checking to see if those updates are actually compatible and your site is functioning properly afterwards. We have one of our staff check weekly after scheduled updates to ensure that updates to the website haven’t broken anything and the website is functioning as intended. This is a heavily overlooked task in most support plans.

4. Backups

Speaking of heavily overlooked tasks, please do not take this lightly: backup, backup, backup! I cannot stress this enough.

We take backups in 2 ways: daily to one remote server, and weekly to a completely different server, just to be safe. If we conduct a plugin, theme, or WordPress core update and in our human check we find that it broke the site and it’s not functioning properly, instead of panicking we rely on backups to restore the site to a previously working state. Double the backups means double the means to restore a fully-functional website. Having backups is absolutely mandatory in any good WordPress support pan.

5. Support & Report

This rhymes and it sounds cool, but that’s not the only reason why I’ve mentioned it. When a website goes down or isn’t functioning properly, our CareKit Medics (support staff) investigate and address the issue. We also provide a monthly CareKit Insights Report outlining the number of website hack attempts prevented, uptime, plugin updates, and more.

Take a look at our website’s September 2019 CareKit Insights Report: 437 hack attempts! WOW, that’s a lot. We’re protected though, so it’s time to kick back, relax, and take a much deserved coffee break.

Ankit Designs September 2019 CareKit Insights Report Screenshot
Ankitdesigns.com CareKit Insights Report For September 2019

Takeaway

All of this can seem overwhelming but with a little bit of education and the right team, you can conquer the wild wild web with finesse. Take your WordPress website security seriously and use the 5 Must-Haves list above to pick the WordPress support plan that’s right for you. WordPress website hackers are ruthless and it’s your job to ensure you’re ready for the battle.

Of course, we can take care of all this hassle for you. Our CareKit is a monthly, no-commitment plan that includes daily backups, weekly updates, weekly human checks, monthly reports, and support should you run into any trouble.

About the author

I'm nobody's taxi service but I take pride in driving the bus! Upbeat, energetic serial entrepreneur on the quest to serve and help people. I enjoy long walks on short beaches and adventurous, adrenaline-pumping activities. I'm a normal bloke doing abnormal bloke things!
Read more posts by Adam
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