Think of your website like a car. Just as a car needs regular maintenance, updates, and sometimes even a complete overhaul to keep it running smoothly and safely, your website needs similar care. Interested in learning more about why the occasional website redesign and updates are necessary? Let’s go through it!

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Keeping Up with Technology

WordPress Updates

WordPress is a popular tool for building websites that breaks everything up into blocks. Think of it kind of like how some people use LEGO bricks to build scale models. Over time, the people who create and maintain WordPress (like LEGO designers) release new features, security fixes, new versions with improvements. If you don’t update to these newer versions, you’ll miss out on all of these benefits. Not updating your WordPress site is like driving an old car that lacks modern conveniences and safety features, making it less efficient and potentially unsafe.

Server-Side Software

Servers use programming languages that work behind the scenes to make websites, including WordPress, function. On top of the standard HTML and CSS coding, there are also programming languages used, like PHP, which functions like an engine would in your car. It powers everything, but you don’t see it directly. Over time, these languages get updated to be faster, more efficient, and more secure. Newer versions can handle tasks better and more securely than older ones.

As server-side software evolves, certain features or ways of writing code become outdated and are removed. This is called deprecation. When this happens, entire sections of your website’s code may no longer function and may require a complete rewrite to work with the new versions. Additionally, some technology that your site relies on, such as plugins, may no longer be maintained and must be replaced to ensure compatibility and security.

What is a Server?

A server is a powerful computer that stores your website’s files and delivers them to visitors when they access your site. Think of a server as the garage where you keep your car. Just as the garage keeps your car safe and ready to drive, the server keeps your website’s data safe and available for visitors to view.

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Security Reasons

Security Updates

Both WordPress and server-side software get regular updates to fix security vulnerabilities. Going back to the car analogy, imagine if your car had a recall because it had a faulty anti-theft system. You would want to get that fixed right away, right? Similarly, updates to WordPress and PHP often include patches for security holes that could be exploited by hackers. If you don’t update, your website remains vulnerable to these threats.

Hackers and Malware

Cybersecurity is a serious issue, and hackers are always looking for ways to break into websites. Older versions of software are like unlocked doors, making it easier for them to get in and cause damage. Keeping your software up to date keeps those doors locked with state-of-the-art security systems, lowering your risk of damage.

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Functionality and Compatibility

New Features and Improvements

When WordPress or server-side software gets updated, they often add new features or make existing ones work better. Think of this like adding new gadgets to your car or improving its fuel efficiency. These updates can make your website faster, easier to use, and more functional for visitors.

Compatibility Issues

Older versions of WordPress or the underlying server-side software might not work well with new plugins or themes. Think of it like trying to make Model T run like a Lamborghini – It just doesn’t work. Additionally, as other parts of the web evolve (like web browsers or other websites your site might be connected to), older software might not be compatible anymore. This can cause parts of your website to not work as intended or even break entirely.

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Pit Stop Perfection: Keeping Your Site in Top Gear

When your website is hosted with InsideOut Solutions, we offer managed hosting services that take care of all these issues for you. Managed WordPress hosting means we handle the technical side of things, ensuring your website is always up to date, secure, and running smoothly. Think of it as having a professional pit crew that keeps your car in top condition without you having to lift a finger. This takes the worry out of having a website for most issues, allowing you to focus on your business.

Why a Website Redesign Might Be Necessary

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Sometimes, just updating isn’t enough, and a complete redesign might be needed. Here’s why:

Modern Design Standards

Websites evolve in their design, much like how the same model of car in 1996 looks entirely different from a 2024 model. So, a website designed several years ago might look outdated today. A redesign ensures your website looks fresh and modern, which can have a big impact on your bookings.

Improved User Experience

Redesigns can make your website easier to navigate and use, like upgrading your car’s dashboard from using needles to digital screens. This can lead to more satisfied visitors who are more likely to want to stay with you.

Better Performance / Functionality

Newer designs can be optimized for speed and efficiency, making your website load faster and perform better. Additionally, as your business grows, you might need your website to do more. A redesign can incorporate new features and capabilities that weren’t needed or available before.

Responsive Design

The way people access websites has changed dramatically over time. In the past, websites often had separate versions for mobile and desktop users. Now, with responsive design, a single website can adjust and look great on any device, whether it be a phone, tablet, or desktop computer. This shift from mobile-first to responsive design ensures a seamless experience for all users.

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InsideOut Solutions: Your Partner in Web Design and Hosting

At InsideOut Solutions, we understand that keeping the software of your website up to date can be overwhelming. That’s why we build websites on the latest versions of software and offer managed hosting services. This means that in the normal course of things, all the ‘under the hood’ updates are handled without any need for you, the website owner, to do anything.

However, it is possible that a website eventually becomes unmaintainable. This happens when the functions no longer work on the updated software, and things become deprecated. When this happens, the only option is to redesign the website using the latest technology. While there is a decent amount of time before a website gets to that point, it will certainly happen eventually.

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What’s Next?

If your website is over five years old, it’s likely well due for an upgrade. If this is the case for you, you’re in luck! InsideOut Solutions has been building websites in the hospitality industry for more than 27 years, and we’d be more than happy to help you get back on track with a website redesign or update! If you’re unsure if your website is up to par with today’s standards, please reach out for a consultation, and we’ll let you know.

Stay Informed, Stay Thriving!

InsideOut Solutions creates a new blog post every week, so subscribe to our monthly newsletter to stay updated with our recent blog posts! Feel free to contact us with any inquiries or if you require support with your property’s website design, digital marketing, content creation, hosting, or print & graphic design. Websites are our specialty, and with over 29 years in the industry and four generations of expertise, we are here for you.