Take control of your website

By: Anonymous

Date: 5 March 2010

One of my clients is in a frustrating situation that my business, Manage My Website, is trying to sort out.

They’re a small business with four divisions, eight domain names and four websites. Their problem? Each website has been designed by a different agency or freelancer and each is hosted separately. My client is desperately trying to get hold of the vital information my business needs to help them gain control of the whole lot.

The lesson here is that it’s crucial to ask your web designer to give you all of the contact details, URLs, usernames and passwords for all of your websites, content management systems, email accounts and hosting services. That way, if anything goes wrong, you can get it fixed quickly and with minimum fuss. You don’t need to do anything with this information other than keep it somewhere safe (preferably in a few places) and make sure you can access it if need be.

Imagine if one day you decide to change a few images on your homepage or add a page to your website. You try to contact your web designer, only to find they’ve emigrated to Australia without leaving a forwarding address. You’re stuck.

Even worse, imagine if you’ve bought an existing business along with its website(s), which you urgently need to update. You need to make sure you know who designed and built your sites and how you can contact them if you need to.

You must also find out whether you own your domain name (you should) and when it’s up for renewal.

If you need to make backups or update or develop your website, do you know how to access your website files? Does your web hosting company offer automatic daily backup services and is this included in your contract? When does your web-hosting contract expire? How much disk space is included in your web-hosting package and how much of it remains?

Simply knowing the answers to these key questions can help to ensure your website continues to run like clockwork.

Allie Astell, Manage My Website