You’ve signed up for a website care plan – congratulations! You’ve taken an important step in ensuring the security, functionality and usability of your website. Below, we outline the key aspects of website maintenance you must be aware of, revealing how to maximise the value of your support package.
Your care plan most likely covers a number of areas (depending on the provider and the level of plan you have selected) including updates, backups and security and performance scans but possibly the most useful feature is the allocated support time. Every month you can access expert assistance from a tech support specialist who can assist you in updating content, adding new features and resolving bugs.
Given that most support packages have a specific amount of time allocated to you each month to complete any requests you submit, you ideally want to be able to maximise this time to get the most out of it. At practiceedge, we handle hundreds of support requests every week, so we’ve put together our top tips on getting the most from your website care package on some of our most common request types.
Complete Basic Checks First
When something goes wrong with your website you obviously want to have the issue resolved as quickly as possible. Despite the urgency, there are a few basic steps you should take before contacting your support team.
- Check if you are connected to the internet – it sounds obvious but we’ve seen a number of occasions where this is the reason a website isn’t loading. Try loading another site or two to make sure the issue is only with your website
- Determine where the issue is occurring – try to replicate it on different browsers and on different devices (your computer, phone or tablet). If a glitch is only occurring on a specific platform that helps us to identify its cause faster
- Get a friend or colleague to check if they are experiencing the same issue – this helps to rule out anything on your system that may be causing it.
Provide Detailed Information
Identifying and fixing a bug in your website, email or hosting involves a troubleshooting process to find the underlying cause of the issue. The more specific you can be about what the problem is, the more information your support team has to work with.
Try to include the following details in your bug report:
- Where is the issue occurring – on a specific page or the whole site?
- Describe the issue – what is happening and how is this different to what should be happening?
- What device (desktop or laptop, tablet mobile), operating system (Mac, Windows) and browser (Chrome, Firefox, Edge etc.) are you experiencing the issue on? Is the problem occurring on other devices and browsers or just specific ones?
- What steps did you take before the problem occurred? This helps us reproduce it in testing.
- When did the problem start happening?
- Have there been any updates made to your website recently?
- Do you see any specific error messages?
- Can you take a screenshot of the issue and include it in your ticket?
You can never provide too much information in a support ticket. The less work your support technician has to do to interpret your request, the more quickly and efficiently they can action it.
Be Specific in Your Request
If you are requesting new content to be added to your site, specify which page it should go on, where on the page it should be added and any styling requests such as font colours or image placement. If you are requesting updates to your current content, identify what needs to be added and what needs to be replaced or removed. You know your content best so we rely on you to let us know what needs to go where.
Provide All the Assets
Make sure you include everything that is needed to complete your update. For example, if you are wanting a new blog post to be uploaded, specify the blog title, what the URL should be, attach a featured image as a separate high resolution file, include what category you want the post to go in, any links that need to be included and what date you want it to go live on your site.
Feature or Functionality Requests
From time to time you may want to add a new feature or function to your website. While your support package won’t cover large redesigns or system integrations, small additions such as creating new pages, building forms or adding slideshows are often within the scope of your support time.
Again, the key here is providing specific and detailed information. Using the example of adding a new contact form, here is some of the information you should provide:
- Which page does the form need to go on?
- What fields need to be included in the form?
- Which fields are required and which are optional for the user to fill in?
- Where should the information be sent when a form is submitted
- Should the user also receive a confirmation email and what should it say?
- Should the user be redirected to another page after filling in the form
- Does the form need to integrate with any other platforms e.g. Mailchimp. If the answer is yes, make sure you provide login details
- What is the timeframe? Is there a specific date this needs to be ready for?
The key thing to remember is that your support team are here to help. Following these guidelines when submitting your support requests means we can work together, making the process as easy and efficient as possible and ensuring you get quality results from your website care plan.
For more information or to add a care package to your website, contact practiceedge.