This week, my dad got in touch to say his two WordPress self-hosted sites had been suspended by his web host as they had been hacked. I cleaned things up and the web host reopened the sites.
My dad then asked if he could manage without a website, and simply use social media. There are many things to consider, such as how much control you want to have – and being at the mercy of a third-party (Facebook, Twitter etc). But if something goes wrong with your web host, it’s not a totally different scenario.
Years ago I would’ve said that everyone should have a website. Today, I think it really depends what the website would be used for, and what the company does. My last few jobs have all been developing websites, either as part of an in-house development team or working for an agency building sites for clients. These would not have worked purely on social media. They were all fairly big sites with a lot of custom functionality behind the scenes. We also had an in-house development team. A small business may not have ready access to developers.
I think there’s a benefit in having a website, but if it’s taking a lot of your time to manage and you’re not seeing a lot of sales from it, perhaps it’s time to consider what the point of it is. Does your website have a specific purpose, and is it fulfilling that purpose? Or do you have a website because you feel you should, or someone told you that you need one?
If you’re not seeing the benefits, consider streamlining it, keeping it simple and cutting out anything that isn’t worth keeping. It’ll take less work for you to manage in the long run – and means you can spend more time on the things that matter.