There is a variety of CMSs and each of them has its benefits and drawbacks. With more than 443,500 active installs, Umbraco is a popular content management system that has a lot of advantages. Here are some of them.
- It is the leading open source ASP.NET CMS that can be easily adapted to suit a wide range of needs.
- It is scalable and offers flexibility to run everything from small campaign sites to complex applications and to some of the biggest media sites in the world.
- It makes a good choice for creating unique custom websites for enterprise-sized businesses.
- Umbraco websites look great, are very easy to maintain, and offer intuitive editing experience for content creators.
- It has a worldwide community of developers who are constantly working to improve it and provide great tools that you can use on your website.
Need advice on how to maintain your website based on Umbraco CMS? Of course, there are standard practices for maintaining any website but Umbraco has some features and packages that require user’s special attention. In this article, you will find some Umbraco maintenance tips that will help you run your Umbraco website at its absolute best. Keep reading to learn more about it.
1. Use the Latest Version of Umbraco
One of the advantages of Umbraco is a strong ecosystem of an open source community that now includes more than 200,000 active members and a commercial company that provides professional support and tools. The system is regularly updated according to the latest development trends and every release offer new awesome features. That’s why you should always make sure your website uses the latest version of Umbraco. At the moment of writing, the most recent version of Umbraco is 7.11.1 (released on June 26, 2018). Umbraco 8.0.0 is under development and the release date is to be determined.
2. Add Umbraco Packages
Want to run your Umbraco website more efficiently? There are different packages offered by Umbraco and the Umbraco community. Currently, you can take advantage of more than 320 free packages. You can choose from different categories such as CRM, security, SEO, e-commerce, and more. But you should always make sure that the packages you use are compatible with your version of Umbraco.
You can use Umbraco for free in an open-source format and if you want to make your website more functional, you can add professional tools and get additional Umbraco support from the commercial organization.
3. Keep Your Website Fast
Your website’s speed is very important for SEO and usability. A fast website is a must because Google and other search engines include this aspect in their algorithms. But internet users also don’t like slow websites. According to surveys, users expect any website to load in less than 2 seconds or even less and 40% of them are likely to leave a site if it fails to load in less than 3 seconds.
You should check your Umbraco CMS website speed and take steps to ensure it runs fast to make it SEO- and user-friendly. You can use Google Analytics and PageSpeed Insights to get a better idea of how your website is performing and what you can do to increase overall speed.
4. Check Your Forms
Do your best to make your Umbraco website usable and ensure a pleasant user and brand experience. Do you have calls to actions or other forms on your website that users need to fill out if they are interested in your services or products? Any functionality on a website can sometimes break and forms are no exception. Besides, they may fail to work properly and it can result in missing lead information or purchases. But the consequences may be even worse because it can also lead to a terrible user experience. Your users may be disappointed and leave bad reviews about your website and your brand. That’s why you should regularly test your website’s forms to ensure they operate properly.
5. Do SEO Audits on a Regular Basis
Do you check your Umbraco website for page errors and broken links? If you don’t, you should start doing it immediately.
SEO is important for attracting traffic to the website so you have to make your website SEO manageable and performing. You should be consistent about improving your SEO and make a schedule of checking your website for page errors and its overall performance. You can use a variety of SEO tools of your choice to do that. For example, you can take advantage of Moz Pro or Screaming Frog.
Here is a short list of SEO items you should keep your eye on. All of them are very important issues that can have a bad impact on your website’s organic visibility and disappoint your users.
- Broken internal links
- Broken pages
- Broken images or media
- Page titles
There is nothing more frustrating than you click on a button or a link and the page won’t load. Besides, your website can lose its rankings in search engines and you can lose your revenue.
If you happen to find broken links or page errors on your website, you have to take measures to update your links to ensure they point to proper URLs and make sure that pages that don’t exist redirect users to the relevant pages. You can use Umbraco Redirect Management to add URL redirects quickly and manage them easily.
Not sure where to start to improve your Umbraco website’s SEO? There are tons of useful SEO resources online and you can also use some of the Umbraco SEO packages to get started:
- AMP for Umbraco
- Umbraco XML Sitemap
- SEO Starter Kit
With these useful tools and a careful planning, making your Umbraco website SEO-friendly will be quite easy and you can have a site that will perform well with search engines.
6. Separate Your Data Files from Your Umbraco Website
You should separate your data files that contain information about forms, videos, and images configurations from the files that are needed for your website to run. In this case, you will be able to move your website anywhere you want and your data will not have to go with it but you will be able to access your data from a different location. Then, you will be able to deploy a new copy with all your updates and will not have to worry that these files will be deleted or lost. How can you separate your data? You can use Azure Blob Containers together with the Umbraco package that is called Azure File System Provider.
7. Keep your Data in Sync across Environments
When you have to run Umbraco in multiple environments, for example, your test, staging, and production websites, it’s important to keep changes to your data in sync. Keeping your data in sync manually is time-consuming because you will have to go to every environment and copy changes every time. Still, there is a way to increase your productivity. For example, you can use such tool as uSync. Are you using Umbraco Cloud to host your site? In this case, all this functionality is handled by Umbraco Deploy.
We hope that our Umbraco open-source CMS maintenance tips will help you achieve success in running your website.