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Five Ways to Keep Your Website Relevant in 2018

by Brian Byer  |  
February 12, 2018

Welcome to 2018, the year you need to update your website's look and functionality for two business-critical reasons: legal compliance and user respect and trust.

The latter is probably long overdue and has been hindering conversions; the former, a long time coming, is looking to become an immediate concern.

The problem? Businesses that set up a website many years ago and have done few, if any, modifications since. They may have updated to integrate new forms of payment or to manage inventory in a more timely manner, but that's usually the extent of it. If that describes your business, then your site is doing a disservice to your business and your customers—and, potentially, your bottom line, because they are noncompliant at a time of looming enforcement of standards and legislation.

Here are updates you should consider for your website if you find it's out-of-date in any of the following areas.

1. Data Security

In 2018, security is going to be a top concern of your website visitors, especially if your site requires them to provide personal or financial information. After the numerous well-publicized data breaches in 2017, your users will be especially wary of how interacting with your site could affect them.

Minimally, you should be using HTTPS to protect confidential online transactions and even online info-request forms. But today's users now expect a trusted certificate on any webpage they visit, so be sure all your pages have up-to-date certificates. The addition of basic SSL-level security will also aid in your SEO efforts.

For e-commerce sites, Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) compliance, while not in and of itself the law, is the standard required by the major credit card issuers (Visa, Mastercard, Discover, American Express, and JCB) for all merchants accepting payments online. Merely using a PCI DSS-compliant processor cuts down your risk, but it doesn't eliminate your compliance obligations. Merchants still must validate compliance, and the usage of an Approved Scanning Vendor (ASV) to check your website for vulnerabilities can help keep hackers at bay.

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Brian Byer is VP of Blue Fountain Media, a leading digital marketing firm headquartered in Manhattan.

LinkedIn: Brian Byer 

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  • by Chris Mon Feb 12, 2018 via mobile

    How do I update my website I got it through vista print any help will be greatly appreciated

  • by ColinN Mon Feb 12, 2018 via web

    This is really interesting. Legal compliance risks would not have been my first guess in terms of website updates. But I do see the concerns of neglecting those risks longer term. I am currently working with an entrepreneurial business on refreshing a very outdated page. Legal compliance updates are not as much a concern for the business owners at the moment. If you had to focus on update tips for a services small business that may only refresh their site every few years what more specific updates would suggest to carry them through the next 1-3 years? Any approaches are appreciated! Thanks for the great article!

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