When it comes to running a WordPress website there is a lot of behind-the-scenes action that must take place. Tasks such as security monitoring, backups, site wide updates, and database optimization all play a role in how your site will function from the inside out and are essential for creating an exceptional user experience. And sometimes website owners don’t know how to do these things, don’t want to do these things, or just need a little extra help.
If you are a small business owner that uses the most popular content management system around, yes I am talking about WordPress, I think it is time you consider enlisting the help of a WordPress maintenance service to help you with the managerial tasks required to keep your website running.
Now I know some of the services provided are actually easy enough to do on your own.
But wouldn’t you rather take advantage of the expertise of say Zen WP, so that you can concentrate on other tasks related to your website that are more enjoyable and less administrative?
If you are on the fence about whether to use a WordPress maintenance service I am going to help make your decision-making process a little easier by showing you how Zen WP can help you.
What is Zen WP?
Zen WP, in business now for about a little over 2 years, is relatively new to the list of WordPress maintenance service providers website owners have to choose from. Offering technical support to business owners who run WordPress websites, Zen WP maintains the attitude that they are the best option for those who either don’t have the time or the knowledge to run the back-end admin tasks WordPress requires.
By providing clients direct access to dedicated developers and engineers, Zen WP boasts unlimited support for any task that is WordPress related. And with a retention rate of 94% so far this year, I think it’s pretty safe to say that they are doing something right.
Zen WP’s services reach far and wide when it comes to your website’s maintenance tasks. Here are some of the main things you can expect, depending on the plan you choose, should you decide to use Zen WP for your website management needs:
- Website Security. Backups, recovery, and malware/spam prevention are a priority. Not only will any issues be resolved quickly, your website will be constantly monitored to prevent future security issues.
- Regular Updates. Your WordPress core, plugins, and themes will always be up to date and working properly.
- Configuration. Installation of plugins, Google Analytics setup, WooCommerce configuration, and payment gateway integration can all be taken care of for you.
- Minor Design and SEO Optimization. Search engine indexing, sitemap creation, favicon installation, and YOAST SEO configuration will help your website get found by both Google and your site visitors.
- Optimization. Never worry about site speed again with things such as redirect setup and caching plugin installation.
- Developer Jobs. Get help with minor CSS changes and child theme creation from one of Zep WP’s expert website developers.
In addition, Zen WP takes their service one step further should you decide to sign up for their Pro Plan or design a custom plan. Things like new website design, host migration, marketing efforts, page rank boosting, custom plugin functionality, and custom theme configuration can be handled quickly and easily making your job as a website owner much more relaxing.
How it Works
One of the great things about Zen WP is that in addition to the services outlined above, they are on hand 24/7/365 for all of your WordPress needs.
When you have an issue with your website all you have to do is email Zen WP and describe your issue in as much detail as possible. Within 24 hours (and 12 hours with the Pro Plan) you will be contacted by one of Zen WP’s expert developers or engineers to confirm your job request. From there your job request will be handled within another 24 hours (again, 12 hours with the Pro Plan).
If you prefer, you can also directly contact your favorite developer or engineer to help you solve your problem. The only downfall is, depending on the popularity of the developer or engineer you request, Zen WP cannot guarantee that your issue will be resolved within the 24 hour period. But don’t worry, it will still get solved quickly.
After your issue has been resolved Zen WP will always deliver a report detailing your website’s issue, the solution applied, and any other recommendations they feel would be beneficial to your website in both design and performance. In addition, you will receive monthly tips sent via email for improving your website. Need some advice? They are there for that too.
I think the only tricky part is that not until you click onto the page detailing the types of jobs they can handle do you realize services are only for “…any basic, 30-minute WordPress task.” Though there is no issue with this initially, as this is customary for most WordPress maintenance providers, there is no real clear indication what would happen if the task proved to be beyond ‘basic’ or the thirty minute time limit.
With year round access to the support team, clients of Zen WP can rest assured help is just an email away. Unfortunately, Zen WP does not provide phone support for any of the plans website owners can sign up for. Although those with a custom plan might have direct access to a developer via phone, the option is not readily available for everyone else.
It is also disappointing to see that live chat is not available either. For website owners with a pressing issue, or maybe one that could easily be solved with a small conversation, a live chat option would be useful.
Though Zen WP guarantees a reply to all email requests within 24 hours, it would be great to know that small problems could be solved right away and major concerns could also be addressed right away rather than within the 24 hour period which can feel like ages when your website has been compromised.
Zen WP Pricing Plans
Zen WP offers 3 distinct pricing plans to accommodate your website needs:
Zen WP’s Basic Plan is quite expensive when compared to some of the competition that offers additional maintenance services for a lower monthly price. I would have liked to have seen some minimal proactive tasks taken care of such as WordPress core and plugin updates since that is often the point of hiring a service to maintain your website.
I think it is also important to note that unless you sign up for the Standard or Pro Plans you will not receive the benefits of Zen WP’s Security Plan. With website security being such an important issue, waiting for a security issue to pop up and then handling it may not sit well with many website owners.
That being said, I think one of the nicest features Zen WP offers all clients regardless of the plan they subscribe to is the ability to purchase design or development hours for specialty jobs at the relatively inexpensive rate of $15-20. However, this is an additional cost that must fit into your overall budget which is not always doable and may create a financial burden.
Conclusion and Recommendations
WordPress maintenance is one of the most crucial investments you can include in your overall website budget. The behind-the-scenes tasks that need to be handled on a daily basis that are either overlooked or dreaded must get tended to regardless. Security monitoring, regular updates, website backups, and other general maintenance is what will keep your website running smooth and provide your site visitors with a great experience.
In short though I think Zen WP offers WordPress website owners a solid set of maintenance features, I feel that for the price clients are paying for the Basic Plan there should definitely be a couple more added features to keep up with the tough competition that is on the market today. However, enlisting the help of Zen WP, no matter which plan you decide to go with, is far better than doing nothing at all or struggling to maintain your website alone.
Do you feel you need some help maintaining your WordPress website? Have you tried Zen WP for you WordPress maintenance needs? I would love to hear all about it in the comments below!