Supporting and maintaining your Drupal website
Support and maintenance is the job of keeping your website up and running at a good speed, securely patched, backed up and being available to help you if you get stuck. IE Digital’s Head of Support, James Marsh, explains our approach to hosting, monitoring, supporting and maintaining websites for our clients.
Here at IE Digital, we’re experts in designing and building websites in Drupal and other Open Source CMSs, but our job doesn’t stop when you go live. We also offer a flexible website support package, which is designed to keep our clients’ websites running securely and efficiently.
Our website support and maintenance package keeps everything running smoothly, and gives access to a team of digital experts who understand the client, their websites, and the tools used to build them – all managed by a dedicated Customer Support Engineer, and based in the UK.
IE’s digital support package includes:
Managed Secure Hosting
This covers the web server used to run your site. The actual hardware, its operating system and the vital software and database components that it needs, based on the individual requirements for your website.
We supply standard Cloud-based hosting for your website, that’s tuned and suitable for its current functionality.
We backup the site nightly, on a rolling basis. Backups are held for a minimum of 2 weeks. These can be be used to recreate your site in the event of a catastrophic hardware failure.
Proactive monitoring of server resource usage and website availability.
We apply server and database patches to help protect it against attack.
We provide a SSL certificate, which ensures a secure connection for your editors and visitors, protecting data and boosting your visibility on search engines.
We use a range of tools to keep an eye on the performance of your site, the software that runs it and the servers it sits on. Our standard checks currently include:
Checking automated tasks occur when they are supposed to, such as imports from external systems.
Checking levels of server utilisation are as expected.
Checking your website is visible to the outside world.
Depending on the website and client, we can also include regular, bespoke health checks as an additional, optional part of the service:
Review usage stats or other data for unusual variations
Checking availability of specific services or sections (sub-parts of a whole website)
Monitoring email delivery
Reviewing error logs
All our packages cover the cost of implementing and testing security patches for your content management system and other software that makes up your website, mobile app or web application.
This service dramatically reduces the risk of successful attacks and helps towards the longevity of your website. We usually apply the most critical updates straight away. The frequency of less critical security updates will depend on the level of your package and the likely impact to your site. (The criticality of patches is determined by external organisations, for example the Drupal Security team, not IE.)
Application patching will occasionally mean small bugs creeping in to your site – so we test each set of updates before we carry them out on your live site and fix any minor issues we find.
IE Digital support desk
All our packages include a retainer that gives you access to our digital experts, through our business hours, UK-based Support Desk. They’ll be able to cover any queries about content or site admin for the applications that make up your site, and they’ll react quickly to any new issues that have a significant impact on the service your site delivers or your organisation’s reputation.
The IE Digital Support desk can also advise on and carry out small feature requests by installing and configuring additional Drupal modules or making minor template (HTML/CSS) tweaks.
For anything more significant outside the ‘business as usual’ support service, you’ll receive the support of a senior digital consultant, your account owner. They can advise and quote for developments to enhance your site, introduce new functionality, or make other improvements to the user experience.
And there's no need to worry about talking to a faceless overseas support team. IE Digital is based entirely from our studio in Birmingham, UK, so your Customer Service Engineer, developers and consultants are all on hand to solve your problem as a team.
Tailored support packages
Every client is different, so as well as our Standard Digital Support Package we also offer a Premium service, which caters for clients who need to be treated as high priority, who want something a little more bespoke in the way of hosting or monitoring, or where a formal service level agreement (SLA) is required.
The package you will need depends on the complexity of your website, the volume of use etc. In broad terms, the things that add further complexity are:
multiple web sites, mobile apps and web applications
content delivered in multiple languages
pulling information from or pushing information to external systems
complex interactive user journeys (e.g. big forms)
complex permissions for different sorts of registered user.
We'll work with you to tailor a package to suit your organisation.
Our website support and maintenance package keeps everything running smoothly. Keeping up with regular security updates will dramatically reduce the risk of successful attacks and help towards the longevity of your website.James Marsh
Senior Digital Consultant and Head of Support, IE Digital