5 Key Website Logins You Need Access To

5 key website logins you need access to

Do you have all the logins required to fully look after your WordPress website? Hint: we’re talking about more than just your website backend login!

The start of a new year is as good a time as any to double-check you have all the logins required to administer all aspects of your WordPress website.

Why?” I hear you ask.

I have lost count of the number of companies we’ve worked with who have struggled to give us access to various key systems. And in some cases they have ended up at a dead end. Perhaps even in a situation where they cannot update their website, or make other related changes.

How does this happen?” I hear you ask.

People move companies and if those employees had the logins (and the logins were in their now defunct email address), you have a problem.

Also, sometimes companies work with third parties (web designers, SEO companies etc) who create services on their behalf, but then forget to hand over the login credentials. Fast forward 18 months when you are no longer working with that company and it should be no surprise that login details are hard to find.

A further problem is that some of these logins are not needed all the time – perhaps only in an emergency. And an emergency is not the time to find out you do not have the login details!

So, which logins to you need to check?

1) WordPress Login

Let’s start with the obvious one: the login details to the backend of your WordPress site.

Now you might dismiss this out of hand because you were in the backend of your website earlier. But do you have the Administrator level login? I.e. this is the highest level login which give you full access to do anything.

It may well be that you and your team do not use the Administrator-level account day to day, you use a lesser WordPress role instead – and that’s a good thing as that can shield you from accidentally changing website settings which can have dramatic accidental repercussions. However, a company should still have access to an Administrator-level account in case of an emergency.

2) Hosting

Your website is ‘hosted‘ somewhere. You need access to this as it controls many things which you cannot do from the WordPress backend itself; e.g. access website backups, set up SSL, access SFTP/GIT details, raise support tickets, and, perhaps most importantly of all, pay for your hosting.

Now, if you pay an agency to host your website directly, you will not be able to access the above (nor will you need to). However, even in a scenario where you are paying an agency to support your website, a preferable scenario would be where you set up your own hosting, and then grant the agency access to your hosting account (which means, of course, you can revoke such access when you need).

3) Domain Registrar

The domain registrar is the company where your domain names are registered. Your company will be periodically billed (e.g. yearly, every 2 years, or even longer), to renew your domain names.

Whilst your domain name registrar could be the self-same hosting company from point (2) above, in reality, this is not often the case.

If any third party (e.g. a web design agency) has registered a domain name on your behalf, and you do not have direct control over that domain name, then that is a serious issue which you want to resolve. A tell-tale sign here is whether a registrar like 123-reg, or GoDaddy bills you for your domain name renewal directly, or the web agency does – if the later, please investigate.

4) DNS

DNS (or Domain Name Servers) is a service which translates your domain name, to computer-readable IP addresses. We use DNS to ‘point‘ your domain name to the relevant services that make your company work digitally; e.g. your hosting account, or your email provider.

Sometimes your DNS provider is either your hosting company (2), or domain registrar (3); however, this is not always necessarily the case as third-party DNS services can be used as well. Indeed, we typically recommend our clients use the CloudFlare DNS service.

Problems with DNS can not only affect your website, but can also bring down your email – please check who has access.

5) WordPress Specific

If your WordPress website uses premium, third-party plugins or themes, then you ought to have the logins to such Premium services, as they are often needed to update such services. If you have access, this typically means your company will be billed directly for any such Premium plugins / themes (this may happen on a monthly or annual basis).

We often host websites for clients on our hosting platform. For such clients, by using our platform, clients have access to Premium services which we pay for directly (e.g. the security plugin iThemes Security Pro). If a client then decides to take their hosting elsewhere (and we are no longer involved in support), then the client has the option of purchasing their own licence to carry on using the plugin.

Side note: whilst I’m thinking of licences, if your website uses any stock photography etc, please check who purchased this licences in case of any future query.

The End

I hope that helps, I’ll update this article each year and keep reminding business in January. Hopefully, it will save a few companies some heartache.





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