BeeKeeper CMS to WordPress
The BeeKeeper CMS is no longer supported in Australia by the original developers. Whilst we can provide limited support, you need to understand what this means.
If your website is based on an unsupported CMS platform like BeeKeeper CMS, the following article explains what this means and some of the potential risks associated with non-supported platforms.
Firstly, what does “unsupported” mean?
Law Insider uses this definition:
“Unsupported Software means Third Party Software for which maintenance support is no longer offered by or on behalf of the vendor of such Third Party Software”
(https://www.lawinsider.com/dictionary/unsupported-software; accessed Apr 2022).
If you think of Windows as an example, the team at Microsoft explain it well:
An unsupported version of Windows will no longer receive software updates from Windows Update. These updates include security updates that can help protect your PC from harmful viruses, spyware, and other malicious software which can steal your personal information.
(https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/what-does-it-mean-if-windows-isn-t-supported-08f3b92d-7539-671e-1452-2e71cdad18b5#:~:text=An%20unsupported%20version%20of%20Windows,can%20steal%20your%20personal%20information; accessed Apr 2022)
Swap the word “Windows” for “BeeKeeper” and “PC” to “website” and you get the gist.
So what do you need to do?
Basically if you have a BeeKeeper CMS based website, you need to rebuild your website.
To put this in perspective, it is common for businesses to redesign their websites every 2 – 4 years and whilst it is ideal to extract the maximum value from a site, particularly for a not-for-profit, to not invest in your website can lead to serious issues for the organisation.
We recommend you recreate your old BeeKeeper site in software that is the most used content management system in the world, WordPress. Unfortunately there is no simple BeeKeeper migration to WordPress. Your site will need a rebuild and of course that usually means a redesign so you and your clients receive maximum benefit. In terms of moving over to a modern, well-supported platform, we strongly recommend you start budgeting for that now, as the current BeeKeeper website is at risk.
What are the benefits of a new WordPress website?
Aside from removing the risk that BeeKeeper CMS poses, some of the benefits of a website redesign are:
Review of objectives – is the existing site meeting all strategic objectives of the organisation. For example, if you goal is to increase membership by 10%, how is the website supporting that objective?
Review of existing content – this could mean adding new content, reducing old content, making the site easier to navigate for your users, checking all key messages are in line with current strategy and that contact details etc are up to date.
More modern design – website design is constantly evolving as technology and tastes change. Your website is often the first point of contact with your prospective members, so a modern design can provide a positive first impression. Good design also makes your website easy for current and future members to use.
Ease of support – keeping control of your website means ensuring you have the ability to make your own content changes to the site and also to change your support contracts as you deem necessary. It is easy to find support staff and providers for open-source systems such as WordPress whereas a proprietary system such as BeeKeeper means you are tied to the one company for the life of the website.
Mobile responsiveness – if your site is several years old it may be one of the early generation of mobile responsive sites. Your BeeKeeper site might be responsive, but a website redesign is a good opportunity to look for ways of improving the mobile experience for your users.
Avoid risks of loss of website, loss of control, hacks or breakage – As Internet technology moves on, the old BeeKeeper site could break at any stage. At best this could manifest itself in virtually any way, however some common issues we see from poorly maintained sites are:
- Hacks and other compromises,
- Members data made publicly accessible – yes this has happened with BeeKeeper CMS
- Back end becomes inoperable,
- Site goes down and/or is lost because of unpaid hosting – if your BeeKeeper provider hasn’t billed for hosting, but this puts your site at risk. For example, there is a chance that your supplier has an unpaid wholesale supplier and this wholesaler could suspend or shut down the underlying account at any time. Alternatively, if your supplier runs their own server, there is a chance they are not maintaining the server if they are not receiving any income for it and the risks are similar to 1 – 3 above. As the outcome of this risk is loss of website, we strongly recommend you undertake a backup of the BeeKeeper site urgently and implement ongoing backups.
- BeeKeeper CMS is no longer supported and that puts your site at risk.
- There is no migration from BeeKeeper to WordPress.
- Your old BeeKeeper site will require a rebuild in WordPress.
We would love to help you redesign and rebuild your website from BeeKeeper to WordPress. To discuss your website redesign strategy, contact us today.