This blog post is written about Sander’s experience and how he started to sell WordPress care plans with the help of Patchstack.
Hey there! Sander here – you might recognize me from the Patchstack support channel.
In this article, I’ll share a bit about how I started using Patchstack, and how I am building my little side hustle using Patchstack to sell WordPress care plans. I’ll also include little tips & tricks on how you could do it, too!
I have been a customer of Patchstack since 2018 when the product first launched. Because I had been developing WordPress websites for a few years, I saw Patchstack as an excellent tool for protecting my clients’ websites.
I’d had several occasions where the sites got mysteriously hacked – once, I even needed to clean up one server where hackers had uploaded an online bank phishing page. The server had a text file with over twenty people’s credit card numbers. Yikes!
Selling website protection to my clients was initially difficult because people usually have no idea how big of a target their website is. The most common answer I got after the initial sales pitch was: “But who would want to hack my website? I run a small business; what do the hackers get out of it? I have nothing valuable to hide”.
Most of the sales I did manage to make were to people whose sites had already been hacked – i.e. people who already understood the risk.
I’m not a good salesman, but I eventually convinced some clients that security is essential. I even sold a few very basic security plans, but I also agreed to do all the version updates themselves. This, however, was not a complete solution because these website owners didn’t actively do the needed updates, and I still ended up doing it for them from time to time.
I started working for Patchstack in 2022 and during my time here I got to learn more about different security topics. It was actually this experience that inspired me to start this little side-project – my very own website care plan service.
Selling care plans becomes much easier once you understand the potential risks in the WordPress ecosystem because you’ll be able to explain these risks to your customers so they are easy to understand.
Here are some steps I go through to get my customers on care plans:
These are the arguments I use to support the idea of why site owners need a care plan:
If you want to learn more about WordPress security you can read our 2022 security whitepaper – it should give you a better understanding of what is (or isn’t) a threat, which in turn will help you explain them better to potential clients.
Security is not just about turning on a firewall and calling it a day. Aside from protection, a care plan should provide additional layers of security and service.
What I went with – and that is also what most such service providers offer – is this:
Depending on where your clients live, you can charge approximately $100-$200 per month per client – though the actual price will also depend on any additional services you may want to offer.
Whether you prefer cold calling or emailing, it is vital to discuss security openly. You can use the arguments from Step 1 to tell them why keeping their sites up-to-date and secure is essential.
Before making a pitch, you can also install Patchstack on a client’s website to monitor its current situation. The free Patchstack plan shows you how many of the site’s components are vulnerable to exploits. These are potentially dangerous and need updating as soon as possible. You can use that information to illustrate the potential risks with actual, relatable examples to a potential client.
You can sign up to try it out and check the vulnerable components. We also have complete instructions for signing up and connecting the plugin here.
To onboard more customers, it is crucial to market your service well. Here are some steps you can take to keep your marketing funnel active:
I hope my story has inspired you to take the first steps toward selling WordPress care plans. If you have any questions about setting up your care plans, about using Patchstack, or about security in general, you can always find me in the support chat box on our home page – so hope to see you there!