Digital Marketing Insights

To ensure the successful launch of your upcoming website it would be great to have a checklist to refer toso that you know your website has all the content, features, functions, or applications that you want itto have before it officially goes live.

Here are some things you need to check off your list to facilitate the smooth launch of your website.

For your convenience, we have created a handy checklist summarizing these points that you can print out and use today before your site launch. Please download the Pre-Launch Checklist now!

1. Branded Design

Your website’s design needs to make a lasting impression on visitors. So ensure that you have a great design that compliments your brand, is easy to navigate, and gets internet users to revisit the website and even tell their friends about it.

You should also make sure that your site includes your logo, as well as a matching Favicon.

Here’s ours!

example of 2 web's favicon

You would also need to ensure that your brand colours are consistently used throughout the site. You can even get creative and incorporate branded 404 error pages to further enhance your online identity.

2.Proofread Content

The content or information on your site is the next important aspect you need to perfect before launching your website. It may take a bit of time and effort to proofread the entire site to check for any small errors in the data, spelling, or even grammatical mistakes–but it’s worth it! It’s always important to cross-check all of your pages content to ensure that the information mentioned is 100% accurate and 0% plagiarized.

You can even check to see if the developers have missed anything or have forgotten to edit the lorem ipsum or dummy text on certain pages of the site. It would also be beneficial if you also double checked the address and contact information on your contact us page to ensure that your audience will have no trouble contacting your company if they want to.

3. Optimize Images and Content

To ensure your site has the biggest impact possible, it would be smart to optimize your website images and content prior to launch.

Optimized images have proper image titles and alt text which tells search engines what the image is about. This helps to improve the search engine optimization level of your website. You can also use the page titles and meta descriptions to boost the SEO of your websitethrough strategic placement of keywords.

4. Run Tests

Although your web developer will run a series of these tests for you, it never hurts to complete a few quick tests on your website.

  • Basically, you want to make sure your site works properly on the most popular devices (including smartphones and tablets) that your audience uses.
  • You will also want to click around and ensure that all links are working and that they don’t lead you to a dead end.
  • It is also helpful, if possible, to check out your site on multiple browsers (Chrome, Safari, Firefox) and operating devices (Microsoft or Apple)
  • Make sure that all of the buttons can be easily clicked on your mobile website
  • See if your site takes an EXTRA long time to load. If you get impatient waiting for it, your site visitors will too!
  • If you have the functionality on your site, see how well the site search performs

Additional functionality to test:

  • Forms

If your website has certain special request forms that visitors can fill to get any specific information like query forms, contact forms, etc. then it would be good if you ran a test on them to ensure that they work. Fill out the form on your site giving your email details and check whether youreceive a notification from your website regarding the receipt of the form.

By doing this short test, you can also ensure that the captcha option is working. If you don’t receive any notification or if your forms are faulty, you can contact your web developers to fix it immediately.

  • Integrations

The maybe many applications integrated with your website, like social media buttons, CRM tools, email integration software, etc. You need to run a test of these applications as well, as it would be difficult to fix the problems that may arise from these applications once your website is live. If you have incorporated any security software or application onto your website, then you would probably need to conduct a security testing session for that as well.

5.Google Analytics

It is important that you are able to track the effectiveness of your website. You can do this with Google Analytics. Whether you are getting a new site or a website redesign, you should ensure that you are receiving analytics data.

In case your website is undergoing a complete redesign, you need to have a system where you can analyze or benchmark the current site that is being revamped and compare the changes to the new one. Google analytics can help with this by giving the exact reports of visitor traffic and performance levels of the new website. All you need to do is link Google Analytics to the new site to avail these reports. Accordingly, your can check its performance and level of engagement with your audience.

6. Backup Your Site

While this is not a NECESSITY, we highly recommend that you keep backups for peace of mind, in case your site was to ever get hacked or infected with malware.

Your website probably contains plenty of valuable information about your business and may even have records of certain data stored on the website. If you feel that your site does contain a lot of useful content related to your business, then it only makes sense to backup your entire website so that all the data that is there can be recovered in case the website were to crash. So if ever something were to go wrong with the site, your data would still be safe.

7. Paperwork: Copyright, Privacy Policy, Terms & Conditions

The most important paperwork to be included on your website include:

  • Copyright

While there is much debate about whether to include© YEAR, Your Business / Website, we don’t see the harm in including it. It can act as a useful reminder that your work is still protected and as a deterrent to prevent someone from stealing it.

2web's copyright example

  • Terms & Conditions
  • These are the “rules” for using your website. They are, generally, a preventative measure to minimize your risk of any sort of claims which may be made on your website. They can include such principles as limiting your liability about the accuracy of your content, your privacy policy – how you collect and use your visitor information, your copyright.

Sometimes users must “Agree” to the Terms & Conditions, such as when you are making a purchase or logging into an account.

  • Privacy Policy
  • This policy is required to explain how you collect, use, and disclose personal information. It helps to put customers at ease knowing that you will safeguard and respect their privacy.

When designing a privacy policy, or getting help to make one, there are ten “fair information principles” to include. These principles include, but are not limited to, who is in charge of privacy, why are you collecting information, getting consent, limiting use and disclosure, ensuring information is accurate, etc.

For information, please see Canada’s private sector privacy laws, which in general, apply to all organizations’ activities in all provinces (except within the provinces that have their own privacy laws: AB, BC, QB, ON, NB, NF) — Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA)

8. Update CMS password

Assuming you have a CMS, it’s highly recommended that you update the passwords before your website launch. A Content Management System helps you keep the content on your website secure. You can even make changes easily to the content of your website using a CMS program.

However, if you have had web developers use the CMS while updating content on the website in the past, then you need to update the password of the CMS softwareso that you would be the only one who has total control over the content management on the site after it goes live online.

Your Checklist?

These are the things that we think you need to check off your list well before you officially launch your website. Once you have completed all of the above activities your website would be ready for its official launch.

Don’t forget to download our FREE, handywebsite pre-launch checklist! Do you know of any more things that need to be checked before a website’s launch? If you do then please share your views in the comments section below.

Mouneeb is an experienced digital marketing strategist with a passion for helping clients achieve their goals online. With over 15 years of experience in designing, developing, and managing a team that develops top-notch web projects, he brings a wealth of information to the teams that he leads and the leaders that he follows.

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