Website Checklist – 55 Pre and Post Website Launch Elements
Wondering what could be an ideal way to launch your website successfully? Well, there are a number of points to look into. But website checklist can be the answer you are looking for.
Looking into all these aspects and implementing them to achieve the best possible results can be strenuous.
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So, in this blog we have put together a website checklist of top 55 points that you your check off for a successful new website launch.
Web designing and launching a web site consists of numerous little things. Unfortunately, the number of ways in which you can screw it is also staggeringly high. Simple way to success is to focus on quality and quality is all about the details.
One thing that professionals do to make sure that everything is under control is to prepare and refer a website checklist. We have made an effort to provide you with a website checklist to launch your website successfully.
This website checklist is a careful blend of multiple checklists, which are related to website launching. In this website checklist, we have also added some elements around marketing.
The website checklist we have provided below includes the lessons from the mistakes committed as well as views from years of hard-earned experience.
So, we hope you will be able to forgo some of the pain, which are frequently committed by others.
Also, you can help someone who is planning to launch a website and save them too with this website checklist.
Now, without any delay, let us get started.
Website Checklist for SEO and Content
First part in our website checklist deals with content. As content is the king, we will first begin with it. These are the steps that help you to be in line with all the best practices of on-page SEO and can also carefully migrate the top content.
So, you do not have to move every single page. However, based on link popularity, traffic and rankings you should definitely identify and move the page that has the top performing content.
Here are some simple steps to do it:
- Log in to your Google Analytics account and export the file containing high traffic pages in the CSV format
- Log in to the Google Search Console to get the list of the content that is most linked and download it in CSV format
- Leverage SEMrush to get the pages that rank high; often these will be same as the pages that rank higher
- Combine these into a single spreadsheet and ensure that all these pages will be retained or just design related ones for each
- The list of top pages have to be created to decide which URLs will be changed in the launch. Then create 301 redirects for these
- If you have a WordPress blog, the database should be exported and then imported to new website
- Title tags should be unique, should begin with keyword and end with company name, not exceeding 55 characters with space
- Meta descriptions should be unique and should begin with keyword, not exceeding 120 characters with space
- Web pages should have headers and sub headers and should be divided into subheadings and the H1 tag should have keyword
- Pages should be internally linked across the website
- Content body should have relevant keywords
- Call-to-action should be added to the web pages and guide the users toward the necessary actions
- Alt tags containing target keywords should be created for all the images
Website Checklist for Design Review
This step in website launch checklist is the one where you should ensure that your final design is in lines with the original plan. Often formatting will be required and the images could be inconsistent with the actual designs.
This is something that will ruin your efforts during the web design process. So, here are a few point to consider at this stage:
- Compare the final website with the approved design to review all the templates for discrepancies in the formatting, fonts, layout, design, content and style
- Check the image size and image quality and also whether they are compressed for the web
- In case of stock photos, make sure that the licenses are purchased
- Finally, the imagery, spacing, colors, navigation, line height and font styles should be checked for consistency
Website Checklist for to Get it Right with the Analytics
This area also requires special attention. Even if you miss a small thing here, you will end up losing a lot of the data. While this can be fixed later, you will not be able to get any historical reports.
So, it is important to do it correctly the very first time.
Following is the website development checklist for this:
- Request and get complete access to the Analytics account, that is, to read and analyze, manage users, collaborate etc.
- The config record of the website should contain the Google Analytics code, however, the method for this might vary based on your content management system
- Create filters to filter out traffic from office IPs, just Google “what is my IP” to know your IP address
- Set goals for every type of conversion; configuring a funnel can be a great idea
- Enable site search where applicable. The query parameters for this feature varies based on content management system
- E-commerce should be enabled where applicable
- Google Search Console should be linked to Google Analytics
- In case of site with SSL, the “https” should be selected for both – the “view” and “property” in the account
Website Checklist for Testing Website Browser
- All the forms on the website should be checked for proper functioning – provide auto email to submitter, should take to “thank you” page, store submission in database when email doesn’t get through
- Check the CMS for file upload feature to identify any permission errors
- Pages should be tested for CSS/HTML errors and for compatibility with major browsers on different devices
- Test all the programmed features to assure that they are all user friendly when it comes to different devices
- Check the overall performance grades using Pingdom Tools and Google PageSpeed and then implement the relevant technical specifications
Pre-Launch Website Checklist
This is the checklist for final testing and include technical items with huge impact on ROI of your efforts. It can be a very expensive mistake when you miss even one out of these.
So, here is your pre-launch checklist:
- All third party things should be connected to right accounts – social media, newsletter sign up, Flickr galleries etc.
- Make a list of things which could not be done at the time of launch and make plans to prioritize it
- Downloading current size using tools like WebZip. This will be your last chance to recover something after launch
- Finalize the list of domains which have to be pointed out to new site and check whether you have access to its domain registrars
- Have a IT contact to assist with your launch, who has domain registrar
- Using WHOIS lookup get the current registrar information
- Open a dig www.domain.com and Terminal to get current DNS information
Website Checklist for the Launch
If you have already checked all the pointers in the list above, then you are geared up for a successful launch. While you sift through the following checklist, make sure that you do not plan your launch on a Friday.
- Move to new server (set up and apply or purchase) in case of secure website with SSL certificate
- Stimulate a live test by changing local DNS to ensure that all the plugins are appropriately configured
- Send launch IP address to administrator or update DNS records
Website Checklist for Post-Launch
After the DNS changes are complete, the new website should go live in a few hours. But, there could be inconsistent propagation periods of up to 48 hours, as the internet routers do not get upgraded at the same time.
So, even if you see new site over phone, the old site still appears over desktop. Well, the reason for this is your phone and office network connect to web via different routers.
We know that it is strange, but such is Internet!
Once your site is live, here is what you should be doing:
- Ensure that the data is being collected by Google Analytics
- Get Search Console configured
- Ensure that your new sitemap gets through without any errors
- After this, select the option “Crawl” then “Fetch as Google” enter domain and hit “Fetch and Render”
- You can also modify the settings to mark the pages which you do not want to see in the search results pages, when users search for your brand
- Make sure your web pages are not set to nofollow, noindex
- Ensure robots.txt is also not set to nofollow, noindex
- Set all the login areas to nofollow as well as noindex and in the sitemap.xml just “disallow” them
Website Checklist for Marketing and Announcement
Congratulations as your website is live and is functioning properly. Websites are also a part of your other things which have to be marketed. So, we have put together a marketing launch checklist for you.
- Announce your website launch in your newsletter
- Release a post on the thinking and process behind redesign – include the challenges faced and thank the team
- Schedule multiple announcements across the social media
- Update feature images across social media networks
- Add the new link to your email signature for the following 2 weeks
- Modify your outgoing message on your phone lines about your new website
- Unless you have something unique about your new website, press release is not a good idea
Greetings for Your New Website
Congratulations for your high-confidence low stress website launch. Your team deserves a pat on the back.
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