A Checklist For Launching Your New Website

March 31, 2022

A Checklist For Launching Your New Website

Preparing to launch a website?

Yes. Then this article is for you!

We all know and understand how important a website is to attract and retain customers for businesses. It is one of the best forms of advertising. But just building a website isn’t enough. Once you create a website, there are a few requirements that you need to consider before launching it. 

Here, we have created a checklist of all the requirements that you need to check before you launch a website: 

  1. Proofread Your Content

  2. Focus On Branding Message

  3. Optimise Images and Videos

  4. Set Up Google Analytics

  5. Add Sitemaps & robots.txt file

  6. Test Usability And Functionality Of Your Site

  7. Implement On-page (Search Engine Optimization) SEO Techniques

  8. Keep A 404 Error Page Ready

  9. Connect Your Social Media Links

  10. Promote Your Website

A Checklist For Launching Your New Website

  1. Proofread Your Content

The first and foremost thing to do after creating a website is to proofread your website’s content. Check for spelling errors, grammatical mistakes, sentence structure, as well as the content of the images and videos of your site. If you find any, fix them to avoid creating a negative impression. You can take the help of online spell checkers or grammar tools like Grammarly, SentenceCheckup, Hemingway Editor to proofread your content.

  1. Focus On Branding Message

While you proofread your website’s content, also make sure that your content and website design represent your brand’s message correctly. Pick the color scheme, font size, font type, designs that blend together and maintain consistency throughout the site. The look and feel of your website should be uniform and communicate what your brand is, what your services are, and how trustworthy your brand is. 

  1. Optimise Images and Videos

Make your website look interactive and appealing with images and videos but ensure that they are of the correct size and do not slow down the site loading speed. The size of every image should be between 70kb to 100kb. You can use image compressing sites like CompressJPEG, CompressPNG to reduce image file size. We suggest you use the “WebP” image format on your website. WebP is a modern image format that Google has developed as an alternative for JPEG, PNG, and GIF file formats. It provides superior lossless and lossy compression for images on the web.

Use alt text for images to describe what is it, how they are relevant to your brand and their purpose to the visitors. It will improve their accessibility on the web and help search engine crawlers to find your website. For videos, use a file size between 400kb to 1MB or you could create a YouTube channel and use the embed links to upload videos on the site.

  1. Set Up Google Analytics

It is a great tool introduced by Google to track your website’s performance. It is a free analytics tool that will give you insights into your website like:\

  • the demographics of your audience\
  • average time spent by visitors on your website\
  • most visited pages\
  • engagement with your contact form\
  • conversation rates\
  • campaign performance\
  • sources of traffic\
  • loading speed insights, and a lot more.

    Install Google Analytics to get astute data of your website. Use the data to further improve the performance of your site, marketing campaigns and find the best possible ways of reaching your target audience. 
  1. Add Sitemaps & robots.txt file 

Having an XML/HTML sitemap and robots.txt file is essential for search engines to crawl, index, and rank your website. Sitemaps help search engines to understand your website structure, making it easy to navigate and crawl your website. A robots.txt file instructs the search engines which pages to index and which pages do not.

We would recommend you install Google Search Console on your website. You can submit XML Sitemaps and robots.txt files here. The platform will also help you with indexing, crawling, site performance, and other SEO issues you might face with Google. If a site is built using website creation platforms like WordPress, Wix, Shopify, you can create and submit sitemaps and robots.txt files using SEO plugins offered by these platforms.

  1. Test Usability And Functionality Of Your Site

Ensure that your site provides a great user experience to the visitors by performing various tests such as:

  • Cross Browser Testing - You never know who might use which browser to visit your site. It is important to check whether your website is compatible with different browsers like Google Chrome, Firefox, Mozilla. You can use free online tools like Power Mapper
  • Functionality Test - Test if every individual element such as buttons, contact forms, menu bar, app/file downloads, call-to-actions, etc. of your website are working. This will provide visitors with a better navigating experience.  
  • User Interface Test - Your website should be easy to navigate for visitors. Make sure that they can browse through the website smoothly and quickly search for what they are looking for.
  • Mobile-Friendly Test - Most visitors access websites using mobile phones or tablets. Examine whether your site is responsive and compatible with phones. You can use free online tools like the Google Mobile-Friendly test.
  • Speed Test - Having a slow loading speed might result in people losing interest in your website. Take a speed test of your site with free online tools like PageSpeed Insights. If your page speed score is low, it will list down the issues and how to solve them.  
  1. Implement On-page (Search Engine Optimization) SEO Techniques

On-page / On-site SEO Techniques are the ones that we apply to our website to optimize the content. Off-page / Off-site SEO techniques are the ones that we use to promote our site and drive traffic to the website from external sources. They usually come into the picture after a website is launched.

For now, let's understand which On-page SEO Techniques you need to implement before the launch of your website: 

  • Favicon - Favicon is a small image of 16 X 16 pixels that are displayed on the left side of a web browser’s tab. It is usually the logo of a brand or the first letter of a brand name. Having a Favicon on your browser tab creates trust among the visitors that your site is legitimate and boosts your online branding as well. 
  • Title of the web page - Title is basically the name of an individual web page. It helps search engines and readers understand the unique value your page offers. Make sure to keep your titles under 60 characters and have your brand name in the title. For example - “WE3 Solutions | Web Development”. Now here we have specified our brand name first and then the name of the page.
  • Meta Description - Meta descriptions are summaries of your site that appear beneath the title tag on the search results page. Keep it brief (between 160 to 200 characters) and appealing enough to encourage potential visitors to click.
  • Internal Links - Provide internal links on your website that allows visitors to switch between your web pages. These links help search engines determine the structure of your site and make it easier for users to navigate throughout your site by showing them more content relevant to their search.
  • Headings - Heading / Header tags separate headings and subheadings on a webpage. They improve the readability of the webpage and thus enhance the search results. They rank in order of importance, from H1 to H6, with H1s usually being the title and H1, H2, H3 being the most essential. 
  • Keywords - Keywords are the words and phrases that users type in the search engines to search for a topic. Identify what kind of keywords people use to find similar types of services or products as yours and use them in your content. Perform keyword research and use keywords relevant to your industry, services, products, and brand. It will allow search engines to find your site and show it to the users when they search for these keywords. Use your keywords in the title of the page, meta descriptions, headings to enhance your search results. You can use online keyword planners such as Google Keyword Planner, SEM Rush, Ubersuggest to perform keyword research.
  • Broken Links and URLs - Check if there are any broken links and fix them. Also, make sure that all the URLs are correct and drive people to the right landing pages. You can use Google Search Console to check if there are any broken or dead links.
  • SSL(Secure Sockets Layer) Certificate - Having an SSL certificate on your site indicates that your website is verified and safe to be used. To check whether a site has an SSL certificate just take a look at its URL. If the URL begins with HTTPS instead of HTTP then it is safe to browse.

After you implement all these on-site techniques, perform an SEO audit with the help of online tools such as SEM Rush, SEO Quake, Ubersuggest, Google Search Console, Lighthouse Audit. These tools will help you understand and fix further SEO issues.

  1. Keep A 404 Error Page Ready

404 error or page not found error is a Hypertext Transfer Protocol standard response code that appears when the server cannot carry forward your request. It happens when users type incorrect URLs or visit a page that no longer exists on your website. The 404 errors do not affect your SEO directly, but users might find it frustrating and leave with a bad user experience. At times, there should be a link on the 404 error page that directs them to your website. Prepare yourself for such a situation and build a custom page for the 404 error code. Provide links on the 404 error page to give users a way out of those pages.

  1. Connect Your Social Media Links

Linking your social media pages to your website boosts your digital presence and increases the chances of people finding your website when they search for your social profiles on search engines. It works as backlinks to your website that improves your search rank once your website is live. Having your social profiles on your website helps people find the other content presence of your brand.

It shows how Social Media icons should be present on website.

  1. Promote Your Website

Last but not least, promote your website once it is ready to be live. Share news about its launch before, during and after it is set live. Create excitement among your potential audience for the launch of your website. Release teasers, trailers, short videos of your website and posters for announcing the date of your launch. After it is launched, inform your audience about it through social media, emails, messages by sharing links to your new website. You can even keep your audience posted about website changes by adding a notification bar at the top of your website before, during and after it is ready. 

Now, you have a checklist to confirm you have met all necessary requirements before launching your site. Go ahead. Implement these techniques and get ready to set your website live!

Need a hand with crafting your web strategy? Connect with us at admin@we3solutions.ca