50 Little Things to Double Check Before Your Website Launch

Launching a new website can be very stressful, not only to get everything in order but also the anticipation of your audience’s response towards your new design. There are so many things that are easily overlooked like a broken link or a misspelled word.

Instead of worrying about the “what ifs”, wouldn’t it be much easier to have a comprehensive website checklist to run down before every site launch?

Well, you’re in luck because we’ve put together the following list of 50 things to check before launching a website. We’ve grouped items into six categories: page content, design, functionality, SEO, analytics and security.

Remember that these are just a few guidelines to help you and may differ from business to business.


Page Content

Take some time to carefully review all of the content on your website. That means page content, but don’t forget about your premium content. From data-driven content and downloadable documents to rich media such as videos and images. Make sure everything is in place, working properly, and looking beautiful.

So our suggestion is to check the following items once — and then check them again. You really don’t want to miss a single typo or grammatical error.

  1. Web copywriting has been proofread. Spelling and grammar are correct.
  2. Paragraphs, headers, lists, and other formatting are correct.
  3. Copyright date (perhaps in the footer) includes the current year.
  4. Company contact details are accurate throughout the website.
  5. Generic content, such as lorem ipsum, has been properly removed and replaced.
  6. Images are in the correct places, formatted and working on all devices.
  7. Videos are in the correct places, formatted and working on all devices.
  8. Audio files are in the correct places, formatted and working on all devices.
  9. All premium content, such as case studies, ebooks, and whitepapers, have been proofread. Spelling and grammar are correct.
  10. All premium content, such as case studies, ebooks, and whitepapers, are stored in their proper libraries/databases and work properly.
  11. Rights to images, fonts, and other content have been properly licensed and/or cited.

Design

Take the necessary steps to ensure that the site design is pixel perfect. If you have a responsive website (and you definitely should), you need to check the design across all devices. Your site should be looking good not just on an office desktop, but also on laptops, tablets, and mobile phones.

  1. Website pages are compatible across browsers (IE 9 and 10, Firefox and Chrome).
  2. Website pages are compatible across devices (Android, iPhone, tablets).
  3. CSS/HTML is properly validated.
  4. Scripts are optimized across web pages.
  5. Images are optimized across web pages.
  6. CSS is optimized across web pages.

Functionality

Take some time to test and validate all of the different features on your website. Online contact forms, social sharing and any other technology should work flawlessly across your website.

  1. Forms are submitting data properly.
  2. Thank-you message or page displays after form is submitted.
  3. Form data is being emailed to a recipient and/or correct email address
  4. Auto-responders are working properly (if applicable).
  5. Internal links across web pages are working properly.
  6. External links across web pages are working properly, and open in a new tab.
  7. Social media share icons are working properly.
  8. Feeds are working properly (news, social media).
  9. Company logo is linked to the homepage.
  10. Load time for site pages is optimized. ( i.e. png images converted to jpg images for optimal loading time)
  11. 404 Redirect pages are in place (page-not-found.php).
  12. Integrations with third-party tools, such as your CRM, E-Commerce software, and/or marketing platform, are running smoothly.

SEO (Only relevant for our current SEO clients)

Take some time to ensure that your website has been given a solid foundation for SEO success. From site architecture and content hierarchy to metadata and XML sitemaps, do not leave any stone unturned. Your SEO consultant will do all of this for you.

  1. Pages have unique page titles (fewer than 70 characters, includes keywords).
  2. Pages have unique meta descriptions (fewer than 156 characters, includes keywords).
  3. Pages have keywords (fewer than 10, all words appear in page copy).
  4. Metadata is properly in place for any content in an RSS feed.
  5. Metadata is properly in place for any social media sharing content.
  6. Spelling and grammar are correct in all metadata.
  7. Alt tags have been added to every image.
  8. A dynamic XML sitemap has been created.
  9. The XML sitemap has been submitted to search engines.
  10. Page URLs consistently reflect site information architecture.
  11. 301 redirects are in place for all old URLs (redirecting old to new pages).
  12. rel=”nofollow” tags are in place on applicable links and pages.

Analytics (Only relevant for our current SEO clients)

Make sure your website is set up to capture web data and analytics. This valuable information will allow you to continually improve your website going forward, so you don’t want to forget this stuff. Your SEO consultant will do all of this for you.

  1. Your website analytics codes have been inserted on website.
  2. Relevant IP addresses have been excluded from analytics tracking.
  3. Funnels and goals have been properly created in your analytics software (if applicable).
  4. Google Webmaster and Google Analytics accounts have been properly synced.
  5. Google AdWords and Google Analytics accounts have been properly synced (if applicable).

Security

You can prevent loss of data and protect against malware and other damages by properly setting up site security and regular backups.

  1. 24/7 monitoring scripts are installed.
  2. A copy of the final website has been made for backup purposes.
  3. Passwords and other website credentials are stored in a secure database.

Launching a new website can be a tedious task, but you can alleviate some of the stress by using this website launch checklist.