Launching a new website is exciting –you’ve done all the hard work of creating a dynamic site and, obviously, you can’t wait to share it with the whole world. Seeing that it’s a huge undertaking, it does come with its own fair share of challenges. Given all the things you have to consider, launching a new site can seem complicated and stressful for anyone. Before going live, it’s important to run through this checklist to make sure you’ve got everything right so the site runs smoothly and becomes a success:
Protect Website against Spam
Once you’ve built up your website, you’re positive it will bring you success. But with a popular website, comes with an influx of spam. Luckily, you can deal with this before launching your site by installing a plugin to help make comment management much easier and your site safer. Check out some of the best anti-spam plugins here.
Configure an SEO Plugin
Imagine a website that’s beautifully built with an attractive design and all the products and services listed properly. Sounds great, right? This is probably a waste of resources if the site can’t be found on search engines, since it won’t generate traffic. Google sends billions of internet users to SEO-friendly websites. You can further improve SEO by installing SEO plugins. Such a plugin will automatically add metatags to your website pages, where you can optimize them to increase traffic to your website.
Add Google Analytics Code
Adding a Google Analytics account with the relevant code on your site ensures everything is tracked. This allows you to see the number of people visiting your site, where they come from, how long they stay on your site, what pages they visit, what browsers they use, and so on. You can also use it to setup simple goals to help track things like sales funnels and E-commerce effectiveness, just to name a few. All this information can be used to improve user experience.
Confirm Your SSL
An SSL certificate ensures your site is encrypted so cyber-criminals aren’t able to intercept any of your data. Your website risks being labeled as ‘not secure’ if it doesn’t have an SSL certificate. This, obviously, puts off potential visitors. Most hosts provide a free SSL certificate and you can use online checkers to help diagnose any problems with your SSL certificate and ensure it’s valid, trusted, and correctly installed to avoid giving any errors to your users.
Back Up Your Site
Putting a backup solution in place will save you time, money, and your business in case technical issues cause data loss. You can use plugins like BackWPup, BlogVault, BackupBuddy, and UpdraftPlus to set up automated, remote backups for your site. Whatever you choose, ensure you’re using the most updated version. Alternatively, you can manually backup files to a hard drive. The only problem with manual backups is you have to do the process on a regular basis or risk losing lots of data.
Test Website on Different Devices
Internet users browse from multiple devices, not to mention Google now focuses on mobile-first indexing. For these reasons, it’s important to test your website on multiple devices before launching it. Your site must be just as appealing and functional on mobile phones as it is on desktops. You can use Google’s own Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test to test these aspects. While you’re at it, use tools like Browsershots to ensure the website pages are compatible with popular browsers.