Chris Schutte

Oct 12, 2022

Website Launch Checklist — From a Website Agency

Reading Time: 5 minutes

Are you thinking of launching your brand on the internet? Well, a great way to get started is to create your website where potential customers in Johannesburg and the rest of South Africa can easily find you.

While this is an incredible time to experiment with the layout and design of your website and to create the perfect overall user experience, there are certain aspects of the website launch that you can’t afford to miss out on. Take a look at the comprehensive checklist below to help you better prepare for your big day.

Before Launching a Website

To launch a successful website, it’s important to test drive it first. Doing this will minimise the chances of encountering errors and allow you to make the necessary enhancements to improve the platform. Here are essential tasks you need to accomplish during the pre-launch phase.

Test Your SSL Certificate

SSL stands for the Secure Sockets Layer and presents itself as the “https.” It validates the identity of your website so you can secure every data transfer. This is especially crucial for e-commerce websites because it adds a layer of protection for you and your customers.

If you miss this step, the search engine’s algorithms may label your page as unsafe and not recommend it in search engine results. When this happens, it will be incredibly difficult to get visibility and traffic.

Typically, your website designer in South Africa should be able to set up the SSL certificate. But if they forget, you can use online services, like Let’s Encrypt, to instantly generate your free certificate. Once it’s set up, review Google’s guidelines to ensure your website is secure.

Update the Content Management System

The content management system, also known as CMS, is a great way to make your life easier. This is specific software that can provide a broad range of digital tools that allow you to easily create, update, and even manage your pages. The best part about it is that you don’t need to be an expert to do it!

Create a Backup Solution

As much as you want everything to go smoothly and perfectly, technical glitches happen. Of course, these are instances that you can’t control, but that doesn’t mean you can’t do anything about it.

To avoid the stress that comes with possible website errors, create a backup of your website. The way to do so is to either manually copy and download all the files, use third-party services, or engage with your website developer.

Integrate Analytics

As an online business, clickability, traffic, and engagement are all important to gauge your brand’s success. That’s why you need to integrate analytics into your website. This will give you the essential data you need to see how well your platform is performing. From that, you can see which areas are doing well and which ones need improvement.

Optimise the Website

Before the launch day, make sure that every page is optimised. When you do this, you can enhance your chances of ranking in the top place in search engine results, thus increasing your traffic.

Some of the elements you need to optimise before the launch of your website are:

  • Page Titles: Page titles need to be consistently structured. This means that the placement, font, size, and wording across the different pages must be cohesive.
  • Meta Description: A meta description is essentially a summary of what your page has to offer. As such, it’s your opportunity to entice visitors. To optimise your meta description, make the paragraph brief with approximately 150 characters and include essential key terms like page title and product.
  • Load Speed: Depending on the content of your page, your website can load slowly. To optimise this, you need to compress heavy elements — like images and videos — and keep the content straight to the point.
  • Payment Processing: If you have an e-commerce website, having a payment page is essential. It collects customer information and verifies the truthfulness of the inputted data. So, before launching your website, test the effectiveness of this feature.

Do a Final User Experience Test

Now that you have all the essential pages, it’s time to do a quick test run. After all, you can’t launch a website without first trying it for yourself.

Doing so will help you spot errors and correct them as soon as possible to create the best user experience possible. So, when doing a final test, here’s what you need to pay close attention to:

  • Conversion Paths: Conversion paths are the clickable buttons you’ve integrated within your website that enable customer interaction. These include lead generation forms and CRM integration that can collect data and process requests. Because these aspects work to engage your consumers, it’s important to make sure that they run smoothly.
  • Spelling and Grammar: Professionalism and credibility for a brand lie in the details. This means that even if you have an incredible layout and reliable conversion paths, if you make a mistake in simple elements like grammar and spelling, your customers can think twice about trusting your brand. That said, always double-check your content to minimise errors.
  • Design and Layout: Besides the text, the graphics also play an integral role in your brand’s reputation. That’s why it’s crucial to prioritise the design and layout of your website. As much as possible, try to have cohesive aesthetics that embody your brand’s personality and target your ideal audience. From the colour palette and font to the images and icons you integrate, everything should be consistent.
  • Security: Finally, check the security of your website by installing a 24/7 monitoring script. In addition, if you need to upgrade plug-ins, be sure to have a plan in place. These steps should be taken on top of obtaining an SSL certificate. This way, you can protect your page from potential issues and guarantee the safety of your customer’s information.

Once you’re confident that all elements are working properly and you’re satisfied with the overall experience, it’s time to count down to your big day!

After the Website Launch in South Africa

While the success of your launch is a call for celebration, it’s also a time for learning. After completing this milestone, you need to review the whole experience to find ways on how you can improve next time for your audience in Johannesburg, South Africa. To make this happen, we have a few tips.

Promote Your New Website

Now that you’ve introduced your brand to your potential customers, you need to promote it. This is the only way for you to widen your reach, increase your visibility, and ensure sales. Some of the strategies you can implement include:

  • SEO: By using relevant keywords, regularly updating your content, and optimising your page, you can drive organic traffic and rank high on search engine results. Because of this, SEO or search engine optimisation is a brilliant way to promote your website.
  • Paid Advertising: Another strategy is to utilise paid advertising. While it works similarly to an SEO campaign, the main difference is that you pay the search engine to promote your web page. That way, you can guarantee that you will be the first page users see when they search for topics relevant to your website.
  • Social Media: Besides tapping search engine tools, you can also spread the word through social media. Post across all your platforms and include a direct link to your website to allow easy navigation. You’ll be surprised at how many clicks you can get with just a simple post.

Test Your Page Again

Even after launching your website, you need to constantly check your page to ensure that all components are accurate and updated, from the page titles and meta descriptions to the URLs and overall content. Even if there are no mistakes, you may still find certain aspects you want to change. This is the best way to spot them and make the necessary modifications.

After the Website Launch

Do you feel overwhelmed just by looking at this list? Don’t worry. All you need to do is search for “website designer near me” and you can find top professionals in South Africa to assist you in launching your page. From the pre-launch requirements to the post-launch checklist, they can be on top of everything so you can have peace of mind that your launch will go as smoothly as possible.

We are a web design company in Johannesburg that specialises in all things involving digital marketing and web design. We can help you with everything from design to user experience to ensure your website launch goes as efficiently as possible.

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