Pre-launch checks for your new website
It can be easy to feel lost at sea for business owners who have to manage the build of their own website. There are so many factors to consider and it’s hardly a job you’re used to, or possess a great deal of expertise in.
Test your forms
It’ll be pretty embarrassing if a potential lead fills out a contact form more than once and you haven’t responded because the developers haven’t sent it to the right email address. or is it getting caught up in your junk folder. The latter is very common with new sites.
Run it through the W3C Validator
W3C stands for the World Wide Web Consortium, the main international standards organisation for the World Wide Web. One of the free services they provide is a validator for code on your website. Preferably you want to get a 100% score, but that isn’t always achievable – it gives you a good indication of major problems though.
Check it with an SEO tool
Found have a really simple free SEO tool which checks all the essentials of your website, all you need to do is enter your web address. It uses a really simple traffic light system, so you don’t need to figure out which of the errors should be treated as the most important.
Sort your 301 redirects
If you already have a website and you’re having a new one built, then the content on your website will have already built up a fair degree of organic value. You need to tell Google, and other search engines, that these pages have moved to a different URL but the content is essentially the same using 301 redirects.
Make sure you have analytics on your website, we’d advise that you push for Google Analytics being put on there, as this is the most widely known platform. Additionally to this, make sure you have total access to analytics, not just a read level account.
It can be a boring job but if your website is riddled with typos then who would you trust you? This is especially true if you work in an industry that uses more complex terminology, make sure that this terminology is being used correctly. As part of your proofreading, check that your contact details including phone number/ address are correct.
Look at it on different platforms
Modern websites are built to be responsive across all screen sizes, so check it across as many screen sizes as you can. As a bare minimum, look at it on your phone and on your computer.
Know your host
It is really important you know who your current host is, as well as who is responsible for your domain as often these can be two separate companies. The removal of your old website and the set-up of your new one may require the co-operation of both.
Get back-ups in place
You should have a schedule in place, either through a website plugin or with your host, to back up your website at least on a monthly basis. It is purely precautionary of course, but if your website breaks for any reason then you are immediately able to restore the latest back up and prevent any expensive bills or even worse, damage to your business.
How does the website perform?
You might be too close to the website to get a clear view on how well the website is functioning, so get people to test it – your employees will be able to do that. We’re looking for any issues at all, from the speed of the website, how well the information is presented to anything that they feel may be missing.
For a truly in depth review of your website, SEO and other marketing factors get in touch for a completely free and impartial marketing review.