Website Pre-Launch Checklist plus PDF download

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Web site is a forged marketing promotional tool used in the competitive era today. Analyse your own behavior: what you do when you want to know about a product, a place, a price, a material, i simply  log on and search for it ,so do many of us   . Web page are easy and flexible means to gather information , people these days have started evaluating  a company by its web page and defining the quality of the company by the quality of the Website. This forged marketing tool holds  an important stake in company.So its crucial that you analyse all the parameters of website before you launch it.Yes i agree  you’ve completed your design, coded all the pages and implemented the content management system, so what next ? Think again does that complete  all the parameter for launching your site ?Have yo cross checked on the technical details?I  often overlook some of these things  in the last minute to finish up the task. Considering through my learning  would certainly help you safe land ….

Website Pre-Launch Checklist plus PDF download

 

 

1. Cross Browser Testing

Every designer likes to be free ,free in implementing new thoughts.These thoughts are later inspired to unique design ,but we should never forget we are creative people with technical limits.Our creativity can only florish when our target group can easily use it so it is a must we have to limit our creativity because of our end group might not be updated to new functionality like browsers .I agree Browser testing is quite possibly the least ‘fun’ aspect of web design. But this is business and as web designers we need to test our sites across several browsers depending on what your target audience uses. So consider using progressive enhancement for browsers that can handle nifty things like border-radius and text-shadow. IE6 has been pain for every web designer and developers but we can’t avoid it since people are still using IE6 even though IE9 is out there.

Few tools are listed below for cross-browser compatibility.

IETester

IETester

Browsershots

Browsershots

Cross browser testing

Cross browser testing

2. Create a Favicon

A favicon is usually a logo or symbol of any websites which is seen on the tab of any web browser. It uplifts the brand when someone bookmarks a page of the website and also catches eye of viewers when they try to reopen bookmark pages. You can create favicon using online tool like Dynamic drive.

Dynamic drive

Dynamic drive

Favicon can be displayed by using following code between the tag.

<link REL="SHORTCUT ICON" HREF="http://www.yoursite.com/favicon.ico">

3. Set Up Web Analytics

It is necessary to understand the user behavior, so use an analytics as it provides you with a wide array of statistics and information about your website and its users. It helps us to track searches, popularity of articles and to watch users visit the website in real time. Analytics helps you realize future design iterations and help make decisions based on visitor behavior.

Google Analytics

Google Analytics

Clicky (Try it for free)

Clicky

4. SEO (Search engine optimization)

a. Page Titles

Title tags are the most important SEO tags for any website so keep the page title related to the page content, do not stuff page title with unwanted, irrelevant keywords. Keep the titles between 60-70 characters.

b. Meta Description

Use relevant sentences that content most relevant keywords and keyword phrases which make sense to a particular page or post.

c. Keywords

Google officially does not use meta keywords meta tag in web ranking but do ensure that keywords that are used inside the content not on meta tags are relevant and will help your site rank on search engine.

5. Check for broken link

Things are always overlooked when we are in a rush to finish things up. Try not to overlook on small details which are important, broken links are often overlooked. So try avoiding it take a speedy visit through all the page of the site and for sure you can avert it. Another possibility is to use the built in link checker in Dreamweaver. With your website open go to File > Check Page > Links. There are also several 3rd party link validator on the web.
Few tools to find and fix broken links

Xenu

Xenu

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Webmaster tool

Webmaster tool

6. RSS Feed

Check if RSS feed is set up because almost every site or mainly blogs are dependent on RSS feed. RSS feed help grow traffic to the website or blog. You may say how? Visitors or website readers are intelligent instead of browsing their entire favorite site on regular basis they just check RSS feed of their favorite ones. Mainly blogs are updated on daily basis and will help people get updated with regular post. If you missed out including RSS feed you might miss lots of visitors and traffic.

7. Set up a 404 page

Error 404 the error page is displayed each time someone asks for a page that’s simply not available on your site. To make a visitor stick with you despite the service not being available is indeed a great task.
We try a lot to avoid on the broken links, but at times broken links are unavoidable. So always seek to have a backup plan. Setting up a 404 page guarantees that users have some sort of direction if they follow an old or broken link. So go for it.

Rocket theme

Rocket theme

The north face

The north face

South park studios

South park studios

8. Testing Forms

Forms are important aspect of design; at times in the urge of safe landing you get yourself busy with getting design to work across all the browsers and actually forget to TEST the contact forms. Make sure you check on stating with the client what email you want the results of the contact form to deliver to.

9. Spell Check

In the hedge of concentrating on the technical aspect of design we forget on small a thing which means a lot. Like grammatical error always take time to spell check and re-read emails and text on websites. Yes the content comes from the client side, here I’m not talking about going all out proofreading, but if you catch on something, fix it will certainly take you a step ahead

10. Setting up 301 redirects

Sometime when you are re-launching your website do not forget to set up redirects for the old URLS. Yes indeed this is quite as simple as adding a link to your .htaccess file like so: Small things that everyone remembers or many a time it escapes our mind. 

11. Security

Every now and then websites are been hacked or injected by spam. Be on top of all these vulnerable things by configuring a regular backup. If you are using a href=”http://www.wordpress.org”>wordpress as a CMS there are many plugins that will automatically back up content and databases if you spend few minutes to set it up. Sites like Site vault can be use to backup your website.

12. Print style sheet

Ready with the website launch checked regular CSS file, works fine. Wait a minute have you checked the print version of it? Normally when someone wants to print an article or content they would like to print the content or article only not the menu, advertisement or footer. To avoid unwanted blocks while printing do consider adding print.css file. It can be done by using following tag.

<link rel="stylesheet" type="text/css" href="print.css" media="print" />

13. Accessibility

Web accessibility means how people with disabilities can navigate and interact with the website. Building a website accessible does not only reach wider range of audience but it will allow improving web page download times as well.
Top 3 tools that will help to identify and correct web accessibility.

Firefox addons – Accessibility Evaluation Toolbar

Firefox addons - Accessibility Evaluation Toolbar

IDI Web Accessibility Checker

IDI Web Accessibility Checker

AccessColor – Online Tool for Colour Contrast

AccessColor - Online Tool for Colour Contrast

14. Legal

Before launching a website pay attention to proper copyright, terms and conditions, privacy policy or disclaimer of particular website or organization.

So in regards have pointed some points that I often forget when I am in a rush to launch a site,Hope you will check now onwards before doing so.

About the Author:

  • Rusell

    Kudos!!! Well written article and pdf looks clean and useful. Thanks

  • Ravi kumar

    Downloaded the PDF. Will always use this file before I go live with any website.

  • http://www.kooldotshosting.com/ TheKoolDots

    Nice, Very Nice!

    Yeah, we will download the PDF.

    Thanks for the info.

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  • http://njwebguy.com/about.php Chris Sansone

    I have been using statcounter for a few years now, and I prefer it over Google Analytics.

    Google analytics looks a bit prettier, but it always misses a few hits.

    • http://www.webanddesigners.com WAD

      Ya there are few drawbacks of Google analytics. Haven’t tried statcounter yet.

  • http://www.kevinleary.net Kevin Leary

    Great article Snigdha!

    I think #10 is especially important to preserve pagerank during a launch, and is often skipped. I’ve created a detailed web redesign launch checklist specificall for WordPress projects that includes a nice function for adding temporary 301 redirects inside of your theme. Many of the items on the list apple to general launches as well, hopefully it can help a few people out there!

    Thanks again for the great content!