If you’ve ever wondered about the best way to launch a website, then you’ll love our definitive guide. Here at Intuitiv, a web design Oxford based agency, we’re experienced in B2B website design, and we know exactly what goes into launching a successful website. And we’re here today to give you all the information you need to set yourself up for success.
In our comprehensive guide to a successful website launch, we’ll tell you everything that you need to do, before, during and after you debut your new site, so that you and your business can hit the ground running.
The key to how to launch a successful website is planning. And before you bring your company or brand to the market, there are some important steps you need to take. Whether you’re creating something completely new, or rebuilding your old website, a solid plan of action will ensure that you give yourself the best chance of success when it comes time to launch your site.
With that in mind, here are some top tips for things to check before you launch your website.
First of all, you need to know who your website is targeting. If you have a clothing brand that sells alternative street fashion, then your audience probably won’t be the over 60s!
So the very first thing you should do, if you haven’t already, is consider what your business is promoting and who is your most typical customer. Once you’ve narrowed this down, you’ll be in a far better position to focus your efforts, and website, on a particular demographic.
Another important step before you start creating a site is to find out what else is out there on the market. Is there already another company selling a product similar to yours? If so, how does it compare? And, most importantly, what does your competitor's website look like?
A great tool in your arsenal is the ability to research your competitors and see what they’re doing right, as well as reflecting on what they could improve on. If you’re new to the world of web design, your competitors can give you a lot of inspiration and, possibly, also demonstrate what you don’t want on your website. So spend a great deal of time seeing what else is out there.
If you already have a site that you want to improve, sit down and take a good look at it. What do you like about it, and which areas could be improved? If you created this site a few years ago, you probably have more industry experience under your belt now, and are in a better position to look at the old site objectively. Then, with your new-found expertise, you can analyse where you could make changes.
Of course, if you want a wide ranging analysis, you can conduct some research. This could be as simple as asking your friends, family, colleagues or customers what they think of the old site and what you could improve on.
If you have a great product or service, and you’ve identified your target audience and researched your competitors, now it’s time to plan out your site and content strategy. You may already have a good idea of how you want your website to look, but have you thought about the content and how it will all fit together?
Your content needs to be relevant and engaging. Plus, you will need a link strategy to optimise your SEO. Finally, in order to offer the best user experience (UX), everything on your site should be easily accessible and written in easy-to-understand language.
Creating a website is no easy task, and the whole ordeal can be made a whole lot easier with a great team behind you. But, if you’ve ever heard the expression ‘too many cooks in the kitchen’, you’ll know that one of the most important steps in working with any staff is delegation. That’s why it’s imperative to create a project management list, so that you can delegate tasks and get the most out of your team.
Start by creating a master list and allocating team members accordingly, depending on their skill set. Then, make sure you create clear, realistic and attainable deadlines for these tasks to be completed.
By working with a great team, having clear-cut goals, a content strategy and tons of research under your belt, you’ll be ready to launch a successful website much sooner than you would without all this essential planning.
At this stage, you’re ready to launch your website. But this is not the time to sit on your laurels! There are still plenty of checks to make during your launch. So let’s take a closer look at the important things to look out for as you bring your site to market.
A content management system (CMS) can take a lot of the headache out of designing a site from scratch. If you’re not experienced in creating websites, then a solid CMS will often let you use a pre-developed website that you can customise, as well as make edits once the site is live.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is extremely popular for any website, if you want to appear on the first pages of a Google search.
These days, there are many things that you can do to climb the ranks and become an authority site that businesses and customers look to.
In line with SEO is using a great analytic software program. After all, how do you know if everything you’ve implemented is working properly and driving traffic to your site?
By setting up analytics software, you can see at a glance who is using your site and which pages/content are performing well. This is also a great tool when it comes to selecting your advertising and marketing tactics, and a top software program will let you look at data easily, using charts, graphs and statistics.
At the end of the day, regardless of your product or service, a fantastic website comes down to one thing: user experience. Therefore, testing a site for UX is imperative to a successful website launch and ongoing trade for your business.
Ways to test your site’s UX include:
By now, you have created a great site that promotes your business and offers a great user experience. You may have also chosen the best time to launch your website and are looking forward to putting your feet up. Not so fast! Even once you have launched your website, you still need to monitor it, to ensure that it is working well.
So here are our top tips on what to do after you’ve launched your website.
If you’ve ever had a laptop crash before, then you’ll know that backing up your work is essential. And it’s the same for a website. In order to protect your site from malware, crashes, or other technical ‘acts of God’, implementing a backup strategy will save you from any unnecessary stress in the future.
Make sure you have created a backup schedule, and that you and your team know the location of the backup. Also, ensure that you have protocols in place so that your site is backed up regularly.
As the saying goes, sometimes you can’t see the wood for the trees. And when it comes to spotting errors or areas of improvement on your site, the best time to do this is after the website has launched.
When you’re creating a site, you can often miss small errors and other mistakes, as your concentration is on the project as a whole. Therefore, once you’ve launched your site, it’s a good idea to go back and look for any minor errors, or things that may need tweaking.
Online security is paramount for you, your website, your business and, ultimately, your customers. That’s why it’s so important to use 5-star security software, to protect your site from any shady third party activity.
Make sure you have installed 24/7 monitoring scripts and top-of-the-range security software, along with an SSL certificate. The last one is extremely important if you take payments or hold any sort of sensitive information on your site.
Depending on your business, there may be some laws you need to comply with. And it’s imperative that you are up to date on all legal obligations you or your business may have. For instance, if your business is in the iGaming industry, you will need a licence to operate from the UK Gambling Commission. Or, if you sell fresh produce, you will need to obtain permissions from the necessary authority.
Metadata goes hand in hand with SEO optimisation. In order for your site to perform properly, you need to optimise your metadata.
Things you can do to make sure your metadata is performing well include:
As we’ve seen earlier in the guide, analytics are the perfect way to see how your site is performing. And tracking these analyses will help you keep your website optimised and at the forefront of your industry. But what kind of tracking and analysis do different businesses need? Let’s take a look at some examples.
If you’re in the e-commerce sector, it all comes down to sales. And with the right analysis, you can see which of your products are performing well, as well as which ones are generating interest. For instance, using tracking and analytics, you can collect data on the following elements:
Or, if your website is more about information than sales, then you want analytic software that lets you collect vast amounts of data, and which lets you view that data in a manageable way.
For example, analytics for an information website may include:
To set up and maintain tracking and analytics, you need to ensure that the following are all in place and working well:
Whatever your line of business, having a high-performing, relevant and engaging website is an absolute must in today’s internet-based world. And launching a successful website takes planning, time and effort, including pre and post checks and the appropriate software to keep things running smoothly.
If you’re wondering how to launch a website, and you need a helping hand, then get in touch with us here at web development Oxford agency, Intuitiv. With years of industry experience, we can assist you with setting up your site, as well as with SEO optimisation, tracking, analytics, security software and more. So get in touch today! You can call us on 01844 888777, email us at [email protected], or use our online contact form.
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