Increase Visits & Conversions GET A FREE WEBSITE REVIEW


20 Things To Do Before You Launch a Website

Date: 22/01/2024

Stuart Watkins

At Devstars, we’ve guided clients through the critical final stages before launching hundreds of websites. It’s a pivotal moment filled with excitement and anticipation that requires meticulous attention to detail. In this blog post, we share our website launch checklist and 20 essential steps to ensure your successful website launch. These steps are informed by our extensive experience in web design and development at Devstars.

We’ve also included a link to download our website launch checklist to help ensure your next website launch runs smoothly.

website launch checklist

1. Content Review and Proofreading

Before anything else, ensure all your website content is error-free. This includes checking for spelling, grammar, and punctuation errors. Also, ensure that all information is current and accurate.

This process should be done by a human, but it helps to have some support, so here are a few of our favourite tools. 

  • Grammarly – Great for testing page by page, but better used as you are adding the content to improve readability, grammar, and spelling.
  • Powermapper – Very powerful, but you will need the paid-for version.
  • Lorem Ipsum Checker – We’ve all got caught out with Lorem sneaking into a live site. Not with this tool. It will scan your whole site and email you the problem pages.

2. Responsive Design Testing

Your website must look great and function well on all devices. Test it on various screen sizes, including desktops, tablets, and smartphones.

Try tools like Screenfly or ResponiveTestTool to expand your tests.

3. Browser Compatibility Check

Test your website on browsers (like Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge) to ensure consistent performance and appearance.

Try Browserstack for devices you don’t have access to. It will allow you to try most combinations via a virtual machine but there is a limited time (4 mins) for free.

4. Link Functionality Test

Click every link on your website to confirm they all lead to the correct pages or external sources. For this we use Semrush’s site audit function as it will run a report and tell us any dead links or broken images. It will also help find where broken off-site links. 

5. Load Time Optimization

Slow websites lose visitors. Use tools like Google PageSpeed Insights to analyse and improve your site’s loading time.

6. SEO Essentials

Ensure your site is SEO-friendly with optimised titles, meta descriptions, alt tags for images, and proper URL structures. Refer to our detailed SEO guidelines for comprehensive insights.

Again, we use various services here to scan the site and provide a list of issues and suggestions. 

7. Security Features

Implement security measures such as SSL certificates to ensure safe browsing for your users. Just Encrypt provide free certificates, and your hosting company should allow you to add these. 

8. Functionality of Forms

Test all forms on your website, including contact, subscription, and feedback forms, to ensure they work correctly and notifications are sent to the correct email addresses.

We often use Amazon’s Simple Email Service (SES) for reliable delivery of emails. Adding SPF Records, DKIM & Dmarc records on your domains is also a good idea.

9. Analytics Integration

Set up tools like Google Analytics 4 to track visitor behaviour and gain insights after launch.

10. Social Media Integration

Ensure all social media buttons are correctly linked and functional, promoting easy sharing and engagement.

Make sure you have OpenGraph code in place so your shares look their best on social. You can check how a page will look using Facebook’s tool here

11. Compliance with Legal Requirements

Ensure your website complies with legal requirements, including GDPR, cookie policies, and accessibility standards. 

12. Backup Solutions

Implement a robust backup solution to protect your website data. Your web hosting company can help with this.

13. Error Page Setup

Customise 404 and other error pages to guide users back to relevant sections of your site. 

14. Image & Media Optimization

Ensure all images are optimised for web use – this helps in reducing load time without compromising on quality. Things have moved on from GIFs and JPGs, and formats like WebP and SVG will look better and load faster.

15. Contact Information Accuracy

Double-check that your contact information is accurate and easily accessible. Tap in the numbers, make a call, and make sure it goes through.

16. Favicon Implementation

Add a favicon – this small branding element makes your site look professional in browser tabs.

17. Website Copywriting Tone

Ensure the tone of your website copy aligns with your brand voice – professional yet approachable, as per our ethos at Devstars.

18. Call to Action (CTA) Effectiveness

Review and test the effectiveness of CTAs across your website to ensure they are engaging and clear. It’s worth returning to these and refining them via A/B testing once the website has been up to see if you can increase conversions.

19. User Experience (UX) Assessment

Conduct a final review of the overall user experience, including navigation ease, readability, and intuitive layout. Can you get feedback from a small group of the target market? If not, try friends and family. 

It’s easy to be too close to see the problems sometimes.

20. Website Launch Checklist Pre-Launch Meeting

Have a team meeting to review this checklist and confirm that every aspect is covered.

Launching a website is like unveiling a digital masterpiece – the culmination of creativity, strategy, and meticulous development. By following these 20 steps, you can ensure your website resonates with your audience and is a testament to your brand’s professionalism and attention to detail. 

Remember, a successful launch is just the beginning. Ongoing development, analysis and content marketing will be required to ensure the site and its traffic grows.

Download our Website Launch Checklist Template (Word and PDF).

Share this Article share

Tell us about
your project

Send us a brief message outlining
your project and we’ll get back to
you asap to discuss your project
in more detail.