Whether it’s a brand new website you are eagerly awaiting, or a redesign of you current website, understandably, you are keen to receive a ‘Go Live’ date from your Project Manager, but is your website ready?
It is widely assumed that once designs have been approved, and content has been handed over, it’s only a matter of your developer building your chosen look and functionality.
Surely this is a quick process…no?
Well, this all depends on how many problems you are prepared to deal with, which will crop up at a later date. Experiencing ongoing problems once your website, brand, and business is live on the Internet, is not good for business!
It is true to suggest a completed website can be put live within the hour on many occasions. However, an experienced developer will forecast potential problems, and advise against a speedy completion of your project.
Managing the following 9 problems beforehand,will ensure a professional, fully functioning website for you, which looks great.
So…What could go wrong?
1) Website not indexed by Google
This can be caused by not removing the tick from the “Discourage search engines from indexing my site.” check-box, which is used during development.
2) Contact Form not working
Sometimes the recipients of the contact forms are stored in a private directory on the server, to avoid the emails being harvested by spammers. The path to this directory needs updating.
3) Pages that aren’t styled or place holder text still used
This is often discovered during future maintenance. It is important for you to check the whole website is as you expected from the designs.
4) Broken Links
Links that have been included in the content provided, alongside notes to say the linked content will follow. It is your responsibility as the website owner to ensure this is provided to the developer before your website goes live.
5) Missing Blog Posts
This is a much simpler task to deal with whilst your old site is still live, and is often overlooked until you go to make your first blog post, weeks after the site has gone live.
6) Images/PDF’s or entire databases missing
When the DEV site is deleted, if the LIVE site hasn’t had its asset files (IMG/PDF etc) or database remapped to the new domain, major problems occur on a LIVE site. It’s therefore essential to clean up DEV sites during live migrations, so that any migration problems are detected straight away and can be dealt with, whilst the build of the website is still fresh in the mind of the developer.
7) The traffic to my site has dropped
Meta Titles/Descriptions, Page Headings and Content have not included the keywords targeted by the old site.
8) Links in Google are broken
301 Redirects have not been created for all links indexed by Google.
9) Google Analytics is no longer working
It’s either not been set up on the new site or it’s been set up with a new account, as no information for an existing account has been provided.
No one wants problems with a new website they have paid for; particularly when they are trying to run a successful business, often with an existing good reputation.
So, be sure to check these 9 points off your list before encouraging a ‘Go Live’ date; get it right…the first time.