Website Pre & Post Launch Checklist

Website Launch Checklist

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A Quality Assurance or Launch Checklist is used to ensure the deployment of a new website goes as smoothly as possible. In this article we'll take a look at exactly what that involves and how you can use it during your next website launch.

Launching a brand-new website or design overhaul can seem like quite a daunting task or it can appear extremely simple if you’re unaware of everything that could go wrong.

That is why a Quality Assurance or Launch Checklist is extremely useful.

It’s simply a list of checks and tests that need to be performed before or after the website has been deployed to ensure everything goes smoothly.

Let’s take a look at the checklist we use at White Peak Digital.

Content

  • All text is free of spelling errors
  • Page and content formatted on all pages
  • Placeholder content removed
  • All pages have content
  • Print stylesheet exists and tested
  • Favicon displays correctly (including retina)
  • Footer includes copyright statement
  • 404 page created
  • Privacy Policy included
  • Correct author is attributed to posts (as required)

SEO & Analytics

  • Page titles are descriptive and SEO friendly
  • All page titles are unique
  • Meta data included and appropriate
  • H1 tags used for page titles with only one per page
  • XML sitemap has been generated and added to root of website
  • robots.txt is generated and added to root of website
  • 301 redirects for existing website are prepared and in place (as required)
  • Website can be accessed by search engines (remove noindex and nofollow)
  • Google Analytics and relevant analytics / tracking tools installed

Social Media

  • Open Graph tags included across website? (including images where possible)
  • Social accounts integrated, linking to correct URLs and use API for integrations

Markup

  • HTML has passed validation (or known issues noted)
  • CSS has passed validation (or known issues noted)
  • Site links have been tested and resolve correctly
  • JavaScript is error free

Accessibility

  • Website meets appropriate level of WCAG compliance
  • ARIA Landmark Roles specified
  • Images use appropriate ALT text
  • Semantic headings and structure used
  • Links are clearly recognisable and have :focus state
  • Alternatives provided for users with JavaScript disabled
  • Associated label for all form controls
  • Colour contrast tested

Compatibility

  • Displays & functions correctly in IE11 (IE10 and IE9 optional)
  • Displays & functions correctly in Microsoft Edge
  • Displays & functions correctly in Firefox (Windows)
  • Displays & functions correctly in Firefox (Mac)
  • Displays & functions correctly in Chrome (Windows)
  • Displays & functions correctly in Chrome (Mac)
  • Displays & functions correctly in Safari (Mac)
  • Displays & functions correctly in Safari (iOS – Mobile)
  • Displays & functions correctly in Safari (iOS – iPad)
  • Displays & functions correctly in Chrome (iOS – Mobile)
  • Displays & functions correctly in Chrome (iOS – iPad)
  • Displays & functions correctly in Chrome (Android – Mobile)
  • Displays & functions correctly in Chrome (Android – Tablet)
  • Displays & functions correctly in stock browser (Android)
  • Displays & functions correctly on large resolutions

Functionality

  • Forms have been tested and processed correctly
  • Required fields have been tested
  • Review input validation (min / max lengths and character limits)
  • Forms send to the correct recipient
  • Forms have confirmation URL or event tracking so submissions can be tracked
  • Forms process correctly with JavaScript disabled
  • Website search and search results function correctly

Optimisation

  • Images have been optimised
  • CSS is minified and combined
  • JavaScript is minified and combined
  • Enable gzip compression
  • Ensure only necessary fonts, weights and character sets are installed
  • Run Google speed test and optimise accordingly (record results)
  • Run Web page test and optimise accordingly (record results)
  • Incorporate CDN and caching as required

Security

  • Secure areas are locked and not accessible by search engines
  • Default CMS login URL is changed
  • Default CMS username is changed
  • SSL Certificate is requested

Post Launch

  • Ensure site is visible to search engines
  • SSL certificates successfully installed
  • Images, media and links reference live URL
  • Webfonts integrated and working correctly on live site
  • 301 redirects are in place and working correctly
  • Generate a new sitemap.xml and upload to root
  • Site added to Google Webmaster tools and sitemap submitted
  • Analytics has been setup and integrated into website

That’s it, you’ve made it to the bottom of our Pre & Post Launch Checklist!

If you’re interested in finding out more about Brisbane web design projects then you should check out our post 7 Phases Of A Web Design Project.

If you have any questions about this launch checklist or your new website please feel free to get in touch with us anytime.

To your success,
Jackson

Jackson Gartner
About The Author

Jackson Gartner

Jackson Gartner is a web consultant and the founder of White Peak Digital. He has a background in website design, digital marketing and customer experience. In his free time, he enjoys motorsport and time with family.

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