The time has finally arrived! You’ve spent several months mapping out the structure, designing the layout, putting everything into code in HubSpot, and you’re now ready to present your organization to the internet.
Happy website launch day!
Building a website is not always an easy task—it requires time, skill, and a dedicated team to put in the hours, the strategy, and the due diligence to create what will be a fully functional virtual home where online visitors can learn more about your business and turn those leads into prospects, and eventually customers.
As you arrive at the website build finish line, you may feel like your job is complete. However, there are several key items to follow through on, especially on the launch day itself. That’s why it’s important to create a HubSpot website launch day checklist. Keep reading to learn some key items your checklist should include.
Why Build Your Website on HubSpot?
HubSpot provides a fully integrated CMS that is stable, secure, and optimized for search, mobile, and conversions. Unlike other CMS platforms, HubSpot allows you to manage all of your content—website pages, landing pages, blogs, emails, forms, and content offers, you name it—in one place, helping you to create a more seamless integration for lead generation. Some other key benefits of using HubSpot CMS include:
- No need for plugins or extra software
- Backups managed directly at the server level
- Automatic SSL enablement
- A dedicated customer support team
HubSpot Launch Day Checklist
Before you push your new or improved HubSpot site live, be sure you have reviewed and checked off the following items:
1. Content Skim
Most obvious errors concerning content should have been caught during your website’s QA process; however, it’s always best to perform a final site-wide skim to ensure that all content is correct. Make sure:
- Copy is free of typos—button text, form field titles, and permalinks included
- Contact information is consistent and correct through your site
- Images are optimized and sized correctly
- All links are clickable and go to the correct pages
- Form submissions and redirects are performing correctly
- Copyright date is current
2. DNS Changes
Review your DNS setup in HubSpot to make sure website visitors can access your new site and that your hosting provider has the ability to point your CNAME record to HubSpot. Learn how to connect and check your domain here.
3. Tracking Codes
From launch day on, you should be tracking data about your website’s performance, as well as visitor behavior and acquisition, so make sure you’ve set up your Google Analytics account and installed the tracking code properly. One quick way to check this is by viewing the page source of your homepage in a browser to see that the code has been installed in the <head> section.
Similar to Google Analytics, Google Search Console provides valuable insights into your website’s performance, particularly pertaining to search results and SEO. Double-check that your new or updated sitemap has been submitted to Search Console in order to ensure that Google is crawling and indexing your site correctly.
Without URL redirects, you run the risk of leaving visitors in website limbo when they try to visit a page that no longer exists. Check that redirects have been set up for your new sitemap in order to keep customers on your site. Learn how to create a redirect or import a list of them in HubSpot here.
6. System Pages
It’s likely that even if you have submitted your redirects, some non-existent URLs may still be floating around, especially with new site launches. When building your site, you should have created a few system pages for server errors, including 404s, or “page not found” error pages. Check that these pages have been set up on your new site and that they are working correctly when unknown or nonexistent permalinks are used.
7. Contingency Plan
Regardless of how prepared you are for your site's launch, unforeseen issues can pop up and put a damper on your launch day. Create a list of worst-case scenarios and corresponding plans to know what action you should take in the event that things go wrong.
Bonus: Post-Launch Enhancements
Although your website is launch-ready, you should still consider ways to optimize it, especially as performance data begins to roll in. Your website is an ever-changing, agile tool for your business—there is always something you can improve or enhance to engage your visitors and encourage them through the Buyer's Journey. Consider the following opportunities:
- Heatmapping: Install a user heatmap to see how users interact with your site so you have a better view of what and where on your site can be improved.
- Design: Feel free to play around with design, especially with calls to action (CTAs) if you feel conversion rates are lacking or could be improved. HubSpot allows you to create A/B variations to test CTAs. These tests are easy to utilize throughout your site.
- Content Personalization: Some CMS systems, like HubSpot, allow you to create content specific to user groups based on demographics, lead status, or previous user behavior. Consider personalizing your site per visitor to create a more custom experience for your visitors.
- Broken Links: Using tools like Screaming Frog, you should continue to crawl your site for broken links that can be addressed with new redirects.
Congratulations on your HubSpot website’s launch! If you follow the above items and continue to look for ways to improve your site for better visitor interaction and experience, your site is likely to be a high performer and valuable tool for your business.
Did we miss anything? Tweet us at @SmartBugMedia to share your thoughts!