You’ve designed the website and you’ve built it too! Your client is happy and now all you have left to do is to launch the brand new website.
Have you made sure to optimize the new website for search engines and usability?
Before you officially celebrate and announce the new website, go through these 32 items to make sure everything is in great shape.
Pre-Launch Site Checklist
This is a lengthy list, but it won’t take long to go through once you know what to look for. Grab some coffee or tea, get cozy, and let’s get started.
Design > Logo & Title > Site Title / Tag Line
This is where you can change your site title and add a short tagline. Use keywords and consider using location-specific terms for your business.
Settings > Domain
Change your built-in domain to match your business name. Make your custom domain the primary domain.
Settings > Basic Information
Add a description about your website and what you offer to visitors here.
Settings > SEO > Search Engine Description
Add your business description. You can use the same one that you used in Basic Information.
Settings > Connected Accounts
Add all of your business-related social media accounts here.
Check your page titles
Settings > Blogging – Change your default blog permalinks to just contain your title. %t
Settings > SEO > Page Title Format – Double check your page title format. %p — %s
Settings > SEO > Homepage Title Format – Double check your homepage title. %s | (Short Tagline)
Settings > SEO > Collection Item Title (blog posts, products and events) – %i — %s
Settings > Business information
Double check your Name, Address, Phone and Email Address. Add your location and business hours.
Pages > Page Settings > Basic >
Navigation Title – This title may show up in your menu. Make it short and concise.
Page Title – Use target keywords but keep it short. This will show up in search engines.
Enabled – (if you want anyone to see this page, you must enable it)
Description – Write a concise description using your target keywords to describe what you’re offering on this page.
URL Slug – Make it legible and short. Try to use a keyword you’re targeting in the URL.
Password – Does this page need to be password-protected?
Pages > Page Settings > Advanced >
Double check the code in Page Header Code Injection.
Settings > Security & SSL
Enable Secure and HSTS Secure.
Design > Custom CSS – double check any code added here
Settings > Advanced > Code Injection – double check any code added here
Design > Logo & Title > Browser Icon (Favicon)
Add a favicon so your website has a nice icon in the browser tab.
Design > Logo & Title > Social Sharing Logo
This is the default image that shows up on social media platforms if there is no thumbnail image.
Look for broken links on your site.
Check internal and external links.
Check your links across the website and make sure any external links have the “Open in New Window” setting enabled. Internal links should have this disabled.
Form > Edit > Storage
Double check each form and make sure that you’ve added a Google Drive spreadsheet for each form. You want to have a back-up for this data.
Use the device view menu above the website pages to check and make sure your website looks good on mobile.
Settings > Advanced > External Services
Add your Google Analytics ID.
Analytics > Google Search Keywords
Use this to verify your site with Google Search Console and set up Squarespace Analytics
Settings > Cookies & Visitor Data
Enable your cookie banner, edit the settings, and style it to fit with the rest of your website.
Settings > Advanced > 404 Error / Page Not Found
Set up a custom page to be your new 404 page.
Design > Style Editor > Site: Loading – Disable AJAX Loading
This can often cause issues when adding or updating custom code.
Design > Squarespace Badge – Disable Squarespace Badge
Always Double Check Your Website
Before you launch your website, remember to look over your settings and optimize your website for usability and search engines.
Remembering every item on this list, so take a little time to create a standard checklist that you can use on any website you work on.
If you work with a developer, you can hand off this checklist to them, so that you can be sure every item you care about has been looked over with a 2nd pair of eyes.
Did I leave anything off the list? What do you double check before launching a website? Leave a comment and let me know!