Website Launch Checklist | Red Shark Digital

There are a ton of benefits to developing and hosting a site with Webflow. Those benefits can be summarized with three simple words: speed, stability, and simplicity. In fact, the process can be so quick and simple that it can be easy to forget some crucial steps before launching your site. As a Webflow agency we know all the steps you need to take to create and launch a successful website. We’ve put together a website pre-launch checklist that you can follow along to make sure you’re completing all the necessary steps.

Pre-Launch

The website launch checklist will cover everything you need to complete after you have designed and developed your website. If you have any questions about the Webflow development process check out some of our other blogs where we cover the benefits of developing within Webflow in detail.

QA & Test

Not only is this the first step but it’s one of the most important of the website launch checklist. As you develop your site you’ll be previewing your site with Webflow’s tablet, mobile landscape, and mobile portrait views. However, now it’s time to do some real-world tests. If you have the ability to, view your project on both Android devices and Apple devices. View your project on different browsers such as Chrome, Internet Explorer, Edge, and Safari. 

When you are viewing your project on different browsers and devices make sure you are checking the following to ensure they look good:

  • Fonts
  • Colors
  • Gradients
  • Images
  • Logo
  • Navigation
  • Animations

Create a custom 404 error page

To create a 404 page in Webflow, just edit the existing 404 page located in your “Utility Page” tab within the pages of your website. As far as content, we like to notify the visitor that an error happened and provide a link back to the homepage. 

Remove Unused Styles & Unused Animations

Clean up any unused styles and unused animations in the Designer’s Style Manager tab.

Connect Forms

An important part of any website is forms and managing form submissions. Make sure you update all the form information on the Forms tab on your Webflow Dashboard. If your form submissions are going to multiple places you may want to utilize applications such as Zapier.

Create “Thank You” Pages

This step is optional. However, it can be beneficial to set up thank you pages for each specific form. These pages will be helpful for setting up analytics and measuring conversions.

Set your site’s language

Search engines and other translator tools like when you set the language for your website. You can set your site’s language within the Custom Code tab within your Webflow Dashboard for the website launch checklist. 

Page Titles & Metas

Make sure each page has a proper title and meta description. The SEO title and meta description are what usually show up when your page appears on Google or any other search engine. You can update the SEO settings for each page in your project from the Page settings. If you are rebuilding an existing site make sure you transfer all the existing titles and metas to your new site.

Set Open Graph Data

Make sure you set your Open Graph tags and image for each individual page. Each page should have unique Open Graph information, you can even set it to match your SEO Meta Title and Description. 

Set up Redirects

Next, you’ll need to set up 301 redirects. This will totally depend on your hosting environment. However, if you are hosting with Webflow, you can set up redirects within the Hosting tag. Webflow even allows you to use “wildcard” redirects to help with the process.

Remove Webflow Branding

This step is optional. Remove the Webflow branding from the editor and add your company’s logo. You can also visit the “Webflow Branding” section under the General tab and remove Webflow branding from the HTML and Webflow Badge.

Spellcheck

It’s important to spell check all the content within your site to make sure you don’t misspell any important words or messaging that may damage your clients brand. It’s also important to spell check your website’s meta data so that your search results come up with no misspellings. Use external programs like Google Docs, Grammarly, or Microsoft Word to copy and paste your content to help with spell check while completing the website launch checklist.

Duplicate Site

If you plan on transferring your site to another user make sure you duplicate the site in case something goes wrong. It’s always good to have a copy!

Analytics and Marketing Pixels

Analytics are very important! If you don’t already have Google Analytics, set up your account today to track the traffic that visits your site! Setting up analytics on your Webflow site is quick and easy. You can add any marketing pixels within the Custom Code tab of your Webflow Dashboard. Paste your snippets in the “Head Code” section.

Send Invites for Collaborators

The last step before going live is to send out invitations to the Webflow Editor. You can add collaborators within the Editor tab of your Webflow dashboard.

Go Live

Once you’ve gone through the checklist above its time to go live! At this stage you will need to add both A records and CNAME record (all records can be found under the “Hosting Tab” within the “Custom Domains” section on your Webflow site.) Once you’ve added all the necessary records it’s time to check the status of those DNS changes. Lastly the final step is to publish your site!

Congrats! You’ve successfully launched your website and you can break out all celebrations. We’ve attached a website launch checklist along with this blog to help you follow along and complete all the necessary steps to launch your website!

WEBFLOW WEBSITE LAUNCH CHECKLIST

  • QA (links, mobile, functionality)
  • Test website on different browsers to make sure everything looks in order
  • Create custom 404 error page
  • Remove unused styles
  • Remove unused animations
  • Connect Forms (Direct to correct email, Zapier, etc.)
  • Create “Thank You” pages for each specific form
  • Make sure all pages have proper Titles & Metas
  • Add OpenGraph Images
  • Set your site’s language
  • Set up Redirects
  • Remove Webflow branding (site & code, from settings)
  • Add company branding to Editor
  • Spell check the site
  • Make a duplicate of the site (if you transfer the site and something goes wrong, you want to have a copy)
  • Hide style guide (set as “draft”)
  • Add SEO tags if necessary
  • Setup analytics
  • Add additional marketing pixels
  • Send out invites for Collaborators (access to Editor)

GO LIVE

  • Add both A Records (remove any A Records with the host “@”)
  • Add CNAME Record (remove any CNAME Records with host “www”)
  • Set Default domain (generally www.yourdomain.com)
  • Check Status of DNS pages within Webflow
  • Publish!

Red Shark Digital is a superior full-service digital marketing agency that specializes in Web Design, SEO, Branding, and Digital Advertising. With offices across North Carolina including Raleigh, Greenville, and Wilmington, our team of digital marketing specialists are able to create catered solutions for your business needs. Our clients have allowed us to push the boundaries of web and creative design, while building innovative results for their company and their brand. These clients have encompassed multiple industries including higher education, healthcare, and major commercial franchises. Our wide range of clientele has allowed us to craft specialized strategies for businesses of all sizes while conveying our knowledge across a variety of platforms. We always strive to connect brands to customers, learn what we can do for your business today.

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