Don’t you want to get the most value for money for your website?
You’re about to tell the whole world about your shiny new website. It’s exciting, it’s fresh, you finally have a site that represents your vision and professionally communicates your products and service. Great, let’s go!!
No! stop, take a breath, and let’s consider a quick strategy to get the best value out of your investment.
Part 1: Soft launch
1) Send the website to a few friends for some honest feedback
- Check basic text and grammar.
- Go through the website with a fine-tooth comb.
- Make use of the free online writing tool; Grammarly.
- Ask for suggestions.
2) Check your web hosting server and web hosting traffic capacity
The worst thing that could happen is launching a website and it doesn’t load because your web hosting server capacity is too low. We monitor quite a few of our clients’ sites (using Uptime Robot) and you’d be surprised to know how often websites go down.
Your best bet is to ask your webmaster or web host for more information. Alternatively, you can set up a CDN such as Cloudflare to help split the flow of traffic, and keep the website up!
If you really want reliable, super-fast, secure WordPress web hosting, we strongly recommend moving your hosting to SiteGround. Furthermore, their customer support is world class.
3) Website speed and cache
Ask your webmaster if he has taken your website through the SSS process; Speed, Security, and SEO.
There are many things we can do to make your website load faster, thereby improving your users’ experience, and Google page ranking.
A few quick speed and security optimisations you can make are:
- Install a cache plugin. We recommend WP Fastest cache.
- Install an image compression/optimisation plugin such as Smush, ShortPixel, or EWWW.
- Remove any unnecessary plugins.
- Install a security Plugin such as iThemes Security, WordFence and Sucuri. Also, make sure your username and passwords for WordPress logins are complex and lengthy.
- To test your website speed, you can run speed tests with Google Developer Page Speed Test or GT Metrix.
4) Ensure a great smartphone user experience. Statistically, that’s where most people will view your site!
48% of the web is accessed on a smartphone (57% in Africa) so you need to make sure that your user experience on a smartphone is just as good as it is on a laptop. Make sure your web developer or designer has taken the time to truly optimise the mobile experience of your website.
5) Set up Google Analytics to start tracking use of your website for future improvements.
Having data on your website usage will help you make decisions for improving your website in the future and will tell you a lot about your business and your target audience you may not have known.
Here are some of the cool insights you will be able to access:
Part 2: Hard launch
6) Tell Google and rank higher.
Eventually, Google will discover your new site and may even start displaying your domain for certain search queries. But why wait for Googles bots to notice you? There’s a lot we can do to ensure our visibility and compatibility to Google’s standards are optimal, thereby increasing our chances of our website being seen by potential customers.
Very quickly, here are some of the steps you should take:
- Submit your website & sitemap to Google Search Console.
- Create a free Google Business Profile making sure to verify your address. For this, you will need a Gmail email address (e.g. Weaverbirdmarketing@gmail.com)
- Ask your business friends to include links on their website that link to your website, or perhaps of your blog post.
7) Create a post on all your social media accounts for max exposure
Firstly, create business profiles on Facebook, Instagram (if relevant), LinkedIn, Twitter and Youtube (if relevant) to your organisation. Complete these profiles with as much information as possible ensuring contact details and website links are accurate and consistent.
Invite your friends and family to like or follow your business page. This can feel like shameless promotion, but think about it this way, if your friends truly care about you, they will support you!
Finally, create a post on all these profiles about your new website, then share that post on your personal social media profiles. This is absolutely key because your social media business profiles probably won’t have many likes or followers which means at the start, anything you post there will receive very little views. If you share your business post to your personal profile, your WHOLE network will see the post!
8) Change your WhatsApp and Skype status to your website link.
This is a nice subtle way to inform your network, whether personal or professional, that you have a business, and it is a big part of your life. It’s a nice little nudge to say, “Hey, come and see what we do…”.
9) Email signature with links to the site.
Between 2014 and 2018 the average office worker received about 90 emails a day and sent around 40 business emails daily. If you don’t have your website in your email signature, you are missing so many opportunities to promote your website and potentially let new business slip through the cracks.
A quick tip for a successful email signature, in this multi-device age, is to ensure all information and contact details are live, clickable text, and that the design works just as well on a smartphone as it does on a laptop. To ensure this, make sure it’s a narrow design.
If you need help setting up a professional email signature, feel free to get in touch with us on firstname.lastname@example.org.
10) EMAIL EVERYONE you know!
People who like you will like to work with you or recommend you!
Lastly, and probably most importantly, you should send an email to your entire personal and professional network informing them of your new website and the solutions your organisation provides.
You can send a standard email through Outlook or Gmail or you could set set-up a beautiful, traceable, free new email campaign with MailChimp. With MailChimp, you can craft visually engaging HTML emails with an easy-to-use, quick-to-learn drag and drop layout builder.
The biggest benefit of Mailchimp is that you can see who opened your email, how many times they opened it and what links they clicked. See example below: