Launching the Space Shuttle PRACTICAL ADVICE TO ENSURE A SMOOTH PUBLIC WEBSITE LAUNCH Raheel Gauba – Creative Director, Bl...
 
 
 
 
 
 
STEPS TO ENSURE A SMOOTH PUBLIC LAUNCH OF YOUR WEBSITE
Assemble a launch team <ul><li>Identify individuals (internal as well as external) who are contributing directly towards t...
Avoid launching your website prematurely <ul><li>There are too many things that can go wrong –  and they will! </li></ul><...
Create & Follow a Plan Accept delivery from vendor Launch 0% 100% 50% Page creation and setup Insert content according to ...
Content Inventory
Content Inventory > Page Setup > Content > Linking <ul><li>Start from the homepage and document all pages and their conten...
Optimize Images 400 x 220 px 400 x 220 px 53kb 1.2Mb Original dimensions: 400x220px Original dimensions: 1600x1200px
OPTIMIZE YOUR CONTENT TOO!
Optimize Content
Optimize Content
 
 
 
Optimize Content
Styleguide
Styleguide
Styleguide
SEO Considerations <ul><li>When a tree falls in a forest, does it make a noise? </li></ul><ul><li>Headings:  Use proper he...
Proof reed <ul><li>Ensure that you are proof reading your content to make sure that there are no typographical mistakes or...
Cross browser testing <ul><li>Ensure that your website has been tested in all major browsers and versions </li></ul><ul><l...
Analytics <ul><li>Install an analytics system on your new website to track audience activities </li></ul><ul><li>Allows yo...
Communication Plan <ul><li>Make sure that there is a communications plan in place to inform internal staff as well as exte...
Sitemaps
Sitemaps
Final Checklist Testing  >  Backup  >  Restore Procedures >  Redirects  <ul><li>Test, test, test all forms and interactive...
Ready to launch? Do it on a Monday morning! <ul><li>Ensures that you have your entire project team available to tackle any...
QUESTIONS? Thank You! Raheel Gauba Creative Director, Blackbaud Internet Solutions Email:  [email_address] Phone:  +1 (843...
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Launching The Space Shuttle: Practical Advice to Ensure a Smooth Public Launch of Your Website

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Practical Advice to Ensure a Smooth Public Launch of Your Website:

So you’re about to “flip the switch” on your brand new website. What are the final checks you need to make? Who should do what and when? Get practical tips and advice you can use when taking your next website live!

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Launching The Space Shuttle: Practical Advice to Ensure a Smooth Public Launch of Your Website

  1. 1. Launching the Space Shuttle PRACTICAL ADVICE TO ENSURE A SMOOTH PUBLIC WEBSITE LAUNCH Raheel Gauba – Creative Director, Blackbaud
  2. 8. STEPS TO ENSURE A SMOOTH PUBLIC LAUNCH OF YOUR WEBSITE
  3. 9. Assemble a launch team <ul><li>Identify individuals (internal as well as external) who are contributing directly towards the new website – e.g. IT, Hosting, Design, Marketing, Development… </li></ul><ul><li>Carefully choose a project lead who will be making critical decisions that may impact timelines </li></ul>
  4. 10. Avoid launching your website prematurely <ul><li>There are too many things that can go wrong – and they will! </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t rush… Patience is a virtue that can save an organizations well established reputation </li></ul><ul><li>Follow the plan (you have a plan, right?) </li></ul>
  5. 11. Create & Follow a Plan Accept delivery from vendor Launch 0% 100% 50% Page creation and setup Insert content according to inventory Link up pages & navigation Styleguide check Cross Browser Testing Analytics Communication Plan SEO Considerations Final Testing Optimize images & content Proofread Sitemaps Backups Restore Procedures Test, test… Due xx-xx-xx Resources: Resource 1 Resource 2 … Due xx-xx-xx Resources: Resource 1 Resource 2 … Due xx-xx-xx Resources: Resource 1 Resource 2 … Due xx-xx-xx Resources: Resource 1 Resource 2 … Due xx-xx-xx Resources: Resource 1 Resource 2 … Due xx-xx-xx Resources: Resource 1 Resource 2 … Due xx-xx-xx Resources: Resource 1 Resource 2 … Due xx-xx-xx Resources: Resource 1 Resource 2 … Due xx-xx-xx Resources: Resource 1 Resource 2 … Due xx-xx-xx Resources: Resource 1 Resource 2 … <ul><li>Review the launch plan as a team and agree on roles and responsibilities </li></ul><ul><li>Ensure that you are adjusting the timelines appropriately when dependent milestones are delayed </li></ul>
  6. 12. Content Inventory
  7. 13. Content Inventory > Page Setup > Content > Linking <ul><li>Start from the homepage and document all pages and their content according to the natural progression of your main navigation system </li></ul><ul><li>Keep track of linked pages within the content – especially the orphan pages that do not exist in the main navigation system </li></ul><ul><li>Repeat the same procedure for secondary nav and footer nav </li></ul><ul><li>Remove redundant and out-dated pages from your inventory </li></ul><ul><li>Create an appropriate place for all final orphan pages within the navigation system </li></ul><ul><li>Create “empty pages” per the final content inventory within the CMS ready to be populated with content </li></ul><ul><li>Start inserting your content according to the inventory </li></ul><ul><li>Link up the pages within your navigation system and content </li></ul>
  8. 14. Optimize Images 400 x 220 px 400 x 220 px 53kb 1.2Mb Original dimensions: 400x220px Original dimensions: 1600x1200px
  9. 15. OPTIMIZE YOUR CONTENT TOO!
  10. 16. Optimize Content
  11. 17. Optimize Content
  12. 21. Optimize Content
  13. 22. Styleguide
  14. 23. Styleguide
  15. 24. Styleguide
  16. 25. SEO Considerations <ul><li>When a tree falls in a forest, does it make a noise? </li></ul><ul><li>Headings: Use proper heading tags <h1>, <h2>, … this allows search engines to understand what the page is all about. Simply bolding and enlarging the heading font does not tell the search engine anything about the title of the page </li></ul><ul><li>Link Titles : Add titles to the link tags when linking pages together. Try your best to add a descriptive title that uses keywords from the title of the target page </li></ul><ul><li>Image Alt Tags : Search engines cannot understand the contents of an image, this is where alternate text (alt=””) text comes in handy. Simply place a clear and concise description of every meaningful image inside the alt text declaration. </li></ul><ul><li>Meta Description: Make sure you fill out the meta description for every page on your website. This information provides the search engine index a summary of the information on the page. Make sure that you are not placing the same description on every single page of the site. </li></ul>
  17. 26. Proof reed <ul><li>Ensure that you are proof reading your content to make sure that there are no typographical mistakes or grammatical errors </li></ul><ul><li>For best results get someone other than the content managers to proof read </li></ul><ul><li>Look for opportunities to reduce text and make the content specific </li></ul>
  18. 27. Cross browser testing <ul><li>Ensure that your website has been tested in all major browsers and versions </li></ul><ul><li>Pay special attention to Internet Explorer </li></ul><ul><li>It is normal for site to appear slightly different in each browser due to the differences in font, padding and margin rendering </li></ul><ul><li>The general layout, however, should be consistent </li></ul><ul><li>The same browser in different operating systems may yield different results </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.browsercam.com </li></ul>
  19. 28. Analytics <ul><li>Install an analytics system on your new website to track audience activities </li></ul><ul><li>Allows you to keep track of page visit trends on your new website </li></ul><ul><li>Make adjustments and fine tune based on audience activities </li></ul>
  20. 29. Communication Plan <ul><li>Make sure that there is a communications plan in place to inform internal staff as well as external audiences </li></ul><ul><li>Keep internal staff and project team informed about key updates and milestones </li></ul><ul><li>Ensure that Marketing and Communications is aware of all delays and latest timing estimates </li></ul><ul><li>Include the following channels of communication in your plan for external audiences: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Press release </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Email campaigns </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Social media </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Search engine submission </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Offline campaigns </li></ul></ul>
  21. 30. Sitemaps
  22. 31. Sitemaps
  23. 32. Final Checklist Testing > Backup > Restore Procedures > Redirects <ul><li>Test, test, test all forms and interactive elements </li></ul><ul><li>Test, test, test all links and navigation </li></ul><ul><li>Create a backup of the latest version of your old website </li></ul><ul><li>Ensure that IT & Hosting is prepared to restore the old website in case something goes wrong with the new site launch (Practice your restore procedures) </li></ul><ul><li>Ensure that all your 301 redirects are in place to ensure minimal impact on your search engine rankings </li></ul><ul><li>When you have a few spare moments, test again </li></ul>
  24. 33. Ready to launch? Do it on a Monday morning! <ul><li>Ensures that you have your entire project team available to tackle any issues as they arise </li></ul><ul><li>Experience your website under normal traffic conditions </li></ul><ul><li>Higher chance of discovery and sharing! </li></ul>
  25. 34. QUESTIONS? Thank You! Raheel Gauba Creative Director, Blackbaud Internet Solutions Email: [email_address] Phone: +1 (843) 697-9579 Blog: www.blackbaud.com/sansprofitdesign Facebook: Raheel Gauba

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