Launch day in the Fifteen office is one of our most exciting times. It’s the culmination of a lot of work by all of the combined departments. Not only do our clients get excited, but we do too.
The designer gets to see their creation on the web for real, often coupled with the nice effects that the developer has added to it to give it a bit more oomph. The developer often is the last person to do any major work on a client’s website, so they get to see their work go live, which is an immensely satisfying feeling.
Search specialists get to see how on-site SEO will perform and how it plugs into any wider strategies. They’ll continue to monitor the website over the coming weeks and months, altering what isn’t quite working and optimising what does.
Naturally, we’re all very excited when we launch your new site. But are you ready for launch?
Run through the essentials
First off, it’s extremely important to have a launch strategy in place. For example, we have a pre-launch checklist that we run through on Launch Day at our end, which ensures that the website is performing to it’s maximum potential.
You want people not only to visit your website, but engage with it too. Good and consistent use of Call To Actions or newsletter sign-up forms will keep your user (or potential client) coming back. You also want users to share your pages, so make sure that add and share buttons are used appropriately.
Your new website should have as many ways as possible for your users to engage with it. You’ll want people to sign up to your newsletter, so you can keep them informed about your business, new products or updates. An email address is often more valuable than anything else a user can give you (excepting cold hard cash money of course!), as it is a direct channel to them. It keeps them coming back in the future.
Those are all things we’ll be on top of, but you’ll need to think about a few essentials too. (And we can help with all of these!)
Launch Day = Event Day
A lot of time and effort went into your new website (and perhaps brand at the same time), so you’ll want to show it off. Make sure people KNOW there’s going to be a new website or brand to look at by promoting it beforehand. We have used landing pages with countdown timers in the past, and they’ve worked well. If you’re an e-commerce website, maybe launch with a flash sale so that people have incentives to visit and share your pages. Celebrate with free shipping or a limited edition launch product. Don’t forget to contact your email database about these things too.
Even if you’re not an e-commerce site, you might want to consider some PR activity to your database or even relevant publications and news sites.
Social Media Strategy
A good social media strategy is a great part of any launch day activity. Just like blog comments and replying to them, Twitter or Facebook – for example – is a fantastic means of directly talking with your customers. You could let them know the site has just been updated, but also ask for their feedback on some of the changes. You might want to celebrate the launch by sharing a discount code to your social followers to encourage more traffic to visit and make a purchase. You might also want to use paid promotion on Facebook to reach the widest audience possible on this special day.
We used to live in a world where websites were overhauled once every few years to a completely new design. But now we’re used to seeing minor evolutions as part of on-going testing. Be that colours or button placements, new blog content or design tweaks, web trends never stand still. Just because your site live now doesn’t mean you should now forget about it.
This is just the start of growing your business.