Are you ready to launch your Joomla site? Each day thousands of new sites appear on the web. That’s why you want to make sure that your website stands out and shines from the very beginning. In this article, we have prepared a handy checklist of 10 things you should do before launching a Joomla website.
Let’s get started!
#1 Are You Sure Your Joomla Site Is Mobile Friendly?
Most of us have known for a long time that people everywhere are increasingly accessing the internet on a range of devices. No longer is it safe to assume that a visitor to your company website will be using a traditional desktop or laptop computer - there is a good chance that she will be using a tablet or a handheld Smartphone. Smartphones and other mobile devices are fast becoming the preferred method of Internet access. That's the reason why you need to make sure that your site is mobilde friendly.
Double checking your website to make sure that it’s mobile friendly is not too paranoid, isn’t it? Here are a few things need to be reviewed:
- Does your website respond to screen size changes without fail?
- Is it necessary to make it adapt to the features and capabilities of mobile devices like touch support, touch icons?
- Are all the Joomla extensions you are using mobile friendly?
- Have you optimized your website’s loading speed for mobile?
#2 Is Your Joomla Site SEO Friendly?
The SEO and internet marketing world has been in a dramatic and swift shift over the past few years and what previously worked wonderfully now is ineffective and in some cases will hurt your website!
Before letting your site go live and allowing both real people, as well as robots, access it, you need to make sure that your website is easy to find/crawl too.
So, let’s look back to see if your titles and metadata are optimized – meaning that they’re short, contain your targeted keywords, reflect the content of each page exactly, not repetitive on all pages, etc. Also check for: canonical URLs, redirect for an invalid link, URLs are all short and understandable – not randomly generated, all images has Alt tags.
Plus, you need a sitemap.XML file for search engines to easily index your website too! Add this sitemap to your Google Webmaster Tools. You can use XML-Sitemaps to automatically generate this file for you. Or you can alternatively use Joomla extensions like JSitemap. Your final sitemap link should be like this: www.mydomain.com/sitemap.xml.
#3 Does Your Website Pass The Test?
The most important thing is that your website needs to pass this the speed test by Google PageSpeed tool. No one wants to wait for a fast-as-snail website so make sure your site runs fast.
What’s next? Your site’s compatibility. Even when you think your site is perfect for every pixel, try opening it on different browsers to see if the nightmare comes. Everything should work properly no matter what browser your website is open in.
Is that all? Not yet – we have grammar and spelling test to pass too. If you don’t want your website looks silly then make sure it has grammar correct content displayed on it.
#4 Do All The Links Work?
Don’t trust your guts this time if you think all the links are working! It might not always happen.
Make sure all of your links are in different color with normal text, clickable and redirect to the right site. You can make your visited links display in the different color with unvisited links. Plus, take a look at your website’s logo to check if it links to your site’s homepage yet.
In case it’s an invalid link, do you have a proper 404 error message? So, don't forget to create a custom 404 error page.
#5 Did You Make a Thorough Checkup of Everything?
Okay, so you’re reaching the end (now do you think launching a website is joyful or stressful?). Make sure all functionalities on your website work properly – from contact form to send the proper email, search function to display right search results, etc. to other complex features.
If possible, ask for other people – your friends, family or colleagues to use your website and watch where they stumble to optimize your website better.
#6 Have You Already Made a Backup of Your Joomla site?
Backup is life. Remember that.
Backup helps you save everything of your website so you won’t scream “everything is all gone!” when your website has trouble, like being hacked, for example. So, if everything is fine now, you can create a backup of your Joomla website.
That’s it. Oh, and remember to test your backup recovery function as well as schedule backup regularly too!
#7 Setup Email for Your Joomla Site
Make sure your Joomla emails are sent and delivered
Failing to send or receive emails from your Joomla site is one of the most common Joomla errors. Some of your email notifications may deliver, but some of them may not. The reason for this is that most mail servers consider it email spoofing when the sender’s email address does not match the originating domain or server.
#8 Check All Forms on Your Site
Once you have setup email, the next thing you need to do is to make sure that all forms on your site are working. Test your contact forms, comment forms, email subscription forms, and so on. Make sure every form on your site works properly.
Check your email list and send test emails to confirm that your emails are delivered to the right mailing list. If you are not building an email list, then you should read our article on why you should start building your email list right away.
#9 Check Images, Videos, Sliders
Images and videos make the modern web more interactive. Make sure that all images on your website are loading properly. See our guides on how to speed up Joomla by optimizing images for the web. You should play the videos on your website using different devices and browsers to make sure that they work as intended.
#10 Install Google Analytics
You cannot improve without knowing how your readers interact with your website.
Google Analytics is the easiest way to track how your readers interact with your website. It tells you where your visitors are coming from, what they see on your site, when they leave and how well your site is doing. It is important that you install Google Analytics before the launch, so you can track how your launch efforts performed. It will also help you keep a historical record of the day when you launched and how much your site has grown since then.
That’s all, we hope this article helped you prepare your checklist of things to do before launching your Joomla site. Now, go ahead with bringing your website to life. Let it out and hello the world. No one can stop you now!
Did I miss anything else that needed to be on this list? Feel free to add your comments below!