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Comprehensive Website Launch Checklist & Quality Assurance Checklist

Web Launch Quality Assurance Checklist

We have a pretty comprehensive checklist that takes about a half day to review when websites are in beta. Beta testing usually lasts a few weeks as the new site is built.

In fact, our quality assurance guru sometimes takes a full day to review websites (or longer). However, this ensures we find issues before our clients do, which is important. We want to be the ones that find missing pages, broken links, and content issues. When we are finally launching the site, we run most of the tests again – just to double check.

Setup

  • Download all build files if developed remotely (database and files) locally.
  • Install bug reporting app, assign team, save client files and uninstall all testing apps when finished.

Human Review

  • Check for broken links (XENU) fix items, save report
  • Compare JPGs of design
  • Compare approved site architecture
  • Test the design and open in all browsers
  • Resize the browser (stop every 50px). See how it breaks.
  • Review header, footer, sidebar and main content area of home page.
  • Click on all links (including main menu buttons, drop down bars, and sidebars – if available)
  • Review those pages from a human standpoint
  • Check the 404 page, make sure it redirects to 404 and has a html sitemap.
  • Repeat all test for Internet Explorer, Chrome, iPad and iPhone
  • Make sure there are no numbers in any of the links found on your site (bad for SEO)

Forms

  • Contact Forms – Send test email from contact form, confirm it is received at the appropriate email
  • Check all contact forms as sometimes there are 2-3 versions of the form

Check Design in All Devices & Browsers

  • Check using Pixel Perfect or Visual
  • Home Page
  • Sub-Pages
  • Attorney Landing page
  • Attorney Bio page
  • Practice Landing page
  • Practice Area Page
  • Contact Us Page and Contact Form
  • Blog
  • Blog Post
  • 404 Error Page with site map
  • Favicon is loading
  • No image watermarks found
  • All image rights are purchased and saved
  • Responsive websites should snap at 959

Content

  • Run Sitebeam report for spelling
  • Check for content/format errors
  • Check main navigation against approved site architecture
  • Home Page – does it match what was approved?
  • About Us page – does it match what was approved?
  • Practice Area pages – does it match what was approved?
  • Attorney Bios pages – does it match what was approved?
  • Blog posts – does it match what was approved?
  • Contact Us page – does it match what was approved?
  • Check office addresses and phone numbers are present on website and html
  • Check site against developer notes
  • Check that all inbound and outbound links lead to proper page
  • Search for “Lorem Ipsum” content

SEO

  • Run Screaming Frog and resolve any errors
  • Check title tags & meta descriptions are in compliance
  • Make sure schema local business is set up
  • Make sure all social media icons are linked to the correct pages
  • Check images for alt tag modifications
  • Redirect all old pages to new pages. Use an .htaccess file for WordPress redirects.
  • Redirect non-www to www, your testing link to www and alternate domains, if applicable
  • Ensure URLs are SEO friendly URLs (short, extension less, close to the URL)
  • Custom 404 error page with site links / site map and URL errors redirect to a 404 page
  • Check that the robots.txt file is present and make sure website allows indexing
  • Make sure html site map is created

Installs & Codes

  • Webmaster Tools (WMT): Login and install your sitemap.xml. If you are using WordPress, install Yoast and use sitemap_index.xml.
  • Set WMT tools to send notifications to you@yoursite.com. Use “Submit to Index” to make sure Google re-indexes your site.
  • Google Analytics: Insert your Google Analytics “UA” code on all pages you want tracked – if site is using a subdomain; make sure to grab that version of code.
  • PPC or Social Campaign: Insert all tracking codes to your website.  Adroll, Facebook, Retargeter, Google Conversion and Chat Boxes are samples of the needed codes. Verify all codes.
  • Goal Tracking for SEO Clients: Create goal tracking in analytics for confirmation page.
  • Sync Analytics and WMTs

Website Launch Checklist

We also have a half day checklist on launch day. What else do you do when launching sites? Leave us a comment below.

  • Download Locally
    • Download the site to Local Server (backups, we love backups)
    • Export the database to Local Server (backups, we love backups)
    • Run SiteSucker on the current website to ensure we have a local static copy for future reference
    • Import sub-directories as-is if they are present on the site (/pdfs/, /videos/, /articles/, etc.)
  • Screaming Frog Report
  • Point DNS
    • DNS/Nameserver switch on domain registrar
    • If necessary, setup email and point MX records
  • .htaccess
    • Remove the testing links
    • Add redirects
  • Robots & Meta
    • Check the domain.com/robots.txt file
    • If WordPress, ensure Settings > Reading > Search Engine Visibility is unchecked
    • Double check <meta name=”robots” content=”noindex, nofollow”> is not on the site
  • Contact Forms
    • Is the site using sendmail script? Check <form action>.
    • Is the site using SMTP setup through clients email?
    • Ensure email data is saved
    • Send test email to client, ask for a verification reply
  • Google Analytics
    • Use a client email for all Google products accounts
    • Install Google Analytics UA – code before </head> tag
    • Setup Goal Conversions
  • Google Webmaster Tools
    • Create sitemap.xml and submit to WMT
    • Verify both the non-www and www have been added to WMT (set preferred domain to www)
    • Fetch and render both desktop and mobile to Google and submit
    • Test robots.txt and submit/verify to Google
    • Check for crawl errors and fix
    • Select Google Analytics Property to tie Google accounts together
    • Other Resources/PageSpeed Insights, run test and resolve issues
  • Manual Checks
    • Make sure a full physical sitemap exists
    • Check that vCards are complete and working
    • Open up each website page (hold down CRTL)
    • Check for 404 page
    • Also check for photos, sidebars, footers, odd text, odd URLs
    • Check each page of the site for broken pages (404) and quick visual scan
  • WordPress
    • Under Users – Create client user, apply email account from the client complete with email and user name and make them an admin
    • Turn on caching
    • Turn on backups
  • SEO & PPC Check
    • Check with SEO and PPC and make sure both are applied to site, as applicable
    • For WordPress, install WordPress SEO by Yoast plugin
    • Add/copy title tags and meta descriptions
  • Xenu Scan
    • Check for broken links
    • Fix broken links
    • Inform content of broken links to send to client, include link location and link heading
  • Credentials
    • Send all credentials to the client
    • Add the newly launched site to our monitoring system for online monitoring
  • Rejoice! Have Fun. Relax.

If your website recently launched and you are looking to have a professional team review your website for all of the issues above, and more, contact us about our website analysis and consulting service.

Peter Boyd :