Best Practices for Launching a New Website

Best Practices for Launching a New Website

If you’re planning on launching a new website, check out our best practice guidelines, including when to promote and how.


Congratulations on your new website!

You’ve designed (or redesigned) a website that reflects your brand and engages your audience. You’ve revised and streamlined content to tell your story in as few words as possible. You used striking imagery to speak to the minds and hearts of your users.

You implemented an easy-to-use Content Management System (like WordPress!) to keep your content fresh and search engines happy. And you sweated over the details to ensure that everything looks great and works well on popular screens, browsers, and connections.

Now it’s time to get your beautiful new website out into the world.

Solid technology and a great host (we love SiteGround for hosting) will make the nuts and bolts easy. But to ensure long term success, you’ll need to follow launch best practices and have a marketing plan in place that lets your users know about your new online presence.

Guidelines for Launching a New Website

Read our three key steps to ensuring a successful launch:

1. Timing is Everything

As tempting as it is to launch your website at a big conference or event, don’t.

Preparing a launch means testing and refinement, and the time you need to do this thoroughly might not be available before a set conference date. It’s fine to present a preview of the site (a screenshot, single static page, etc.), but wait until the site is solid before an official public launch.

2. Let It Sit for a Bit

Websites don’t appear at the flip of a switch. It can take up to 48 hours for your new website to appear on the internet, and if you’re replacing an old site some users may still see a cached version for a while. Give your new website plenty of time to settle in before you make major announcements.

Note: If you have caching issues, check out our blog post on how to clear your browser and your computer DNS cache.

3. Be Ready for Anything

Website launches usually go smoothly, but not always. Initiate your launch during typical low-traffic times, and be sure your hosting and website teams are available to solve problems.

Above all, manage expectations so that if systems are briefly offline or things look strange, nobody panics. Small bumps in complicated launches aren’t uncommon, but most issues are solved quickly and easily.

When to Promote Your Website Launch

Follow these time guidelines when launching your new website:

Internal (Staff, Web Team, IT Department)

One month before launch: Announce the anticipated launch date, and show a few pages as a “sneak peek” for staff members.

Two weeks before launch: Confirm the launch date. Make sure that web vendors and your IT team are in communication and prepared.

Best Practices for Launching a New Website

One week before launch: Confirm that required personnel are available to answer last minute questions. Get alternative contact information if possible. Make the draft website available for review by those who will answer questions from
callers so that they can become familiar with it prior to launch.

External (Public)

One week post-launch: Announce the website launch publicly and share any early positive comments.

Where to Promote Your Website Launch

Email Blasts: Use an email marketing service like MailChimp or Constant Contact to announce your new website. Include links to your most important pages.

Newsletters: Include a short article about your new website in online and printed newsletters. Highlight new features and content.

Telephone Scripts: Make sure the people who answer your phone are familiar with the new website so they can answer questions.

Social Media: Get the word out via social media, and encourage others to share. Use hashtags and mentions to make your posts easier to find.

Press Releases: Issue a brief press release that lists the key features of your new website and information on vendors and partners.

Blog Posts: Write a blog post that describes the process of creating the new website. Include information on the specific user needs you focused on; unique features; and future plans.

Events: Throw a launch party! Invite your funders, partners, staff, and major customers. Display your new website on a big screen.

Best Practices for Launching a New Website

And your website has launched!

Let the celebrations commence – all your hard work has paid off!

And remember, if things aren’t quite perfect, AndiSites is always here to help. 

Contact us today if you have any questions.

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