Three things You Should Test Before Launching Your New Website
We’ll never forget the feeling we got before we launched our first ever website. If you’re coming to the point of sending your own creation live to the web, you’ll likely know what we’re talking about.
It’s an exciting, satisfied feeling, one that comes from looking over all that hard work you put in, on seeing the fruits of your labour in all its digital glory, and the anticipation of all those scores of visitors flocking your way to check out what you have to offer.
Nor will we ever forget the countless additional hours we had to put in after the go-live date when we discovered we weren’t quite as finished as we thought we were. There were things we’d overlooked, things we hadn’t even considered, even things we thought we’d tackled but clearly hadn’t.
Having built many new websites since those early days, we’ve thankfully learned an awful lot. More specifically, we’ve learned about the importance of thoroughly testing our websites before we start inviting people to visit. To help you avoid the same mistakes we made with our first websites, here’s our checklist of three things you should definitely test before launching your site.
Responsive web design is extremely important aspect to check, and for good reason too. With over 50% of web users accessing the internet not via traditional laptops and desktop computers, but by smart phones and tablet devices, all with screens that come in any number of different shapes and sizes, it’s imperative that your website looks good, and works without a hitch on every single one of those screens.
It’s tempting to think that the hardware will do the job for us, but that isn’t necessarily the case, and it’s important to check whether your website performs just as good on a mobile phone as it does on the computer you used to build it.
Many of the best website building platforms do come with free responsive website themes, but even if you’ve used one, it’s still worth double checking before you go-live.
How fast your website loads can make a big difference between whether visitors stick around, or rush off to one of your competitors. A delay of even a few seconds can have a huge detrimental impact on your website traffic, so it’s well worth testing that everything loads as quickly as possible.
A tool like Google’s Site Speed Test can come in very handy here, not only showing you how fast your site loads on both mobile and desktop, but also making helpful suggestions on how you can speed up your site even further.
All told, this might well be the most important element to test of them all. Let’s say you’ve got yourself a website that loads quickly and seems to work perfectly on all the major devices. That’s a great start in terms of getting visitors to use your site, but when they do, how easy is it going to be for them to find whatever they’re looking for?
Is your navigation menu clearly labelled and simple to follow? Is it immediately obvious what users can do on your site, and how to do it? What if they want to make a purchase or get in contact with you? Can they do that in as few clicks as possible?
To test this, you might want to rope in a few friends, family members, or even existing customers. Have them browse around your website and provide you with honest feedback. That way, you’ll be well equipped to tackle any potential problems before you dive into the exciting part of launching your site.