12 Things You Should Test Before Your Website Goes LiveRieva Lesonsky
Whether you’re building a website yourself or having a website design company handle it, you want it to look great and function perfectly. Before your new or redesigned website goes live, be sure to review and test the following.
- Usability: Try performing some common actions that you want users to do. For example, try conducting a search for content, finding a product and putting in your shopping cart, or going through the checkout process.
- Responsive display: How does your website look on mobile devices? A mobile-responsive website is essential for success, since most people look up businesses or conduct searches on their smartphones. You can use a free Google tool to test how your website renders on a variety of mobile devices and in a variety of different browsers.
- Content: Proofread every word on your website for errors in spelling, grammar and capitalization. Don't forget about headings, subheads and product descriptions. Make sure fonts are consistent throughout. Finally, information such as prices, phone numbers, hours of operation and your address needs to be accurate.
- Working links: Check all hyperlinks on your website to make sure they work properly. If you have links to any external websites, make sure they open in a new tab—that keeps visitors from leaving your site.
- Icons: Make sure that any social media or online review icons (for Yelp, for instance) that are on your website link to the appropriate social media account.
- Form submission: If your site has forms for users to fill out, such as a contact form or a form to download a white paper, make sure the forms submit the information to you properly. Also make sure that a confirmation page displays after submission.
- Downloads: If users are supposed to download white papers, eBooks or other content, test that they download properly.
- Email subscription: If you have a field for users to subscribe to marketing emails from your company, test it to make sure that 1) you get the email addresses and 2) the user gets a confirmation email in response.
- Images: Check to see that all images and videos are optimized, load quickly and display properly. Make sure all of the images have been licensed for use and that any copyright or licensing information required is on the website.
- Tags: Each image should have alt tags. Every page should have a unique title tag and meta description.
- Website analytics: Whether you’re using Google Analytics or another analytics tool, get it set up correctly before launch so you can start tracking your website metrics right away.
- Security certificate: If you have an ecommerce site or collect payments from users for any reason, check that your security certificate is displaying properly.