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Website Launch Checklist

Launching a website doesn't have to be a complex thing.

But it is.

Here is a helpful checklist to keep in mind the next time that you launch your new website.

Essentials

Pick a domain

You have many options when it comes to choosing a domain.

While the domains are the same regardless of where you get them, the pricing and added features can be different.

I personally use Google Domains for the majority of the domains that I use, as they offer free privacy protection and are relatively affordable.

Select the right hosting

Just like with domains, there are many options when it comes to hosting. Much of this will depend on your exact tech stack as each hosting provider caters to a specific language and framework.

You can check out the resources page to check out a few options in terms of hosting.

Setup your SSL certificates

While not completely required in order to run your websites, it is pretty much expected at this point.

Without proper SSL certificates in place, most modern browsers will splash a warning page to your site visitors urging them to navigate elsewhere.

While SSL certificates can be on the expensive side, many of today's hosting providers offer free certificates with paid plans.

TOC and PP

Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policies are pretty much a staple of any website that collections any kind of info.

That means that if you have ads running or some other type of cookies and tracking technologies in place, then you will need to include some kind of policy stating how you plan on using it.

I don't have any one preference for TOC/PP generators, but if you Google the term you are bound to find plenty of free (and not free) options.

Analytics

It's important to introduce tracking and analytics early on in the life of your website. For one, you don't really know when you will begin to get a substantial amount of traffic. And once you do know, it's even more important to know how you got there.

The best free analytics tool that you can set up today, is probably Google Analytics. And that's because it typically just takes a few minutes to get up and running and because it allows you track multiple different properties on the same account.

Search Console

If you want your website to start to show up in Google Search results, then you will need to set up a Google Search Console account.

W3 Validation
Not typically required, but ensuring valid markup increases the chance that your website will render correctly in a variety of devices and browsers. Once published, you can run your website URL's through the official W3 Validator.
Uptime Robot

Websites sometimes go down. And it would be nice to notified when such things happen, just in case there's something you can do about it.

I personally use Uptime Robot because it offers a free tier and because the company offers an app with real time notifications.