SEO Tasks for a Successful Website Launch
The tasks performed for good SEO when launching a website is an important final step for your new website. There are many activities that must be completed to ensure a smooth transition and continuity of your search engine ranking. If you desire good SEO results, make sure this list of activities take place.
The following is a list of 6 good SEO housekeeping tasks to be completed before or during your website launch. The items on this list do not need to be done in this order. And, there are other critical SEO measures for your website to rise up in search rankings.
- Create and Upload an XML Sitemap
XML sitemaps help search engines identify and index pages & content on your site. If you have created a WordPress site, try using the Google site map generator plugin. XML Sitemap Generator is another source for generating a quality XML sitemap. Once you have your sitemap, upload it at your Google Search Console and Bing Webmaster dashboards
- Install Google Analytics Code
Check your old site and make sure to insert the same analytics code in your new site. This will ensure your reporting is not interrupted, as well as offer you a mechanism to track your new website’s success. Don’t forget to check your documentation for which goals your company is tracking. Then make sure to change to the new site’s URLs to keep tracking your business goals.
- Check Your Robots.txt File
Your robots.txt file is often set to block search engine spiders during website development. Make sure you check this file and that it is not blocking robots at launch.
- Put Your Page Redirects into Place
Invariably your new site will have different page URLs than your old site. This might be as simple as www.mysite.com/services becoming www.mysite.com/seo-consulting-services. Make sure your old website links to are permanently redirected (using 301 redircets) to the new page URLs. This is similar to telling the post office where you’ve permanently moved and to send your snail mail to the new address.
- URL Canonicalization
This is actually a pretty simple, but important step for ensuring that your website resolves to the same address and that your analytics count page views correctly. In addition, the search engines might ding you if you don’t take care of this as they’ll note your site as having duplicate content. You’ll need to determine whether you want your site to resolve to www.mysite.com or mysite.com.
- Submit Your Site to Search Engines
An important step for launch is to submit your newly developed site to the search engines. You can use a tool, but it might be best to manually submit your site to the major search engines like Google and Bing (handles Yahoo as well)
Each of these items offers good SEO when launching a website and are important to the success of your website launch and the continuity of good SEO. SEO is an ongoing effort, but making sure these website launch items are complete will make ongoing SEO efforts much easier.