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New Site Launch Tip #10: Check New Website Performance

check new website performanceIt’s not uncommon for new websites to be developed on a temparory URL or IP address. This allows developers to code the site where it can be reviewed, tested and tweaked by the marketing team without an unfinished site being accessible to the masses.

Most site issues can be tested and tweaked while on that development URL, and you can be confident that they will work as advertised once the live site rolls out. However, the dev URL itself presents some issues that can make some previously fixed issues re-appear on the live site.

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New Site Launch Tip #9: Don’t Rely on Gut Instinct – Install Analytics Tracking Codes

Install analytics tracking codes

One of the more frustrating things I see as a web marketer is businesses using the magical powers of observation to determine whether or not their online marketing efforts are succeeding. Sure, observation can be interesting, but it should not be held as a definitive benchmark for determining your site’s success. At best, observation should be used as a starting point for digging deaper into your analytics to get to the truth of the matter.

When any new site rolls out there are going to be some hiccups, bumps and potholes along the way. A good SEO will help you minimize problems as much as possible, but inevitably, they’re,well, inevitable (mic drop.)

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Pay Now or Pay Later: The Hidden Costs of Cheap Websites

Hidden costs of cheap websites

There is a huge amount of truth in the saying, “you get what you pay for.” There is no place that this is more obvious than in website design and marketing. Well, maybe it’s not so obvious, at least until you get around to changing something.

We get this a lot.

Prospects come to us looking to help improve their web presence and ask for a quote. After a quick review, we realize that starting any web marketing will be fruitless until the structural site issues are fixed. How bad those structural issues are usually has a direct relation to how much the business “saved” on website development.

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New Site Launch Tip #8: Go Mobile!

Go mobile

I was recently asked to provide an answer to a question about what SEOs should focus on in 2016. My response was:

  1. Mobile
  2. Mobile
  3. Mobile

(Not necessarily in that order.)

Mobile is big and it’s only getting bigger. While I don’t think mobile devices will ever fully replace desktop (or laptop) computers, there is already a merging of devices going on with laptops that also work as tablets. I’m sure more of that will come.

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New Site Launch Tip #5: Get Your Navigation Right


Update navigation when launching a new site.

When it’s time to upgrade your website for a new design, don’t let a good opportunity go to waste. This is a perfect time to revisit your site navigation.

While the bulk of your content might not change, you may find that the way your visitors want to access that content has changed.  This is your opportunity to make sure that the navigation for the new site is better than the last.

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New Site Launch Tip #4: Transfer Optimized Content

Transfer optimized content
Ensuring optimized content is properly transferred to a new website is just one of the reasons you want to get an SEO involved in the development stage of a new site. Web designers are typically just focused on the new site and don’t think about what is necessary to maintain previous optimization efforts. In most cases, the new designers will transfer over raw content, but what may be missing is the HTML markup of that content, along with title tags, meta descriptions, alt tags, etc., that should accompany it.

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New Site Launch Tip #3: Review Internal Links

Review internal links

Not every page is a landing page. By that I mean that there are likely more than a couple pages on your site that you wouldn’t want to be your first contact with a visitor. Policy and privacy pages come to mind, maybe even a login page.

Every site has them. They are important pages to have, but they’re only needed for specific purposes. They simply do not have the type of content that draws visitors into the sales and conversion process.

So what do you do with these pages? You have to have them, and you have to link to them. But you’re in control of those links. Maybe you don’t need links to these pages in a global header or footer of your site. Perhaps you only need to link to them on an “as needed” basis.

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Usability Audit: The Good, The Bad and the Ugly of

Ikea usability audit

Sometime amidst all the content about “how to do x” and “x steps to world domination,” it helps to just take a tour through something.  It helps to take a real-life living, breathing (OK, websites don’t breathe, but you get it) example and dive deep into it.  Examine it.  Poke and prod it.  That’s what I’m going to do here.

Instead of talking theory about how to have a better website, we’re going to tour one together.  In the midst of all the data there is to analyze, sometimes you can learn the most just by going and using a site.  Click things.  Download things.  Search for things.  Usually, you find enough issues to keep your team busy for a while.  You should also come away with questions about many things that can lead to testing.

For this tour, our team randomly chose a big brand they were interested in and told me to lead you on a tour of it.  They chose IKEA.  If you’re unfamiliar with this brand, they are a multinational group of companies that designs and sells ready-to-assemble furniture (such as beds, chairs and desks), appliances, small motor vehicles and home accessories.  Most of the women I know love it.  Here’s the United States version of their website, which is what I focused on.

Here we go!

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Stop Leaking Link Juice With New WordPress Plugin


WP Function Links WordPress Plugin

WP Function Links is a plugin designed to fill an odd gap in the SEO world. Many times a website will need a link to a page for users to use briefly or in the background, and we really don’t need search engines to see or care about this link. What might such a link look like? Perhaps the easiest example is a login page. Login pages rarely contain much content, and it needs to be linked to from almost every page. This is leaking link juice all over your site!

What if we told you that it didn’t have to be like this? What if I told you that we have created a plugin to help fix this exact issue?

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New Site Launch Tip #1: Avoid Devastating Link Equity Loss by Documenting Old URLs

Document Old URLs

Launching a new website? Don’t flip the switch just yet. I’m sure you’ve done all your site testing and everything looks good. But one thing you absolutely, positively, without a doubt must do is make sure you have a list of all URLs that will no longer work once the new site goes live.

You may be inclined to think that old URLs are no longer relevant for the new site. If so, you’re wrong. And that ignorance is detrimental to your new site’s success. Even if you have a catch-all 404 page, that won’t be sufficient. In fact, what you’ll end up with is a bunch of visitors going to these old URLs, only to be told the content isn’t there. What next? Sure, they can try to find it themselves. Some will. But many won’t. They will just leave.

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