Congratulations! Your organization just launched its first website to the world! After months of making tough choices, reviewing documents, talking and emailing with your awesome A-LINE contacts, and clicking enough links to make your fingers sore, your hard work is finally available for the world to see. So…now what? What can you expect after your new site launches?
- Not everyone will see your site immediately. We know that you’re super excited to show this baby to the world. But be patient. The bots at Google and Bing might take as long as 20-40 days to even figure out your site exists and index it accordingly. That means that even folks searching for your site might not find it online. So don’t get discouraged if your site takes a while to show up on search results (and don’t expect it to have the #1 slot the day it launches!).
All that said, if you absolutely want people to see your site immediately, you can purchase AdWords and/or share your site all over social media (but please read #2 first).
- It’s not so bad to not be seen for a while. Rarely does a site launch without a few glitches. While our programmers do their best to test every link and page, errors sometimes happen – or even if not errors, a page just might not perform in the most efficient way that a user expects. As users begin to access your site, these issues quickly become apparent and can easily be fixed. So by the time your site is more easily findable, any kinks will have been worked out.
- A new site needs new support – now and in the future. As mentioned in #1, when you’re ready for your site to be seen, you need to put some effort behind promoting it. The efforts should be custom-tailored to reach your specific audiences – there’s no one solution to get every site in front of the right people.
Some general tips that work for many organizations is to first help people find your new site by purchasing AdWords for your top keywords. Share your site on all social media channels, and boost (pay for) those posts to get top viewership. Then – and this is often forgotten – keep adding new content to the site. Search engines prefer sites with often-updated content, so don’t launch a site and leave it to stagnate. Add blog posts, calendar updates, new pages, social media feeds, or other content additions to keep your site fresh and interesting to both visitors and search engines. And then promote those new pages with more AdWords and social media sharing.
Again, though, these solutions are not One Size Fits All. A partner like A-LINE can help you identify where your audiences are and how best to reach them – which may or may not include blogs or social media, AdWords or event promotions. Ensure that all efforts you put into your site are strategically designed to reach your specific audiences and interact with them in the ways they prefer.
- Changes aren’t hard. If after your site is live and being used you notice problems or things you wish you’d done, don’t feel like you have to go back to the drawing board to address them. A live site can be easily changed and fixed without starting the web-design process all over again. Contact your web team anytime to make small or large changes.
- Keep an eye on things. Since changes aren’t hard, it’s important to be open to change. Regularly review your site’s performance analytics using a page like Google Analytics. Track which pages users are accessing and what they’re doing on those pages. This can help you see if calls-to-action are working, if buttons are being used, or if people are finding your contact page within one or two clicks. If you see areas that can be improved, make those changes on your site. Then continue to monitor the analytics to find areas for improvement. Again, a new site is not set in stone – continue to make improvements until it’s functioning at its most effective. (And if this process seems overwhelming or difficult, the A-LINE team is happy to work with you to regularly review, adjust and improve marketing efforts).
At A-LINE, we don’t launch sites and then disappear. We stand beside all of our clients to ensure websites go up smoothly and then get the support they need to succeed. Whether you’re managing your digital presence yourself or would like our team to help with digital marketing strategies, we’ll remain your partners to ensure a new website gets the love, attention and success it deserves.