What happens after the website goes live?

So you’ve launched your new website for your small business. Now what do you do?

Well, I hope you have a post-launch plan in place for the new site. You see, websites aren’t just static things (unless you have a completely static site). Instead, they are living things that need to be tended to. You’ll have things that need to be updated, things will break and you’ll want to change things.

So here’s what you need to think about for after the site is launched before it goes live.

Who’s running the updates?

Unless you have a completely static website, which is a rarity these days, you’re going to need to run updates to your website constantly. With WordPress, it feels as though there are daily updates for plugins, themes and WordPress core itself. And I know the same can be said for any other content management system out there.

So, the question is who will be running the updates? Will it be yourself or someone inside the business? Will it be the developer? Or will it be someone else?

There are no real wrong answers here. The only wrong answer you can make is to say no one. You have to run updates. Staying up to date keeps your website secure, since a lot of updates have security fixes, and makes sure you have the latest features for whatever you have on your site.

So make sure you have that figured out.

What happens when something goes wrong?

Also, things are bound to go wrong at some point. An update will mess something up on the site. Someone will accidentally make a wrong move and mess up the website. And there’s always the threat of your site being hacked.

So what will happen when things go south on the site? Again, this is where you need to have a plan in place.

You need to figure out who’s going to go in and fix everything. Just like you have a disaster/evacuation plan at your physical business, have a disaster plan in place for when something goes wrong with the website. Again, the exact answer you come up with doesn’t matter; it’s whatever will work for you. But you need to have an answer no matter what.

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Making small changes to the website

Finally, you’re probably going to want to make smaller changes to the site after it’s been launched. You might not think that now, but trust me it’s going to happen. I’ve done it already for a number of clients.

And that’s perfectly fine. I’m okay with making small tweaks. Heck, I do it to my own website as well. But like everything else, you need to figure out how this is going to work out beforehand. Will you stay in contact with the developer and ask them to make changes if need be? Or will someone on your staff learn some CSS and PHP to make those changes?

Once again, there isn’t really a wrong answer as any option will serve you pretty well. Just know that you need to have an answer for it.

Sorting this out before the website goes live

So, how do avoid all of these thing becoming major issues after your website is launched? The answer is to think this through and plan before the site sees the live internet.

When you’re talking to the developer, talk about the post-launch stuff. See if they offer a support plan. Or if they don’t, go over how things will be handed off and see if they have anyone they recommend to help in that phase. Or just talk about the code with the website if you’re going to take care of things yourself.

Then based off of that information, make a plan for your website after it’s launched. Write it down and make sure everyone knows what the plan is. That way it’s one less bit of stress when things get tight before launch.

I know I offer support website maintenance support that takes care of each of these items plus web hosting. If you want, you can learn more about it on the web maintenance page.

But do make sure you have a plan for after your website is launched. It will make life so much easier down the road for you and your business.

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