When your site is finished and live, what basics do YOU do to ensure it runs smoothly?

Hi all, I’m just curious. Whenever I finish a website and load it live, I always do 2 things:

  1. I add my site to https://www.google.com/webmasters and add the sitemap there.
  2. I add my site to https://www.google.co.uk/analytics and copy the google tracking code to the site.

Are these 2 things still good things to do? I find both Google sites really confusing but will carry on doing them if it’s good practice.


test your analytics. make sure your own browsing and testing is being properly ignored.

i view my site on every sort of device and every browser i can get my hands on. with max sized windows and really tiny ones.

i use chrome to view the site with a simulated slow connection. don’t ask me how i have to figure it out every time, but it’s in the dev tools somewhere.

there are sites and chrome extensions that allow you to view your site in a simulation of what people see with various forms of color blindness. do that too.

check that videos load and links work. click on everything. there are automated tools for this too — but one last human check is always a good thing and will definitely catch things that an automated tool can’t.

open the dev console in chrome click through your site and look for errors and warnings.

read the copy from top to bottom out loud, this always helps me catch the last few grammatical and copy editing typos.


Great advice by Isaiah…

You can check for broken links, internal and external, by using [integrity] (free)

Also try to find some tools that allow you to check your meta data, page descriptions, etc. in a “bulk” format (rather than page by page.) Sitemap plus can help (Site Organization button) - Meta Mate is (was) great at this but I’m not sure how well it is still supported.

If you are showing on Search Engines make sure the text that is showing is what you want. I am surprised that so many web pages have page titles that don’t make any sense at all or don’t tell what the page is (what showsin browser history, etc.).

  1. All of Isaiah’s tips above
  2. Do a “site:mydomain.com” search in Google to make sure all pages are indexed
  3. Look at each page and check your description tags read well and invite users in. Also remember to use the newer longer ‘allowance’
  4. If site is an update, check all redirects are working if appropriate
  5. Check pages load nice ‘n’ quick!
  6. The ‘yawn’ bit. Try and get a PC to check all is well on Edge or IE
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The ‘yawn’ bit. Try and get a PC to check all is well on Edge or IE

it’s so tough to do all that platform testing. there really are so many things now. but if you’re trying to reach a broad market then you’ll want to hit all the basics:

android chrome
iphone mobile safari + a couple iOS versons back if you an find a device for that

remember with mobile to test in both orientations. some folks like to browse in landscape mode

Desktop (PC):
chrome, edge, firefox. remember to test on a very small screen (as well as 1080p) as some of the windows tablets have limited screensizes.

Desktop (Mac):
chrome, safari, firefox. yes you should hit firefox. it’s become a good browser again. really, give it a try. i’m using firefox right now. it’s crazy fast.

chrome on mac should just about cover chromium on linux except for the available fonts and a few other random. honestly, i’ve not once tested on linux before launch – and i’m a regular linux user. LOL.

there are some more exotic scenarios like web browsing TVs and such – but these are very market specific and often require herculean effort to get great results – so only go there if you must.

lastly: use chrome or safari dev tools responsive mode to test A LOT of different screen sizes. even just with apple devices there are a simply stunning number of possibilities. there are some destops with smaller screens than some iOS devices :scream: there iOS sidebars that a new twist, and zoom modes that change the overall resolution.

an iPhone SE (still currently sold i think) has a screen size of 1136x640 and an iMac Pro has a native resolution of 5120×2880. if i did my math right that’s about 20,000% the number of pixels. :nerd_face::exploding_head: your design is going to need to be a bit flexible. :joy:


one final thing - if building for clients, whatever you charge for the build, charge again for the testing :slight_smile:

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An excellent thread with some brilliant advice - thanks guys. Is there a way to hide pages from google index btw?


Sure is. Click on the tabs icon upper right and deselect the robots ‘Index this page’ box.

This will tell legitimate search bots not to index the page. It won’t stop rogue ones however.

Here’s a simple intorduction: https://www.lifewire.com/how-to-use-nofollow-tags-1616797


In addition to what @manofdogz said, checking the box on a page by page basis, you can use a robots.txt file on your site.
There are many posts about robots.txt files, the significant advantages are you can keep all the noindex stuff in one place, and Google has a useful testing tool to make sure it works.

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The 2 tests I like to run as well

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