Here’s How We Launch Sites so Fast

Even in 2017, new media companies and brands still think they need to invest in an expensive tech team to launch a successful website. But websites aren't what they used to be. Now sites have to be dynamic and put content at the forefront in order to build sticky audiences and generate sustainable revenue.

At RebelMouse, we operate off of a lean tech methodology that launches sites in weeks, not months. We act as your developers, UX experts, QA team, and designers all at the same time. Our team of Rebels also operate as a creative agency to ensure your content is successful on social, with SEO, and at making meaningful revenue.

The sites we launch are also super fast and intuitive for users. It's how we helped create the two biggest new media companies to date: Axios + The Dodo.

Here's how we do it. This is our launch checklist.


Design

Once your design is finalized and fully implemented, we get your blessing on everything before launching. This includes reviewing:

  • Home, post, tag, search, 404, and profile sections on all devices — mobile, tablet, and desktop.
  • Google Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP).
  • About, terms of use, contact us, and other boilerplate/footer sections and links.
  • Social integrations.
  • That all remnants from the design, testing, and implementation phases are cleaned up or removed.

Monetization

To ensure your site is ready to reap the benefits of improved monetization, we work with you to ensure that all of your ad setups are in perfect working order. This includes:

  • Onsite ads.
  • Google AMP ads (if applicable).
  • Facebook Instant Article ads (if applicable).

Content Import

This is the most dynamic and fun part of launch. We can either import content from your old site or stage new content that is perfect for day one. If you're importing, we:

  • Make sure your old content has been 100% ingested into RebelMouse.
  • Double check both your old and new site to make sure no content is missing, and that all migrated content is appropriately styled.
Note: If you still plan on using your old site alongside your new site during the launch phase, then some content may have to be migrated manually. To avoid this, it's best to temporarily put a stop to your editorial production prior to launch.

Client Access + Accounts Page Setup

Onboarding doesn't stop after launch. We make sure that you:

  • Have access to the new site with your own account, and show you where to log in.
  • Are familiar with where to start configuring high-level site options, like your search metadata.

DNS Setup

We work with you to configure the DNS settings for your new site. Here's a breakdown on what's required, and how you can even handle this step on your own.

Once you've got your new DNS settings created, you can easily change your Domain Settings in your RebelMouse Account Dashboard.

HTTPS/SSL Sites

If you're moving to, or transitioning from, a secure site, we'll work with you to make sure you have the right security certificates in place prior to launch. For more on how this is done, check out this tutorial.

After Launch

Launching — from our perspective — is as simple as changing your domain, and sometimes our clients even do this themselves.

Clients usually handle their own DNS changes, but our RebelAdmins are here to help.

Traffic + Monitoring Performance

Your dedicated account manager will keep an eye on the following features to ensure your site is running smoothly:

Google Data Studio

  • We'll create a Google Data Studio dashboard report so you can easily monitor all of your traffic and site metrics on a single screen.

Sitemaps

  • We'll check that your sitemaps are updated and working cleanly.

Google Webmaster Tools

  • We'll make sure that Webmaster Tools/Search Console and Google News are submitted and pass verification. We'll also check that there are no crawler errors.

Google AMP and Traffic

  • We'll make sure Google AMP verifies correctly.
  • We'll monitor Google AMP and search traffic.

Facebook Instant Articles/Apple News

  • If you had Facebook Instant Articles or Apple News enabled on your previous site, we'll make sure your domain is updated for these services.

301 Rules

  • After your site has launched, we'll work with you to discover and immediately fix any 404 Not Found errors that might crop up. These will usually be patched with redirects.

Google Analytics

  • We'll monitor real-time Google Analytics traffic to ensure nothing is going wrong during launch. We'll also check on real-time visitors before starting the SSL migration, and ensure that things stay stable throughout the entire process.

RSS Feeds

  • We'll make sure that any old RSS Feeds you might have are redirecting to your new site. Sometimes this requires performing a 301 redirect in our 404 dashboard:
    • /feeds/feed.rss = full feed
    • /feeds/section.rss = section based
    • /feeds/editors-pick.rss = main section for Google News

At RebelMouse, you can rest assured that your site is in good hands from start to success.

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As we announced this to our site network and rolled it out publicly, many of our clients asked me personally, "How did you do it?" The answer is easy to understand regardless of how technical you may be. It's perfectly summarized in this wonderful quote attributed to Mark Twain:

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—Blaise Pascal, 1657 (and later, more famously Mark Twain)

The universe is sometimes very beautiful, and especially when you keep it simple. If you would like to start publishing on a site optimized for both speed and sustainability, request a proposal and let's start working together.

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