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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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Google Made Major Changes to Its Formula for Page Speed. Here’s What to Do About It in 2022.
Rebel Insights

Google Made Major Changes to Its Formula for Page Speed. Here’s What to Do About It in 2022.

Make sure your site is set up for success in 2022.

In the spring of 2020, Google let the world know that its Core Web Vitals would become the new benchmark for measuring a site's performance in its search results, known as the page experience update. Fast forward to more than a year later in August 2021 when, after much anticipation, Google's page experience update became official.

Since its rollout, developers have felt the impact of how their publishing platforms stack up against the new standard. Important decisions around the architecture of your site can now make or break your site's performance in the eyes of Google.

HTTP Archive, a tracking platform that crawls the web to identify trends and record historical patterns, has revealed how top content management systems (CMS) have weathered the page experience update through the creation of its Core Web Vitals Technology Report. RebelMouse consistently outperforms major CMS platforms on Google's most critical metrics since its rollout and into 2022:

Getting superior scores on Google's performance benchmarks isn't easy, either. The Ahrefs blog analyzed Core Web Vitals data from the Chrome User Experience Report (CrUX), which is data from actual Chrome users, to see how the web stacks up against Core Web Vitals. Their study found that only 33% of sites on the web are passing Core Web Vitals.

data from Ahrefs tracked on a line chart finds that shows only 33% of sites on the web pass Google's Core Web Vitals From Ahrefs.

Luckily, performing well on Core Web Vitals is possible with thoughtful, strategic changes to your site’s codebase. Here's what you need to know and how we can help.

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In 2022, Publishers Take Back Control With Subscription Success

Users are ready to pay for content that delivers

The Rise of the Mature User

It's been a long and winding path, but in 2022 the subscription model continues its upward trajectory as a top revenue strategy for publishers of all sizes. The tug of war between platforms and publishers reached its peak in the last few years of the previous decade, leaving users desperate for a modern user experience that's clear of any clutter from the duopoly that is Google and Facebook. This is why intelligent paywall models are a top choice for users looking to consume content right from the source. When done correctly, the strategy can work for any type of media. The New York Times, a frequent showpiece example of the power of paywalls, is constantly reporting record-busting subscription numbers, with 7.6 million digital subscriptions in 2021.

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Improve Your Site’s Load Time: Google Launches Signed Exchanges for Desktop
Rebel Insights

Improve Your Site’s Load Time: Google Launches Signed Exchanges for Desktop

There’s been an important launch from Google that can help improve your site’s load time — signed exchanges (SXG) are now available on desktop. According to Google, SXG is a delivery mechanism that can help improve your Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) score by enabling privacy-preserving, cross-origin prefetch.

What’s an LCP score? The LCP metric is one of Google’s Core Web Vitals that determines your site’s performance. A page’s LCP score is determined by how long it takes Google to load the "above the fold" content of your site. This includes all content in the first viewport of a page, such as images, fonts, ads, and embeds. Click here to learn more.

Since SXG uses a cache to prefetch content that has been cryptographically signed by the origin, it helps speed up cross-origin navigations from referrer sites while also ensuring that pages remain unaltered and properly attributed, according to Google. To put it more simply, in certain browsers, the referrer site (Google) and destination site (your page) share cached information which increases your site’s ability to load quickly.

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RebelMouse’s Technical SEO Influencer Program

If you’re a search engine optimization (SEO) expert, we know you can do a stellar job of juggling a lot of tasks. That’s because there’s no magic key to unlocking a winning search strategy. High performance on search requires a deep understanding of how Google indexes and ranks content, as well as the flexibility to adapt to its frequent changes.

Today, SEO professionals aren’t just amazing content marketers. They double as savants when it comes to the technical aspects of SEO, which is often a piece of the puzzle that gets overlooked. If you are an SEO consultant, you know how frustrating it can be to make important suggestions to clients that never get implemented, and often, it’s the same problems over and over.

That’s why RebelMouse has decided to launch a Technical SEO Influencer Program to help SEO experts get access to the right technology that better showcases their talents. We know that you can do more for your clients on the right platform, and that’s where RebelMouse comes in.

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