When launching a new website it can be tempting to try and get everything perfect before you go ahead and make it live. That’s understandable because you want your new website to be perfect. In the pursuit of perfection your new website can be delayed by weeks and even months as you try to get every piece of content right. You may eventually get your content just right, but the time you lose in that process can cost you success in more ways than you think. Here are some reasons sooner is better than later:
1. Google Crawl and Index
When you launch a new website on a new domain, it can take some time for Google to crawls and index your site. For this reason its better to have something online sooner than later. In the first 4-6 weeks, it is unlikely that your content will be discovered by online search. This can give you time to perfect your content while Google crawls and works out your site.
As part of our website build process we build an xml sitemap which helps search engines crawl your site. At the time of launch we submit the sitemap to Google to help speed up the crawl and index process.
2. Google Sandbox
There is also an alleged “google sandbox” at work which affects the rankings on your new website. While there is debate surrounding exactly how this works, the general consensus is that Google has an algorithm in place which limits the success of a new website. The reason for this is to prevent spam style websites quickly ranking on google.
As users start interacting with your website, google learns that your website does deliver quality content. Once the trust is established your website will show up in the search results. In our experience this can take up to 6 months before your website fully shakes off the effects of being new.
3. Domain Age
Another time related ranking factor is the age of your domain. Older domains carry more authority which can give them an advantage over relatively newer domains. This is why some people seek to buy old domains to build their new website on. This gives them some immediate authority and better rankings in the search results.
Finding an appropriate existing domain is not really an option for most businesses owners. Instead, most will register a domain that is more in line with their business name. The best practice is to build a website as soon as possible once a domain is purchased. This will ensure that the data accumulation process begins by Google sooner and some authority starts to get built into the website.
If you have purchased a domain but not yet in a position to build a full website, consider building a small website first. This will make your domain live and start the authority accumulation process. We have a number of small website packages available.
4. Learn From Your Visitors
By launching your site sooner, you gain valuable insight into how visitors engage with your website. For example, when your site is live you can see which pages have a high bounce rate. Bounce rate is when visitors leave your site immediately after arriving by hitting the “back” button. You can then trouble shoot why the bounce rate is high: slow page speed, not enough internal links, content that is inadequate etc. By fixing the causes of bounce rate, you can improve overall user experience which leads to higher rankings.
Google analytics provides you with a wealth of data which you can use to improve your website. This will ultimately lead to a better website than trying to build a website independently of user feedback data. Part of most of our monthly SEO services include gauging user data as a means to improving the website. This is an essential practice for improving user experience and data.
5. A Successful Website is a Changing Website
Google loves to see a website that is constantly changing and evolving. That’s because the internet is constantly changing with new search trends and new technology. Google is constantly tweaking it’s algorithm in an effort to provide better results to end users. If your website doesn’t grow and change with these changes it will get left behind. For this reason it is far better to see your website as a constantly changing, growing organism rather than a static masterpiece.
We build websites using the WordPress platform. WordPress is great because it allows non techs to add change and add new content to their website. By placing a blog feed on the home page that is periodically updated with fresh content, you are giving your website every chance to grow and rank.
When it comes to the success of your online presence it is far better to launch sooner than later. Once your website looks professional and has quality content it is time to go live. You can always add more content later or take time to tweak that article. By going live you begin the indexing process and start to build authority. You can collect user data which you can use to optimise your user experience and convert more visitors into leads.
If you have a domain for your business but no website yet then get started today. Even a simple one page website will help establish your online presence. We have solutions for any budget.