Website Launch Checklist

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This article outlines the steps required for a successful website launch using Agility CMS. It is important to note that the CMS is headless CMS hosted for you in the cloud, and this guide is meant to assist in launching up your website that is connected to Agility CMS. 

  1. Deploy your Preview and Production Website - setup two website domains, one to be used for previewing content (and code changes), and the other will be your production website
  2. Configure your Preview and Production Domains in Agility CMS - register the website domains in Agility CMS and set them as your Preview/Production domains respectively

  3. Sync your Content (if using classic .NET Sync model only) - If you are using Agility.Web, you must register and sync your content to your deployed web servers. Please see How to Add a Syncing Web Server.

  4. Test Previewing and Publishing - ensure you can preview content prior to publishing on your preview domain, and test publishing content and that it is available to your production domain

  5. Publish your content - publish content that will be live at launch, it's better to do this long before your launch date so you can iron out any issues that may arise

  6. Test Site Links - using a tool such as Xenu Link Sleuth, crawl your site to find any broken links you may have, fix the links, and re-test until you don't have any errors

  7. Setup Analytics - ensure you have some way for you to track website traffic

  8. Run a Page Performance Audit - using a tool such as Lighthouse, run an audit of your top pages and fix any critical issues

  9. Expose a /sitemap.xml Page - its important to provide search engines an easy way to crawl your site

  10. Configure a /robots.txt file - you must inform search engines where your sitemap.xml page is and to set instructions as to what parts of the site should or shouldn't be crawled

  11. Test Page Caching (if applicable) - if your website is a server-rendered application, ensure you have page-level caching enable so that your page output is cached and lookups to content are minimized

  12. Custom CDN URL (if applicable) - If you haven't already, consider using a custom CDN domain for your Media and Documents for SEO benefits. Please see Updating your Media & Documents CDN URL for more details.

  13. Test URL Redirections - using a crawler like Xenu Link Sleuth, crawl the old website to get a list of active/public URLs you'll need to handle redirects for, then use this list of links to crawl on your new site. For any links that 404, set up a URL Redirection in Agility CMS to handle this and re-test until you don't have any broken links. 

  14. Add Custom Host Headers to Web Server - In order for the webserver to receive requests for your website on a custom domain, the headers need to be set up on the webserver for each of your custom domains. If you are hosting your website/web application with Agility, please contact support@agilitycms.com with your request to add custom domains/host headers. If these domains are already being used by an active site and you are deploying to an Azure App Service site, this will require you to add TXT verification records for your domains to validate ownership. Please see Migrating an Active Site to Azure App Service for more details. 

  15. Install SSL any Certificate(s) - If your site is hosted by Agility, you must provide your SSL certificate for installation to support@agilitycms.com.

  16. Test your DNS and SSL - Normally the last step before going live, it is important to ensure that you've tested all of your custom domain names and SSL certificate(s) with your production application on the live environment. Please see Testing DNS and SSL Before you Go Live for more details. A great way to test this is to re-test URL Redirections using your actual production domain names.

  17. Final Step: Flip the DNS - Whether you are launching a new site or migrating an existing one, usually the last step is making live changes to your DNS records ultimately pointing your custom domains to your production web server. Please see Live: Pointing Your Domain for full details.

If you have any questions or concerns, please email support@agilitycms.com for assistance.

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