How to test and publish your website pages

Last Updated: March 25, 2014

Once you've created all of the website pages that you want to launch on your new or redesigned site, it's time to publish those pages. Then you can review the website on your default HubSpot staging domain and make sure that everything looks the way you want it to.

How to publish draft pages

Go to Content > Site Pages and look for any pages that are still drafts. You can identify draft pages by looking for the grey circle underneath the page name.

How to publish draft pages

Click on the gear icon next to a draft page and select Edit from the drop-down menu.

If  you're ready to publish that page, click the Publish button at the bottom of the content editor.

How to view your website at its staging domain

Your staging domain can be found in Content > Content Settings > Domain Manager and will look something like "yourcompanyname.sites.hubspot.com." If you hover your mouse over the default domain, you'll see a message indicating that it is a default domain.

How to view your website at its staging domain

What to check before going live

  • Check that there are no broken links in your website's menu. If there are broken links, you'll either need to edit the site map that the menu was created with or make sure that the page you are linking to is in fact published.
  • Check that there are not any broken images on your website pages. If there are broken images, you'll need to edit the page and replace the images using your HubSpot file manager.
  • Check that any forms that you've added to your site are functioning correctly. If any forms are not functioning correctly, you'll want to edit the page and reconfigure your form actions as needed.

How to run a usability test on your website pages

You should be testing all aspects of your website, from navigation to layout to placement of information, and how each aspect creates value for your prospects and current customers.

Exploratory Interviews and Usability Testing

If you have the time and resources, conducting exploratory interviews and usability tests early on in the process can be incredibly beneficial. When testing your website, you'll want to chat with prospects who are truly considering your product or company as a solution to their problem. Have them walk through your website with a particular task in mind. At HubSpot, we ask our testers to use the HubSpot homepage to gather information for a report back to their boss. From this experiment, you can see if the information you’ve provided on your site actually helps your prospects complete a simple task. You can also decide how well the flow of your website works for users.

Quick Information Testing

Another great method that you can test with anyone (not necessarily a prospect) is the quick informational test. Ask a tester to look at a page for  anywhere from 10 to 30 seconds to gather as much information as they can. This helps you make sure your content, layout, and navigation convey what you need them to do in a short amount of time. Research shows that people are patient with websites for up to two seconds. That doesn’t give you a lot of time to showcase your product and message. These brief tests can help with this.

Talk To People Internally

If you don’t have the time or resources for more thorough testing, use your coworkers -- especially the customer-facing ones. Have them walk through a task similar to what you’d do in a typical usability test. A customer support team is the ideal for this process, but any employees who regularly deal with your prospects or customers will do.

Next Article: How to improve your website pages over time

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