Process for GoLive (Beta to Live Site)

Site Administrators should make sure that they have followed the steps and rules set out in the "How to Move a Site to Flex2 Theme" in order to ensure that they have set up their beta site correctly, are using the proper GSU Elements, and have tested all pages and posts of their site for links, images, forms, mobile experience, etc.

The first thing that we will need to verify is that the DNS is pointing to CloudFlare. We need to confirm this with Jamie Thaulbald in IT as early as possible.

Once the site is up and running, the Digital Strategy team needs to go in and remove all Super Admins that do not need access to the site in question. This will not affect their access to sites that they already have access to.

Larger, outward-aimed sites will be required to print out all the main landing pages of their site (or provide them in a digitally editable format) and haveDon Hale, the VP for Public Relations and Marketing Communications, review and edit the copy. Plan accordingly, as this may take more than a week to have these printouts reviewed and edited, and then reviewed again.

Site Administrators will then need to contact Digital Strategy of their intent to transfer their beta site to their live site (the process of GoLive) at least 2 weeks before they want it to occur. Digital Strategy will need to meet with the Site Administrators and go over the beta site with them, reviewing layouts, menus, fonts, links, etc. Changes that need to be made will be discussed, and if the GoLive date has to be pushed back to accommodate these alterations/corrections, it will be deliberated at this time.

Some items that Digital Strategy will be looking for:
  • Menu bar items are consistent and used properly
  • Headlines appear properly
  • Official GSU fonts are used throughout the site
  • Calendar feeds are functioning as expected
  • Menus are mapped properly
  • Contact information is correct
  • Wherever possible, all links should be relative. Also check every outside links to verify they are not broken
  • Forms functioning as expected
  • SEO Titles and Meta Descriptions have been added throughout the site
  • Alt Text has been added for all images
  • If activated, make sure Print Friendly & PDF plugin is configured properly so that green buttons are not appearing on every page

The Site Administrators will need to make the changes discussed and then set up another appointment with Digital Strategy. If the changes that needed to be made were small, a simple phone call or Skype call can be arranged. If the alterations were significant, it would be preferred to have a face to face meeting where all the changes could be revisited issue by issue. If all the changes previously discussed have not been made at this time, or if more items have arisen, they will be brought up, and the GoLive date may be pushed back to accommodate the work that still needs to be completed. Another meeting will then be scheduled before GoLive to ensure that everything has been finished.

Once everything is completed, GoLive will commence on a pre-scheduled date.

Prior to GoLive (a week or so before), we need to run a check for non-relative links to see if any appear broken.

**On the day before GoLive, Digital Strategy will transfer all form data from the Live site to the Beta site. We also need to add the Gravity Forms key and add all of our GSU settings to the plugin.

On the GoLive date, Digital Strategy will switch the beta with the live site. They will then make the LIVE site PUBLIC, and remove the PUBLIC setting from the now BETA site.

**The old site (now listed as must then "discourage" search engines to keep from being included in Google searches. Go to Settings > Reading > Discourage search engines from indexing this site.

Temporarily redirect the old site too to make sure that no search engines will spider it until we’re ready to delete it.

Remove the word "Beta" from the Blogname.

On CloudFlare, cache for the live site will be cleared.

The plugin SSL Insecure Content Fixer must be activated, and it must be set to "capture all." 

Run a SMUSH ALL to make sure all images are Smushed.

A search will need be done to verify that no inter-site links point to "beta." anymore, and corrections to the URLs will need to be made. CHECK ALL CUSTOM LINKS IN THE MENU SECTION FOR "beta." LINKS AS WELL.

We will then turn off all unused plugins - these add to page load unnecessarily.

SAML login is not auto-activated. Activate it now.

The Site Administrators will then need to go through every page and post on the now live site, check that every graphic appears, link goes where it should, and form functions as it should (including being submitted and delivering the correct email confirmations).

We will also need to check links in the Students and Faculty & Staff top menus, as well as footer menu for changed or broken links.

Once verified, GoLive will be complete.

**Digital Strategy must then make sure the Trello cards are getting properly updated - especially the site IDs, so that we know the correct site tables to delete on the backend.

The Site Administrators of the site will be given one to two weeks to contact us directly with any fixes that need to be made. After this time period they must be told to submit any further changes/fixed via UserVoice.

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