When we build custom WordPress websites for our clients, we always dedicate at least a week minimum to go through user testing and quality assurance with them. During this step of our process, they are reviewing the “staging website,” which is essentially a non-published, working version of their new site. Since this is usually a unique experience for our clients, we wanted to dedicate a post to help understand what to expect when reviewing a staging site.
How Does the Staging Site Work
A staging site is basically a working version of your website for live testing and review. All of the buttons, links, animations, and responsive design will function exactly how it would when it’s live, and we send these to make sure everything works as it should before launch.
Before we send a staging site to a client, we always undergo an internal review as a team to make sure we didn’t miss anything and everything is in working order. Once we have made any adjustments needed, we then send the staging site to our clients.
What Should You Review
Ideally, this part of our website development process should be reserved for the following tasks (but not limited to):
- Make sure the website looks sound on all devices
- All links and buttons work correctly
- Make any final tweaks to any website content
- Checking all forms and plugging in submissions to make sure the correct person receives them
- Checking the navigation to make sure all pages are visible and accessible
- Reviewing the website in multiple browsers (Safari, Chrome, Firefox) and on various devices (Android, iPhone, iPad, etc.)
- For eCommerce websites:
- Making sure the payment gateway is working as it should
- Testing to see if an account creation is simple for the user
- Seeing if login and checkout options are functioning correctly
- Page timeout limits
- Confirming that email confirmations or texts are delivering correctly
The biggest thing to remember when reviewing your staging site is to take your time! We usually allocate five business days for the first round of quality assurance (QA), which will give you plenty of time to test everything.
Once we complete all of the necessary adjustments to the staging site, we then schedule a launch date so everyone can see your new website.
Remember: A Website is a Never-Ending Project
Something we like to remind our clients of is that a website is rarely a one-off project. Changes will come and go with your business, and the same can be applied to your website. Whether that means adding new products to sell, changing photos, removing pages, or updating evergreen website content, a website is a reflection of your business and needs to be consistent with any changes you have made.
If you have any questions about staging sites or quality assurance, contact GreenMellen today.