Essential Pages to Include When Launching Your Website: A Must-Have Checklist

Essential Pages to Include When Launching Your Website: A Must-Have Checklist

Essential Pages to Include When Launching Your Website: A Must-Have Checklist

When it comes to building a website, it's crucial to consider the pages that will provide a seamless user experience. While many websites may have similar structures, the clarity of their navigation can vary. Users and search engine bots often expect specific web pages at certain URLs, and it's important to ensure that your site layout and navigation accommodate those expectations.

At Media Masters Plus+, a leading web design company specializing in web design, ecommerce development using Shopify, and SEO services, we understand the significance of creating a user-friendly website. Our extensive experience has identified several must-have pages that should be included to optimize your website's performance and enhance user satisfaction.


1. About Page

One of the most essential pages for any website is the About page. This page serves as a hub for miscellaneous information about your company, such as office locations, a brief company overview, and staff bios. It not only provides users with key information about your business but also offers them a way to contact you.

To streamline the user experience, we recommend consolidating your contact information and forms on the same page as your About section. This approach minimizes redundancy, reduces maintenance efforts, and creates a better-centralized user experience.

Expected URLs: /about-us/, /about/, /contact/, /contact-us/

What to do: If you don't have an About Us page, it's crucial to create one. If you have substantial information to share, consider creating a separate Contact Us page. For single-location businesses, include concise content, outbound links, contact information, and set up 301 redirects from the expected URLs to the current URL for that page.


2. Shop Page

For businesses that sell products, optimizing the URLs for your shop and product pages is crucial. While some brands may prioritize merchandise, others may have a broader focus on their website. To maintain the quality and resources of your main site, it's advisable to avoid hosting your shop on a separate domain.

Expected URLs: /shop/, /merch/, /products/

What to do: Regardless of the significance of products on your site, ensure that you redirect the expected URLs to your cart page. If possible, consolidate your products onto a single page. Although certain platforms like Shopify may not allow moving the shop URL, you can create redirects for other URLs to point to your built-in shop.


3. Services Page

If your business offers services, it's essential to have dedicated pages on your website. Some websites list all services on a single page, while others prefer spreading them across multiple pages. For instance, if you're a landscaping company, you likely provide various services. When users are unable to find a comprehensive list of services, they often expect to navigate to a URL like /services/.

Consider using industry-specific URLs, such as /landscaping-services/, to add keyword relevance to your page's slug.

Expected URLs: /services/

What to do: If you don't have a universal landing page for your service listings, create one immediately. If you already have a service page but it resides on a different URL, such as pain-management-services, ensure that you redirect /services/ to that page. If you don't sell merchandise and have an e-commerce site, redirect the expected URLs from the e-commerce site to your services page.


4. Careers Page

Having a careers page is crucial, even if you're not actively hiring. Many individuals and search bots search for careers pages on websites. By excluding a careers page, you may miss out on valuable search traffic and potential employees. Having a dedicated careers page can help talented individuals find your company without requiring significant recruitment efforts.

Common URLs: /jobs/, /careers/, /work/, /employment/, /apply/

What to do: Create a dedicated /careers/ page, even if you outsource the actual job listings to another site. Ensure that all the expected URLs mentioned above redirect to your careers page. Based on our research, /careers/ is the most intuitive URL for visitors looking for career information.


5. Blog Page

In recent years, adding a blog to websites has become increasingly common. Studies indicate that approximately 60% of websites use WordPress, which offers a built-in blog function. Including a blog on your website allows you to share valuable content, engage your audience, and improve your search engine visibility.


6. Feed Page

While RSS readers may not be as popular as before, the /feed/ URL is still widely used by podcasts, news outlets, and blogs to export their content to third-party aggregators. Although users may not directly visit this URL, search engine bots frequently do.

Expected URLs: /feed/, /feed.xml

What to do: If your website includes a blog, podcast, media feed, or news section, it's important to have an RSS feed attached to it. If the feed link is located elsewhere, set up a redirect from /feed/ to the appropriate location. This ensures that users and bots can easily access your content's most common access point.


7. Events Page

Even if you don't regularly host events, many people and bots search for event-related pages on websites. Whether it's special sales, hiring events, or sponsored events, having a dedicated page can cater to these searches and enhance user engagement.

Expected URLs: /events/, /classes/, /sales/ (in some cases)

What to do: If you don't already have an events or sales page, create one to showcase upcoming events or promotions. Tailor the content to suit your website's purpose and consider redirecting /events/ to a relevant URL, such as a filter for "on-sale" if you have an e-commerce platform that supports it.


8. Coupons Page

While users may not frequently navigate to /coupons/ manually, coupon-related searches generate significant search volume. Having a dedicated coupons page can attract users searching for discounts and promotions, ultimately driving more traffic to your site.

Expected URLs: /sales/, /coupons/, /discounts/

What to do: Create a coupon page and list any available discounts, such as student discounts, AAA discounts, or club memberships. SquareSpace's approach of displaying a clear message on their coupon page is an excellent example. Even if you don't actively offer public discounts, you can still use this page to highlight alternative ways to lower prices or provide special offers.


10. Help, Support & FAQs Page

Addressing user inquiries and providing support is crucial for maintaining a positive user experience. Consider creating a Help, Support, or FAQs page to answer common questions and assist users. It's important to ensure easy navigation between this page and other relevant sections, such as About/Contact pages.

Expected URLs: /faq/, /help/, /support/, /faqs/

What to do: Analyze how users need to access support documentation for your product or service. If you're a software company, a user-friendly and accessible support solution is vital. Utilize existing services or create your own, and set up redirects for assumed URLs to direct users to the appropriate help solution.


What's Next After Implementing These Pages? Once you've implemented these essential pages, it's crucial to actively monitor 404 errors, indicating that a page cannot be found. By using tools like WP-Redirection for WordPress sites or similar plugins for other CMS systems, you can log 404s and identify URLs users assume exist but lead to non-existent pages. Set up redirects to ensure users are directed to the right pages and have a seamless browsing experience.

Lowering user frustration should be a goal for every webmaster, so continue to optimize your website's navigation and address user needs effectively.

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