The Ultimate Blog Launch Checklist For 2022 & Beyond

Planning to launch your blog? As someone who’s launched multiple blogs over the last 8 years of my blogging career, I can say with confidence that launching a blog isn’t easy. 

There must be so many things going on in your mind right now. So many decisions to make. So much work to do. 

You must be thinking: 

Where should I start? What should I do first? Am I missing something? 

Well, to ease things a bit for you, I’ve created an ultimate blog launch checklist that you can follow to make sure your blog launch happens exactly the way you wanted it. 

I’ve listed down all the possible steps (big or small) that you will have to take in order to launch your blog. With minimal details for each step, you’ll be in the right direction and will be confidently able to launch your blog to the world. 

Let’s get started. 

The Ultimate Blog Launch Checklist 

I’ve divided this blog launch checklist into 7 sections that cover the different stages of launching a blog. From ideation to implementation, the checklist consists of over 40 steps. I’ve also added helpful resources in various steps in case you need more information or help regarding something.

Phase 1: The Research

The Research phase consists of tasks that will help you brainstorm and ideate topics and ideas for your blog along with other details such as identifying your target audience, your demographics, etc. 

  • Choose Your Topic/Niche: The first step of starting a blog is choosing a topic or niche. Your blog’s topic should be something you’re interested in and have good knowledge about. This will help you create valuable content for your audience. 
  • Understand Your Target Audience: Once you have decided on a topic, spend some time understanding who your ideal target audience is.

    Identify their pain points, goals, and aspirations. This will help you plan and produce content that’s tailored to their problems. 
  • Set SMART Goals: Setting SMART goals will give you some direction for your blog. SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-Based.

    By defining parameters for your goals, your targets will be clear to you. An example of a SMART goal for your blog could be: Driving 1000 visitors in the first month of your blog. 
  • Identify Your Competitors: Spend some time researching who your competitors are in your niche. You can do this by searching for some of the topics you’ll cover in your blog and seeing who’s ranking on the search engines.

    What you should be looking for in your competitors are the topics they cover on their blog, where their audience hangs out, and how they drive traffic to their website.

    You can do this extensively by using an SEO tool like SEMRush that lets you enter your competitor’s website and it shows all the above information and more. 
  • Research Topics To Cover: Once you’ve researched your ideal target audience and your competitors, you’ll have an idea of what topics to cover. But you should go a step further and find topics that have the potential to drive traffic from search engines.

    To do this, you can use keyword research tools like SEMRush or UberSuggest (Free) to uncover keywords, their search volumes, and the difficulty to rank for them on Google. 
  • Brainstorm Names For Your Blog: By now, you must have already thought of a name for your blog. But if you’re struggling with it, you can try using a business name generator such as Namelix.

    Keep in mind that the name of your blog should be short, easy to remember, easy to pronounce, and should obviously have the domain extension (.com preferably) available. 

Phase 2: The Setup 

You’ve done all the research work and finally, know what your blog is going to be about. Now, it’s time to work on setting up the blog and getting things running. 

  • Buy A Brandable Domain: As I mentioned in the previous step, your brand name or domain should be brandable. You can buy a domain using a registrar like Namecheap or you can buy it along with your web hosting. 
  • Pick The Right Blogging Platform: There are many blogging platforms such as WordPress, Squarespace, Wix, etc. I recommend WordPress as it’s the best among all. It comes with all the features you’d need to run a blog. 
  • Purchase A Fast & Reliable Hosting: The next step is to purchase a hosting to host your blog. While many experts recommend Bluehost, I find it slow and not worth the money.

    My personal recommendation is to choose Cloudways. Most of my sites (including this one) are hosted on it and it’s fast and really affordable as well. 
  • Install WordPress: After purchasing your web hosting, you’ll have to install WordPress on it. For Cloudways, you can refer to this step-by-step tutorial on connecting your domain and installing WordPress. 
  • Install SSL On Your Website: An SSL certificate is required to secure your website. Websites that don’t have an SSL certificate are displayed as “Not Secure” on browsers which is something you don’t want your visitors to see. To learn more about SSL and how it works, check out this article
  • Install A WordPress Theme: There are so many great WordPress themes to choose from. You can browse WordPress theme marketplaces to find the theme that matches your style. If you’re confused, I recommend you go with the Astra theme which is one of the fastest WordPress themes. 
  • Install Essential WordPress Plugins: Installing WordPress plugins will help you add additional functionality to your website. Plugins for SEO, speed optimization, security, etc are important to have on your website.

    Here are some essential WordPress plugins you should install on your website:
  • Create Essential Pages: A website should have some important pages to help visitors navigate and get the information they need. You should create the following essential pages on your website: 
  • Home
  • About
  • Blog
  • Contact
  • Privacy Policy
  • Terms of Service
  • Setup Google Search Console: Google Search Console is a free tool that will help you manage your blog. It notifies you of any errors, gives you information about your website’s performance, and a lot more. Check out this article if you want to learn more about Google Search Console. 
  • Setup Google Analytics: Google Analytics is a website analytics tool by Google that provides free information about how your website performs.

    You can find information about how much traffic you’re getting, where your visitors are coming from, how long they stay on your website, etc. Check out this tutorial on how to set up Google Analytics on WordPress. 
  • Submit Your Website’s Sitemap: A sitemap is a file that provides information about all the pages on your website. Submitting your sitemap to Google Search Console helps Google crawl and index your pages on their search engine more easily.

    Having a sitemap helps Google understand your site’s structure and stay updated. Refer to this guide to submit your sitemap to Google. 
  • Change Your Permalink Structure: By default, WordPress posts have the URL structure as year/month/post-name which often makes the post URLs very long. Change your permalink structure to just /post-name with the help of this tutorial
  • Sign Up For A Website Downtime Monitoring Tool (Optional): It’s good to monitor your website and make sure you don’t face any downtime. Uptime Robot is a free website monitoring service that notifies you immediately (via email, SMS, call, etc) if your website goes down. 

Phase 3: The Design

After going through the initial setup, it’s time to beautify things and spend some time on the design aspects of your blog. While many new bloggers skip this altogether, I feel it’s important to ensure that your blog looks well put together and leaves a good impression on your visitors. 

  • Design A Logo For Your Blog: A logo will help you create an identity for your blog. You can get a logo designed by a professional designer or you can use free logo generator tools if you’re on a tight budget.

    But, I do recommend spending money on a logo because this will be your brand’s identity for years to come. It should look professional and meaningful to your audience. 
  • Add A Favicon To Your Blog: A Favicon is the small icon of the website displayed on the browser tab. By default, WordPress shows its own favicon which is why you should add a favicon to your website. Refer to this article to add your logo as a favicon in WordPress. 
  • Build A Brand Style Guide (Optional): A style guide helps you stay consistent with your branding and how you represent yourself and your blog. You can create a style guide that defines both the visual and content aspects of your blog.

    It can include documentation on the colors of your brand, fonts you’ll use, your writing style, tone, voice, etc. 
  • Design Your Website Pages (Optional): Start designing the pages of your website to present information in a more visually pleasing manner. You can use the default style of your theme for your pages.

    But if there are pages where you want a custom design, you can use the Elementor page builder for designing pages in your style. 

Phase 4: The Content 

You’re almost halfway there and it’s time to focus on the most important part of your blog: the content. This phase includes creating content for your blog. 

  • Make A List Of 25 Topics For Your Blog: Brainstorm and research atleast 25 topics to cover on your blog. Having 25 topics will help you keep the momentum going and not face writer’s block quickly. 
  • Write 5-10 Blog Posts Ahead Of Launch: It’s always a good practice to write atleast 5-10 articles ahead of your blog launch. This helps you continuously publish content after launching keeping your audience interested. 
  • Write Content For Other Pages On Your Blog: Write content for your About, Contact, and other pages you have created for your blog. Since these pages are essential, it’s important the content you write for these pages is descriptive enough for readers. 
  • Optimize Your Content For SEO Using RankMath: The RankMath plugin helps you optimize your content for SEO by providing suggestions on what to change.

    For each post/page, you can set the target keyword and it’ll give you recommendations to optimize your page for that keyword. To learn more about this, check out this article by RankMath. 

Phase 5: The Pre-Marketing Setup 

Your blog is almost ready for launch! Now, it’s time to generate some hype and prepare for the launch. This phase is very important as it can dictate how well your blog launch happens. 

  • Create Social Media Accounts For Your Blog: Make sure you create accounts on various social media platforms for your blog. I recommend creating the following profiles: 
  • Facebook Page
  • Twitter
  • Pinterest
  • Instagram 
  • Facebook Group 
  • TikTok 
  • Setup an Email List: An email list is very crucial in building an audience and it’s always a good idea to create one right from the beginning. To create an email list, you’ll have to sign up for an email marketing tool.

    I use and recommend SendFox as it’s simple and is made for content creators. It comes with a free plan so you don’t have to invest any money right from the beginning. Here’s a walkthrough video of SendFox to help you get started. 
  • Create A Lead Magnet For Your Audience: One great way to attract subscribers early on is to create a lead magnet that compels them to subscribe.

    You can create a lead magnet out of the blog posts you publish. It can be a PDF, checklist, or anything that compels visitors to subscribe to your email list. 
  • Create Social Media Posts/Graphics To Promote Your Blog’s Launch: To build hype and anticipation ahead of your blog launch, you should create social media graphics using a tool like Canva. This will help you create some excitement in your social circle. 
  • Connect With Other Bloggers: Find bloggers in your industry on social media and connect with them. Don’t directly promote your blog but instead form a connection with them. Forming good relationships with other bloggers goes a long way as they’ll help you out once your blog is launched. 
  • Find Guest Blogging Opportunites Ahead Of Launch: Another smart way of generating buzz around your blog is to look for guest blogging opportunities. You can connect with bloggers and request to contribute content to their blogs. 
  • Collect Subscribers Before Launching: You can collect subscribers before launch by creating a coming soon page where visitors can opt-in to get notified when your blog goes live.

    This is an effective strategy if you already have a decent following on social media and want to leverage it. 

Phase 6: The Testing

Don’t go ahead and launch your blog right away! Spend some time testing everything out to ensure there are no errors. The last thing you would want on launch day is someone pointing out an embarrassing mistake on your blog (Happened to me once. It’s quite embarrassing!). 

  • Check If All Pages Are Working & Interlinked Properly: Go through all the pages and posts on your website and check if they’re loading properly. Check all the links on your website and see if they land on the designated pages. 
  • Make Sure The Website Loads Properly On Mobile: Check your website on mobile and see if it loads properly. Ensure that the text is readable, the images are clear, and the overall experience is good. You can also use this free tool called Responsively to check how your website looks on different devices. 
  • Conduct Speed Tests On Your Website: Check your website’s speed using tools such as Google PageSpeed Insights and GTMetrix. Try to aim for a speed less than 3 seconds of loading time for your website. Use the WPRocket plugin to optimize your website’s speed. Refer to this guide
  • Make Sure Your Website Meets All Accessibility Standards: It’s important to ensure your website meets the various accessibility standards. You can check your website’s accessibility using this free tool
  • Check If Your Contact & Email List Forms Are Working: Check whether your contact forms are submitting data properly and you’re receiving them. Also, reply to the submitted data to check if the sender is properly receiving a response from you as well.

    Do the same for your email list forms and check whether the user is getting subscribed and receiving emails properly. 

Phase 7: The Launch 

So, you’ve followed all the above steps and now it’s time to hit the launch button! Here are the final steps to successfully launch your blog to the world: 

  • Announce Your Blog’s Launch On Social Media Platforms: Post on all the social media platforms about your blog’s launch. Use Canva to create beautiful graphics about the launch to attract even more visitors. 
  • Inform Your Family & Friends: Your first supporters will be your friends and family. So, let them know about your blog and ask them to share it further to support you. 
  • Email Your Pre-Launch Subscribers (Optional): If you collected subscribers before your launch, now’s the time to email them and share your blog with them. 
  • Keep Promoting Your Blog Consistently: Your blog promotion should continue consistently for the next few weeks. This will help you keep the momentum going and build an audience. Join Facebook groups, Pinterest group boards, and other communities where you can promote your blog. 

What’s Next? 

So, you’ve launched your blog now. What’s next? 

Launching your blog is only the first step of running a successful blog. The real work starts now. 

After launching your blog, you’ll have to consistently publish content, stay active on social media, and keep promoting your blog. It’s easier said than done. But if you’re passionate and committed enough, you can make your blog successful. 

I hope you liked this blog launch checklist. If you have any questions or think I missed something, let me know in the comments below. 

Lastly, please do consider downloading a short PDF version of this checklist so that you can refer to it any time while you work on your blog’s launch.