Carnegie Mellon University

CMU Web

A service provided by the University CMS Team

Launching Your Site

Follow the steps below to initiate the site launch process once your site is complete.

Note: We require a notice of ten business days for a site launch. After requesting a site launch, you may continue to work on the site and publish to the staging server as needed. During site launch, the site will be published to the live server/URL in its current state in the CMS.

Publish your full site to the staging server to preview the site before it goes live. After the publish completes, visit the site on the staging server at:

https://cms-staging.andrew.cmu.edu/site-folder-name

After your site has been published to the staging server, review it to ensure it is fully functional and follows best practices.  Below is a list of items to check.

ITEM PROPER USE
Overall Functionality
  • Test links throughout the site (i.e., external site URLs are valid, document links load properly)
  • Images load on pages
  • Navigation is accurate and consistent on every page
System Names

All system names (names displayed in the Asset Tree) should meet the following requirements:

  • All lowercase letters, numbers
  • No spaces
  • Hyphens are used between words (not underscores)
Titles and Headings The title of a page (i.e., what the page is called in the navigation) should match, or be similar in topic to, the first heading of the page.
Meta Descriptions Meta descriptions (Description field in the CMS) should summarize the page content and incorporate relevant keywords where applicable. They are important for search engine optimization and should be filled out completely for each page on your website.
External Links External links, those that are outside of your site, should open in a new browser window.
Document Links Links that open a document such as a PDF should be labeled to reflect the document type (e.g., [pdf], [doc], etc.) and should open in a new browser window.
Link Relevant Text Text links should contain relevant keywords; do not link generic words and phrases like "click here" or "read more."
Images

To improve load time and minimize bandwidth consumption for visitors to your website, please compress all images before uploading them to the CMS. We recommend compressjpeg.com and compresspng.com.

Web Accessibility Proper measures should be taken to ensure that your site can accommodate those with disabilities. Learn more about web accessibility.

After you review your site and complete any edits, the site's Project Sponsor or Project Lead may submit the site launch request. Please note:

  • We require a notice of ten business days for a site launch. We will coordinate with you the date/time of the launch.
  • Your site will be launched to the URL that was approved with your site request. To launch the site to an external server, a technical lead must be designated when requesting the site launch. You must also agree to the conditions for publishing to an external server.
  • The Marketing & Communications Online Strategy team can perform a pre-launch site review upon request. Select this option when requesting the site launch. Please allow ten business days for the site launch AFTER the review and any subsequent updates resulting from it are complete.

Submit the site launch request form

FAQs

No, you may continue to work on your site after you submit a site launch request. There may be a short period of time where we ask for a content freeze during the actual site launch process, but we will coordinate the time/date of this with you.

No, when a site is launched we publish the full site directly from the CMS to the live server. In step 1 above, we recommend that you publish the site to the staging server so that you can review the site to ensure it is fully functional in its published state. The state of the site on staging does not affect a site launch.

No, the staging server will remain available to you as a test environment for previewing site updates prior to publishing live.

To ensure that your site appears in search results, submit an indexing request using Google Search Console once your site has been launched and installed with Web Analytics. 

CMU's search engine is powered by Google, and the search engine at search.cmu.edu uses the same search index as google.com. This means that any indexing issues pertain to both search engines.

Refer to our SEO page for more information about submitting your site to search engines.