How to Build a Launch Page with Wordpress

You have a business idea, app, or website that you want to launch. One of the first steps is to get a launch page up so that you have something visual to show potential customers or users, and to collect emails. There are a couple simple options to putting a launch page up. Using Wordpress is one of those options.

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    Find an available domain with

    Like anything else, there are plenty of options for finding available domain names. This is one of my favorites because you can also search available social media names. Simply put your domain idea into the input box. No need to add a domain ending like .com, as it will search multiple domain endings.

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    Get Hosting for Your Domain

    Obviously, if you have hosting and a domain, skip this step. In order to get the domain online, you need hosting. This is a link to Bluehost, a popular shared host. You can get your domain and hosting here (if you have a domain already, you can transfer it, but that's an extra step). You will get just about exactly the same service at a similar price as other hosting companies, such as GoDaddy. It will run about $90 per year, give or take. I've found Bluehost to be the easiest to use out of the hosting companies. GoDaddy is a little confusing, and their customer service is a lot worse than Bluehost if you run into any trouble. Just an FYI, any offers they give you outside of your regular hosting, you don't need. Just uncheck all of them. 

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    Install Wordpress on your Bluehost Account

    Now that you have a domain and hosting, you need to install Wordpress as your content management system (CMS). You can do this from the control panel of Bluehost (assuming you went with Bluehost). GoDaddy or anywhere else will work almost exactly the same. Follow the instructions in the video. You'll be taken to Mojo, where you'll run through the installation process. Again, if they want you to add any extra services, themes, or plugins, you don't need any of it. Just uncheck everything. Once you have Wordpress installed, you really don't need to get into your Bluehost control panel anymore. You'll access everything from 

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    Use the Launch Effect Theme

    Launch Effect is a free theme that allows you to pretty quickly get a theme up with an email capture. Each person that enters their email is given a unique trackable link to share (which you can set rewards for). All the tracking is done in your Wordpress back-end. It works pretty slick. There is a premium theme that you can pay for if you want extra features. There are some other options, but this is the best. You can potentially use a "Coming Soon" plugin or theme, but that requires some unnecessary hacking.

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    How to Set up the Launch Effect Wordpress Theme

    This is a pretty easy to follow video and demo that will walk you through setting up the Launch Effect Theme, and all of your different options. It's really straightforward. You should have it set up in 10-15 minutes if your content is ready.

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    Accepting a Payment? Use Launch Effect's "Buy it Now" Button

    Here is a tutorial video on how to set up the "But it Now" button, which is powered by Paypal. Giving a payment option is a nice way to quickly sell something or add further validation that a customer is interested in what you've got to offer.

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    More Information on the Launch Effect Theme

    This is a presentation about the theme if you want some more intricate details as to your options and their intentions in creating the theme.

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    Helpful tips on using Launch effect

    Utilize the trackable URL to create contests or incentives to share your app, product, or website. Think about what Dropbox or Mailbox App did with their launch process. Perhaps even publish a leaderboard or show weekly sharing winners via one of your social media channels. 

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