Website under construction: how to create a coming soon page
While your site is under construction, you could still provide content. With a website coming soon page, you can promote your upcoming web presence. A coming soon page is also helpful for maintenance work. Find out what you should consider when designing and setting up sites of this type.
- What are the functions of a coming soon page?
- Setting up a page under construction: here’s how
- Important elements on a website under construction page
- Find the right style for your website coming soon page
- 3 examples for a successful coming soon page
- How long should a website construction take?
- What about SEO when designing your coming soon page?
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What are the functions of a coming soon page?
Weeks or even months may pass between registering a domain and a website going live. Meanwhile, your URL is submitted to Google and indexed to inform visitors of your upcoming web presence. This is often the case for online stores, blogs, or corporate websites. You can spark curiosity by promoting your website and giving visitors a reason to return. Find out how in the following paragraphs.
For a site that is not under construction, but under reconstruction, the corresponding website under construction message usually has a similar structure and serves a similar purpose as the website coming soon page. However, the purpose here is not so much to make visitors curious, but to inform existing customers why they may currently be unable to use a site or features thereof and how long the interruption will last.
Setting up a page under construction: here’s how
If you are launching an entirely new website, you can design and set up a website coming soon page. Once your actual website is ready simply swap the sites.
Important elements on a website under construction page
Unfortunately, the potential of a site under construction is often not fully utilized. A “page is under construction” message alongside a relevant picture isn’t wrong, but it doesn’t spark curiosity or entice the user to return later. This is your chance to introduce your project before it has launched.
A site under construction is better utilized when containing the following elements or content:
Present your company or idea
What’s the goal of your website? I.e. what do you plan on offering? The information doesn't need to be as detailed as it would be on an “About me" or “About us” page, but it should provide some idea of what a user can expect from you in the future. If your page is under construction, explain why maintenance is necessary, for example, because you’re relaunching or are updating stock from the next season. You can be charming and playful in your approach to explaining why a site may be down.
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Establish a corporate identity
Include a logo or company name on your website. In the best-case scenario, you will already have decided on colors, fonts, and other design elements for your website that you can also use for your site under construction page. These small elements provide a first impression as to your future web presence.
Let others know when construction is finished
One classic option is a countdown to show the minutes or days until your website will resume normal operations. However, this poses the challenge of having to meet proposed deadlines and failure may risk disappointment. If you’re not entirely sure you can use softer wording such as “In August”, “In the fall”, or “At the end of the year” which will give you some wiggle room. You can also set an alert: Users submit their email address and receive a notification as soon as the website is live (again).
Integrate contact options
Link to an existing contact form, provide your email address or phone number, and if applicable link to your social media profiles (assuming you’ve already populated these with content).
Collect newsletter subscribers
A newsletter is a popular addition to many coming soon pages. Depending on the type of your website you can reward subscribers with discounts. You may be able to add newsletter subscriptions before your website is set to go live or while reconstruction is ongoing. Or you can schedule your first newsletter for the launch of your website.
Find the right style for your website coming soon page
Aside from features and content, a memorable “website under construction” page depends on the style in which it is written. Depending on your professional tone and target audience, this may be witty and casual at times, or factual and neutral. Ultimately, you’ll want to establish some connection to your website theme.
Let’s look at an example of an online furniture retailer who could write “Our interior designer is currently measuring our online store to make sure that all our furniture fits in”. For a restaurant suitable wording could be “We are currently rewriting our menu” or “We are currently developing the most delicious pasta north of Italy and ask for a little patience until then”.
Blog, corporate website, or online store: How much does a website cost and what features are included?
3 examples for a successful coming soon page
Countdown & newsletter
How long should a website construction take?
If you’re building an entirely new website, you could keep a website under construction message active for as long as you like. Things are different when it comes to pages that are “under reconstruction”. Try to keep maintenance periods as short as possible – a few days or a week at most. In any case, once a date has been communicated, you should stick to it. Otherwise, you run the risk of seeming untrustworthy.
What about SEO when designing your coming soon page?
While SEO doesn’t play a significant role for a coming soon page – after all, Google has not yet indexed any content – it is a hot topic for websites undergoing maintenance. After all, if the crawler crawls your website during the reconstruction phase and doesn't find anything except for the maintenance page, the engine interprets this as a bad signal and devalues it in the ranking. Repetitive and long maintenance phases can have a cumulatively negative effect. It’s one more reason to keep maintenance to a minimum, as this reduces the risk of a crawler passing by.