Thinking proactively about post-launch
Congratulations, you’ve just launched your new app! And now … the hard part.
It can be daunting to think so far ahead when prepping to release an app or website. But as the launch date quickly comes into view, digital product owners need to think proactively about ways to support and iterate on the products they’ve built.
What will you, and your users, want this product to look like in a month, six months, or a year? A post-launch plan can be sprawling, but we’ve broken it down to help you think about your priorities and goals.
Post-launch needs typically fall into three broad categories: maintenance (bug fixes and site optimizations), managed hosting (DevOps proactively manages and monitors your cloud infrastructure), and new feature design & development. Let’s break those categories down.
Think about your upcoming maintenance needs in three ways:
- Corrective maintenance such as defect analysis, troubleshooting, and bug fixes. This also could include updates to core components and feature extensions.
- Perfective maintenance such as performance reviews, as well as improvements and recommendations for overall performance improvements.
- Adaptive maintenance such as adjusting visual elements and copy, updating visual elements or copy within an existing page, testing legacy code with updated browsers, and ensuring layout is consistent throughout the site as content is updated. Design production for items such as buttons, icons, and tools is part of this too.
Do you have the internal team to support that maintenance, or the budget to support externally? Does the agency you’re partnering with to build the product have the bandwidth and expertise to support you after launch? Do you know how you want the product to evolve, or do you need help figuring that out? Answer those questions first and you’ll have a clear idea of the next steps.
Managed hosting and DevOps
Once the dust settles after launch, it’s time to review how your infrastructure is managed and maintained. Depending on your internal team size, it’s often easier to have an agency like Dom & Tom:
- Configure, deploy, and maintain servers for client web and mobile applications in a cloud environment
- Provide deployment support to developers
- Develop automated deployment and provisioning processes
- Design application deployments in such a way so future enhancements and scalability are accommodated
There are many options for hosting, and we can help you make the right choice. For example, we host a majority of our applications on AWS on both private and public clouds. We leverage their services wherever possible such as RDS for SQL databases, S3 for object storage and CloudFront for accelerated web delivery and global caching.
So, how to choose the right technology? It’s helpful to have a Technical Diagram that outlines both your first-party infrastructure and your third-party services (core vs context). It provides a clear outline for your infrastructure team on what to manage and maintain.
Post-launch development typically includes hours dedicated to:
- New feature updates
- Quality assurance testing (for every new update)
- Project management to facilitate all communication and track hours
- Technical consultation
- Creative consultation
If you have a clear product backlog, a retained team makes the most sense. But if you’re still figuring out Product Market Fit, then engaging on fixed-scope, feature-specific areas is a better approach.
If you’re not sure which way to go, we recommend a “bucket of hours” that rolls over month-to-month. Three months is the magic number to learn product-team velocity. Then you can “right-size” to higher or lower velocities in either a retainer or fixed-scope approach.
Build your plan
Have questions about building a post-launch plan? Ask us anything.