One of our favourite WordPress plugins at the moment is Launchpad by Obox. This nifty plugin has lots of customisable options that enable website creators to build a helpful landing page for visitors while the website is being built or modified behind the scenes, and puts the website into maintenance mode so that only users of a specified level can see the full website.
We’ve been using it on this website, and on our parent website debbidoo.marketing, while the sites were under construction (we’ve recently split our old hand-coded website, debbidoo.com, into two new WordPress websites on new domains).
This is a free plugin which has some great features, including:
- The option to display a countdown timer showing how much time is left until the website is launched
- The option to display a newsletter subscription form and social media links, so that visitors can keep in touch with you until the website is ready to launch
- Styling options including custom background, logo and fonts, and if you’re feeling adventurous you can completely style the landing page with custom CSS.
We also use Launchpad in combination with Global Hide Toolbar and Sky Login Redirect while we build websites for clients. This means that, using a temporary ‘subscriber’ user account, our clients are able to log into their WordPress websites from the Launchpad landing page and view the progress of the work we’re doing, without having any access at all to the WordPress admin menu until we’ve finished building the website and have handed over the main administrator password. This combination of plugins also means that, as long as the client doesn’t already have a website in place on their domain, there’s no need for us to build their website in a staging setting before packing up and uploading all the files and database to the client’s domain.
Launchpad is a very easy to use plugin, especially if you’re not bothered about creating custom CSS to style the landing page fully (although if you do have some CSS experience you won’t be fazed by using this feature). We rate this plugin ‘highly recommended’!