Should we tag our new website as 'beta'?


What does tagging your new website as 'beta' say to your potential customers. We intend a 'soft' launch to our website and are not planning any significant marketing at this period. We intend to use this time to refine our business administration processes and sort out any teething troubles in terms of the correct functioning and operation of the website.

We intend to 'relaunch' 4-6 months after our 'soft' launch but beyond a marketing drive, a moderate extension our services (and perhaps a moderate update to the look and feel), there is not any major revisions to our website. Should we tag our website as 'beta' during this first period or not, and does it matter?

Marketing Launch Website Beta Branding

asked Sep 24 '11 at 04:27
Dan Mac Bean
151 points
Top digital marketing agency for SEO, content marketing, and PR: Demand Roll

6 Answers


BETA is not a word to decorate your brand name. It is the word to represent your product is new, may have errors, we are working for its development There are few major risks if you didn't release your product as beta at first.

1) What happens if your product had bugs or crashed for some reason?
2) No first release is successful. It needs validation, verification and feedback.
3) Can you answer to your users if your website's server got down?

That is the reason why the term BETA helps you from many risks like above. No body has a right to question you/your product when it is in BETA. BETA just says your product is in testing purpose and requires bug fixing.

BETA can also be used for incomplete projects. You can launch your product now with BETA and can upgrade it daily until you reach your end. Once you reached your position and feel that your product is out of risks you can remove the term BETA.

All the best.

answered Sep 24 '11 at 13:25
427 points
  • No product is ever out of risks, or ever completed. No service has 100% uptime. Every product has bugs. Beta is just a highly subjective term, and it doesn't mean that when out of beta your product needs to be perfect. – Mihaly Borbely 12 years ago


Tagging as beta is fine but don't do what Google did with gmail and tag it as beta for seven years - it just looks ridiculous.

answered Sep 24 '11 at 11:38
1,194 points
  • Well, it did look funny, but did it do any harm? They are market leaders on email. So, if we are talking about business here, you can't justify the statement that it hurts the business to stay in beta for too long. – Mihaly Borbely 12 years ago
  • Without doing a thorough investigation, it's hard to say. I did always think it made them 'less serious' and when it comes to my email, I want something serious. It made me hesitate and that's all a competitor needs to take a customer from you. – John 12 years ago


It doesn't matter. Whatever you choose to name it, it will only be used by early adopters, because by definition those are the ones who use new stuff. Since early adopters have no problem with the beta sign at all, you can freely use it, or not, as you wish.

However, I would highly recommend reconsidering the plans for "no major revision of our website" after the first release. Actually, the only point of an early release is to get feedback and make even major changes if necessary. As far as I understand, you got no user feedback yet, and this will be your first release. How do you know your product is any good and doesn't need major changes?

answered Sep 24 '11 at 04:58
Mihaly Borbely
715 points


Are you sure that the website you're launching is technically flawless? If you aren't, you should definitely tag is as beta. This will protect your image if some bugs are found by your early users.

answered Sep 24 '11 at 07:42
381 points


I would not tag it as Beta. I think the Beta tag is an excuse for not getting rid of bugs or making it usable. There is a big push for launching a minimally viable product, which I agree with, but viable is not buggy or unusable.

I would get rid of bugs and make sure the basic functionality is usable, and then launch without a disclaimer. It's fine that there is still much more to come, but what you have launched should still add value, and if not, it's too soon to launch.

Don't hide behind a beta tag, get it to be a legitimate minimally viable product and then launch.

answered Sep 24 '11 at 14:39
Joel Friedlaender
5,007 points


You see I tagged mine as beta. The reason is, since it is work in progress I don't want to give potential user impression that this is a finished products. Especially when I expect to find some flaws in design as the customer base grows. It really up to you how you look at it.

Also depends on whats your business model, but I think its easier to explain why you changed your pricing or products offer should you need to do so for various reasons when using beta tag.

answered Sep 24 '11 at 04:37
Peter K.
194 points

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