You can launch your community right now. You shouldn’t wait for the website to be ready.
Too often we delay doing the important work until the website is live. That’s a huge mistake. The important community building work; reaching people, gaining permission to speak to them and building relationships, facilitating conversations doesn’t require a website. Waiting for one wastes time.
Before you launch your website, you need a group of people that are desperate to use it. Otherwise, what's the point?
Your website should be the equivalent of having your own meeting venue. It’s the difference between meeting in a café and having your community hall.
Your launch date isn’t when the website is ready. It’s when you begin talking to the people you want to use it. You can do that right now. You can find your first members. You can discover if an online community is going to work. You can introduce yourself, have a mailing list, invite others. You should do a great deal of work before you launch an online community website.
Once you begin messaging members, talking to them, learning about them, you'll discover an awful lot about the eco-system. This will save you a huge amount of time later on.
So don't wait for the website to be ready, message your first members right now.