When someone visits your website they form an opinion in as little as five seconds!
Hands up if you’re guilty of this? Me!!! It’s pretty crazy but in a saturated online world and with our already busy lives, who has the time to sift through messy layouts and scattered information for the bit of gold we’re looking for? Not me!!!
That’s why it is so important to be clear on what your business and website is about. Your potential customers are looking for the right information, not more information.
A lot of people get overwhelmed when it comes to figuring out what they should feature on their website’s homepage. You might feel that if you don’t include ALL of the information that your potential customer might miss out on something and this could lead to less clients and less money coming your way, right?
Wrong! Simplicity is key here. Don’t clutter your homepage with unnecessary information that can be covered elsewhere. You want your customers to get the whole experience and your homepage is just the beginning of your relationship.
Here are six simple points to get your customers to hang out for longer than five seconds so you get the chance to show them what you’re all about!
1. A Headline and a Hook
Your homepage is the hero space of your entire website and should feature an image and headline at the very top of the page, and in this instance, less is more – you want the right copy, not more copy.
Your headline should clearly sum up what you’re offering, who it’s for, and what problem it’s going to solve.
Don’t try to be too fancy or witty here. Getting your offering across boldly and concisely is the main mission.
2. A Call-To-Action
Your call-to-action is the next actionable step you want your customer to take.
Potential customers are visiting your website to find a solution. They want to be steered in the right direction from the get go, not left to try and crack the code.
A call-to-action is usually located just under your headline and will directly link customers to the next step to solving their problem. (They can also be strategically placed throughout your website when you want to direct people’s attention to somewhere specific.)
People like clarity and direction so be clear on what your call to action is and make it easy for your customers to get there.
Example: “View my web design & brand identity packages.”
3. Show Off Your Stuff
Now that your customers know who you are and what you do, show them how you’re going to make their lives easier by adding in your products, services and offerings to your homepage.
The goal is to get your customer to click and learn more about the product/service by taking them to a page that goes into detail on the features, pricing and ultimately, how to attain it.
Having a dedicated page for each offering will enable you to tell your customer all about it. If you grab their attention they keep interacting with your website and you will get a chance to tell them how awesome you are and why they should work with you.
Featured projects and client testimonials are also a good way to show off that you’re great at what you do.
4. Social Proof
Social media proof is so relevant and necessary for any and every business these days – it is the 21st Century after all! It falls into the category of ‘trust building’, in that if you don’t have even a basic presence on social media people wont take your business seriously.
Facebook and Instagram accounts are free and easy to set up, guys! So make sure your links are present. I’m not saying that they need to be the feature of your homepage, but they do need to make an appearance somewhere.
Common places to place social media icons are at the top of the page, near the navigation, or in the footer. Just make sure they link to external pages so your customer always has your website open in their tab to come back to.
5. An Opt-in Form
Opt-in forms are an invaluable feature for any website or blog. This is where people give you their email address in exchange for a freebie you’re offering.
This could be an e-book, cheat-sheet or checklist in a downloadable PDF, or a downloadable video tutorial – something valuable enough to your customer that they’re willing to provide you with direct access to their inbox because they’re picking up what you’re putting out there.
If a customer is visiting your website it’s because they’re already interested in a service/product you provide. You want to get their details so you can both get to know each other better.
Example: “Sign up for my free website planning guide.”
6. Contact & Connect
This should be a no-brainer but you will be surprised how often this key feature is overlooked or forgotten – we’re only human!
Make it as easy as possible for people to get in touch by putting a message with a mail-to link, a chat box or a small ready-to-fill form on your homepage.
Common places people look are at the top of a page or at the very bottom in the footer, so place it where it suits the design and layout of your website and where you think will have the best effect.
Your homepage is where the connections happen and the sparks fly. Taking the time to make sure you’re sending out the right message will be invaluable for how people interact with your website and ultimately, how your business will be perceived.
Does your website include these six homepage essentials? What are you missing? What are you stuck on? Let me know in the comments below.
Who is Rabble Rouse Creative?
Hey! I’m Kate Carman, a qualified Digital Designer and the namesake behind this multidisciplinary freelance design studio. I founded Rabble Rouse Creative with a rebellious spirit and a simple objective: to create intelligible and minimalist design concepts that help small businesses create big brands.
I'm passionate about empowering fellow creative freedom seekers with the knowledge, resources and inspiration to realise and achieve their business goals and dreams. You got this!