Your website should serve as the digital hub of your organization.
All digital traffic and efforts should filter back to it. Search Engine Optimization should point people to it. Social media posts should lead them there through articles and downloads. Which makes your website homepage one of the most important pieces of your brand’s digital collateral. So, what makes up an effective website homepage?
Above the Fold
There was a saying in the ‘olden times’ of newspapers that the most important part of a paper was ‘above the fold’. Newspapers were delivered folded in half and the most important content was put on the front page, above that fold line so readers would definitely see it.
The term is still used today for websites, but it’s taken on a more modern meaning. The ‘above the fold’ section of a website is the top of the home page that appears immediately when the page loads. But even now, the term is evolving.
A few years ago, it was thought that everything the reader needed to know should be above the fold, so they didn’t have to scroll to find anything. The rise of mobile devices and social media have squashed that thinking as the vast majority of readers are used to scrolling for content.
So, what should be above the fold? Who you are, what you do, and how customers can get it? Simple, right? It should be. That top portion of your site is vital to giving the customer everything they need (who, what, how), but also not overwhelming them with too much information. Keep it simple, visual, and bold, while providing clear action steps.
Empathy & Relationship Building
As readers scroll down your website, the content should alternate between empathy and relationship building. Show that you understand their problems. Then quickly show them why they can trust you to help them. Repeat, Repeat, Repeat.
Three repeats may be too many, but your homepage shouldn’t be about you. It should be about your customer and how you can solve their problems.
Many businesses are too quick to flood their website homepage with tons of information about their own company – their history, bios, or detailed descriptions of product offerings. The thought is that this is the only chance we’ll have to talk to them, let’s put everything we have upfront. That does more harm than good.
Instead, show customers that you understand their problems. You’ve been in their shoes. You feel their pain. Then, in quick bite-sized pieces, show them that you can solve their problem through testimonials, a very simple process, or a few quick bullet points that show your successes.
Calls to Action
While this list isn’t in order of significance, calls to action are vital – and you should have lots of them. Every section of your homepage should have the same call to action.
That may sound odd, but you should make it extremely easy for customers to contact you, request a consultation, or shop now – whatever it is that you want them to do.
They shouldn’t have to look for that button. It should be right there, all the time. There are a few different ways to accomplish this, but it should be there, easy to identify, and easy to follow.
If your reader has made it this far, they’re probably pretty interested in your company or products. Make sure your footer is consistent with your brand, but feel free to add additional links, contact information, or other information about your brand.
It’s a good place to store details that are nice to have if the readers want to get more information about your company.
Many of the best websites follow this method to engage their customers – and it works. If the time comes that you’d rather partner with an experienced team to jumpstart your marketing efforts, Contact the Acorn+Arrow team. We know how you’re feeling. We’ve been there and we’d love to help drive your growth.