5 Must-Have Components for a Home Page that Converts
Because your website is working hard for you, even after business hours, you need to make sure it is portraying the right message.
Your website is your first impression to potential customers and clients. Because your website is working hard for you, even after business hours, you need to make sure it is portraying the right message. Your homepage is the first stop and needs to capture your visitor’s attention, convey your expertise, and accomplish your end-goal (sales, views, etc.).
Your website can be a place of potential points of frustration, that can cause distrust between you and potential clients: complex, busy layout, lack of navigational aids; pop up ads; slow loading times; small print; too much text; and poor search abilities. While this may sound overwhelming, with careful planning and design, you can create a home page that attracts, builds credibility, and sells.
The most essential aspect of a successful home page, is your strategy.
The most essential aspect of a successful home page, is your strategy. When you are planning your website, it is important to keep a few things in mind:
What is the purpose/goal of your website?
What are your potential customers searching for?
How do you want your potential customers to find information?
Planning your website is easiest when you know and understand your target audience. Finding your target audience allows you to create the right content, ensures your website is working for you, not against you, and results in higher conversion rates.
While planning out your website strategy, I find these questions helpful:
Is your contact information easy-to-find?
Does your content support the purpose of your site?
Is your navigation simple and clearly defined?
Can a customer find what they are looking for in 3 clicks or less?
Is your website on brand?
What keywords will your audience use to find your website?
Your navigation is easily one of the most important aspects of creating a home page that converts. It is important that it clearly communicates your website content. Users should always know where they are, and where they are going. Within seconds, they need to know what to click on to find the information they are seeking. Your navigation is not the place to be cute; be clear and concise.
When planning out your navigation, creating a visual sitemap (an organized list/flow chart that shows the connections between your web pages and website content) can be an excellent tool to see any potential problems.
The main things to consider are:
Include only the pages that add value to your customer.
Utilize your footer menu, but remember, users should be able to find what they are looking for without it.
Pay special attention to your mobile navigation. Drop-down menus can be intrusive on mobile, so avoid them when you can.
Call To Action
When someone visits your site, you want to help them navigate the site effectively. Creating specific call-to-action(s) for your users to take, once they land on your home page, is important to the user experience and to your ROI. CTAs are really the number one way to create a home page that converts. When thinking about what your CTAs should be, consider your target audience and your website goals.
Potential CTAs are:
Opt-in to sign up for your newsletter
Link to a course you created for your target audience
Link to your product sales page
Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, is the process of optimizing your website’s set-up and content and then promoting it so that you can be found more easily in search engines like Google and Bing. Search engines are smart, but they still have a long way to go to understand your content the way your users do. This is why optimizing your website is so important — you need to let Google know what your content is about so they can show it to people in search.
Around 63,000 searches are made on Google every second. That’s a lot of people looking for answers to their problems! Furthermore, 70-80% of all searchers ignore paid ads and focus on organic results – people trust search engines. With an audience that big, SEO can provide very relevant, quality traffic to your site and can be a big part of your strategy to get in front of your ideal clients.
An excellent way to utilize your website as a sales tool is to have an opt-in on your home page. Your email subscribers give you a one-on-one way to connect with them, in more meaningful and personal ways that your website or social media can. It gives you direct access to sell future products or services and create connections.
There are several places you can include your opt-in, that will lead to higher conversions:
Directly under your hero image
As a pop-up on your home page
If you have a blog, you can include it in your sidebar
Directly above your footer
Creating specific call-to-action(s) for your users to take, once they land on your home page, is important to the user experience and to your ROI.
Now that you know what to include for a homepage that converts, let’s take a look at how to create a great about page!