The homepage of your website is the most important page on your entire site – it’s what visitors will see first and it can make or break their opinion of you. That’s why it’s so important to get it right. According to a study by Chao Liu and colleagues, 99% of websites have a 10-second opportunity window to capture visitor attention before they leave the page, making structure and design crucial elements in creating an effective homepage.
In this post, we’ll dive deep into the science of crafting the perfect homepage for your website. One that not only captures attention but also drives traffic back to other pages on your site. We’ll discuss which elements are essential for success and provide tips on how best to structure them so that people stay engaged with your content.
Step Into Your Customer’s Shoes
It’s easy to get carried away with flashy design and fun features, but remember that designing your website with your ideal audience in mind should be your priority. Here are some questions your homepage should clearly answer:
What do they want?
What do they need?
How can you help?
Why should they choose you?
This is your opportunity to gain customer buy in. Write for them, rather than focusing on yourself here. The content towards the top of the homepage should be entirely focused on serving your ideal audience, make an emotional connection, get them invested. Once you have their attention, you can share some personal context.
Include Your Value Proposition: Front and Center
We’ve all been on a site where you get to the bottom and still have no idea what exactly it is that they do. It looks compelling— but are they a streetwear brand, a tech company, who knows? As soon as users land on your page, it should be immediately clear what you do, and who you do it for. That’s where your value proposition comes in. A value proposition is a statement or promise that explains what unique benefits and advantages you offer to your customers. It should be concise yet persuasive, giving the customer a clear idea of your business in a few simple words. Use language that speaks to the heart of your audience so they can gain an instant connection and sense of trust with your brand. Include your value proposition above the fold (before users have to scroll) to immediately clue them in about what’s to come on the rest of the page.
A Clear Customer Journey
Visualizing a clear journey for your users can go a long way when optimizing a compelling homepage. Imagine the user arriving at your site with no idea of where to start – if the navigation isn’t clear and leads the user toward a destination, it won’t be very helpful in getting them what they need. It’s important to determine specific destinations that you can guide people towards and make sure those CTA’s are highlighted. Here are some questions to help:
What’s the primary goal of your website?
What’s the secondary goal of your website?
get people to sign up for your newsletter
opt-in to a freebie
read the blog
Once you’ve got that part figured out, mapping out the user’s unique journey is key – clearly emphasize steps that must be taken and make sure there aren’t too many required actions or they may not complete it!
In order to drive engagement and increase conversions on your homepage, strong calls to action (CTAs) are key. You’ll want to ensure that your CTA is attention grabbing and makes it clear what you want visitors to do. It should also be front and center—no one should have to search for it—and visually stand out from other elements on the page. A little humor can go a long way too! Get creative with how you articulate your CTA; using an unexpected phrase or punchy language could really help you grab people’s attention. Good luck creating a compelling homepage with strong CTAs!
Include Social Proof
Including social proof on your homepage can be one of the best ways to increase user trust and attract more customers. It builds credibility by showing that people have found success with your product, legitimizing its value and increasing a potential client’s confidence in your services. Don’t forget to ask customers or clients for reviews or feedback. Some other social proof elements can include displaying awards you’ve earned or relevant news sources you’ve been featured in.
Bonus: Moments Of Delight
Including surprise details, micro interactions, hover effects, and video elements on your website can help keep users engaged as they scroll through the page. Surprise details give your audience something unexpected and keep them excited to continue exploring everything your site has to offer. Some examples include: hero video elements, hover effects on buttons, unique entrance and exit animations, marquee text, anything to give your site some personality and movement to engage your users.
By following these simple tips, you can design a homepage that captivates your audience and converts to sales. Homepages are often the first interactions customers have with your brand – so make sure you make a good impression. Give some thought to how customers will interact with your site, and what their journey will look like. With a well-designed homepage, you’ll be one step closer to driving more sales and conversions for your business.