On average, you have roughly eight seconds to get your message across before the end user exits your website for one of your competitors sites. I have created simple guidelines for what shouldâ€”and, more important, should not be featured on your homepage, so that you can convert regular traffic into new sales.
1) Create a Powerful Homepage Message:
Your homepage message should be a targeted, benefit-oriented statement that outlines what you can do for the potential client. In order to properly draft an intriguing homepage message, you will need to identify the benefit to your potential client. Clients want to hear why your product/service is different and what it means to them. Put more simply, customers are asking, â€śWhat can you do for me?â€ť Answer them.
2) Focus on Clarity:
With so many people searching online for products and services, your homepage should clearly identify who you are, what you offer, your core competitive benefits, and your supporting textâ€”all in a clean and easy-to-navigate user-friendly format. Use graphics and pictures to help illustrate what service or product you provide, and how these benefit the customer.Â The homepage should be a â€śno-fluffâ€ť zone. A good rule of thumb for the homepage is â€śless is more.â€ť Make it easy for the user to understand what you do. Too much verbiage, images, and graphics will only confuse the user.
3) Make Effective Use of Secondary Messaging:
After you have presented your homepage message, you will need to incorporate â€śsecondary messagingâ€ť on the homepage. This includes any additional messages that will be used to help clarify and drive home the points made in the primary message. Secondary messaging should also incite the user to take action now. These calls to action could direct the user to e-mail the company, phone the sales rep, download a white paper, read a recent success story, etc. A good marketer will know how to choose a penetrating secondary message.
4) Integrate Imagery to Emphasize Your Core Message:
Imagery is a important part of your homepage. To help illustrate your companyâ€™s core competitive benefits, this helps customers visualize how you can meet their needs and requirements. Most people are visually oriented, so your imagery will quickly convey and emphasize your message. Be consistent with what you are telling your potential client. Align your messaging with your visual strategies. Images are also great ways to eliminate clutter, by adding a visual component to your website, you are alleviating the need for additional reference text.
5)Â Specific Call to Action:
You have already heard a little bit about calls to action, this is such an important strategy. Failure to convert online potential clients into sales leads is mostly attributable to homepages that lack any calls to action. A call to action should be placed squarely in the visitor’s face, it should jump out at them. Statistics have proven that if you can guide web users along your sales process, you will convert more of them into clients.
6) Know Your Audience:
Â Most people can clearly state whether they are an introvert or an extrovert, your website should cater to these and other personality types. Develop your website not only for an audience that requires what you can provide, but also for disparate personalities within that audience. Some people prefer to pick up the phone to find out more information about your products or services. Some may prefer to e-mail you instead. Others may want to schedule a meeting. Your website should cater to as many of these personality types as possible, or else you will lose conversions. Make it easy for the web user to contact you .Â
7) Make Your Homepage Easy to Navigate:
You must lay out your website with easy-to-navigate options and buttons.Â If you sell more than one service, then enable a pull-down menu showing options for your customers. Allow them to select the page that they want to researchâ€”without having to click first to find out more . Another strategy is to use sidebars to help users navigate as they read your content. You will also need to ensure that your homepage uses an interlinking strategy, so that if web users hit the wrong button, they can easily get back on track and find the information they are looking for.
The Bottom Line: Make it easy for a prospect to find out more about your products and/or services. Create a homepage that takes the guesswork out of it by guiding visitor’s through the process, from understanding the message to taking action.