Typically the home page of a website serves as the most significant landing page for both new and returning visitors. Essentially, this single page creates an overall impression of your company in a matter of seconds. If your home page does not spark the interest of the user, they will typically leave your website rather than checking out any subpages.
So, if your home page is so important, what exactly should it do?
1. Capture the attention of the visitor
Text-based content alone can be dull, boring, and potentially overwhelming. At the same time, audio can be obtrusive, especially if your clients are in the corporate world. Instead, visual elements are an excellent way to create interest in your company with a level of creativity.
Some examples of visual elements that can be used:
- Slideshows showcasing work/services or important news about the company
- Short video animations that introduce your company or unique service offering
- Graphical call-outs featuring sales or company news
The following is an example of a animated slideshow on one of our client websites.
2. Inform the visitor who you are
After you have successfully captured the visitor's attention, the home page should inform in a quick and concise manner what your company offers. This should typically be done in 2-3 short paragraphs. In some cases, the visual attention element can begin this process by briefly introducing keywords describing the service offering.
It can be beneficial to establish your credibility by briefly mentioning accolades, client testimonials, years of experience, or media coverage. Note that you do not want to mention every single element, but rather put your strongest foot forward and save the rest for the other pages of the website.
3. Direct the visitor where to go next
The final element is to provide guidance on where the user should visit next. The site must have a clear, easy and understandable navigation (website menu) to use. However, when a first time visitor comes to your website, it is often smart to highlight particular elements for them to check out. Consider highlighting the company's complete service offering, online store, portfolio, latest blog posts, or customer reviews. Directing the user is a critical element to ultimately convert the visitor into a customer.
Though one can configure their home page with many different types of content and features, we believe 3 main purposes should be the core of every successful home page. Do you have any others that you think we are missing? Feel free to comment below.