5 steps to crafting a home page that customers love

Marketers, give your audience more than candy hearts for Valentine’s Day. These tips can help make your organization’s online presence swoon-worthy.

As Valentine’s Day nears, love is in the air.

Dinner reservations are in place, flower shops are making sales, and users everywhere are searching for the perfect home page to capture their hearts.

Think of your users in the same way you would your Valentine’s Day date. You want to impress them, while keeping their interest long enough that they learn more about you. You’re looking for a long-term relationship, a happy marriage and a few kids.

To catch users’ attention, step up your game.

First impressions are key, and your home page is generally the first thing people see. Your home page can propel you toward a great date or leave you alone at the bar. Follow the tips below to create a home page that will sweep visitors off their feet.

1 . Don’t overdo it .

Keep your home page user-friendly. It can be tempting to want to impress your users with flashy colors and poetic words, but users can become overwhelmed if too many graphics or text blocks crowd the space.

People like things that are clean and easy to read. Keep the text relevant and concise. The same goes with call-to-action buttons. Have no more than two, with simple, bold text such as, “Call Now.”

Follow the above the fold rule. Though you might be tempted to cram everything into the top half, include only the most important text and graphics above the fold.

Here are easy-to-follow tips to woo visitors:

• Use white space; the more, the better.

• Strategically place big, bold graphics that tell a story.

• Choose words carefully; keep text concise.

* Who’s doing it well? Dropbox

2 . Offer visitors something sweet .

Who doesn’t love getting a heart-shaped box of chocolates on Valentine’s Day? The same thing applies to your users. People love gifts and always like getting a good deal.

Providing your customers with something unexpected will make them more likely to buy something from your website. This enticing freebie might be a CTA button on the home page or a pop-up screen that greets users.

You don’t have to give away expensive, elaborate gifts to make users love you. Hook them with something as simple as an email list that promises them coupons and great deals. Other ideas include:

• A free e-book, or the first couple of chapters free

• Free coupons or discounts

• Free quote, offer or consultation with a phone call

* Who’s doing it well? SellMax

3 . Take the words right out of their mouth .

Users want to know what they’re getting without any gimmicks or sales talk. Most people visit your website to see what you offer and whether you meet the criteria for a second date.

One surefire way to make users’ lives easier (and your own) is to answer their questions before they even know what they are.

Questions might include:

  • What do you do?
  • How fast can you do it?
  • How much is it going to cost me?
  • What makes you better than everybody else?

Put the answers to these questions clearly on your home page to let your users know exactly what they’re getting.

* Who’s doing it well? MailChimp

4 . Let them know who you are .

You don’t have to tell them all your deepest, darkest secrets on the first date, but offer basic information. Lay out the things you do best and what you stand for as a company.

A simple way to tell users about yourself is with a tagline—a catchy phrase that clearly states what you do as a company, and how you do it.

Also, let them know your mission and what you stand for. That way, there are no issues or misunderstandings down the line. By telling users up front about the kind of company yours is, you have a better chance of forming a meaningful, trustworthy relationship.

* Who’s doing it well? Evernote

5 . Look your best .

For a good first impression, dress for success.

The look of your home page says a lot about your company’s attention to detail, personality and values. Key design aspects can have specific psychological effects on your users.

Certain fonts and colors evoke different emotions and feelings. For example, to create a sense of passion and urgency, use red. On the flip side, blue is more calming and reassuring.

Maintain a consistent design throughout; sticking to a color scheme will focus users’ attention.

* Who’s doing it well? Airbnb

Lucas Miller is the founder and head copywriter of Echelon Copy.

(Image via)


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