Ten seconds. That’s all you have, on average, to grab the attention of website visitors and convince them to discover more.
More than half of all visitors spend 15 seconds or less on any given website. If you don’t impress them in the first 10 seconds of that visit, it’s more likely than not they will leave.
You must clearly and distinctly communicate your message on your homepage to convince visitors that it’s in their best interest to explore. Here are five things your homepage must include to do this.
1. What’s Your Deal?
Your homepage needs to state what it is you do clearly. Have you invented a product that helps new mothers? Are you a photographer who shares his/her original nature pictures? Are you a business that makes unique gardening gadgets?
Your visitors should be able to identify and understand this information right away when they visit your homepage.
2. What’s in It for Them?
Why should people care about what you do? In addition to communicating what you do, it’s essential that your homepage also speaks to what’s in it for them.
Do you sell a product or service that solves a common problem? Your homepage needs to tell that story.
This statement needs to be short and sweet and to the point. You can have an entire page dedicated to your in-depth story. Your homepage needs to quickly and concisely communicate “the why.”
3. What Makes You Different?
As unique as you may be, there is bound to be someone else doing something very similar to you. The challenge is you’re competing for the same finite audience.
Because of this, your homepage needs to say why you are different from others. What is the one factor that makes you better than your competitors? What is the brand identity that is genuinely unique to just you?
Again, this message needs to be short and sweet on the homepage. You’ll have room to expand on your About page.
4. Why Should They Trust You?
Trust is everything today — especially on the internet. Looks can be deceiving, as the saying goes.
To that point, having a professional-looking website with a clear and attention-grabbing message isn’t enough. You need to quickly communicate to visitors that your brand is legit.
A simple way to do this is to include links to your social media accounts and your company’s address. These pieces of information tell visitors that you are well-established and are more likely to have a following than brands that don’t have these things.
Your homepage can also include a badge showing your business’ credentials, organizations it belongs to and links to online ratings from places such as the Better Business Bureau.
5. How Can They Contact You?
Brands that include direct contact information on their homepage are more likely to build trust with their visitors. Not only does it send the message that you have ways for people to contact you directly, but you’re willing to interact with them.
Your homepage should, at the very least, include an email address and direct links to your social media accounts. If you have a customer service phone number, list that on your homepage, too. It adds an extra layer of validity to your brand.