The design of your website’s homepage is vital for a variety of reasons. Although many companies prefer to focus on the SEO value of their homepage, the primary focus should be on readability, aesthetics, and the user experience.
However users happen to land on your website, you have to be able to convince them to stick around and possibly follow through with a specific action. At that point in the game, the search engines no longer matter.
Best tips for homepage optimization
With that in mind, are you doing your best to optimize your homepage for the purpose of increasing conversions and promoting your brand? Consider four of the top tricks for making this happen.
- Include a clear and unique selling point. Does your company have a unique selling point? One would hope the answer to that question is a resounding yes. But even if you do, it needs to be clearly identifiable and visible on the homepage. Place it at the top and reinforce it throughout the page copy, as well as restating it at the bottom. This ensures your visitors will know what you stand for and ideally should evoke some kind of emotional response.
- Give reasons to keep clicking. Is there anything currently on your homepage that encourages visitors to click past it and explore other areas of your website? For example, Ultra Torq, a leading supplier of quality torque wrenches, offers two compelling reasons on its site. One tells people they can “Download our worker training guide,” while another urges the viewer to “Request a demo.” If you want your homepage to convert, you need to include specific calls to action that explicitly instruct your visitors to do something that might just be to their benefit.
- Stress ease of access over complex menu structure. The structure of your menu and navigation is critical. Your choice of whether you use sliders, drop-down menus, static tabs, or anything more fancy will greatly affect how your users respond. There’s probably no standard best practice for menu design—it depends on your line of work or service—but it’s usually advisable to make navigation as simple as possible without omitting pertinent information.
- Simplicity is always better. Finally, remember that simplicity is almost always the better choice. Overcrowded homepages have a tendency to overwhelm visitors and distract them from grasping who you are and what you have to offer them. You can dig into complex issues and details further into the site, but leave the homepage relatively pristine and well organized.
In addition to implementing each of the above optimization tips, it’s also wise to invest in A/B testing every time you introduce a change or want to verify the efficacy of a particular design element. In most cases, your website users can answer whatever questions you have regarding which line to pursue.
Make your homepage work for you
Many businesses simply don’t understand the true value of a homepage. At some point, an SEO or marketer likely told them that keyword optimization is the only thing that matters and anything else is a waste.
This just isn’t true. Optimizing your homepage should be about satisfying users, not algorithms or search engines. Use these tips to craft better homepages and increase your company’s conversions.