The home page is often the first place where your website visitors and your business/brand meet to get to know each other, so it’s crucial you shout boldly and quickly those first core messages you want to convey. Generally, you only have 10 seconds to get the user's attention and give them enough reasons to stay there.
Yes, read that right - only 10 seconds!
This sense of urgency is because users decide whether to hit the “back button”within milliseconds. Therefore, your home page is your chance (and perhaps the only one you’ll have) to make them want to stay on your site to get more information about your company and what you have to offer.
So, what are the top elements your homepage should have to grab the visitors’ attention and keep them navigating through your website? That’s exactly what we’ll be talking about today, so let's go to it!
5 homepage must-have to grab your visitor's attention
To achieve a great first impression and capture (merit) user’s attention beyond 10 seconds, the following 5 elements need to be in place - and above the fold - on your homepage.
As we said a couple of lines ago, your homepage is the first impression you make for people visiting your website by first time, so you want to make sure they get to know your brand IMMEDIATELY. That means your ‘who, what, and where’ should be front and center, including:
A brief description of your brand that provides an overview of your mission
Featured products/services or your latest blog post to show your visitors what you have to offer
Location (if applicable) which will help customers to easily find you.
Tip: Ask a family member or a close friend (anyone that will actually be completely honest with you) to look at your homepage and let you know if it’s really clear who you are, what you offer, and where they can find you. This can help refine your overview section if necessary.
Calls to action (CTA)
This element tells the reader what you want them to do next. Plain and simple. For example:
"Get a free quote"
"Enter your email to get the latest updates"
"Click here to chat with someone on live"
"Read our new e-book now"
Don’t make the mistake of miss this element (simple but crucial) altogether or put it at the bottom of your page. Instead, let everyone see it at the foreground, that way they’ll know immediately what they’re supposed to do next.
And even if they don’t act on their first visit to your site (most don’t), if your CTA’s are just in the right place, each time they come back, they’re more likely to do what you’ve requested.
While your homepage is crucial to grab your viewers’ attention, a well-developed website MUST have sections - just like the newspaper. By this we mean that if the users can’t find quickly and easily what they’re looking for on your website, they’ll be off to find it somewhere else.
What you should do then? Make sure you have a simple and intuitive navigation system, not only on your home page but on every page of your site.
Most people aren’t necessarily going to consume the first time they visit your website, and we don’t say it, the numbers do. Although it might be unfortunate, it’s actually an excellent opportunity capture their information with an opt-in. This way, you can stay in touch with visitors who were already interested in your products/services/blog.
However, don’t just throw up a random subscription form and expect for the best. Instead, have some sort of free offer they receive for sharing their information ... something that will be of value to them! It will all depend on your particular business/industry and your target audience, but just make sure you offer something enticing and valuable.
Social media & contact info
Similar to why you want (need) to have an opt-in, you want to make sure you have social media icons and contact information all correctly linked and visible on your homepage. Give your prospects what they want, and if you do things right they’ll want to do business with you.
Make it super easy for them to find you if they have questions or just want to stay connected with you on social media. This will help cultivate a better relationship and trust, which will result in an increase in sales.
If you’re a newer business, having zero testimonials or reviews isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but just keep this in mind for later down the road. Although it is an important element, you don’t need all of your testimonials on the homepage either. Just choose the 3-5 most significant ones that you can highlight in a creative way, so your visitors can read them to get a better feel for your business and what you’re offering.
This is just a bold way to start building trust and credibility among your website visitors so they feel comfortable working with you or purchasing your products/services.
Crafting a powerful homepage can be the difference between visitors sticking around or bouncing via the back button. You have a limited amount of time to convince them that your site is worth their time. So as you design your homepage, make sure each of these 5 elements grab visitors’ attention and drive them to take action.
But remember every single website and business is different and what works for one, it might not be the best for another. So find out what works for your particular website and go from there. Take away some of these or add more to your website… you know what’s best!