A website’s homepage is the first thing a user sees, and you don’t want it to be the last. Not only is your homepage a place to introduce your brand and message to users, it’s your company’s first impression to the world.
Think of your homepage as a first date between you and your users. Presentation is key—higher-conversion rates mean sprucing yourself up a bit and putting your best foot forward. You only have a short window of time to hook your users and convince them to stay on your site.
So, how long do you actually have to impress people? Unfortunately, not very long. Users only stay on a homepage for an average of 10 to 20 seconds. In that time, there are a lot of things you could do in less time and more easily with design, than convince someone your company is worth their attention.
Making a good first impression is never easy. Below you’ll find four tips on how to implement UX (user experience) strategies that will help you make the process smoother. Besides, isn’t it about time you turned your homepage into a smooth-talking, high-converting work of art?
1) Have a CTA
Steven Krugg put it the best in his book, Don’t Make Me Think: “If visitors can’t identify what it is you do within seconds, they won’t stick around long.” This is one of the best pieces of advice for creating a higher-converting homepage.
In order for users to quickly identify exactly what your company does, you need to have a CTA (or call-to-action). A CTA is an image or text that prompts your users to do something such as download, book, call, order, reserve, purchase, etc.
CTAs are an easy way for your users to find the information they’re looking for, and allows them to take an action within seconds of landing on your homepage. Placing a CTA in a visible spot on your site will help users understand why they are there in the first place.
* Who Does It Well? HUNGRY
While the homepage serves as the main point-of-contact for your users, don’t feel the need to cram every single fact and piece of information onto it. A homepage is meant to be an introduction—a firm, but friendly handshake, or maybe even a high-five, depending on your audience.
Making your homepage easier to consume will hold your users’ interest and make it less complicated to find what they’re looking for. An easy way for creating a cleaner and simpler homepage is by making it more scannable.
This simply means that your users will be able to quickly scroll down the page to find exactly what they’re looking for, without having to sift through large blocks of irrelevant information to find it. You can make your homepage more scannable by:
- Adding headings and subheadings.
- Utilizing content chunking strategies.
- Using meaningful photos and graphics.
Other options like including a search function, linking your logo with your homepage, and using white space are also great ways to simplify and streamline your homepage. Your goal here is to ensure that users work less to find the information they need.
* Who Does It Well? Drift
3) Know Your Audience
As the “King of Usability,” Jakob Nielson once said, “Pay attention to what users do, not what they say.” Personalization is key when it comes to relating to your users. You should have a clear idea of who your target audience is, and create a homepage that resonates with their wants and needs.
A successful homepage speaks to a targeted group of people in their language, using terms they understand and can relate to. Avoid corporate jargon and vague terminology at all costs, or you risk consumer confusion and a loss of interest.
Here are some quick tips for writing easy-to-read, relatable content for you target audience:
- Break up long paragraphs into several small ones.
- Make the text large enough so that your audience can read it.
- Get to the point quicker by using bullet points and short sentences.
* Who Does It Well? SalesRipe
4) Make It Accessible
In today’s world of mobile devices and on-the-go technology, it’s important that your homepage is responsive on a multi-device level. This means that the design is smooth and consistent, moving from desktop, to smartphone to tablet.
People are going to be looking at your website in a variety of different spaces, including on the subway, at a coffee shop and on their couch at home. Your site and your homepage need to look perfect no matter what shape screen your users happen to be viewing it from.
If a user finds your unresponsive homepage on their smartphone, they aren’t going to bother to take the time to revisit it from their computer. By not having an accessible site across multiple devices, you risk losing out on potentially valuable customers and their money.
* Who Does It Well? Instapage
Consumers’ attention spans are only getting smaller, which means that your homepage needs to step up its UX game. Follow these easy tips to create a cleaner, more efficient and higher-converting homepage. Both your users and website will thank you.
This post is part of our contributor series. It is written and published independently of TNW.
This post is part of our contributor series. The views expressed are the author's own and not necessarily shared by TNW.