Think you know how to write a business website homepage? Read this article to make sure.
You probably think you already know what a homepage is. But if you’re like many business website owners, you really don’t. The homepages of many business websites are suffering an identity crisis. They're trying to do job of several web pages, and doing none of those jobs well.
What a Business Website Homepage is Not: A homepage is not place to dump a long description of your business. That’s for “about us” or “company information” page. On homepage, this information will just bore most people. A homepage is not place where you list and sell all your products (unless you only have one or two). You should have a special products and services page for that, and preferably a shopping cart or catalog. Trying to make people buy right on your homepage is a little pushy. The homepage will also get over-crowded as your offerings expand. Instead, just include a list of product categories with links to inside pages, along with direct links to your biggest sellers. A homepage is not place to include full text of your announcements and press releases. Just include a teaser paragraph of each article on homepage, with a link to web page with full text. If people want to read full text, they can. If they don’t, you haven’t bored them to tears. A homepage is not your company president’s or owner’s personal blog. It’s OK to rant, rave, or preach need for world peace. Just don’t do it on wesellwidgets.com
As you’ve probably noticed, a good website has multiple pages. You should have special web pages for special topics: an “about us” page for company information, a products and services catalog, president’s blog, etc. When you advertise or send out links to your site, you should link directly to most appropriate page, rather than just homepage. Of course, that doesn’t mean you don’t need a homepage, just that you don’t need it to do every single thing you want your website to accomplish.
Quick Guide to Writing a Business Website Homepage Important Points to Consider Target audience Your business website’s homepage must be all things to all people who type your URL in their navigation bar, whether it’s their six-hundredth visit or whether they just happened to catch your web address painted on back of your car.
Content For benefit of new visitors, a homepage must provide a snapshot of who you are and what visitors can do on your website. Your first one to three paragraphs should give a quick overview of what visitors can do on your site. For example, you could include a short paragraph each on “buy widgets,” “learn more about widgets,” and “meet other widget enthusiasts,” with links to your shopping cart, informational articles, and message board, respectively.
For returning visitors, homepage must serve as a touchstone for navigating site, announcing new developments and pointing out especially popular or useful pages. For these visitors you don’t have to write anything new especially for your homepage. Anyone who's coming back to your site is already interested and is going to want to jump right into deeper pages of your site, rather than linger on homepage wondering whether it's worth their time.