Published On: October 26, 2020
There are many considerations that factor into the design of your website. What information do your visitors need to know? How will you display your goods and services? What will be the theme and layout?
Digging deep into your content and layout can get overwhelming. It’s a good idea to take a step back and think about your website from a visitor’s point of view. How will they feel when they first enter your website? What’s going to introduce them to your brand and convince them to explore further?
Your homepage is often going to be your first chance to hook a visitor. This is the anchor that holds the rest of the website in place. It sets the tone. This is the face of your website and it can either be welcoming or off-putting.
A web design company can help put together a face for your website that communicates your message and invites the visitor to continue looking around.
6 reasons why your homepage is so important and how you should design it:
- Your Homepage is the Most Viewed Page
- First Impressions Count
- Availability of Information
- Keep it Simple
- Provide a Roadmap of Your Site
- Communicate Your Brand
1. Your Most Viewed Page
Your homepage is going to have the most eyes on it. Even visitors who find a different page of your website from perhaps a search query are likely to check out your homepage once they’re already there.
Why is that? Because everyone understands your homepage is essentially the Homebase of your website. This is where people go to make up their mind about if they should further explore your goods and services. It gives them a broad idea about the content they can expect to find. And beyond that, it gives them a broad idea about your business as a whole.
2. First Impressions Count
Website visitors don’t give a website much time to impress them. In fact, most visitors give a new website about fifteen seconds to prove their worth. This means you need to make your first impression count.
And even if the visitor doesn’t take the time to read any of the content on your website, they’re going to view the general layout, theme, and design of it.
These aesthetic considerations are important. A visually-displeasing website puts a bad taste in the visitor’s mouth. But an attractive homepage communicates that you pay attention to details and respect your visitor’s time.
3. Availability of Information
Your homepage is also partly a sales pitch. You have the opportunity to give a general rundown of who you are, what you do, and why you can provide a valued service to your visitor. The general outline of your business should be apparent even before they scroll through your page.
Provide summaries and links to your services. Make your contact information easy to find by placing it clearly in the footer. There is no reward for keeping secrets from your visitors. Your homepage is the perfect place to put all of your cards on the table and hook your visitor as soon as possible.
4. Keep It Simple
Be careful about the amount of information you include on your homepage. Keep it to general explanations and summaries. Don’t overload it. A visitor can easily get overwhelmed if they are presented with a wall of text, multiple headings, or even a cluster of multimedia objects like videos and gifs.
This plays into the idea of keeping your homepage aesthetically pleasing. Nobody likes to walk into a room and have multiple people screaming for their attention. An overloaded homepage essentially does the same thing.
5. Provide a Roadmap of Your Site
As the Homebase of your website, your homepage must provide clear directions to the other areas. Strategic calls-to-action (CTAs) will spur your visitor into action while simultaneously pointing them in the appropriate direction.
The navigation bar should also be prominent. Your homepage creates interest and communicates your value, but that’s pointless if the visitor is unable to further explore your services. Your web design company will know how to tastefully include these mechanical necessities.
6. Communicate Your Brand
Your brand should dictate the way your customers think about your business. However, there needs to be a platform and multiple lines of communication to appropriately get this idea across.
Direct interaction with the public and social media posts are a great place to communicate your ideals and goals. But your website — specifically your homepage — is where you can really put your brand on display.
The way you portray yourself will decide how you are viewed. The language and tone of your content, the image choices, and the color scheme of your homepage is a great opportunity to let your creativity and individuality shine through.