To ensure that you are providing your website visitors with a stellar user experience, there are some website home page questions that must be considered. Keep in mind, many of the visitors to this page will be coming into contact with your brand for the first time. This is their first glimpse into who (and what) your business is. The efficacy of this critical area can mean the difference between visitors clicking through to explore more of your site or having them bounce. Consider this your shot to make a stellar first impression. Here are some basic guidelines you can use to check if your homepage is on point or if it falls flat.
First of all, are you accommodating your visitors on their device?
One of the most important things for a website today is to be responsive (or, at the very least, mobile-friendly). More than half of all online searches today are done from a mobile device - if your website isn’t mobile-friendly, you can count on turning away many of your visitors the moment they hit your site. Not a great first impression.
Your site must also load quickly. If you have bloated code on the back-end of your pages, or images with large file sizes, you run the risk of making visitors wait around for your home page to load. KissMetrics reports that 40% of people will abandon a website that takes more than 3 seconds to load. In today’s competitive world, you should expect NO forgiveness for a slow site. And not only will you lose more than half of your traffic within seconds, there are also negative SEO implications that could be incurred. Bottom line - make sure you test your own site on multiple devices to ensure that it’s as speedy as you’d expect.
Second, can visitors easily and quickly find the information they need?
The content on your website is made up of the text, photos, and videos that your visitors see on your pages. Content should be logically organized and easy to consume. Make sure you carefully consider the items in your navigation. Keep it clean, keep it simple, and try to anticipate your users’ needs.
The content on your site should serve to educate your visitors on key topics:
Who you are
What you do/What problems you solve
Position yourself as an expert to create trust
This is your space to share what sets you apart from your competition. What’s your hook?
How people can contact you
Clearly show your visitors what you want them to do
Remember, your homepage content should also be fresh. Maybe there’s an “In The News” section that highlights your recent public appearances. Maybe there’s a section for your most recent blog posts. However you choose to do it, make sure you give your visitors timely content that is relevant to them.
Third, what do you want your visitors to feel?
The power of empathy cannot be refuted. You have to consider how your visitors feel when they visit your website. Though there is quite a bit of interesting color theory out there, this goes beyond just color choices. Make sure you consider what emotions you would like your business to invoke, then select a layout, text, photos and videos that support this. Do your site visitors feel inspired, motivated, excited, curious, trusted? Or, does your site leave visitors feeling confused, upset, bored, indifferent?
For example, we often talk to clients who say they want their websites to feel “trustworthy”. We encourage these clients to carefully consider the content, layout, look & feel of their home page, and ask themselves if the site makes them seem like a subject-matter expert in their chosen field. If not, the site content should be revisited.
Once you’ve got ‘em - don’t lose them!
Taking the time to ask yourself some of these questions can go a long way to ensuring you are providing the right experience for your visitors. Sometimes all that’s needed are small updates - other times, a complete redesign is the better, more affordable way to address the needs of your visitors. Either way, Skylarq Media would love to help you get a handle on your homepage and create the ideal experience for your visitors.