Top 5 Tips for Converting Users with Your Homepage
September 10th, 2014

Top 5 Tips For Converting Users With Your Homepage

by Regina DiPerna

In today’s digital world, homepages are the new storefronts. Customers stop by, and based on what you present, they will decide whether your company has what they’re looking for. The average user is savvier than ever before, and has high standards for website design and functionality. If your homepage looks sloppy, has navigational errors, or is simply not intuitive to use, users will not trust your business. And that can devastate your conversion rate and all-around profitability. Given that users spend, on average, less than 30 seconds on a homepage, you only get a small amount of time to make a big impression. If you want to turn users into customers—and we know you do—you should understand the fundamentals of what does (and doesn’t) make an effective homepage. Here are our top five tips for converting users with your homepage.

1. Before you do anything, map your buyer personas. Generally speaking, a buyer persona is a profile of the type of person ideally interested in your brand. Most brands have several buyer personas. But what does this have to do with your homepage? Knowing how to appeal to your target audience(s) will influence every decision you make thereafter. Before you make big decisions about visuals, copy, and so on, you must know some basic things about the type of customer you’re trying to convert. What age are your ideal customers? What is their education level? What industry are they in? What kind of products and services are they seeking? What type of device will they be using to search? Get to know your brand’s ideal buyer personas early in the strategizing process, and keep them in mind as you continue to develop (and re-develop) your company’s homepage.

2. Create compelling visuals. The first thing users notice when they arrive on your site is how it looks, and they will draw a lot of conclusions about your brand based on what they see. There are so many small, subtle details that go into a successful page design. Work with graphic designers and web developers you trust to create a polished, professional-looking site that appeals to your target audience. Remember, visuals aren’t just your site’s photos—visuals encompass everything from images and color palette to typeface and logo, and everything in between. The visual appeal of your site directly affects user perception of your brand, which, in turn, affects your conversion rate.

3. Develop compelling, user-oriented content. Particularly on a homepage, providing clear, informational copy to engage your users is crucial to converting them. Avoid lengthy paragraphs on your homepage; in-depth details about your brand’s products and services are better suited for your internal pages. Instead, go for attention-grabbing headlines and messaging that intrigue users while also providing an accurate overview of your what your company does. It’s also important to include relevant calls to action. “Sign up here,” “shop online today,” or even “read more about our services” are concise calls to action that urge readers to so something specific (or even become customers). Homepage content should strategically guide users toward the main objectives.

4. Get smart about layout and navigation. Although your site should be visually stunning, it should also have maximum functionality. That’s why we recommend simple, pragmatic, and user-oriented navigation and layout. Your menus should allow users to easily and intuitively navigate the most important areas of your site. Meanwhile, your homepage layout should put user objectives front and center using a mix of image and text. Layout, visuals, and content should work together to create the overall experience users will have on your homepage.

5. Make social media accounts easily accessible through social icons. Your homepage should be the gateway into your company’s entire online presence, and today’s customers want to follow their favorite brands on social media. Including strategically placed social media icon links on your homepage allows users to easily access and follow your brand on your preferred platforms, which means ongoing exposure for your brand. Depending on the nature of your company, it can also be beneficial to embed live feeds from your social media accounts so users can preview your content. There are tons of social media widgets available, so you can customize both the look and the functionality to suit your homepage.

By following these five tips, you’ll be converting new customers in no time! Of course, an effective homepage is just one part of your company’s digital marketing strategy, which is a necessity to grow your business in today’s market. Sage Island is an industry leader in web design, graphic design, search engine optimization, and social media marketing. Contact our experts today and let us do the work for you.