Title: How to Design Your Website's Homepage
What will you learn?
How to design a home page that will get customers to spend more time on your website?
How to get customers interested in buying your products and services?
How to get customers to come back to your website?
Hi, I am Kelly Richardson the founder of Fashion Entrepreneurs International. Hi, I am Kelly Richardson the founder of Fashion Entrepreneurs of Houston. When a visitor lands on your homepage for the first time they will quickly decide whether they are going to stick around and browse or leave within a few seconds. This is similar to an individual walking into a brick and mortar store, if they like what they see they will stick around, and if not they’ll quickly walk back out. Today we’ll be discussing some tips to help you design the homepage of your website.
Your website’s homepage serves as your online storefront (for your boutique, studio, salon, or other business that you may own). If you were to visualize a brick and mortar storefront what would you see? You’d see signage, storefront windows, and a door containing business hours along with other helpful information. Similarly, when someone lands on your home page they should see your name and logo telling them who you are and confirming they’ve landed in the right place. If you arrive at a brick and mortar storefront and the name on the sign isn’t what you expect then you’ll assume you’re in the wrong place and you’ll leave.
Let’s talk about the storefront windows. You’ll often see some of the best products, sales items, or new inventory displayed in storefront windows. If what’s displayed in the window is attractive to a potential customer walking by, they’ll probably take the time to stop and enter the store. That’s the goal of your homepage to get visitors to take delight in what you’ve showcased on the front page and then get them to want to find out more and explore other pages on your website. Your showcase should consist of an image or images of your best products, images representing your services, sale items, and/or new products and services.
You should note that showcases aren’t cluttered and filled with every item or service being offered. Another thing to note is that showcases are frequently changed. What’s the point in returning to a webpage if it never changes? You want to give a visitor a reason to return to your webpage so make sure to update your showcase or showcases often.
Just like a brick and mortar storefront, you’ll want to display important information such as your telephone number and hours of operation where visitors will see them right away.
In addition to your homepage serving as the storefront, it also serves as the entryway into your store. Within the first few steps of a consumer walking into a store they are able to see what types of merchandise or services are for sale, they may come across brochures, maps, and overhead signage. They get a feel for the atmosphere and overall layout. They are also greeted by a salesperson that informs them of sales promotions, answers questions, helps customers them find what they are looking for, demonstrates products, and talks about the company’s history. Businesses often display recognitions and awards that they have received in the entryway.
So how do you do this with your website? You can set the tone of the atmosphere with your website’s theme, overall look, colors, choice of words, fonts, graphics, and layout, along with many other design elements. A site navigation menu located near the top of your homepage should serve to help customers find their way around on your online store. Navigation should be displayed on each page of your website. The navigation should list the products and services you offer. Often the navigation is categorized by whom you serve, for example- men, women, and children, for clothing boutiques. If customers can’t find what they are looking for they’ll get frustrated and leave.
Utilizing chat features on your website can allow you to greet customers and provide answers to questions that they may have. Websites often include a headline that tells the visitor in a few words what the store has to offer, or in other words what do you do or what do you sell. A subheadline states more details about what you do or offer, what are the benefits, and/or who do you serve, using very concise wording. The homepage should include a “call to action”. The call to action tells the visitor what you’d like them to do next after spending time on the home page. Examples of calls to action include but are not limited to “shop now”, “learn more”, and “contact us”.
You may want to provide a brief overview of the features and benefits of your products and services on the home page. Some products and services may be demonstrated with a video.
If you haven’t yet convinced visitors to take the next steps further into your store you may be able to convince them by assuring them that you are trustworthy. Consumers are risks averse; they don’t want to be the first to buy. Show them someone else has already made a purchase by displaying customer testimonials and logos of clients you’ve worked with previously. Other things that can demonstrate your credibility include awards, certifications, and magazine, radio, and television features, which would indicate to a visitor that you have something of value to offer. Having delighted previous customers and being newsworthy enough to be featured means others have taken an interest in investing in you.
Your website should contain a footer that should be displayed on every page of your website. On the footer, you often find links to information that you would encounter during the checkout process at a store. This information is provided on your receipt, posted on signage next to the register, or stated by the salesperson. The footer often contains store policies for refunds and exchanges, legal information, contact information, and more information about the company. A mailing list sign-up, social media accounts to follow, gift card information, coupons and rewards program details all aid in enticing the customer to come back to your online store.
By now, you should understand that when you are designing your homepage, you should be designing it with your customers in mind. You need to display the information that they want to know in order to take the next step towards purchasing from you? Your home page should convey who are you, what you do, who you serve, and what is in it for the customer. An effective home page keeps a consumer on your website longer, entices them to buy your products or hire your services, and encourages them to come back again in the future. There are lots of homepages online to take inspiration from. Don’t be afraid to get creative with your homepage. Even though we’ve reviewed a lot of design tips keep in mind there’s often more than one way of doing things to achieve goals. Don’t just do what everyone else is doing with their websites. Find a way to do things in your own way.
Your action for this week is to ensure the homepage of your website contains the elements of a storefront and entryway. Thank you for watching. See you next time.
The design of your online store should have many of the same elements as a brick and mortar storefront.
Your home page should convey who are you, what you do, who you serve, and what is in it for the customer.
People are risk-averse, show them they can trust you with testimonials and recognitions.
The goal of your homepage is to get visitors to want to find out more and explore other pages on your website.