Whether selling products, advocating for a cause, or positioning your business as an industry leader, your website should contain plenty of content to communicate the depth of your expertise and the value of your brand.
However, attempting to cram everything onto your homepage is not only ineffective, but also it can overwhelm users and cause them to keep moving. Just like each of the possessions in your house, every piece of content for your website should have a place of its own.
It all starts with the homepage.
Your homepage often serves as a first impression of your organization. With that in mind, you need to prioritize your content and decide what is most important to feature in your homepage layout, rather than trying to cover everything right away. Then let the intentional framework of your site guide visitors through the rest of your website content.
These are 3 main goals your homepage design should accomplish:
- Establish your brand identity
- Educate users about your purpose
- Encourage actions from your homepage
Establish your brand identity, early.
As the first impression most users will get from you, your homepage design should reflect the look, feel and personality of your organization. Through branded elements, design styles, relevant imagery and thoughtfully composed copy, a user immediately perceives who they believe you to be.
Ideally, your homepage design will convey the essence of your brand in the same way you would introduce yourself personally to a new acquaintance. Take a look at The Hook Nashville's website for a great example of how to clearly let users know who you are, in your brand’s tone, right from the homepage.
Educate users about your purpose.
From your homepage, a user should also be able to quickly identify the purpose of your business or organization. If they’ve searched for and found your website, chances are high that they need the products or services that you offer, so make it apparent what you can offer them.
Notice how Memphis Family & Cosmetic Dentistry’s homepage design highlights some of their most common services: veneers, Invisalign, dental implants, and emergency care.
Featuring these on the homepage helps the reader get a sense for what the practice offers. Each service is illustrated with underlying icons to add meaning and draw attention, without cluttering the homepage layout with a lot of extra text or overwhelming imagery.
Encourage actions connected to your goals.
Ultimately, you want your homepage viewers to become clients, donors, volunteers, members, etc. You can help users assume those roles by leading them through the necessary steps with strategically placed website content. A clear navigation and an intuitive homepage layout will allow you to guide your users through the information that will ultimately help them decide to get involved with your brand.
Now that your page users know your identity and purpose, and they have successfully navigated through some of your website content, they’re (hopefully) ready to act. Now, you need to ask them to act with a “call-to-action.” For example, notice how “Shop Tea” is prominently displayed in the homepage design of the My Cup of Tea website.
Other common calls-to-action include: Contact Us, Partner with Us, Donate, etc. If you want to lead homepage users to subpages with additional content to help them make an informed decision about your organization, you can use a call-to-action like “Learn More”.
Clearly, these calls-to-action are an important part of closing the sale, getting the donation, or beginning a relationship. They’re not something that you want to get lost, but calls-to-action can be easily overlooked if your homepage design overwhelms users with too much content. That brings us back to my original point: decluttering your homepage design.
I rest my case: with your homepage, less is definitely more.
It all starts with a design partnership.
Can you relate to an overcrowded homepage layout? Now that you know why it’s important to have a clear, succinct homepage design, let’s get started with some digital spring cleaning. Rest assured that our web design team has the tools to help you tidy up your digital presence.
Questions? Comments? Feel free to drop us a line in the comment section or contact us for a free assessment!