Your website home page – how important is it any more?
When businesses first started going online and creating websites to promote themselves, it seemed appropriate to replicate exactly what they did offline – create online versions of the brochures they sent out by mail or gave directly to clients.
But what worked in the 90’s and early part of this decade just doesn’t cut it in today’s web world.
Today’s web world is driven by the consumer. It’s no longer ruled by the corporates. Today, every consumer, no matter how influential, is able to have their say and control over what content they want to consume on the Internet.
And when you, as a business entity, start embracing social media networks such as Twitter, Facebook, and Linkedin, you start to lose control over how and where potential clients come to click through to your website.
Coming in through the Back Door
Your website home page used to be THE page to get right on your website. It was the entrance, the grand opening, the doorway to how your business was portrayed on the web.
I know I have advised many clients over the years about how to create a home page that converts, engages and turns website visitors into potential customers.
But how many of your website visitors now come via this front door?
Two years ago, before I started using sites such as Twitter and Facebook as engagement tools, more than 55% of visitors came via my home page. Over the past few months, that figure has dropped to 32%.
My blog became incorporated into my main site in Spring 2009. Over the past year, Twitter and Facebook have been fuelling my blog articles. 31 different landing pages (the first page a website visitor is logged as visiting) in one month last autumn have now become 134 in the past month this year.
Now, I know that some of you reading this will have not started a blog yet. You may have only just started to dip your toe in the social media waters. So, yes – your home page may well still be that main front door where people find you.
But you’ve found this article to learn more about this stuff haven’t you? When you start to embrace and turn up the volume of your online marketing, you will have to start thinking about the many doors to your website. And every page on your website needs to be prepared for your new visitors.
You need to get your house in order before you start laying out the welcome mats.
Here’s what you need to do to ensure every page on your website is a home page:
Opt-in offer in your static margin
by having your navigation across the top of your website, you can make room for a static left or hand margin to offer your newsletter, opt-in report or what ever it is you use to build your subscriber list. This static margin is automatically added to all new pages which means you don’t have to worry about remembering to add it. Consistency and constant placement of your offerings will encourage familiarity with your website visitor and increase your opt-in conversions.
Quality copy writing on every page
don’t loss steam and write throw away copy. Your about page is a great example of this. Often left to the end and put together in a hurry because you want your site to go live and you’ve had enough of all the tooing and froing, but if your name is mentioned on this page, then it’s probably this page that will come up on a Google search for your name.
Make every page count
don’t create pages for the sake of creating content. The same goes for your blog articles. Post throw-away “cheap” articles just to keep the search engines happy because you think that’s what’s needed to get your website high up on the search listing, is a waste of time. You will soon be the loser when the potential clients who find this content, click away because the content is dross.
Contact details less than one click away
If you make it difficult for potential clients to speak to a human being, you are going to lose business. One of the easiest ways of ensuring your contact details are easy to find is to make it part of your website banner design.
About the Author: Karen Skidmore helps small business owners work smarter and use the right marketing tools so they can attract more of the right clients to their business. To subscribe to her free email newsletter and get access to practical advice and marketing ideas that will move your business forward, visit www.CanDoCanBe.co