15 Key Elements Every Successful Website Homepage Needs Now
- 1. Brand Identity
- 2. Value Proposition
- 3. Testimonials and Reviews
- 4. Summary of Your Services
- 5. Contact Details
- 6. Any Promotions or Discounts Currently on Offer
- 7. Awards and Distinctions
- 8. User-Friendly Navigation
- 9. Accessibility
- 10. Call to Action
- 11. Images and Graphics
- 12. Resources
- 13. Affiliations and Sponsors
- 14. Mobile Compatibility
- Make Your Homepage Work For You
A website’s homepage is like its handshake. It serves more purpose than simply giving the user a place to start. It’s your opportunity to communicate the value of your business in a precise and engaging way.
You want your homepage to be bright, informative, and compelling without being too busy. If your users have their senses overloaded by too many graphics, animations, and sections of text, they won’t feel compelled to dig deeper. In fact, they may feel exactly the opposite.
Not sure if your homepage is ticking the right boxes? Here are 15 key elements you need to ensure that you’ve included.
1. Brand Identity
As soon as they land on your homepage, users should encounter elements that communicate your identity and that make your business unique and recognizable.
You can create an instantly recognizable brand using a specific theme, color combinations, logos, slogans, patterns, borders, and whatever else you feel represents your brand’s vision. Whatever branding elements you use, you need to repeat them across all your branding to create a cohesive look and feel.
Establishing a recognizable identity will help users get to know you and feel comfortable trusting your services or content.
2. Value Proposition
This is probably the most important element to include on your website homepage. Users need to know what it is you do and why it’s valuable to them. This should get communicated in a succinct way, focusing on the core contributions of your business.
A value proposition should ideally be between 10-30 words. Any more than that, and users are far likelier to lose interest.
Value propositions firmly cement in the mind of the user why they should invest their time and energy into reading more. It’s your opportunity to grab and hold their attention. A strong value proposition can do more for your website traffic than most other elements combined.
3. Testimonials and Reviews
The best—and worst—thing about the internet is that anyone can put anything out there. For this reason, you can’t always trust what a business says about itself without verification.
Serious clients and customers will always check what others have said about their experiences with you before considering engaging further with your services.
Including some of your best testimonials and reviews on your homepage immediately demonstrates that you’re trustworthy, professional, and worthy of consideration.
4. Summary of Your Services
Your homepage should include a brief overview of the features and services of your business. Unlike your value proposition, this can be more detailed and specific. However, you still want to avoid being excessively wordy or overly technical. It can be more detailed than your value proposition, but it’s still a summary. Technical terms, conditions, pricing structures, and other relevant details can come later.
Your summary should be easy to read and broken down into logical sub-sections. The user should understand the structure and function of your service, as well as which sections apply to their needs and interests.
5. Contact Details
All the smart branding and engaging content in the world won’t help if you’re unreachable. Users don’t want to spend too much time digging for your contact information; it should be readily available.
At the very least, you want to have the email address and phone number of a responsive agent listed on your homepage. You may also want to include links to your relevant social media channels.
If you want to go the extra mile, you can embed a live chat on your homepage that takes care of FAQs, lead generation and directs users to where they need to be.
6. Any Promotions or Discounts Currently on Offer
First-time visitors need good reasons to carry on browsing your site. It’s never easy to grab and hold a user’s attention, especially when you have heavy competition. Foregrounding special offers and limited-time deals will capture the interest of new visitors, but only if they’re visible.
Seeing a good discount on offer can have a major impact on a user’s decision. It may mean the difference between users choosing your business over a bigger, more established company. Any extra value you can offer should get representation on your homepage in some way.
7. Awards and Distinctions
In your first impression with a new user, you want to set yourself apart from your competitors as much as possible. With this in mind, any marks of recognition or distinction in your field should be visible on your homepage.
For example, if you have been recognized for humanitarian, environmental, or social efforts, these are great selling points for large consumer demographics. They lend priceless credibility to your business and should always feature on your homepage.
Your homepage should be easy to navigate for the average user. Creating a memorable user experience is key to keeping users coming back for more. Overly complex or technical navigation systems are always off-putting. You want your site to be intuitive and user-friendly to keep potential customers engaged.
The main features of your website should be clearly visible and accessible on your homepage. You don’t want users to have to spend too much time digging and clicking to find what they’re looking for. If they feel like their time is wasted, they’ll simply move on, and your bounce rate will soar.
In recent years, creating inclusive, accessible online spaces has become increasingly important. Going the extra mile for users with disabilities is a huge point in your favor.
Ensuring that your homepage is compatible with accessibility tools such as screen readers and other ease-of-navigation software demonstrates solidarity and civil-mindedness, which will drive customers in your direction.
10. Call to Action
A call-to-action signals to the user what step they should take after landing on your homepage. This may be browsing your catalog of services, booking a consultation, creating an account, subscribing to your publication, or something else. It all depends on what it is you’re offering.
At the very least, you should know where you want your users to start and where you want them to finish. The call to action should be a clear signal denoting where the user should proceed next.
11. Images and Graphics
People respond best to websites that are visually captivating and informative. It’s up to you what kind of imagery you want to include on your homepage. You can utilize relevant graphics, animations, or even videos to accompany and support your textual information.
However, the balance of text and images should depend on your business, and it should reflect what you offer. If you’re a photographer showcasing your portfolio online, you’ll use far more images than an accounting firm or e-commerce store.
It’s unlikely that first-time website visitors are going to be ready to commit to a purchase. It’s good practice to provide a link to a resource center with more detailed information about your business and your services.
This can come in the form of a pamphlet, instructional video, text document, or infographic
13. Affiliations and Sponsors
People like to know who they’re supporting. No business exists in a vacuum—we all participate in a network of private and public exchange built on various partnerships.
Letting users know who you’re in business with and who supports you establishes your presence within a larger network of trust and credibility that you can’t achieve as a singular entity.
14. Mobile Compatibility
A responsive, mobile-optimized website is a must-have in today’s world. The convenience of browsing on mobile devices is unprecedented, which is why you want to ensure that your homepage looks good and works well on mobile and desktops.
If your homepage is cluttered or doesn’t load properly on mobile, you’ll likely lose any business that would have come from mobile traffic.
As annoying as those pop-ups about data security can be, they’re linked to a much wider issue surrounding user privacy. In the last decade or so, user privacy and data collection have become hugely influential in the way people use the internet.
Make Your Homepage Work For You
With these 15 elements, your website homepage will be well on its way to driving your business forward in its mission. However, this is an ongoing journey. It’s good practice to review your homepage content regularly to make sure that it’s making a good first impression on first-time and returning visitors. As online trends change and technology advances, you need to do the same.
Establishing a strong online presence is one of the best things you can do for your business. When it comes to maintaining a successful homepage, you get out what you put in.