Here at Roundpeg, we have done quite a few web audits lately. In the process of evaluating a companies web design, we tear the website to shreds, breaking it down to its component parts and looking at every aspect with a critical eye. Copy, layout, user experience, architecture and navigation, we look at everything. Lately, we’ve been seeing a consistent, recurring problem with homepages: showing too much skin.
These websites are trying to cram every service and every product they offer onto the homepage. Someone once told them how important it is to have calls to action on the homepage, and they took that idea and ran it into the ground. Every inch of the site screams at you to “CLICK HERE,” “WATCH THIS VIDEO,” “BUY NOW” or “DOWNLOAD THIS WHITE PAPER.”The result is a cacophonous babble that becomes absolutely paralyzing to a website visitor. There’s so much visual noise, rather than doing what you’re begging them to do, your visitor simply surfs away to another website that will be a little kinder, help steer them down a clearer path to the knowledge they seek.
Designing a website is like designing a great outfit. You want something that’s flattering and shows off your best assets–a tailored jacket to show a slim waist, or a knee-length skirt to show off your calves. But you have to choose what that best asset is. If you try to highlight your legs and your waist, you’ll wind up with an outfit that doesn’t actually accentuate anything and makes you look a little cheap and desperate to boot. The same is true of your website.
A great homepage is all about making choices and deciding what it’s most important for your visitors to know in the first seconds after they visit your site. The homepage isn’t a chance to pitch every product you offer–it’s a chance to slowly seduce the visitor into exploring further. Yes, you need to have calls to action, but select those calls to action wisely. Show just a little leg to get your visitors interested, and then slowly reveal more and more as they explore the website. You’ll be surprised at how much more successful a clean, targeted homepage can be than one that tries to show the full monty, but ultimately reveals nothing.
If you’re interested in getting a little guidance on your website, give us a call and let’s talk about how a web audit can help you streamline your website and convert more visitors into customers.
Need help? Contact Roundpeg, an Indianapolis web design company.