Components of an Optimized Homepage
Your landing page should focus on a single offer, but your homepage is more about the visitor’s browsing experience — providing all the information about your company. So even though the homepage is not optimized for a single offer, it’s still an important part of your marketing funnel.
An optimized homepage must have all of these core functions:
- Showcase value to visitors
- Be easy to navigate and use
- Capture visitor’s interest with useful and interesting content
Similar to chapter 4, let’s look at some examples of company homepages and explain why each example is optimized.
Your company logo is the visual representation of your brand. The company logo should be placed in the top-left corner of every page on your website. When a visitor clicks on the logo, they should immediately be brought back to your homepage. Regardless if you opt for a text or design logo, just remember to use something that’s meaningful to your brand.
Upwork uses a text logo that combines two different typographic styles:
Conversely, Twitter uses their signature design logo:
And, as you notice, no matter which page you happen to be on with Upwork and Twitter; their respective logos are located in the top left corner and, when clicked, direct users to the homepage.
A homepage is essentially a map of all the other pages on your website. And since a homepage typically presents multiple offers and pages, the navigation menu should be designed so that visitors can easily find the page they’re looking for.
Most homepages use a traditional navigation header and footer like Quintly shows here:
Another way to implement your homepage navigation is with a hamburger menu, a series of three horizontal lines that open up the menu tab when you click it.
Visage uses a hamburger menu:
Another way to optimize your navigation is to add a floating navigation bar. This way visitors can always see the navigation menu and don’t need to scroll to the very top or bottom of the page.
Your homepage is the place for you to showcase all the services your brand offers. So, your homepage headline should be written in a way that encapsulates those services. You could also choose your UVP and showcase that through the headline.
Another way to phrase the headline is to include statistical evidence to convince visitors that they should sign-up for your service.
This is what Insightly does with their homepage headline:
Homepages can feature multiple CTA buttons. Similar to landing page CTA buttons, homepage buttons should be contrasting and be written with persuasive copy.
The Disruptive Advertising homepage uses multiple CTA buttons for a variety of offers, including testing services, analytics services, and PPC services among others:
Your homepage images should be relevant to your brand and the services you provide. The images should also be engaging enough to capture your visitor’s’ attention. One way to do this is to use alternate media formats such as gifs.
HubSpot’s homepage uses images and gifs (scroll down on the link to view the gifs) to help explain their services:
Trust indicators on homepages perform the same function they do on landing pages i.e. they reduce conversion friction and put the visitor at ease.
VWO’s homepage uses brand logos, case studies, and customer testimonials:
Since homepages are generally busy promoting all your services, the copy should be formatted properly — written in short paragraphs or a bulleted list so that it’s easily readable. It should also be benefit-oriented, explain what benefits your service will provide visitors, and how it can help improve visitors’ lives instead of just focusing on the features.
The Weebly homepage copy is formatted so that visitors can scan it quickly and be persuaded to click the “Get Started” CTA button:
The homepage browsing experience is such an important touchpoint for potential customers that you can’t afford to leave its design to chance. Once you optimize your homepage with the critical elements listed above, you’ll have a better chance at engaging visitors better and convert them into customers.