Your web site’s home page is by far the most important page on your web site, often the first visited and used to create the first impression of your site. A good home page will help turn one-off visitors in repeat visitors and paying customers. Here are a few tips to make sure you have a fantastic home page.

Your home page is the most important page on your website

Your web site’s home page is by far the most important page on your web site, often the first visited and used to create the first impression of your site.

A good home page will help turn one-off visitors in repeat visitors and paying customers. Here are a few tips to make sure you have a fantastic home page.

1) Sleeping in Seattle

How many web sites have you seen that waste valuable home page real estate with a cheesy message from the vice principle or by telling you their life history or corporate values.

Visitors don’t care that your business started in a garden shed 37 years ago; they want to know “what’s in it for them” and why use you and not someone else.

You need to engage your readership immediately by providing them with the benefits of the service you provide or the items that you sell.

Give them a compelling reason to click into the rest of your web site.

If you don’t, they’ll just close your web site faster that you will believe and go to the next listing in their search results; usually your competitor.

2) Get Lost

A poorly designed navigation system will kill your site success faster than anything else. If your visitors cannot find what they want they will assume that it’s not there and leave.

EASY: Your site navigation has to be intuitive and oh so easy to use.

Consistency is King: Keep your navigation content the same on every page and in the same place on every page so visitors get used to it.

Site Map: Helpful to show your visitors the structure of your site and to enable them to find those elusive pages. This helps both your human audience and search engine spiders.

Search: If your site is complex with many pages, visitors will benefit from a site search facility for swift results.

3) KISS – Keep it Simple, Stupid !

Don’t assume that your web site visitors know as much about your web site as you do. THEY DON’T.

Your visitors want useful information handed to them swiftly in readable snippets. They do not want to read 17 pages worth of text in one go or get a repetitive strain injury from using the mouse.

Be Concise: Online readers want to read far less information on screen than more traditional readers. Make it easy for them to find the information they want.

Short Paragraphs: Keep your paragraphs short with plenty of whitespace to aid readability.

Bulleted Lists: Use lists to provide little snippets with links to pages that contain further details.

Clear Sections: Use colours, backgrounds, borders, headings and separators to structure your page into distinct and obvious sections.

4) Gather Visitors Trust

Your online business is being judged by your visitors and potential customers before you ever have the chance to talk to them. Build some initial trust:

Contact: Your Company name, business address, and phone number are essential. Your visitors will not do business with an anonymous company.

Email Address: Always provide an email address for online visitors to get in touch.

Portfolio: If you can show off a portfolio of your work, do so. A picture paints more than a thousand words and helps prove your worth.

Testimonials: A few well chosen client words can help to put your potential customers at ease.

5) Stick to the Rules

Make sure that your web site works the same in all of the common web site browsers.

Use web site design standards to make sure that your site is efficient and consistent to all.

Avoid cutting edge technologies unless you’re specifically targeting a sector sure to have all of the latest software installed.

Your home page is your front door. Make sure it is always open and looks as inviting as possible.