Ever take a look at some of your favorite sites and notice… they all kind of look the same? Most websites nowadays have similar components, builds, and styles incorporated into them. While it may seem like the biggest coincidence of a lifetime, all of those similarities are actually made on purpose. It is important that websites, especially your own, include key elements to make your site user-friendly and easy to navigate from the get-go. While it may seem cookie-cutter, these elements can help your user stay on your site longer, leading to more business. It’s as simple as that, really! If you’re looking to get started on your own website, here are 10 elements of a successful website homepage that you should include in your main design.
Let’s talk homepages!
1. Logo and Branding
Almost every website homepage you visit has a logo, so why shouldn’t yours? Logos are incredibly important as they are the first thing that people recognize on your site. If you look at Amazon, Apple, and Google’s logos, you can easily identify them even if they are super-small in size. That’s why it’s important not to skimp out on your logo – it will be what people see first, so it should embody everything that makes your company great.
Your logo is probably one of the most important aspects of your website, so make sure that it’s easy for visitors to spot – and that it’s large enough that people can read it.
2. Mission Statement and Taglines
The hero section is one of the first things people see when they land on your website homepage. This is a great place to make an impact, using large images or slideshows that compel people to explore your website further. This can showcase your mission statement or maybe a goofy tagline to grab the attention of your visitors.
Most of the time, hero sections aren’t being used to their full potential simply due to a lack of information. If you want to make your homepage worthwhile, avoid wasting this much screen real estate without giving visitors any information about who you are and what you do.
3. Call To Action (CTA)
It’s no secret that every website has a goal, which is usually to get visitors to do something. The easiest way to get users to do something is by asking them — and this can be done with call-to-actions (CTAs). CTAs can be a button or plain text, but whatever way you choose, it needs to stand out from the rest of the elements on your homepage. A call to Action is meant to start a conversation: it is meant to convince people to participate in your business. Whether that is signing up for something, placing an order, making a donation, or something different.
There is a special power that comes from the play of words and colors in your designs. Using contrasting colors is one way to do this, but it’s not the only one. The choice of words can also be just as important. Make sure you pay careful attention to both when designing.
4. Clear Navigation Menus
A menu is a must in any web design: it helps you navigate the website, and acts as an introduction to your business. It should be one of the first things you see when you get to your site. Think of your navigation as your road map. These should include your important pages, menus, products, about us, and any other things you need your customers to see.
Your navigation is usually included at the top of your page with your logo and should reflect the same aesthetic throughout your page. However, it should also still be easy to follow and control.
5. The Power Of Color
Websites are quite literally full of colors. The colors you use can either draw customers in or keep them away, so it’s important to have a grasp on which ones will work best for you and your brand. The first step is to decide what your site’s color scheme will be. Think about what emotions you want to invoke, whether it be fun or serious, playful or professional, lighthearted or conservative — this will help guide your color choices throughout the rest of the design process. Once you have a general idea of how you want your website to feel, pick out 2-3 colors that go well together and stick with those throughout most of your site design
6. Original Images
If you want to stand out from the crowd, don’t use images that are simply filler. Your images need to say something about your brand, even if it’s just a great photo of your product or service. That being said, don’t think of them as static – try adding things like animation and interactivity to give visitors a more engaging visual experience.
While stock images can be great for quick projects, they will never beat the impact of original photos. If you can, try taking as many images as possible. For example, your office or workspace, employees, products, and behind-the-scenes shots are a great start. Uploading these images to your homepage or even a gallery on your site is a great way to store them. You can even use them for your CTA or hero section.
7. Easy-To-Read Text
Your choice of font can make a world of difference when it comes to your website. Not only is the right font more often than not more aesthetically pleasing, but it can also improve readability, making it easier for your visitors to access the information they need.
As you choose fonts for your homepage, remember that they will affect the look and feel of your site as a whole. Choose classic designs that are easy to read, and use fun styles for your logo and other branding elements. We know how tempting it can be used to bold, cursive fonts, but they simply aren’t viable. Sometimes sticking to the good ‘ol Helvetica is a safe bet.
8. Testimonials and Accolades
Your homepage is the first piece of your website that visitors will see. Why not spice it up with some kind words from previous customers? Word of mouth is one of the best ways to promote a business, so use them to good use. If you have great Google reviews, add a few to your homepage. When people see that others love and trust your company, they may be more willing to give you a shot.
You can also highlight any other businesses you work with or awards you’ve received. This can show people that you are in fact a real business and not just some dropshipping website run by robots.
9. About Us
It doesn’t matter if you work alone or as part of a team, it’s always great to add a bit of information about yourself and your team on the homepage. People will appreciate seeing faces when they come by, so make sure no one misses it! Knowing the face behind the work is super engaging for customers, and makes you seem more trustworthy. You can also add a dedicated About page for more information about the team.
Don’t be afraid to post silly photos, wacky drawings, or simple portraits. Faces are faces, and when people see the same face on your website that they see in the store, it can bring them coming back.
10. Contact information
As a website owner, you know the importance of having contact information on your site – so add it! We’ve got a couple of different ways to do that, depending on whether or not you run a business site. If you want people to be able to call or email you right away, add them to the main navigation bar for easy access. Otherwise, if you want visitors to be able to fill out a form and submit it without leaving the page, put an embedded contact form at the bottom of your page.
It doesn’t hurt to have this on multiple pages either, especially when it comes to email signups or quote requests. This way the visitor isn’t overwhelmed with having to give out their information as soon as they get to your site. It just makes it easier if they’re willing.
Create a better website homepage design today
A lot of homepages share similar designs, although there’s a logical reason for it. In short, it’s important to include these 10 elements of a successful website homepage. After seeing your homepage, users should know precisely what the purpose of your site is and how it can help them.
We know starting your website from the ground up can be time-consuming. That’s why Three Ring Focus is here to help you craft your next high-quality website, marketing, or SEO strategy. Check out of some the work we’ve done for a little sneak peek. Don’t miss out on the benefits of having an expertly-crafted site. Contact us today for more information about our services!