Within a few seconds of landing on your website, visitors have already formed their first impression of your company. Your homepage is like a hotel lobby; visitors aren't going to linger there for long, but they expect it to be attractive, clean and easy to navigate.
Your homepage content needs to give them a clear sense of who you are and what you do, then invite them to explore. If they don't like what they see or see what they expect, they're going to leave.
You can have the sleekest, most stunning website design, but if visitors can't understand what you do within seconds, you're going to lose them.
Your hero message is the attention-grabbing hook that gets someone to stop scrolling and pay attention. Intel periodically updates their hero message to give examples of their technology at work. Their current hero message, "We're changing the game," piques your curiosity and invites you in.
Your value proposition is a statement that tells visitors why they should choose you over your competitors. It should:
For instance, consider the value proposition for Slack. It's a collaboration hub where the right people and the right information come together, helping everyone get work done. Slack is easy to use, and it couldn't be easier to understand what they do.
Need more inspiration? Check out these fantastic value proposition examples.
After reading your hero message and value proposition, your visitors should have a general idea of whether you can help them. But most likely, they need to know a bit more. For instance:
Insight2Profit is a pricing strategy company that helps private equity firms, executives, pricing managers and sales leaders. Just by skimming the company's homepage content, you can see exactly who they help and how.
And if you're in one of these roles, you know where to go next.
By now, visitors to your B2B website know who you are, what you do and who you help. Don't let them leave without telling them what problems you solve.
Do you help boost collaboration? Improve workplace productivity? Reduce email overload?
Instead of just listing features, lead with your customers' biggest pain points. Tell visitors to your website how you address them.
No matter your industry, you're bound to have stiff competition. Tell visitors more about what sets you apart. It's not enough to say you have the best people, the most efficient processes or the most advanced technology. Make it clear what makes it better, and be specific.
Speak to the experience of your team or how your process leads to superior quality. Keep it short, but make it strong. Always give them an opportunity to learn more.
What results have your customers experienced because of those competitive advantages you just described? How has it impacted their bottom line?
Incorporate statistics, testimonials and short summaries of case studies into your homepage content to back up the claims you made earlier.
Basecamp is one B2B software company that does a great job of this. Right from their homepage, you get a glimpse of what kind of results their clients experience.
Give your homepage some added credibility by including names and logos of some of your well-known customers. You can also include media mentions, accreditations or other affiliations.
The goal of any B2B website is to get visitors to take action, so make sure your homepage content gives them something to do next.
Not everyone will be ready to request a consultation, so let your buyer's journey guide you to determine appropriate calls to action. Check out these call-to-action examples for more inspiration.
Writing clear, concise strong homepage copy is a lot harder than it looks. It can take days or even weeks to come up with just the right message that perfectly captures your company and the value you offer. Most customers will breeze through it in less than a minute. And the majority of them are looking at it on a mobile device — making it even more important to keep your homepage content short and sweet.
Of course, your website's homepage is only the beginning. And it's too important to develop in a silo. It takes an entire team — designers, writers, editors, SEO experts, marketing technologists with experience analyzing data, and experienced developers — to get it right.
Once your new homepage is live, look at the data at least once a month to determine how you can optimize it. Use website analytics tools like Hotjar to capture data on how users are actually navigating your homepage and where they're spending the most time.
Look at CTA click-through rates and conversion rates, as well as analytics on other webpages to see which ones are most popular. Think of your website as a dynamic experience, not a final destination. The best websites are constantly evolving.
What are your best tips for writing powerful homepage content? Share with us in the comments below!
Note: This post was originally published in May 2013 and has been updated with new information.