Key Features to Include on Your Website’s Homepage
First impressions are important and whether in person or online, you don’t want to make a bad first impression. The homepage of your website is what invites people in and encourages them to explore your website. For many people it may be the first impression they have of your organization.
A poorly designed homepage makes a bad first impression, and will likely result in higher bounce rates. Your homepage should be easy to navigate, informative, and should showcase your brand in a clear and attractive way. There are several key features of a well-designed homepage that will help you make a good first impression.
Key Features Your Homepage Should Have:
Branding helps make your organization more memorable and recognizable to victors. Major elements of branding that you can incorporate on your website include photos, your color scheme, and your logo.
The term “hero shot” refers to the main image on your homepage. It is important to make sure whatever image you choose for your hero shot is a good representation of your brand. It should be meaningful and serve a purpose on the website.
When deciding what photos to include on your website don’t just go with any old stock photo, find photos that are relevant to you. There are many websites that offer free high-quality photos that are free for commercial use. Take the time to look around and find the best images for your website.
Much like your logo, incorporating a specific color scheme in the design of your homepage helps make you recognizable. And, visitors will begin to associate this look with your company.
By adding your logo to the top of your homepage it helps reinforce the name and brand of your organization in your visitors’ mind. Most logos also link to the homepage, so that as visitors explore your site, they can always return to the homepage by clicking it. Your logo should be placed at the top of your homepage, most often in the top right-hand corner.
Your homepage should be inviting in a way that makes visitors want to explore your website further. That’s why it’s important to have user-friendly navigation set up on the homepage. This means having an organized menu structure and, depending on the size of your website, a search function.
Use your homepage to communicate who you are and what you have to offer by adding an intriguing headline, with a subheading or a short paragraph of text. Draw visitors in with the heading and include a brief 2-3 sentence description about who you are and the services you offer.
Call To Action:
Include a strong call to action (CTA) on the homepage to encourage visitors to interact with your website. Your CTA button can link to contact forms, subscription/enrollment forms, or other pages on your website.
The footer of your homepage is something that is easy to overlook, but is actually very important. Your footer should be informative and you’ll want to carefully consider what information to include. Contact information, a map or location, social media elements, or other helpful links are examples of information to include in your website’s footer.
Other Features To Include on Your Homepage:
All the features listed above are things that every homepage should have. But you can also include some of these other elements on your homepage.
Special Entry Points:
If your website services different groups of people like, staff or members you may need to include special entry for this subset of visitors. In this case you should include a “sign in” option on your homepage.
Social Media or News Feed:
These kinds of feeds are a helpful way to provide instant updates and consistent content to users.
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