Hot on the trail of this popular blog post about home page content, it’s time to think about your own home page. One thing is for sure, with the changing search algorithms, the “old” format of home pages will need to be transformed.
Think of your home page as a window to the rest of your website or “home”.
What type of window is it: stained glass, decorative, bay, tinted, mirrored? What do you want people to see?
Thinking about a home page in these terms will help you think about what should be featured on an effective home page.
At first glance, a home page header says everything about your business. This is the space you want to take charge of your branding and send a strong message. This can usually be achieved with a high-quality picture paired with a strong statement or call to action.
While big headers were thought to be something to avoid in the past, they are a hot commodity nowadays. The only thing to keep in mind is the load time of the image and space you use “above the fold”. People are used to scrolling through a home page, on desktop, tablet and mobile. You just have to give them the right reason to.
Navigation to Other Relevant Parts of Your Website
The new golden rule for a home page ISN’T to keyword stuff and feature everything all on one page. Instead, it’s more helpful to show visitors different areas of your website and make it easy to navigate to that area.
A home page shouldn’t be so cluttered that all different pages and keywords are working against each other. Just think about it, as every page on your website isn’t a landing page or equal in importance, your home page forces you to focus and choose exactly what you want to showcase on one important page. Make a good first impression!
The home page is no longer a place to throw around all different keywords. It was common practice to include terms and phrases that you aren’t even optimizing for on that exact page. Instead, focus on the general term/idea and make it a point to brand yourself as a reliable, trustworthy and authoritative business.
Gone are the days of home pages with blocks and blocks of content. No one wants to sift through a load of content on a home page. This is where you break things up and feature FAQs in bullet points or sections, that could lead to other relevant sections. The point here is to make your content short, sweet and straight to the point. Not only will this appease reader appetite, but it’s exactly what Google Hummingbird is looking for.
CTA and Contact Information
There are 3 major options when it comes to contact on a home page. You can either
1) Prominently showcase a phone number or email
2) Push visitors to fill out a contact form
Either way, it’s most likely the most important thing to add a phone number somewhere that’s big and high up on the page. A real, number with a local area code will help give visitors a sense of location and also send a good signal to Google about your local business.
In many ways, some of these pieces of a home page are self-explanatory and straightforward. There are just a few new concepts that we have to keep in mind, such as scrolling on the home page and big headers. Check out our portfolio and give us a call at (323) 340-4010 for an analysis of your home page.
Matt Ramage is founder of Emarketed a web marketing agency located in Los Angeles. He loves coffee, good design, and helping businesses improve their look and getting found on the Internet.