10 Worst Home Page Mistakes

Your web site is the centerpiece of your brand. It’s often your first and only chance to make a good impression. Visitors decide in 5-8 seconds if they will stay or go. Here’s a few lessons from those that failed in keeping our attention.

  1. No hooks to entice the visitor to dig deeper.
    People go to your web site because they hope you’ll solve a problem, provide an insight, or entertain them. Offer your customers a “hook” or “bait” relating to why they came to your site. This link should connect them to relevant content.
  2. You don’t immediately speak to your customers’ wants and needs.
    Even a clever “hook” will fail if you don’t speak to their needs. Have you ever actually asked them? Understand the top three reasons why they go to your web site and make these easy to find.
  3. You welcome your visitor.
    Your intentions are good but you may delay your visitors from learning about your company. You have 5-8 seconds. Explain what you do and how they will benefit from working with you instead. Some call this a value proposition.
  4. No free resources.
    Free resources are a very pervasive marketing strategy. Do you offer your clients scores of juicy resources and value-packed content? People are always looking for free stuff. To give is to receive.
  5. Title isn’t descriptive or Search Engine Optimized.
    “Index” in the title (top of browser) is like calling your company “Name”. Most people put their company name up top. Titles offer an easy free way to improve SEO. Include keywords that describe your business, a tagline, key services and your city. Nielsen/NetRatings claim 24.4 percent of searches include the city. Here’s the HTML code: <TITLE>Put your descriptive title here.</TITLE>
  6. No tagline.
    A catch phrase (three to eight words) at the top of your site is an excellent way to communicate what you do and how your customer will benefit from working with you. Help your visitor answer “Where am I and what can I do here?” and you’re golden.
  7. No Blog
    Blogs are excellent for SEO and building your reputation as an expert in your field. Blog 3-5 times a week? Pat yourself on the back. Rarely or don’t blog? Think again. The payback is opportunities and leads. No time? Outsource it or publish a few lines or even a picture. It doesn’t always have to be an in-depth article. New content keeps ’em comin’.
  8. Mystery Navigation and Flash Introductions
    People will leave if they have to guess what to do next or if something is tricky click on. Just because things move, doesn’t make them good. It may seem impressive but it often delays, frustrates and confuses. Content must be relevant and delivered efficiently. Aim for predictable instead.
  9. Your design isn’t distinctive.
    Stand out from the crowd and be different. Communicate your brand’s message. TIP: Avoid the temptation to offer many products or services. It dilutes your brand because it’s confusing. Aim to specialize instead.
  10. Not telling people what your services are.
    Learn what your clients need to motivate them to make a commitment. Do you have a services page? You’re on the right track. If it’s loaded with answers to questions they often ask you, enjoy a gold star! A bulleted list is helpful but can leave people wanting more. Give them insight into the process of working with you. Include packages.

BONUS You speak in your words, not your clients.
Mirror your client’s style. Speak in their words and to their needs. Your messages will be understood and have an impact. Write to connect. Value their time and avoid unnecessary details.

Discover how we can partner to create a much better web site that generates scores of leads, builds customer relationships and creates massive profit. Contact us today.

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Thanks to Purpleslog for the “Burning Money” image.