Your homepage is the foundation of your website. It introduces people your brand, what you offer, and it's often one of the most frequently visited pages on your site. If not, the most visited page.
That's why it's important to make sure your homepage is clean, attractive, and has all the right content in all the right places.
In this homepage content primer, you’ll:
- Learn what a homepage is and why it's so important,
- Learn the best practices that lead to a high-quality homepage,
- Get access to a free homepage content template, and
- Discover how to take action and improve your homepage.
Let's jump in.
What is a Homepage?
Your homepage is the introductory page of your website. It serves three key purposes:
- Grab people’s attention and introduce them to your brand or business,
- Tell your audience who you are and how you help people solve their problems,
- Guide people to the products, services, and solutions they are looking for.
It can also summarize your website and give an overview of what visitors can expect. While every other page on your site is likely to be specialized in one way or another, your homepage speaks to your site as a whole.
A Template for a Great Homepage
While you have a ton of flexibility in the content you include on your homepage, as well as how it's designed, a great homepage accomplishes these goals:
- Capture attention and convey benefits with a compelling headline,
- Identify with your audience and their pain or problems,
- Establish who you are and how you can ease their pain,
- Show what you have to offer,
- Prove your offering or solutions work, and
- Tell people how to get started.
Using homepage content best practices will help you achieve these goals, and can result in a homepage that is structured something like this:
Keep reading to learn how to properly structure each element to meet — or exceed — homepage content best practices.
How to Structure a Homepage
1. Capture Attention & Convey Benefits With a Compelling Headline (H1)
The internet is a noisy place full of shiny objects. If your homepage doesn’t capture your audience’s attention, someone else’s will. Your first opportunity to capture attention is at the top of your homepage. Using a compelling headline and tell people the key benefits you offer on your website.
A good headline should include:
- Attention-grabbing copy that's relatable, using Heading 1 (h1) formatting.
- An explanation of the benefits you provide.
- Your homepage's focus keyword.
Optionally, follow your headline with a subheading, as well as a call to action. Tell your visitors what to do next.
2. Identify With Your Audience & Their Pain/Problems
Once you have people’s attention, you need to show them you understand who they are and the reason they've come to your site. You can build this rapport by acknowledging the pain or problems they are currently experiencing. What sort of relief are they looking for?
Use the same words in your copy that they would use to express their pain or problems in conversation.
This section of content should include:
- Copy that clearly communicates the pain points/problems your audience is experiencing.
- A description of your audience in their own words.
- Your homepage's focus and/or secondary keywords.
The goal of this section is to create trust by showing your audience that you understand who they are what they really need. You can also use this content to filter out visitors who aren't a good fit for you.
3. Establish Who You Are & How You Can Help
Now that your audience trusts that you understand them, tell them who you are, how you can help, and what types of benefits your solution(s) will provide.
This content section may include:
- An introduction to you and/or your business.
- Your unique value proposition.
- An explanation of the positive outcomes people experience when working with you.
- A call to action telling people how to connect with you or take you up on what you offer.
This is your opportunity to put your best foot forward with your audience. Show them what differentiates you from your competition in a way that doesn't feel pushy or sales-y. Most importantly, don't forget to communicate the value you give.
4. Show What You Have to Offer
Get more specific about how your solutions work. Typically, this means detailing the products or services that you offer. Bw sure to mentioning the real-world outcomes you can create for your audience. Use this content to guide people towards more detailed information on each offering.
This section may include:
- An overview of top products, services, or solutions.
- Graphics or images that represent each individual offering.
- A brief description of the kinds of benefits each product or service provides.
- Links to learn more about each product or service.
This is a navigational element of your homepage gently nudges your visitors to learn more about the offerings that will create the most value for them. Make sure it's serving that purpose.
5. Prove That Your Solution Works
After people know who you are and what you offer, show them that your business is trustworthy and that you can actually generate the outcomes you claim. Social proof and examples of your previously completed work are great tools for this job.
Examples of social proof include:
- Recognizable client logos.
- Testimonials from real customers with headshots and bio information.
- Impressive business statistics.
- Case studies.
- Specific portfolio examples.
When it comes to selecting which type of social proof to put in this section of your homepage, think about what will most benefit your audience and instill trust in your business. Product reviews may be great for e-commerce websites, while case studies may be more appropriate for service-based businesses.
6. Tell People How to Take Advantage of Your Offer
Finally, give folks a final nudge to take advantage of your offer, or specifically ask them to contact you. Your call to action should match the key goal you have for your business. Whether it's scheduling more demos, generating subscriptions, receiving product sales, seeing social follows, etc., your final CTA should entice people to take the critical next step toward becoming a customer, client, subscriber, or supporter.
Your call to action may include:
- A button to a contact page, online store, etc.
- A form to get started.
- Other contact info like your email and phone number.
One great rule of thumb for this CTA (as well as all the others on your homepage), is that they need to be distinctive and stand out from the rest of the content on the page.
Notice that the CTAs in the homepage content template above are bright orange. That's because orange makes them jump off the page. Stay consistent with your CTA color throughout the page and make sure it stands out.
Other Homepage Content Best Practices to Consider
The above best practices are just the beginning of your homepage optimization journey. Depending on your business, your homepage may include other elements such as:
- Videos, diagrams, or images of how your products or services work.
- Information about your business and the people behind it.
- Featured blog posts or news.
- A pricing table.
- Additional trust symbols and social proof.
Additional Tips for Great Homepage Content
Now that you have a framework in mind for your homepage, here are a few final tips:
- Make sure your page and website design are dialed in and not outdated.
- Include cohesive branding throughout the page.
- Set up a useful information flow so that people aren't confused about where to look.
- Make it easy to scan quickly.
- Ensure your content is readable and speaks to a single person in a conversational tone.
The Final Step
If you’ve followed our advice so far, your homepage should be ready to convert visitors into customers; however, you can’t convert visitors into customers without having visitors in the first place.
You can get more visitors from Google by making sure that your homepage is meeting keyword optimization best practices. This article about using keywords in SEO will walk you through all the places you’ll need to add keywords to your homepage for proper optimization.
You now understand why your homepage is so important. You know which key components to include. It's time to take action.
Evaluate your current homepage and see which elements already meet these homepage content best practices. If you find that many of our recommended elements are missing, make the necessary improvements to your site until your homepage truly reflects your business and makes clear the value you provide.
If you need help strategizing content on your homepage or on any of your other pages, consider using Pathfinder SEO's guided approach to SEO. As part of guided SEO, you get access to coaches who can help you identify the best types of content to put on your pages. Schedule a demo to learn more.