9 Critical Elements Every Startup Website Homepage must Have

Guest post by Jane Hurst, http://www.lifehack.org/author/jane-hurst & https://blog.getresponse.com/author/jane-hurst)

Without a website, your business is not going to be a success. These days, all successful businesses have websites. But, not all websites are going to ensure success. You need to know how to create a website homepage that is going to attract visitors, and keep them coming back for more. Here are nine things that every startup website homepage must have in order to be successful.

1)      Avoid Clutter - You know that old saying, “You can never have too much of anything”? Well, in many cases, this is not true. When something is too busy, such as a webpage, people aren’t going to want to look at it because it is a bombardment of their senses. Keep it simple, and more people will be interested. Another old saying IS true in this case: “less is more”. Great example of minimalistic design is Measponte.

2)      Nix the News – When people visit your site, they want to see what you have to offer as soon as the open the page. They don’t usually care about company news. So, be sure to keep company news off the home page. Keep it in its own separate category or news feed, and if they want to see it, they will click on it.

3)      Unique Forms – People like to see things that are a bit different, and this includes online sign-in and search forms. Check out the forms at Meet Positives, Eharmony, and Match and use these examples to create your own unique forms.

4)      Page Speed – Most people are not going to sit around and wait for a page to load. If your homepage doesn’t come up within a couple of seconds, they are going to check out your competition instead, because they prefer the speed of the website. It should take less than three seconds for your homepage to load.

5)      Prioritize Your Blog – It is a known fact that companies that publish blogs get more leads and traffic than companies that don’t publish blogs. When you have a blog, it shows search engines that your site is active, and it brings new visitors to your actual website. Blogging is one of the three best ways to drive traffic to a website, along with social media and search engines. A great example is at Sky Five Properties Blog.

6)      No Automatic Videos – Videos are great to have on your website, but visitors want the option to click on the videos if they are interested. They don’t want to be forced to watch. Your videos should be “click to play” instead of starting automatically. That will give visitors a bit of control, or at least give them the feeling that they are in control.

7)      Clear Value Propositions – Make sure that visitors automatically see how your business could improve their lives, and why they should use your business. This is a practice that many successful online companies use, including MailChimp. They make campaigns easy for people, and you need to do the same thing with your website.

8)      Test the Call to Action – Just because you have a call to action, it doesn’t mean it is going to work for you. It is important to test the call to action to see if it is actually going to bring in more business. For instance, Mozilla was able to get more people to download Firefox because they improved their call to action.

9)      Short Forms – People don’t want to do a lot of work when they visit a website. If you are offering something and they have to fill out a form, keep it short and sweet. The less they have to do, the better. Dropbox did this with their signup form, and look at how many people are now using Dropbox.


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