Your homepage is your shop window, it needs to draw people into your website and entice them to buy your service or product. There are general rules expert copywriters follow to ensure your shop window sells to every visitor that lands on your site. I am sharing these to help you improve your homepage conversions today. Just a few short changes can improve your sales and lower your bounce rates. Try it, you will be pleasantly surprised at how blending psychology, copywriting and a little SEO can boost your business in seconds.
The layout of a website is very important. The way someone reads your website is very different to how they would read a book or a magazine.
When constructing your website and deciding where to put copy, make sure you follow these rules, or adhere to the scanner.
You have just 3 seconds to make an impression, and many visitors will already have a preconceived idea of where to look for the information they require. If they have to search (even if it takes a millisecond) it can put a visitor off, and they’ll soon hit the back button and then click on the competition.
This is how someone will read a website:
- Middle- This is the full centre of a webpage. If you have content here remember that people and scanners will basically read:
- The first sentence. The last few words of the paragraph. A couple of words in between. Make your copy count.
- Top Right – This is where your phone number should go. If you do have a search bar, place it in the right side bar, or underneath the phone number. Make sure the Contact or Buy button is in the top right. This is why shops have the checkout button in the top right, while small businesses use this for their phone number.
- Bottom Right – This can be used for the contact button, a contact form or the buy it now button. If you want a visitor to delve deeper it can also be used for the “more info” button.
- Right sidebar – if you have a right sidebar this should be used for extra content, further reading and recommended products. You can also use this for affiliate marketing.
- Top left – this is usually reserved for the log (that links back to the homepage) for good reason. People glance here often but they don’t click. It helps with brand recognition but also gives the option to return to the homepage easily.
The bottom left is ignored unless a visitor is searching hard for essential information. It’s a little silly to put calls to action here. Instead leave it blank or use it for info that’s not essential and isn’t necessary for viewing, such as the business address or sponsored links.
Changing the layout of the homepage to follow these rules will increase your conversions within days. One of my clients, Tax Rebate Services, took my advice on this and saw huge improvements. If you take a look at their website you’ll see their homepage follows every rule.
More About the Middle Content
The trend, today is to have a minimalist website with a flat design. This is great but does nothing for SEO efforts. As an SEO expert I always advise my clients to have at least 300 words of copy on every page. This can be too much for the scanner but there are ways to break it up. For copywriting purposes, it’s best to focus on the first and last paragraph.
All of your copy should be spot on, but these two paragraphs should have the ability to convert or entice a visitor to find out more. Internet users are lazy by definition and they don’t want to think when buying a product or service, they want to be directed easily, with no changes to the norm expected.
As a general rule your first paragraph should:
- Reassure the visitor that they’ve come to the right place
- Inform the visitor of why your service is better than the 100s they may have looked at today, make sure they know your USPs.
- Create a sense of urgency, so they act straightaway
- Show how to buy quickly or how to contact within a minute
It does seem like a tough ask, especially if we want to add keywords into the mix. The advantage her is, Google’s algorithms are now so advanced that you don’t need to keyword stuff. While it’s good proactive to have your keywords in your meta description, in your first paragraph you can still rank if you use related keywords or LSI keywords.
A beauty subscription box service may have a first paragraph that looks like this:
As the only beauty box subscription service to offer free delivery, we have exclusive brands just waiting for you to try them. Sign up today to benefit from a generous 10% off and receive your beauty box by the end of the week.
Be introduced to better beauty with our luxury beauty box delivery. Subscribe Now.
By making these changes today you can enjoy increased conversions tomorrow. Try just one change and see how your bounce rates improve, I dare you!
About the Author:
Martina Mercer is an award-winning copywriter and an organic SEO expert. She has over 10 years experience in the digital marketing industry, with over 600 five star reviews on PPH, and combines her business acumen with psychology and experience to deliver real results to her clients.
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