Tips and Strategies to Enhance Your Homepage
This starts with offering content for your audiences. The most successful organizations have no more than four to five priority audience types. Each of your audiences should have at least one area on the homepage that they can identify with and would want to read up on.
Kruger and Roach advised attendees to identify their four to five priority audiences, and their needs and motivations. Research each audience and create personas, giving them the characteristics of people that constitute each group. Personas can be useful for organizations and design teams to build a common understanding of each audience group.
Give each persona you create a relationship pathway to your organization that begins with your homepage. Visitors can jump from one pathway to another at any time through the navigation. Each pathway you map should involve conversion or some way for the user to at least provide contact information and opt in right on the homepage. And be sure your prime real estate features all lead to areas where visitors can provide their contact information.
Have a plan for what happens when a user signs up on your homepage (or anywhere, for that matter), e.g., automatically send a message to visitors informing them of what they've signed up to receive.
3. Organize your homepage layout so visitors can access your content as efficiently as possible.
The elements of a Web page are:
- Content (should be no longer than 60 characters per line)
Kruger and Roach said research has shown that visitors tend to read from the upper-left corner of a Web site down to the bottom right, so Web sites should place the most- and least-important information accordingly.
In terms of graphics, Roach said organizations should consider:
- design that supports online goals;
- continuity of tone/personality with existing branded collateral (print, direct mail, etc.);
- color pallet; and
- photo treatment/style
Navigation — one of the most important elements on a site — should be intuitive, clean, consistent, visually separated from content, clearly define/support user pathways and a tool to orient visitors within the site.