One critical mistake I see constantly in business websites is a default WordPress blog setup where the blog is the home page. After you read this article, not only will you not be making that same mistake, you will know what you should put on the home page instead.A home page that’s just the blog main page can prevent you from being seen as a real business.
Because there’s no obvious product or service. There is a blog and that’s it.
It often doesn’t even matter what your tagline says or what’s in the header area of your page because people barely look at that that stuff once they’ve seen the logo and the first few bits of navigation links. Here’s a link to a Google image search on eye-tracking heatmaps so you can see for yourself.
What You Can Put on Your Blog’s Home Page (In Order of Preference and Impact)
A big fat giant link to the main thing you sell - Yes, I am Captain Obvious here, beating you over the head with the obvious stick. If you sell web design then put a big fat “get a quote” box on your home page. If you’re a developer, put big fat “hire me” link on the home page. If you’re a coach or consultant of any kind, put a link that gets the ball rolling on your home page.
Have you ever seen an ecommerce website home page? Of course you have. Notice how different that is from a typical blog home page. They couldn’t possibly be any less alike. It’s no wonder an ecommerce site manages to sell products and a blog page does not.
Product category links – If you have enough products or services to sell they need to be categorized, provide links to them by category. Again, you can take a page from ecommerce website design: they all have their product categories as main links.
Go for the smaller, easier commitment: build your list - Not everyone (probably most people) will not rush to buy what you sell right away, but they may be interested in the right information for a smaller price. For the cost of their email address, they can receive a vital report that could prevent them from making terrible mistakes or a course on how to accomplish something they long to do. This isn’t mutually exclusive with trying to sell the main thing, either, because if a visitor doesn’t go for the big thing, the next available choice is more appealing by comparison.
Begin the education process: link to your best content – If they won’t go for the big buy and they won’t even give up an email address, at least you can begin the process of educating them about what you do by providing links to your best content. This can be in the form of links to blog posts or your social media feeds or profiles. You may need to prove yourself first in the eyes of some people before they would ever commit an email address or actual dollars to you. This is what content marketing is all about, in fact.
Blog posts - Finally, yes, you can put blog posts on the home page of your business blog. But they probably shouldn’t be the main thing at the top. And if I were you, I wouldn’t publish full posts on the home page, either: use excerpts. Not only do you want to draw readers deeper into your blog, you don’t want blog posts competing with your home page for search keywords. If you don’t publish frequently, leaving the same content on the home page can affect your SEO.
This is still content marketing
You could remove all content from your home page and just make it a clean, simple proposition/positioning statement. I for one am loathe to remove any of the content from the home page that helps to make my case above a few clever words and an arresting image. I still want there to be some there there, if you know what I mean.
Often your email sign-up incentive is a piece of content marketing designed to educate prospects and lead to a sale, and may require a few words beyond “free ebook.” Most of my email sign-ups occur off the home page for this reason.
remove all doubt: test
This might seem like the tenth time this year I’ve said you should split test your home page, and every time I mention it you nod sagely and think to yourself “I need to get on that.” Split testing will remove all doubt as to what works on your home page and what doesn’t in relation to your main conversion goal. Not only can you split test your home page, you can also split test sign-up forms within the same page. Or, at least with Aweber (affiliate link) you can.
How’s your home page looking?
What are you going to do about it?