There is, I am afraid, no perfect homepage. Only the perfect homepage for your website.
A great homepage will answer the three Ws:
- Who we are,
- What we do and
- What we can do for you whilst you are here.
It's trickier than it sounds, though, because you have to get the balance right. Too many homepages put the emphasis on “Who we are” instead of focusing on addressing the needs of the visitor to the site.
The BBC website doesn't start out telling you who the BBC is, does it. You just get there and start consuming the news.
Similarly, Nordiska Kompaniet aren't showering you with their latest collections. They're just telling you that you can get twice the value you ordinarily get if you're a loyalty card holder this coming weekend.
An outstanding homepage shows it knows its target audience
Within a second or two the visitor to your site will know if its for them or not. Your homepage must communicate your key value-proposition simply and effectively through a combination of great design and outstanding copy.
Nothing about it should jarr or confuse; otherwise the traffic you've worked hard to get to your site will click away – forever !
In 2013 a great homepage has to be designed for mobile
It's not enough that your homepage is easy to navigate and read on a 27″ iMac. It also has to look great on a smart phone or tablet, no matter screen size.
If you can't be bothered for your site to load or struggle to read it on your cell phone neither will your potential customers.
24 percent of total website visits in December 2012 to this website came from mobile devices, which was an increase of more than 80 percent compared to December 2011. Is your homepage mobile ready ?
An awesome homepage will have a primary call-to-action (CTA) that doesn't lose out to secondary CTAs
It's vital visitors arriving on your homepage see a clear call-to-action. Too many CTAs, though, on the page will waterdown the strength of the primary CTA.
Yes, you want visitors to dig deeper into your site and explore the site links, but you don't want them to click their way down a dead end. Your business site is not like a news website with links to stories all over the screen on every page.
You want your site to guide prospects to the right content that they will connect with.
The very best kind of homepage is NEVER finished.
Great sites keep developing – whether it's by adding new content, new call-to-actions, experimeting with A/B split testing or new and emerging techniques and technologies.