To tell you what to do, lets begin with what not to do! Yes, you need to know what is the wrong path to take in the case of the home page for an e-commerce website.
An E-Commerce Site’s Homepage is Not:
- A dumping ground for everything. Too much information about your company – like how you started, then what happened, and so on.
Hot Tip– People want to know what you sell and not too much about who you are and where you were born!
- The homepage is not a product catalog. You need not list each and every product you sell! It will be too much information for the visitors. Also they may feel choked and pushed too hard to make a purchase on the homepage only.
Hot Tip– You should list all your products if you sell like only one or two things! Secondly, give a short and broad list of categories that will take people to the special product pages. Also, feature a discounted or special offer product on the homepage- it grabs attention!Unknown Object
- Your homepage is NOT your newsletter. It must not have full 250 words press releases on it!
Hot Tip– The best idea is to include a teaser paragraph of each article on the homepage, with a link to the web page with the full text. Do not bore people with information they don’t want.
- Do not make it your blog home page! People want interesting content, but they want to see other stuff too.
Hot Tip– Just display the catchy headlines and introductory paragraphs. Let people go on to the blog themselves.
The “don’ts” out of the way, you probably want to know what is good to display on homepage. What should be the content that you must place prominently on your site? For this, you need to do a bit of soul searching. To know what content to write on your site, you need to know what is the purpose of your site. What do you want from your site? The most obvious answer for an e-commerce platform is to get more business, drive more sales. Well, for this, you need to ensure that your site fulfills the following requirements-
- Your site is the complete guide to your business. What you do- who you are and what makes you different.
- It is an authority of sorts on the products you sell- be it through reviews or customer generated content.
- Your website must serve as a good referral point.
Now that we have touched on the site’s essence, lets get to the issue at hand, home page content. Well when you get down to working on it, here are a few key guidelines to keep in mind while you are writing content.
Home Page Content Writing Tips:
Tip 1– Your homepage content should be concise- You need to grab the attention of the users and also tell them the essential stuff. So the key is being short and simple- in order to achieve effective communication. Avoid long sentences and repetitive lines.
Tip 2– Your content must satisfy the query people used to search and come to your site- People have come looking for something to your site and your home page must provide them with that, unless you want people to hit the “Back” button.
Important Snippet– To prevent bounce backs, make sure that you link the referring keywords to the right page. Do not link everything to the home page. It leads to poor user experience.
Tip 3– Your content must represent the entire theme of your site. Is it lively? Serious? Emphatic? Young? The tone of the content has to match your products!
Tip 4– Your home page content must be convincing- Users must be forced to stay and explore more. You are the best in your niche, that is something you have to convince the users for. But again, do not over sell.
For more insights on home page tips- see this video:
Write Who You Are And What You Do?
Your homepage must give an interesting description of what your e-commerce site is about and what it sells or promotes. So, if you have first time visitors, they will know where they are and what they stand to get. Provide a snapshot of who you are and what visitors can do on your site, via the home page content. So your flow could be something like this for a book selling site:
“Books4U is a niche audience business that specializes in selling self help books from top authors around the world. We are a medium sized enterprise, that operates from Victoria, London, and supplies books to our customers across the 7 continents. We have a list of Bestsellers and New Entries from which you can choose and add the books to your cart.”
You must remember to add links to your shopping cart, informational articles, and product lists too.
Tease Your Audience For More:
Your home page must have a snapshot of promising products and information available in the pages inside. You may include a tip of the week, that may be related to a certain product, and take the visitors to that page. The idea is to make your visitors stick to the page and explore further.
You can also feature a bestseller product, with a short description and then link it to its own web page or its place in your “products and services page“, catalog or shopping cart. This will make people curious enough to find out what’s so special about the product that everyone is buying it!
For example, continuing with the book retailer example-
“Want to know who your favorite self help books author is dating? Or why readers have gone wild with the new book by celebrated author- Mr. X?”
Write On What Makes You Different And How Will Shoppers Benefit From You:
Yes, why you and not the hundreds of similar sites? What makes your e-commerce platform so different? You must highlight the features and benefits of the products your site sells and how differently from the others.
People need to be convinced that you indeed are different from the others. For instance, “We are dedicated to bring to your reading table, the best that the literary world has to offer. Buy the latest books that have just entered the market, at reduced early bird prices. As for the really popular books, the old favorites, you can get exclusively autographed copies from our site. These signed copies are few, so book your copy fast!”
This is your big marketing pitch. You have to create content for your e-commerce site’s homepage that is full with your sales pitch. So you can offer discounts like free shipping for one side, or you could harp on your expertise in the business. All of this has one purpose only, to make that sale. Also, assure the users that you have an easy return and exchange policy.
For instance, your words could be:
“Books4U is your best online guide in helping you choose the best self help book that can really make a difference in your life. Our 20 years experience in the field of books, will ensure that you arrive at the book that seems custom made for you. Just add the book to your cart and once you purchase it, we will ship it for free! In case you do not like the book, you can exchange it within 2 weeks, and get your money back. More on our exchange policy here.”
Write What Praises You Have Got From Previous Customers:
You should also always feature a Nothing works like a person to person impact. If you post one line testimonials from ex users, your credibility will soar high among the users. satisfied customer. It’s great if the satisfied customer can send you a picture of himself or herself. This is what you may write-
“See what Mike says about us- ‘Books4U were quite prompt in sending me the book. I feel so much better after reading it.”
Make sure you test your home page on a few people, before it goes live. Show it to people and get their honest opinion. Whether your content works or not, will be pretty clear then. You have to be short and effective as the user attention span is quite low, and you have a few seconds to make impact. Follow these guidelines and you should be good.