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SCALE YOUR STORE:

What's the fundamental difference between a good and a bad home page?

A bad homepage doesn't center on helping the user find a product. That is the number homepage conversion killer.

When someone lands on your homepage, you have just a couple of seconds to convince them that:

  1. they should not leave,
  2. and they should start browsing.

(As opposed to what most people do when they land on a homepage: click the back button, click over to a different tab, or, if you're lucky, scroll halfway down and then leave.)

Your homepage has one primary job: convince someone to start browsing your catalog. You have to break them out of general browsing and into shop mode. This is the difference between someone walking past a storefront and walking into it. A visitor who hits your homepage and then bounces is no different than someone just walking past the storefront.

Let’s talk hero image. You see a lot of stores doing slide shows, and honestly, I’m not a fan, for two reasons:

  1. Image slideshows often bloat page sizes.
  2. 89% of users never make it past the first slide.

Instead, I recommend you just do one big hero image. Or, if you're feeling particularly fancy, go with a video. If you can put together a video, it will boost conversions.

Either way, have a headline over it, with your positioning statement. Make it really clear what it is you offer, what your value proposition is, and who it's for. Being clever or subtle isn't going to sell anything.

Next, your main navigation menu is instrumental in converting a browser to a shopper. If someone is landing on the homepage, they're showing intent, so let's make it easy for them. I see too many stores that have their products buried under some sub-menu that just says, "Shop" followed by a bunch of non-shopping related links like that blog you haven't updated in six months.

Which do you want? Do you want people to come to your site to read a blog that you never update? Or, buy something? The latter of course. Take all that extraneous stuff and put it either into one sub-menu at the very end called, "Info," or move it into the footer. If people are looking for it, they'll find it. That way all your shopping is across the top. You can break it out by collection, break it out by top sellers, whatever you want.

Lastly, throw some social proof in there. I like to do testimonials, reviews, or even something like a reviews app carousel widget. If you've ever been quoted or featured in any kind of press or media, include those logos, and some nice blurbs from the articles. Social proof adds a lot of credibility.

Let's recap:

  1. Your homepage has one job: get people to browse your catalog.
  2. Ditch the carousel, instead use a single hero image or a video. Caption it with a clear and concise call to action.
  3. Focus your main menu exclusively on shopping.

Hope that helps,
-k.