What makes your business or organization unique? What should people deal with you, rather than any of the other similar outfits? What makes you stand out from the crowd? This is the sort of information the home page of your site should convey. Some call this the unique value proposition. Another way of thinking about this is the answer to your prospect's question "Who are you and why should I care?" I thought about this again the other week when we lost a client. Yes, that does happen on occasion. This was a client who never updated their site, never wanted the site to a hub of business activity, wouldn't listen to any of our suggestions or proposals. They moved to a different service provider. I asked them the obvious question: "why?" This was his reply:
"We're going to a service provider that specializes in our type of business. They have a template already laid out for businesses like ours." I looked at their site after conversion. There's no dynamic or easily editable content. Several of the 'cookie cutter' pages have a 'Coming soon, in October 2011'. Note that the calendar now says it's November. Their site now looks like several dozen others in their industry, carefully die-cut by a web design firm that 'specializes' in their line of business. The only question it doens't answer is the one in the title of this article. The copy makes vauge claims that "we're the leader" but I have no idea what that actually means: price? quality? customer satisfaction? awards? cleanest windows? I don't know. Whatever is unique about their business is nowhere to be found on their home page. So here's your homework:
- Write down your unique value proposition
- Is this clearly communicated on your site's home page?
- If not, how can you communicate it?
I'm going to have to do some work here as well.