It’s not uncommon to spend a good amount of time and money developing a website that looks crisp and modern and functions well. And those things are super important.
When a prospect comes to your website, it’s what’s inside that counts. And the thing your website content must do is answer their need.
Your prospects may have many questions for you. But when they get to your website, it comes down to three fundamental questions:
- Can you help me?
- Can I trust you?
- Now What?
These are the questions you need to answer beyond a doubt, and the first two quickly. Because with just a click, that prospect could be gone for good. According to recent studies on attention span, you have about 8 seconds. (Which is one second less than a gold fish, by the way.)
The Home Page
Your home page answers the first question, “Can you help me?” It has to tell the reader, “Yes, this is where you belong, and I can definitely help you”. This page is NOT about you! Your visitor is searching for something that will solve their problem and/or make their life better in some way. They didn’t come to read your brag-sheet.
Make your home page about the prospect. State the problem they came to resolve, and show them you have the solution.
This is your first impression moment. Don’t blow it. It only takes one click to leave your website — forever.
The About Page
Your About page, or Biography, will tell your prospect who you are. This is where you talk about yourself.
But consider that the visitor is STILL looking out for themselves. You must make it clear why you are the right person/business/coach for them. Show how you are uniquely qualified to solve their problem.
Their primary concern is, “I’m going to be working closely with this person. Are we going to get along? Is their personality a good fit with mine? Can I trust them?”
Now, it’ll be up to them to decide if they like you or not. It’s your job to provide an honest view of yourself. (A little social proof wouldn’t hurt either.)
It is crucial to be your true self here. Your prospects need to decide for themselves if they like and trust you. There’s no benefit in putting up a false front when you’re ultimately going to be working one-on-one with this person. If they discover you’re a fake they’ll feel betrayed. Trust is the key to your success.
Don’t be concerned with those that don’t like you for who you really are. You wouldn’t want to work with them anyway, would you? Of course not.
First or Third?
Whether you write your website content in first-person or third is up to you. I’ve found no clear data showing one is better than the other. Often it depends on the type of business.
Websites written in third-person give the impression of a bigger organization. It works well for companies with staff. Bios written in third-person carry a voice of authority. (And it can be a little easier to brag about yourself in third-person, too.)
My feelings are that the more personal the service you offer, the more likely someone will be looking for a personal connection, like talking to a friend. It’s perfectly fine to have both, such as first-person on the Home Page and third-person on the Bio or About Page. Experiment to see which seems a better fit.
That Last Question
Although the first two questions are mandatory in order to capture attention, there is one more that is crucial. Without this piece, you may still lose the prospect.
“What do I do now?”
The Call To Action, or CTA, is vital in moving the prospect from curious-to-client. You must tell them what to do next.
Whether you want them to sign up for your mailing list, or simply to give you a call, you must tell them so clearly. Perhaps there’s another page of your website you want to move them to. Say so and provide the link. Confusion causes inaction.
Never assume someone visiting your website is familiar with what you do or how you do it. Provide what they need to know, in simple, concise language, and you will win their trust, and hopefully their business.
Cindy White is a freelance copywriter specializing in helping businesses reach their target markets for increased sales and improved client relations through compelling, well-crafted copy. Initial consultations are always free of charge.