With clients I emphasize that websites are powerful marketing tools and their purpose is to bring you leads. There is a tendency to focus on how a website LOOKS. That’s all well and good, as long as you also focus on what a website DOES. When planning for an effective website we give equal attention to planning how we want visitors to respond and use the site and to how it looks.
In my last post, I talked about how it’s important to identify your #1 Website Goal. Once you know that, you can add features/buttons to compel your site visitors to take actions that align with your goals. In marketing speak these buttons or links are called “calls to action.”
I think an example is the easiest way to illustrate this point.
For Poloku.us we created several large attractive buttons (part of the website navigation) on the left size of their homepage. Their # 1 Goal is to sell gourmet mushroom seasonings to cooks and food manufacturers in the US. (They are a 25 year old company that sells seasonings throughout Asia.) Therefore, when people come to the site, we want them to see the store and that products are available for both the home cook (in regular size packages) and for the food manufacturer in bulk amounts.
When you look at the Poloku site you’ll see the buttons, (calls to action) on the left, name who they are for and each have an attractive photo.
Three points about these buttons (calls to action):
- this left column is one of the first place the eye goes on the site…it’s important real estate, in web designer speak
- the photos work to draw the eye to the call to action
- the photos match the words and re-enforce the purpose, thus there are words and images both are part of the call to action
In planning your homepage, consider your website goals, craft calls to action to match and plan the homepage to place your calls to action upfront.