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Guide to creating & organizing a successful homepage

By Earl B. Hall
Posted Friday, October 1, 2004

There is hardly a day goes by without someone asking me to look at their home page and make some recommendations. So, in this short article I'll pass along some of the absolutely crucial points to keep in mind when creating your visitor oriented web page.

First of all you must take some time and think about what you are going to write on the web pages. Be perfectly clear about what you are offering your visitor. This sounds simple, but you would be amazed at the sites I look at that are confusing. If you don't state this in the first paragraph....they may not stay long enough to read the rest of the page!

How do I organize my web site?

A good starting point is to write an outline. This will become the basic structure of your web site. About us, mission statement, products & services, testimonials, ordering info, contact info.

When writing your text, you must always stress the benefits of your product or service! People only buy when it improves their life or business somehow. It may save time, make the job easier, make them happy, etc. Usually, saving money is the least important reason. That's why people buy name brand products...perceived value!

As you are stressing the benefits, make sure your message says "you" at least 3 times more than "me" or "I"! For example, "you get" or "you will receive" are powerful motivators. Focus on the visitor and they will most likely become a customer.

Are you making your product or service sound exciting and valuable? Are you asking for the order?

There is nothing wrong with presenting the benefits, asking for the order... then presenting more benefits and asking for the order again! Keep your sentences short, exciting and customer oriented!

Are you asking for your visitors email address?

Without the all important email address, you have no way of following up. Remember, people rarely ever buy the first time around. Ask them to sign your guest book, subscribe to your newsletter, request info from your autoresponder. Be creative!
If you let them know you repect their privacy and WILL NOT sell or share your mailing list with any outside source, your visitor will be more inclined to volunteer information about themselves!

Remember content is king!

So far, we have stressed the message, but what about the actual design? There is nothing worse than going to a home page and scrolling through banner after banner. I can guarantee you that your visitor will not wait! If the banner does not generate income or visitors, then you do not need it. This is a sure sign of a beginner. You can always create a "cool banner page", if you want to add your favorite links.

A clean, crisp logo and a few small images used to emphasize a particular point of interest should work nicely. An attention grabbing headline will go along way! Using words like "discover", "new", "amazing", "truth" or "revolutionary" will more impact than the endless blinking text!

How long is a web page?

A web page can actually be as long as you want it to be. I have seen some seemingly endless ones. But, remember the outline concept. Try to keep your pages to around 50-60k if possible. Web surfers are an impatient lot!

About the Author:
Article by Earl B. Hall of NetPower Publishing (http://www.powerpub.com)