Website Design
December 28, 2020
Written by Scott Lancaster
Read Time 6 Minutes

Keep new visitors engaged on your website homepage for longer

Branding articles, how to build a brand, building a brand, starting a brand.

How can we keep new visitors on our website for longer?

This is a question every business owner has likely asked themselves at some point or another.

But the answer is actually quite simple. However, it does require a little step back for us to understand what's going through the customers mind when they actually visit a website they've never been to before.

Why do people leave websites so fast?

Think about past experiences you've had where you've landed on a website and you've left within 10 seconds.

Why did you do that?

What was so repulsive about the webpage which inspired you to leave so quickly?

Well, you're not alone.

Most customers are busy people. And even if they aren't busy, they expect to get what they want online as fast and effortlessly as possible.

This means if we land on a website and it isn't what we are looking for or expect... we just leave before there is another option which can give us what we want. Just without the unesseary hassle.

So how can you stop visitors leaving your website?

To answer this, we need to realize the three key questions we all ask ourselves when we visit a new website we've never been to before.

We subconsciously go through this mental process everytime we land on a website homepage, as we quickly try to establish if the website can serve our needs.

The questions we ask ourselves are as follows:

Am I in the right place?

So the first question we generally ask ourselves is "can this website give me what I need?" or "Am I in the right place?".

This is simply to save us the time and energy of searching through the entire website to find out if it's what we're looking for.

To answer this question, we need to state exactly what we do.

Shopify showcase exactly what they do really well. They communicate exactly what website visitors can use them for within the first 4 words on their homepage.

So make sure that the text and imagery you use as the hero on your website pages communicates exactly what you do in a way which is easy to understand and digest.

It's also important to note that selecting the right imagery for your homepage and creating a captivating call to action is important too. But I'll save those for another article so I can go a little deeper.

Is this brand trustworthy?

Once a website visitor has established they are in the right place, they will most likely begin asking if they can trust your company to provide a solution which satisfies their needs and expectations.

This is where a trust building section can come in really handy in helping the visitor feel comfortable spending more time on your website, as they see you as credible and worth their time.

There is no 'one size fits all approach' to doing this well. But there are two main approaches businesses tend to take:

The Credibility Flex

This direction means simply showing how trustworthy you are by sharing something which backs up your credibility.

An commonly used example is showcasing logos from established publications who have featured you in write ups or stories.

If you're a consultant, you could showcase the logos of companies you have worked with or even stats related to the impact your skills and experience can bring.

Another approach could be to share how many customers you have already served to date, giving the visitor the peace of mind that they are not the first... as lets face it, very few want to be first.

Tim Ferris uses The Credibility Flex perfectly by showcasing some stats which help new visitors see his podcast as being successful (which it is). The stats make the visitor curious as to what they must be missing out on, and therefore encourages them to want to learn more about Tim and his unconventional ways.

Make It Frictionless

The second direction you could take to building trust with your website visitors is by making it completely risk free for them to try your product or service.

This basically means lowering the commitment bar as low as possible to enable the visitor to ignite a relationship with your business.

We are naturally dubious creatures these days. So we (for some reason) are very cautious when giving out our email address and buying from companies we've never heard of.

So making the process of making a commitment as effortless and risk free as possible is a great way to get a customers initial buy in, allowing you to grow the relationship from there.

The Dollar Shave Club use this approach perfectly, promising that you can try out their service and enjoy Free Shipping, 30-day Money Back Guarantee & you can cancel anytime you like if you're not 100% happy. This makes it very easy for customers who have never used the Dollar Shave Club to make that initial leap and try the company out for the first time.

Tell me more about why I should choose you...

So once your website visitor knows they are in the right place and is confident you are trustworthy, they are going to be far more likely to spend  time finding out about your company and what you have to offer.

This is when they'll begin scrolling through your homepage and visiting various other pages to explore what you can offer them. This stage will help them decide if you are the right fit for each other, which will either result in the website visitor finally leaving or engaging with you through your website.

You can use the rest of your homepage exploring why the visitor should choose to buy from (or engage with) you, as opposed to every other website out there begging for their time (or purchase).

There are ways to encourage a visitor to choose you, but we'll cover that topic for another article.

How do I know my website homepage is doing these three things well?

The first way is simply by looking at your website analytics. You should be viewing statistics such as your homepages bounce rate and how long people are generally spending on the page.

However, a great way to really see how your customers are reacting to your homepage is to installing Hotjar.

Hotjar allows you to see where your visitors are licking and moving their mouse during their time on your website. The software also records screen visits, allowing you to rewatch them and use that insight to make changes to each page of your website according to where improvements can be made.

Hotjar is a great tool and you can get started for free (see...Make It Frictionless) to allow you to really get to grips with the software before taking the leap and investing in a paid subscription.

If you still aren't sure if your website homepage is as impactful as it could be, feel free to get in touch with us and we'll be happy to give you some free advice and guidance to help you get your homepage in tip top shape.

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