AskPat 738 Episode Transcript
Pat Flynn: Hey, what's up everyone? Pat Flynn here and welcome to Episode 738 of AskPat. Thank you so much for joining me today. As always, I'm here to help you by answering your online business questions, five days a week.
All right. Thank so much. Here's today's question from Brad.
Brad: Hi, Pat. My name is Brad Graham. I appreciate all you do at Smart Passive Income. I really enjoy your podcast AskPat. Today, I have question for you. The question is, what makes a good homepage? The background for my question is I have a website GrowMilkweedPlants.com. Where I have a lot of information for visitors. I'm reaching about a quarter million trailing page views for the year. I feel like the users need a better homepage, to lead them through the site. I have pages for each state. I have pages for each milkweed. I have pages for each podcast. There's a lot of good content on there, but I feel like the homepage is a little bit lackluster. Do you have any tips or advice that could make a homepage better? Thanks a lot, Pat. Have a great day.
Pat Flynn: Hey Brad, thanks so much for the question. First of all, GrowMilkweedPlants.com and quarter million trailing visitors. Wow. That's awesome, so cool. Just congrats on that. It's just awesome. Just a great job. One of those things that you're like, nobody can actually get traffic to something like that. Then, boom, it just blows all the way. Great. I want to help you out.
What makes a great homepage? Well, there's a few elements that make a good homepage, in my experience. I will say that, I've redesigned my website more than a half dozen times over the years. Every single time, the homepage is really one of the big factors in trying to help out my audience. That's really what it's for. I love that you're coming from the view of, okay well, what can I do to better serve my audience? It's not just, about making more money or getting more conversions. Which is important, but helping your audience first always leads to those things.
Here's a few elements that I can share with you. For one, you want to make sure you have all the right branding elements. You have this great brand, you have a lot of traffic. Title, tagline. Very clear, very easy to find. You want make sure that when people find you, which is probably going to be from Google, but anywhere. That they know immediately within six seconds, that they are in the right place. That they need to stick around. That's really important, because if you don't do that, people are typically going to leave and never come back. Make it very clear. Title, tagline. Make it just very obvious. If you have any images or logos that goes along with your branding, that can go a very long way and just being presented right away to your audience.
Now, here's a couple other important things. Your number one call to action, what would it be? If I were to ask you, what's the one thing you want people, who land on your homepage. What's the one thing you want them to do? That could be many things. For me, it's getting on my get started page. You can see how obvious I make that, on the homepage at SmartPassiveIncome.com. There are really no other actions, besides the navigation menu. All the attention is drawn to this big green button on the homepage that says, get started here, or start here, or click here to start. We've been messing around with different CTAs, but I will share with you why that's important.
Before that, you also have to think about what is the most important thing that you want people to do. To help you think through that, you want to see where the best ROI is. Is it when people get into articles or is it when people land on a specific resource page? Is it . . . you know, whatever. The call to action can be anything, but you do have people's attention at that point. You have with your branding elements show them that they are in the right spot.
Then, with your CTA, you can have them do whatever it is you want. Make it very clear and easy to do that. Around that call to action, where they button is or where that link is, you want to make it easy for them to go there. Which means, you want to clear everything else away from that as much as possible.
Now, you did say that, you have all these other categories and things that you mentioned. Maybe that's the first thing. In which case, you would make it every easy and organized in a way that makes it easy for people to find the content that they need that way. Again, if I were to ask you, what's the one thing that you want all your visitors to do when they land on the homepage? What would it be? That's going to help guide you, in terms of how this is all laid out and what this design becomes.
Now, speaking of layout and organization. You want that to be very clean. I think over time a lot of blogs and this is myself included, you start to just add things in, because you do new things. When you do, that becomes sort of a overtime a frankenstein setup where it's just kind of things are placed there, because you've added them over time. There wasn't necessarily any long-term planning involved. Now, you're at a point with a lot of visitors and some thoughts, in terms of what you'd like to show up there. That you can actually create something that is more organized, better designed. If you don't want to spend the money or don't have the money to spend on the resources, to help design a custom set up for you, then you can use many of the different themes are out there. That can help you with a lot of the organizational aspects. The layout and the branding elements. Where things are located.
I do have a theme that's available on StudioPress, which is on the Genesis framework. That comes from the guys over at Rainmaker.com and Copyblogger.com. Brian Clark and I had a great conversation. At one point, we formed a partnership to be able to serve you guys who want to start with a great theme.
You can check this out. This may or may not work for you, Brad. Anybody out there, if the theme works for you, great. If not, then there's different ones on the Studio Press platform that I can recommend as well. If you go to AskPat.com/spitheme, you're going to see the theme that's available for you. It kind of has a similar layout to what my site was before, which had that hero section. Which allows you to include those branding elements, large images, and one clear call to action from there too. It also neatly lays out the navigation too. That could work out.
The other thing I would mention, Brad, is with all the content that you have on there, the call to action you might be interested in sharing or at least having people have the option to go to, is a getting started page. I've talked a lot about this in the past. A getting started page is really important, because that allows people who are coming to your site, who are typically lost and looking for answers. It allows them to start in a nice spot and you are already there guiding them.
If you go to my getting started page, for example, it has some quick definitions of what passive income is. Some initial episodes they should listen to, articles that they should check out, and general information about what's going on, and how I can help them. It's not an about page. An about page is more about me.
Getting started page is, okay, this is what the site's about, but let me help walk you through some of those initial steps for you. A getting started page for me has been one of the most beneficial pages, because it's the page that people feel like, okay well, I'm in the right spot. I'm going to let Pat take me where he want to take me and show me what I need to see. You can do the same thing, Brad. A lot of information there. I think a lot of it's going to have to do with you thinking about what it is that you want people to do and see, when they land on the homepage.
Also, keep in mind what's above the fold versus what's below the fold. Meaning, what do people see before they have to scroll. Then, what's below when they scroll? Those are important things. The stuff that's at the top, obviously, that's going to be the most important. That's where you want to have your call to action, your branding elements. You also want to make sure you share your most popular stuff. That's something you can include in your getting started page. You can have a link or a section with some of your more popular information too. That way, people are there. They're seeing what's working. What other people are actually using for their own purposes already. They can get in on that too. Which people love to go where the crowd is. That's just another option, but again Brad best of luck to you. Thank you so much for your question. Keep up the great work. I want to send you an AskPat t-shirt for having your question featured on the show.
For those of you listening, if you have a question that you'd like potentially featured here on the show, just like Brad. Just head on over to AskPat.com. You can ask right there on that page.
Thanks so much. I appreciate you. Here's a quote to finish off the day by Sandy Rakowski. She said, “Lead people with what they want. Lead with what they've already said. Lead people from where they're at. Lead them with the things that concern them.”
Cheers. Take care. I'll see you in the next episode of AskPat. Bye.