10 Essential Website Elements Every Homepage Needs To Have

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Marketing Podcast with John Jantsch

john-jantschIn this episode of the Duct Tape Marketing Podcast, I’m doing a solo show on the 10 essential website elements every homepage needs to have.

Key Takeaway:

What’s the purpose of a website today? Your website has many jobs to do—and that’s part of what makes it so challenging to figure out what elements you should or shouldn’t include on your homepage. Ask yourself: Does your website build trust? Do you articulate what you do and who you serve? Are there clear calls to action? The list of questions goes on. I believe there are 10 critical elements every small business must include on its website, and in this solo episode, I’m breaking them down one by one.

Topics I Cover:

  • [5:04] Number 1 – Make a promise to solve your ideal customer’s greatest problem
  • [7:02] Number 2 – Include clear calls to action
  • [8:30] Number 3 – State clearly who your business gets results for
  • [10:02] Number 4 – Outline your core offerings
  • [10:54] Number 5 – Articulate your process and what customers can expect
  • [11:35] Number 6 – Feature your team
  • [12:31] Number 7 – Build credibility and trust
  • [13:29] Number 8 – Include a video on your homepage
  • [14:51] Number 9 – Use segmentation to personalize content offerings
  • [16:33] Number 10 – Offer various ways to get in contact with you – including SMS or text messaging
  • [17:37] Number 11 – Ensure your site is mobile optimized

Resources I Mention:

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John Jantsch (00:00): Today's episode of the duct tape marketing podcast is brought to you by blissful prospecting, hosted by Jason bay and brought to you by the HubSpot podcast network host Jason bay dives in with leading sales experts and top performing reps to share actionable tips and strategies to help you land more meetings with your ideal clients. Recently, they did a show on the four day work week. I'm a huge fan. I think everybody should be looking towards trying to create that. Hey, we get most of our work done in like two hours every day. Anyway, so let's try out the four day work week. All right, listen to blissful, prospecting, wherever you get your podcasts.

John Jantsch (00:47): Hello and welcome to another episode of the duct tape marketing podcast. This is John Janssen today. I'm doing a solo show, just me, nobody in the other screen. All right. I wanna talk about websites, but more importantly, I wanna talk about what I think are the 10 essential elements that every small business website, particularly the homepage needs to have today. And here's the reason, the question that causes the reason for so many elements being necessary. The question is what's the purpose of a website today? I know many people would say it's to get customers or it's to track leads, but I'm gonna suggest that your website has many jobs to do. And that's part of the challenge, I think, with trying to figure out what goes on there. What doesn't go on there. What do people need to see if you think about your website being the hub, maybe, or at least the starting point for a lot of your customers, for a lot of the decisions that are made about doing business for you.

John Jantsch (01:45): It's part of the journey. We wanna find people that we can know and like, and trust as I've talked about for years. And I think that the website does a lot of that filtering both attracting and repelling. I suppose, those who come to your website. So it's not simply just, I gotta have a website so that people can find me and buy from me. I mean, 87% of potential customers won't consider a business with low ratings. So it's not just that your site has to be there and be findable. People have to get there and they have to build some trust. You have to prove there has to be social proof. There has to be reviews. There have to be things that can make people say, yeah, okay. I checked that box. 64% of consumers say watching a video on Facebook has influenced a purchase decision.

John Jantsch (02:32): So part of the journey is that may be where they come to find out about you. But now they're looking for more of that same type of content on your website. 86% of buyers will pay more for a better experience. I know I have I mean, 86% is most of us. So a lot of times our analysis is, does the site load quickly do the forms fill out? Does it look intuitive? Does it look like what I think it should look like for this industry? I mean, we all have gone to that website that looked like it was built 20 years ago and we're out of there. And I think that's a big part of a job that our website's going to do. It's going to start the experience of what it's gonna be like to work with you. And then finally, and I think this one points to the need for all of these elements that I'm gonna talk about today, probably more than anything, 92% of consumers will visit a Bo a brand's website for reasons other than making a purchase.

John Jantsch (03:31): So what are those other 92%? And by the way, that's not just prospects and buyers. That's also potential employees because really when we talk about all these changes in marketing, the thing that's changed the most, I think is really how people choose, get to choose, to become customers and employees and the kind of straight line suggestion of the funnel approach to marketing of get some people to know you push a few small few through that to small end of the funnel. I mean, that journey, that linear journey is really doesn't exist today. And that, that many of the ways in which people decide about a company that they're gonna do business with might be considered out of our hands out of our control in some ways. And our job really then is to guide people along this journey. But let me give you one last biggie for why your website needs to look a certain way, act a certain way, provide a certain journey for people, your website.

John Jantsch (04:28): I believe because it is such an important part of the journey gives you the greatest ability to increase something that I came across it in Harvard business review talking about enterprise companies, but something called WTP, which is willingness to pay. And I think that in the sea of options that people have out there, if you can increase your worthiness, if you can increase the experience from your website, you're going to increase, somebody's willingness to pay. All right? So let's get in quickly to the 10 things. So the first thing your website needs to do is make a promise to solve your ideal. Customer's greatest problem. So many websites today that I go to you go there. First thing you see above the fold is we are this business or we're this kind of business, or we've been in this business for X amount of years.

John Jantsch (05:22): Typically the person that's visiting the site knows what business you're in, because that's why they found you. That's what they're looking for. But what they wanna see is do you get me? Do you understand? I mean, is there something that you're doing that's different? In fact, if you can communicate the problem, a lot of times people don't really even know the problem they're trying to solve necessarily. They know, for example, I'm a marketing firm. They know, for example, somebody's a remodeling contractor. And so they go to a remodeling contractor, but what problem now? I mean, people don't wanna buy marketing services. They don't really even wanna buy remodeling services. They want an incredible kitchen with an incredible experience. They want quick wins, long term growth, hassles. They want great communication. I mean, those are the problems that people are trying to solve quite frankly, through looking at our businesses as a way to do that.

John Jantsch (06:11): So what problem can you promise to solve that needs to be above the fold? And frankly, I'm starting to actually see websites to Google this sometime problems we solve. And you're gonna see some websites that are actually dedicating entire pages to a list of problems that they solve. You know, for example, in, in marketing, most of the problems we encounter are actually strategy problems, but nobody goes, I'm gonna go find me to buy some strategy today. but they, that they've, they wanna know why they can't charge a premium for their services or worse, why they're always having to offer discounts. And so that's a problem that can be solved with strategy, but we have to identify the problem. The thing that they're actually experiencing is they can't charge enough. We're gonna fix that with strategy, but it won't. We have to articulate that problem first before they'll listen to our solution about strategy calls to action.

John Jantsch (07:04): If somebody, you know, how today is so popular, so common to get these long scrolling home pages. Well, if somebody comes to your website and they're starting to engage and they're starting to scroll down and say, oh, who do they serve? You know, who are their case studies? They start looking for things. We wanna have the ability for somebody to click, to take an action, to do something that's CTAs calls to action above the fold, right under your core message. There are people that are, that actually are just looking to contact you. So make it easy for them to do that. But the vast majority of people are looking for a price, quote, an evaluation, a free report. That's going to tell them how to do X, Y, and Z. Sprinkle those throughout your homepage, sprinkle those throughout your website.

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John Jantsch (08:34): Tell me very specifically who your ideal customer is. Don't tell me that you serve homeowners. Tell me that you serve homeowners in a very specific area of town with a very specific challenge with a very specific need. I mean, identify as clearly as possible show pictures of, you know, maybe you have three or four segments, but don't just leave this open to where somebody says, well, I own a home.

John Jantsch (08:58): So I guess I can call them be very specific where somebody says, oh my goodness, you serve me. You're talking about me. And I'd like to use the word who we get results for rather than who our customers are, who we sell to getting results as what people are after in a lot of ways, that's a problem, uh, that, that you're trying to demonstrate that you can solve. And one of the things about that approach to who we get results, it's sort of implied who we don't get results for or who we can't work for. Again, using my business. As an example, if somebody just comes to me and says, I want leads, I on Facebook ads and, you know, go, I mean, we get results for people who actually wanna build a long term strategy that allows them to dominate their market and not just have a quick event that is maybe going to make the phone ring.

John Jantsch (09:45): Maybe not. We talk about strategy incessantly because that's really, in fact, that's really the only way to engage my firm. And so we want to chase people away. We don't want people who are like, oh, I don't need that strategy stuff. We want them to know that's not who we're gonna get a result for number four, our core offerings. So there's so many businesses that sell, have the ability to sell. I should say 27 things. But when we really dig in, what we find is that there are three things they do that generate 80% of their profits, 80% of their business, really their ideal engagements. And yet they list everything they could do. What I want you to think about doing is saying here's the three things at the most that we do, and we do them better than anyone. Now, if you get a customer and you, you have a great relationship, you start working with them.

John Jantsch (10:38): It doesn't mean you can't sell them the other 27 things. But when it comes to actually getting that ideal customer, you want to, you want that profitable customer. You want them to know that the service that you sell, whatever it is, it, you are better than anyone else at doing it. That you're the obvious choice for doing that. The fifth thing I wanna hear a little bit about is your process. If you have a process for getting me your result, I mean, it might be the ordering process. It might be your onboarding process. It might be your 37 step process to make sure that the job site is cleaned up after you're done. Processes are amazing marketing materials because they prove that first off you have a professional approach. You have thought out how to get me a result, put those on, on, you know, tell me what's going to happen next.

John Jantsch (11:24): I mean, you could even have a process that says, look, if you fill out this form, here's, what's going to happen next. You know, if you're trying to get a quote, tell them the steps in the process, tell them what to expect team, you know, for, I read thousands of Google reviews and I will tell you that for most small businesses, when a customer is happy, they're happy with the person they worked with. Not necessarily the company, the person they worked with, the technician, the person that delivered the service, you know, to them, that's the brand. And so let's feature our team. Let's show. 'em what our culture is all about. Have videos of all of your staff saying their favorite meal on their birthday or something goofy like that. Just make sure that you're featuring everybody, that person's going to be working with the client.

John Jantsch (12:11): That person's gonna be the person that shows up at the door. Let's have pictures. Let's have videos. In fact, what's great about those is if you have salespeople, if you have technicians, send those out, here's who here's, who's coming to see you. Great way to, you know, to really open the door, to really build trust, to create an experience. I feel like I've met that person now, before they show up, trust my customer journey. You've heard me talk about it forever. No, like trust, try by repeat and refer. I think trust today, especially when you think about somebody who's just going out there surfing, or maybe somebody told 'em in a Facebook group, oh, you need to check out this company or this website. They're making a lot of decisions about whether or not they even wanna pick up the phone or fill out a form or engage you in any way, shape or form based on what they see right away.

John Jantsch (12:59): Kind of first impression. I mean, that's how we do it today. We won't move forward. unless we feel like, okay, I like what I'm seeing. There's proof that they've worked with other people, oh, they've got these three people as customers. I know who they are. Oh, they've their content has shown up in this publication. That must mean something. Oh, they have 108,000 Twitter followers. Again, all the ways in which we show proof that we're a real business, that other people trust us, that we can get results. I love case studies to show that we've gotten results for people. Number eight, generically video video is for a percentage of the market out there is how they want to consume content. I, I mean, I can decide all the statistics about YouTube and frankly, even TikTok. And some of those other places that are very video centric, people love video, but it's also a great way to build trust.

John Jantsch (13:48): It's a great way for you to show your customers, your happy customers. There's, you know, you read that testimonial that says they were great, Betty from Memphis. Well, how about Betty from Memphis? gushing about how great they are. Show us how your product's made. Show us behind the scenes. Again, I already talked about your technicians, your designers, your sales people ought to have videos. You're seeing more and more videos. And again, this doesn't have to be high quality stuff. This can be pick up an iPhone. Let people start talking. I saw a great video the other day about, you know, an actual patient. This was not a like deep medical thing. I think it was a dermatologist or something that was had a patient was actually asking them a few, you know, very frequently asked questions and the doctor was answering those questions as part of the video, there was no, I don't think HIPAA issues or anything with what was going on there, but I just thought it looked very real.

John Jantsch (14:39): It was in the office. It looked like an actual patient. Maybe it wasn't , maybe it was, there was the technician. And, but it looked very much like an experience that somebody going to that office would have increasingly segmentation. If you have several types of customers, several types of markets, completely different markets. You know, I always use the real estate agent as an example. They want home buyers and they want home sellers. totally different needs, totally different questions, totally different objectives. So how do you talk to them? Well, today we've gotta start using technology. And one of the simplest technologies is to have a path. Are you this? Or are you that go here for the best content for this go here for the best content for this. Maybe you can actually have, you know, you've probably gone to a website that has these popups, that, that are actually asking questions.

John Jantsch (15:31): I think we used to think of those popups as being really intrusive. And yeah, sometimes if I'm really trying to find something specific on a website, you feel like they're intrusive, but if I'm coming to a website for the first time, and I'm trying to understand, like where do I find the answers? I'm very willing to answer a question. If the proposition is tell us, you know, which tell us who you are. tell us what you're looking for so that we can actually make sure you get the right content. I think we'll give people that shot. I mean, we actually want that more personalized journey. The technology is there today and you've got competitors out there that are completely personalizing for, you know, who people are once they get in their CRM and you come back to my website, you know, I should be able to tell you, heck I should.

John Jantsch (16:19): I should say, I should actually know a lot about you and not bother you with the free report that I know you got the first time you came here. So those are things that people are expecting today because the technology makes it possible. Give me lots of ways to contact you like it or not. Text messaging in a lot of industries is the preferred method. If you're under 40, there's a good chance. Or I should say if your customer's prospects are under 40, there's a good chance that they are going to in many industries want that type of communication. And I'm not talking about the spammy like bomb people with, oh, we have 10% off today kind of stuff. But for appointment reminders, for review request for things that, that, you know, shipping details. I mean, those are things that people now expect to have the ability to get a text or an email, or, you know, a chat bot.

John Jantsch (17:13): I mean, we've just gotta give people, you know, all the ways in which they prefer their preferred methods, like years ago, we used to talk about, do you take checks and credit cards well and cash. Well, now it's SMS and it's chat bots and it's, you know, real time response. I mean, that's really what people are expecting. I know it's harder, but I think we've gotta give people the options to communicate the way they wanna communicate. And then the last one, this is actually number 11, if you were keeping track kind of a bonus, really, but you know, we've been talking about for years, this idea of mobile first, we've absolutely got to think in terms of what our website looks like and how it acts and how people can respond using mobile devices because let's face it. They are. I mean, I, I almost every single one of our clients is well over 50% in terms of traffic to their website coming on a mobile device or a tablet.

John Jantsch (18:09): So most designers, I shouldn't say most, a lot of designers still, or a lot of these, you know, way webpage builders today. People are designing for that big, giant screen they have in front of them. You've got to design for a mobile device and then make it work on a bigger screen. And so if you start thinking about that functionality too, I want click to call because I sure as heck don't wanna have to like, look at your phone number, go, and now I wanna call you. So I have to go to my phone, the phone app component or text app component. And now I have to put that number in and then I have to come back and forth cuz I can't remember. So click to call texting, chat on mobile, you know, easy like your hours directions. I mean all the things that people on a mobile device quite often are looking for immediately and expecting in the experience, but certainly make sure that you're, we've all seen them.

John Jantsch (18:59): You know, the sites that, that, you know, the content was designed for a big screen, you put it on that mobile and all of a sudden the responsive element of the website just makes the, a mess out of the content. So that's it, that's the 10 things. I hope that you enjoyed those today. If you come to duct tape, marking.com, if you Google website essentials, you know, you'll find, uh, some of this in a, you know, in a video format, in a text format, we actually even have forms a workbook that you know, for, you know, working on your website. So check out some of the resources at ducttapemarketing.com. All right, that's it for today. Hey, and one final thing before you go, you know how I talk about marketing strategy strategy before tactics? Well, sometimes it can be hard to understand where you stand in that what needs to be done with regard to creating a marketing strategy. So we created a free tool for you. It's called the marketing strategy assessment. You can find [email protected] not .com .co check out our free marketing assessment and learn where you are with your strategy today. That's just marketingassessment.co I'd love to chat with you about the results that you get.

This Duct Tape Marketing Podcast episode is brought to you by the HubSpot Podcast Network and Semrush.


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