How do you make your homepage more SEO friendly? You know that for a lot of keywords, content pages tend to do better, but does that mean that your homepage can't rank for anything? Of course not.
Home page SEO is very similar to optimizing your other pages, but just skipping over your home page is going to be a big mistake and you're going to miss out on a lot of opportunities.
People go to your home page and learn more about your businesses all the time. First impressions are everything, and that relates to your home page as well. And here's some tactics that you can employ to create a beautiful home page that ranks on Google.
First off, state your company's value proposition and selling points right away.
Your home page is essentially a welcome mat for your website. It states hey, everyone come on in, this is what my website is all about. Say what your company is and what you sell, or the services that you offer right away. Point out your unique selling points. What makes your company different from others? Wherever you can, you want to make sure that you point out your businesses the strongest selling points, and you want to put this really early in your content.
For example, Toms Shoes. For every pair of shoes that are purchased, they donate one to a child that's in need. That's a very strong selling point for Toms. You want to tell customers how your product solves their problem as well.
Use customer testimonials.
When it comes to brand authenticity, the stakes are higher than ever. A study by Boston Consulting Group identified that authenticity is one of the top qualities that would attract them to a brand. Trustworthiness is a huge aspect in conversions. As internet continues to take over, brand trust is getting more and more important. Not to mention, brand trust leads to brand loyalty, AKA, returning customers.
Showcasing your customer testimonials is a great way to build trust with new visitors. If you don't have customer reviews, encourage people to leave reviews. It's as simple as just emailing them saying hey, what did you think about my product? What did you think about my service? You don't want to bribe them to leave a review because when you do that, you're creating reviews that may be biased, you want real reviews.
Make your homepage mobile friendly.
This is incredibly important because Google does mobile first indexing, because over 50% of the searches are now done on mobile devices. And in some industries, it's over 90%. Your web design needs to be optimized for desktop and mobile. Make sure you're using mobile friendly themes and your website is responsive. Whether it's a small mobile device, or a bigger mobile device, or a tablet device, that way you're compatible.
If you're wondering if your website is mobile optimized, well Google has free mobile testing tools out there for you.
Make your navigation simple.
Navigation is key when it comes to user experience. You don't want to have a site structure that makes people confused. Chances are, if people are going to their site, and they can't find what they're looking for within a few clicks, they're going to bounce, Google is going to notice, and in the long run it's going to hurt your rankings. Also, it's important to note that if users are exiting your site so quickly, remember, the user experience isn't great for them as well, so not only is it going to hurt Google as I mentioned, but it's also going to hurt your sales too. So you don't want to just improve your navigation for Google, you want to do it because it's going to help with your conversions as well.
One of the biggest reasons that people bounce is because bad site navigation, and what I mean by that is either too many options or they can't find what they're looking for within three clicks. In general, less is more.
With my old site, Quick Sprout, I ran a test years ago where I reduce my navigation elements from eight to five, and I was able to reduce my bounce rate by 3% and my site navigation received an extra 2049 more clicks each month. That's crazy, right? I reduced the options and I got more total clicks.
Optimize your home page title and metadata.
Most people just make their home page title tag their brand name, and that may seem smart, but it's not when it comes to SEO. Yes, you still want to have your brand name in there, but you also want to put keywords in there as well. Remember, eight out of 10 people will read your title tag or your headline, only two out of 10 will click through and read the rest. So crafting something that's appealing is super important. And if you're wondering of how to craft something that's very appealing, roughly six word headlines tend to do well, people love HOWTOs, they love lists, they love anything that tells them what they're going to get. And with your home page you probably can't do how tos and lists as much, but you can talk about the problem that you're identifying or the industry or the main product or service that you're selling as well as including your brand name.
If you need help with crafting your meta tags, whether it's your title tag or meta description with the right keywords, check out UberSuggest.
Put in the keywords within your industry, then go to the key word ideas report, and it'll tell you all keywords that you can consider targeting and look for the ones with the SEO difficulty score of less than 40, those are the ones that are the easiest and quickest to rank for.
If you also want help to optimize your title tags and you want to run experiments, you can also use tools like ClickFlow which allow you to AB test your title tags to maximize your clicks for your homepage.
Pull in recent blog posts on your home page.
Remember, your home page is like that welcome mat. People can be going there for many reasons. By including your content, it's great because when people keep coming back to your website, they can continually and easily find new content and that will keep them going throughout your whole site, keep your time on site better, reduce your bounce rate, improve the overall user experience, build more authority and brand, and eventually increase your conversions as well.
Here's an interesting step for you, especially if you're an e-commerce and you're just selling products, you may be like hey, I want my homepage just selling products, I don't want to showcase any content. Well, skincare company Olay did a test where they're selling products related to eye care. And what they started doing is driving people to an article on eye care and removing dark circles underneath eyes. By doing that instead of just pushing people directly to products, they saw an 87% increase in click throughs and 100% increase in conversions. That's huge.
Close with call to actions.
Look, by people going to your home page, you don't want them just going wherever they want and have no end in site. The end should be buying a product or service from you, going into Lead Magnet, collecting their name and information, whatever conversion is for you. Make sure your call to actions are easily clickable, they're images that stand out, and you sprinkle them throughout your home page because some people could just go to your home page, and they know they want to buy right away, and for those people, you want to make your call to action closer to above the fold. But by having it throughout your whole home page, what you'll find is as people are reading, learning more, seeing the testimonials, you may convince them to buy, and boom, they can do so right then and there without scrolling back up.