Most visitors who come to your recruitment website will arrive at your homepage first. This is your business’ virtual shop window so should be properly optimised to draw in traffic and convert that traffic into leads.
It’s harder in many ways to design a homepage than a dedicated landing page as it needs to serve all who find themselves on your website – it must inform, encourage conversions, and attract traffic. Remember, first impressions are incredibly important and visitors make their minds up in seconds as to whether they will remain on your site and find out more or if they will click away – possibly to a competitor’s site. We list the must-haves for your homepage to encourage visitors to read on.
Headline and sub-headline
The headline is what a visitor’s eyes will first be drawn to and should therefore give an initial indication of what your website offers. In just a few words it must set the tone, hint at brand identity and make it clear what your business does. The sub-headline gives you a chance to give a little more detail. Think of it as your slogan and keep it to the point – what problem does the visitor need addressing?
Captivating and relevant imagery
Whilst design simplicity and minimalism helps to focus the eye, adding interest with images will grab attention. These might play on a loop behind your text, fill the whole page, or feature in a single area. Just make sure they are relevant, help to convey who you are and what you offer and are not distracting.
It’s the job of the homepage to direct visitors, taking them down a path that will ultimately lead to your end goal. Bad navigation is the most common reason for a high bounce rate. Make it easy for your visitors with a clear menu at the top of your homepage and set out the links in an intuitive order.
Calls to action
These need to address the different paths you want different visitors to take. You might want to urge candidates to go to the candidate page or to travel straight to the page to register their CV. Clients might be taken to a dedicated clients page, or to the ‘contact us’ page. This is where your sitemap will shape your design. The calls to action on the homepage will be dictated by where you want to take visitors next and there should be 2-3 above the fold and more under it, in order of importance. Make them clear and easy to click on or tap.
Benefits to the visitor
Don’t just tell visitors what you do – they want to know why they should care. Very briefly explain to your visitors what you can do for them. Why should they stay on your website and find out more about you? What’s in it for them? How can you help them?
There’s nothing like word-of-mouth recommendations to instil trust in your visitors and keep them wanting more. A short quote with their name, company and photo gives your business credibility. If you have case studies or longer testimonials, create a separate page and link the brief testimonials on your homepage to it.
Interesting and relevant content not only gives you authority as an industry leader and an expert in your field, it provides visitors with another reason to stay on your website. Show previews of your most recent blogs at the bottom of your page and allow visitors to easily click on them to read more.
Your homepage should grab attention, encourage visitors to stay on your website and read more, instil trust, and provide clear navigation on the path you want them to take. Ultimately, you want conversions – potential clients to award their jobs to you and candidates to apply – and your homepage is the first step on that journey.