Go look at the bottom of your homepage. (That’s the first page of your website.)
Scroll to the bottom…
… and tell me what’s there.
- Maybe a lovely footer with links to all your different pages?
- Perhaps another opt-in form for your email list?
- Oo, or maybe you have a glowing testimonial from one of your fave clients?
Any and all of those are good answers.
Now, I want you to look again, and ask yourself…
Do you tell your reader what to do next?
And I mean, actually TELL THEM WHAT TO DO?
As in, “Find out more about My Story here.”
Or, “Curious about how I work with my clients? Take a look at my Services here.”
Or even, “New Here? Start Here.”
(This is called a Call to Action. You’re telling your visitor what action to take.)
Here’s the thing…
Your website visitors are going a million miles a minute.
They’re trying to figure out if they need to stick around on your site for some reason.
So the easier you make it for them stick around, the more likely they WILL stick around.
I see a lot of sites (bajillions of sites!) that hook the visitor in, get her reading all the way to the bottom of the page… and then just leave her hanging.
We assume that she’ll know to go back up to the navigation bar and click the “About” link.
But that’s making her work. It’s making her figure out what to do next, and then trying to find out how to do that next thing.
Which means she’s more likely to click away. Even if she loved what she’s read so far.
Tell her what to do next. Make it a highly visible link or button.
And then, on the bottom of your NEXT page, do it again. Tell her where to go next.
Maybe you get her all the way to the bottom of your Services page. She’s totally interested!
Don’t make the mistake of assuming she’ll just intuitively know she should go to your Contact page and fill out the form to let you know which of your 3 programs she’s interested in.
Instead, on the bottom of your Services page, tell her what to do + provide the WAY for her to do it, like a link or button. (Better yet, tell her how after each and every service or program you describe.)
Use your Calls to Action to guide your visitor through your site.
Just go ahead and assume any new visitor to your website is lost. And that every time they click through to a new page on your site, they get lost all over again.
This is your opportunity to decide:
What is the journey you want a visitor to have on your website?
After they’ve looked at your Homepage, which page do you think is the next best step in their journey of getting to know you?
I see a lot of sites that try to make people jump straight to their Services page, where they then try to sell a $500 session.
But unless that Services page is well-written and functions almost like a longform sales page – where you spend time connecting with your reader’s emotions, unpacking the problem you can help solve, giving them a bit of a preview of your approach or philosophy, and then really selling that offer (as in, making it sound a.ma.zing.) – then you’re probably turning off your visitor.
So consider sending them to your About page before you send them to your Services page.
The About page is the 2nd-most viewed page on most websites, anyway. So just help them along – and make sure your About page is doing some heavy lifting in terms of building the Know, Like, & Trust Factor.
(Hint: If all you have on your About page is your “official bio,” then it’s not building the Know, Like… and possibly not even the Trust Factor. Because people don’t read bios. Even if they try to read your bio, they’ll likely end up skimming it. So craft an About page that connects with your target market.)
Can you have more than 1 Call to Action per page?
Sure you can!
Just keep in mind – the more options you give someone, the less likely they are to take any of those options. (And the less likely they are to take the option that you’d really prefer for them to take.)
You’ll often see 3-4 “boxes” on a homepage that give the visitor options like:
- the About page
- the Services / Work with Me page
- the Blog
- some other page: Courses, Products, Events, Speaking, etc.
(Check out my article about the different webpages most business websites need here.)
That’s totally fine. Personally, I prefer to keep my visitor’s journey through my site more streamlined – like I’m taking them by the hand and saying, “Here, let’s go to this page next.”
But if you feel like you’ll have visitors who want to jump to specific pages, then putting these main options up front and center is great.
If you have multiple target markets, I recommend that you give them separate paths to take pretty early on.
Let’s say you coach entrepreneurs, but you also do corporate workshops, and you do private leadership coaching for corporate professionals.
Your Homepage should have enough copy to hook a new visitor in, give them an idea of what you do… and then split them off! Let your visitor choose which category they belong in, and send them to a page that is written specifically to them. (Instead of trying to write a long Homepage that speaks to all 3 target markets and gets all jumbled and confusing.)
But before you get overwhelmed by the options, just remember…
Go look at your webpages. Is there a clear Call to Action on the bottom of every page?
If no – go add them in!
If yes – do they send your visitor where you actually want them to go next?
It’s a super simple tweak.
But it can give your visitor the feeling that you’re taking care of her. That you’re taking her by the hand and showing her where to go next. That you’re not going to leave her hanging.
Which of YOUR website pages needs a Call to Action?