I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, you have only a few seconds to grab your website visitors attention before they leave and and look elsewhere. During this time they’ll look at the web page for visual clues that this website is going to give them what they need. One of the best visual clues you can give is a well written headline to grab their attention and generate interest.
Your headline is powerful and because of this should be given some time and consideration. When I’m writing blogs I don’t usually put a huge amount of effort into the title (which subsequently becomes the headline), I spend a bit more time when I’m writing an article for wider distribution and I tend to agonise over headlines when its being incorporated into a web design.
Given the subject I did a couple of different versions of the headline for this article. What do you think?
Incorporating Visual Clues into your Web Design
This first ‘web design’ impression is so important that, although it’s a bit off message, it’s well worth a two minute re-cap. By ‘visual clues’ I’m talking about anything you can see gives a visual indication of what the page is about.
So if its a page about making meatloaf, then a nice picture of a completed meatloaf above the fold would help. This could (or should?) be accompanied by a text rich headline. In this case it could be anything as simple as ‘Meatloaf Recipe’
Power Up Your Website’s Headlines
My ‘Meatloaf Recipe’ headline would give you the right idea, namely telling your visitor that they’re on a web page that contains a meatloaf recipe, but would it grab the readers attention? Would it build any genuine desire to find out more.
How about, ‘Five Simple Steps to the Tastiest Meatloaf’ or ‘Quick and Simple Meatloaf Recipe’. This headline, in tandem with your main image, would give the visitor a clear idea of what the page is about. Now assuming that the image is of a lovely tasty meatloaf, then they are going to be almost able to taste it.
Use powerful descriptive language so that the reader can visualise what the web page is about from the headline. Build a mental picture that draws them in, use descriptive words in all of your headlines.
You’ve now grabbed their attention and a genuine desire to find out more about your great meatloaf recipe (or about your fab range of bathroom suites or even web design or whatever service and products that you sell)
I’m sure you could come up with some even better headlines for your website than the ones I’ve come up with and this is an exercise that could vastly improve your web site effectiveness and conversion.
I would whole heartily recommend that you take ten minutes per page and consider if your headline is really doing the job you want it to.
Don’t Compromise Your Web Design for the SEO Consultant
Your headline will typically be placed inside ‘header tags’ and because important information goes into your header tags then Google also places a high value on what goes into your header tags. For this reason your Search engine optimisation consultant will have some specific ideas about what he wants in there.
If it isn’t going to sell, then resist them.
It’s their job to get you up the Google Rankings. It’s your job to sell the product once they land on your web page.
There are tips and tricks (white hat techniques that Google is happy with) that you can employ on the web page to make everyone happy, but that’s another topic for another day. The important thing in this sidebar is that your headline is one of your key weapons to increase dwell time on them page and to then convert that visitor into a customer (and subsequently into profits)
Fulfilling the Promise of the Headline
Once you’ve written your headline then you have to make sure that the rest of the web page lives up the fantastic headline your written.
You’ve worked hard to grab their attention and now they’re interested in what you have to say, so make sure that it gets said in a style that matches the headline.
Although I really don’t think that I’ve done this myself yet in this article, I’m at my own self imposed word count and will continue in a part two, which I’ll publish over the weekend.
Until then, budding web designers, be creative with your headlines.
Web Design in Stafford
Phil Brassington is a director at Rake Mark Solutions a company that provides web design in Stafford.
He graduated from Staffordshire University with a first class honors degree in Computing Science, the first member of his family to graduate university. He lives in Stafford with his wife, three kids and a rabbit named Flopsy. Rake Mark Web Design have been providing web design across Staffordshire for over five years.
thanks , it is really interesting ,