WHAT DOES YOUR COMPANY DO AND OFFER? CAN YOU TELL FROM YOUR WEBSITE’S HOME PAGE?
Question: What does your company do and offer? Can you tell from your website’s home page?
I had been doing development work for a company for about a year when the CEO asked me in for a meeting, during which he asked me about their website and what I thought about it. Their call volume had been going down and he was concerned about the sales pipeline and keeping it in good shape. I thought it was interesting that he asked me about the website… as I was not part of the website team at that company yet.
I said I had one primary complaint about the website and it had to do with the home page.
I said “I cannot tell what your company does or offers to customers from looking at the home page”. It was literally that simple!
Not one line of text, not one picture, image, or graphic showed what the company did!
He laughed at the thought of this and asked me to bring up the website on my laptop… which I did. He then studied the home page and scrolled up and down and I asked him if he was a new visitor who just landed on this website… could he tell me what this company even does… and he laughed again briefly and within about 15 seconds he developed this very confused look on his face. He said “I can’t believe it… I have no idea what our company does from looking at this”. From that point forward, I was now tasked with fixing this problem, which I thought would take about 5 minutes to correct. I was wrong.
As I worked on this issue I discovered that no one at the company could even tell me what they did in 2-3 sentences. There was a lot of “Well, you know… we kind of do this and that” and a lot of general references to specific tasks and tools they offered involved in their service. It was amazing to me that this company (at that time) had been in business around 5 years and no one there could provide a mission statement or even tell me what they did in a brief way.
So, I quickly came up with a 2 sentence summary (or mission statement) that started with “Company X provides…” and asked if we could get this on the website as a good start. This resulted in a committee being formed and the “need to define what we do” became a huge mess. Literally, more than a month later the committee agreed that the original mission statement was as good as it could be and for me to get it on the home page!
Uggh, frustrating isn’t it?
At the time, I was in disbelief that this could happen… that a company, its CEO and managers, and employees would not be able to define what they did! But, I think this is more common than it sounds.
If you are a company owner, CEO, or other interested person at a company, I challenge you to go to your website and look at it with the eyes of a new visitor. Can you immediately tell what your company does? What it offers in terms of services and/or products? Would it be clear to a potential customer within 10-15 seconds exactly what you were offering and how to get it?
If not, it is very important to go through this exercise and straighten it out. If you need help with this exercise let me know… I have been through some of these before!