Growing up I would often go to my dad to help me with my math homework. As a former engineer turned doctor, my dad has an unbelievably in-depth knowledge of how math works… which was a problem.
In order to explain one single, basic Algebra problem to me, he would have to get out at least 5 textbooks, including an advanced Calculus book. This process would take hours.
I would get so frustrated because all I wanted was the answer to this ONE PROBLEM!
And here’s the thing: there’s a good chance that people who browse your website feel this exact same way.
All they want to know is if you can fix their one most pressing problem. That’s it!
If you require a browser of your website to use too much brainpower to answer their most basic questions, they’re going to look elsewhere.
When I work with a client, one-on-one or in my group coaching program, to wireframe their website, I always start with 3 basic components.
You could have the greatest sales page copy ever written, but if you’re missing the answers to these 3 questions, it doesn’t matter because very few browsers will ever see it.
And all three questions must be answered by the header of your website.
The header is the single most important element of your website. If you know anything about journalism you’ll know that what’s “above the fold” of the newspaper as it sits on the newspaper stand is the most important part of the paper.
If the headline and that lead image doesn’t grab the reader’s attention, the whole rest of the newspaper doesn’t matter, because no one will pick it up and read.
The same concept applies to the header of your website. The “above the fold” section is whatever is on the screen when they first pull up the site and before they start to scroll.
A good header has to pass what’s called “the grunt test,” a term coined by Donald Miller at Storybrand.
To pass the grunt test, a browser to your website needs to answer 3 questions within 5 seconds of landing on your website:
What do you offer?
How does it make my life better?
How do I get it?
Does your website have at least one button above the fold with a direct call to action? Maybe it says “buy now” if they can buy online or “schedule a call” if you want to have a fitting call before purchasing. But whatever action you want your customer to take, you need a clear and prominent button above the fold.
And when it comes to the words on your header: don’t be cute. It doesn’t need to rhyme or have an alliteration. Clear will beat out cute or clever any day of the week.
And the simplest way to write a compelling header is to draw directly from your business’ one-liner.
A one-liner says who your business serves and how you serve them in one simple, concise sentence.
If it takes you 10 minutes to explain what you do, then odds are you also have a website that isn’t converting browsers into buyers. The two go hand in hand.
If you head to www.ashleyvogler.com/one-liner, you can download my free one-liner worksheet.
Lastly, I’m currently helping my students wireframe their websites in my group coaching program: The Secret Sauce Society.
In the program I walk my students step-by-step through the foundations of email marketing so that they can build out automated email funnels that will grow their business while freeing up their time to focus their attention on the work they love.
And one of the foundational pieces that has to be in place to do this effectively is having an effective website.
Head to www.ashleyvogler.com/secretsaucesocietyinfo to learn more about the program.
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