A submenu, ideally leading to just two pages:
Ideally with some links to stories. Ruthlessly cut your text here and, when you’ve done that, do it some more. Why?
– you will inevitably start using (or need to use) specialist language, which will reduce the reader’s comprehension and willingness to stay with it. Show you recognise this by being brief
– the website isn’t about this (in my model). It’s about how you can help the visitor, and this informati0n doesn’t help the visitor because
(a) they don’t really know what the problem is—they need to discuss it with you—and
(b) they are not capable of deciding if your services meet their needs. Not an insult: how could they with limited information which isn’t relevant to that decision?
– you don’t want to have them decide based on what they pick up from the website (as above). You want them to decide to have a conversation with you.
You not even need this (I don’t have it). People will get the message that it works from the stories. And they will get the message in a stronger, more compelling and longer-lasting way from the stories.
In fact, you don’t really need this submenu at all, but most visitors will expect it and may be discomfited if they don’t find it.
Ultimately, the point is, paradoxically, not to describe what you do and why it works—as if you were providing academic material for someone about to take a rigorous examination in the subject. The point is to say enough to pique the interest. To get the reader to think, “This might be useful to me, I must find out more”. Cue picking up the phone.
This should be light and brief, but can contain anything you like. I have found it very useful to have a submenu along the lines of
Blogs are very important. They demonstrate that you are a human being. Blogs about “sign up now, only two places left” tell the reader that you’re more interested in selling your services than you are in them, and they will form their own conclusions. If you believe you can’t right, get some professional guidance.
On the other hand, if they are proper articles, dignify them with that term. The term blog verges on the pejorative. On my site I differentiate between blogs (my unmediated polemical prejudices about all and sundry) and “resources” which are intended to be neutral and helpful.
One page per blog/resource.
Stories are the most important component of your site (though a phone number is very helpful) and yet they are the content which most business websites lack completely. If nothing else, a few stories will differentiate you form the pack.
But stories are the best way of helping the client recognise that you know what you are talking about (assuming you do). There’s plenty on this site to explain how to tell stotries effectively. Make a fuss of your stories. Although they will be linked to resources and blogs, make a submenu for them.
One page per story. Little or nothing else on the page.
One page which provides a form for contacting you and a form for signing up to the newsletter.
1 In the UK. You must have the legal stuff (registered office address, company number and VAT number, etc.)
2 Many business websites display blogs and other text content badly. If you want to publish an article, look at how national newspapers, in any country, do it and do the same. The Guardian website offers a fine example (in my view, the best I’ve seen):
3 Remember that what you personally think is the best for the website is irrelevant. It is about what the hoped-for visitor finds the most useful. Just as you expect your prospects to seek out your professional services, seek out the services of people who know about graphic design and user experience. Bear in mind that website developers do not automatically know anything about graphic design, and most don’t.
by Jeremy Marchant . © Jeremy Marchant Limited . uploaded 21 june 2015 . image: Free images.