Rethinking Your About Page — What Is the Goal?
It’s true. Most business owners think they know what they need to do with their “about” page, but most fall way short of the mark.
Sometimes they include all of the usual insights — who they are, where they are located, what it is that they do.
Others don’t even go that far.
Personally, I often advocate skipping the “About Us” page altogether. In most cases you should be doing a good enough job of conveying who you are and what you do within the copywriting on your home page and additional pages on your website.
The important thing is that the information your customers want to know is readily available. Most of the information that would be included on your “About” page should already be woven into your sales pages, and if it isn’t — you might want to take a closer look at how effective your copy actually is.
Still, I find that many just find the inclusion of the “About” page a more comfortable route. They are used to looking for one themselves, and they want their customers to be able to find that information in the same way.
It’s not about you. It’s about them.
There should never be a page on your website that focuses on you. Not in terms of how things are worded, at least.
No matter what you believe or have been told, no one goes to your website looking to hear more about you.
They are going to your website to hear about what is in it for them.
Sure, you might be an excellent salesman. Maybe you’ve won dozens of awards and accolades within your industry. You might be considered at the top of your craft.
Good for you.
But, don’t tell them, show them. Why should they work with you? What can you do for their business, specifically?
Let’s take a look at two different opening sentences from the “About” pages of prominent companies.
Company 1: “We build products that help keep homes warm, all over the world.”
Company 2: “Our one goal is to help you make your home comfortable.”
Both companies sell the same product. Both opening sentences even sound solid. But the second is the more effective opening because it places the focus off of the company and their products, and solely focuses on what their customers get out of it.
Your “About” page shouldn’t be a monologue. It should be a conversation with your customers.
Like any landing page, any good “About” page should start with your USP, or unique value proposition. What are you providing to your customers? What is it that your products allow them to do. You don’t sell waffle irons. You sell products that allow your customers to make restaurant quality breakfasts from home.
Take a look at your “About” page now.
Where is your attention placed? Who are you writing your about page for?
Too often businesses use the page as an excuse to toot their own horn and list their accomplishments. That isn’t to say that you can’t mention those things. They do build credibility and trust. But, those facts should be interwoven into your copy that speaks directly to the customer.
Don’t be afraid to be different.
“About Us” pages are boring.
Think about it — how many of them do you think you have read in your entire life? I’ve read hundreds. Actually — probably thousands, and there are only a handful that I can actual recall reading. I might even chalk those instances up to being a copywriter and being impressed with the work.
But one way that you can catch the attention of your visitor’s is by standing out.
People navigate their way to your About Us page with certain expectations. They probably expect to see the usual inclusions — a picture of your headquarters, a small blurb about your company, maybe some pictures of your managers. The usual stuff.
But by giving them something that still answers their questions (Who are you? Why should I give you my money?), but in a radically different way, you can really catch the attention of your users.
Give them facts, not marketing drivel.
“We’ve provided innovative market solutions to garbage collection companies for 20 years.”
What does that even mean?
Instead, say something like;
“We’ve helped 372 trash collection companies increase their route times by 20% or more.”
Some of the best “About Us” pages that I’ve come across have taken everything most people think they know about what they page should say, and have flipped it on it’s head.
They don’t talk about themselves, they talk about the customer. They don’t put up a photo of themselves in their best professional suit — it’s a picture of them shirtless at the beach. They don’t tell you why you should work with them, they tell you what type of people shouldn’t work with them.
You’re company is unique. There is no other company in the world that is exactly like it. Why should your “About Us” page look like every other one that you come across?
Go ahead and skip the mission statement.
If the “mission” of your business isn’t apparent throughout your copy, you’re doing it wrong.
A mission statement might be a nice way to break the ice with potential investors, but it certainly isn’t going to be something that your visitors will be excited to read about.
If your company’s “mission” is to increase the profitability of businesses through email marketing — don’t just say that, put it on display.
Include testimonials from clients where you accomplished your mission. Because having a “mission” is great and all, but it means absolutely nothing if you aren’t able to actually execute that mission.
Your mission should be apparent in the work that you do. It isn’t something that needs to be spelled out in complete detail for every customer that visits your website.
Show a little personality.
When was the last time that you were PUMPED to call Comcast customer service? Or any customer service line for that matter?
Never, that’s when.
It’s important that you give your visitors every possible chance to form a personal connection with your company. A bunch of “run-of-the-mill” drivel on your “About Us” page isn’t doing anyone any favors.
Tell personal stories.
Talk about the results that you’ve got for clients.
Mention successes. Mention failures. Show growth.
Include pictures of your entire team. Don’t be afraid to show goofy pictures from the company Christmas party (although you should probably exclude any pictures of anyone that looks like they might have had a few too many).
Don’t just say that you are a unique group of people. Show it.
We get so caught up in putting our “best foot forward” that we often forget that most people just don’t care. They’ve heard it all. They don’t believe the webs that you’re spinning.
The best way to earn credibility with your audience is to prove it.
Call them to action.
This isn’t just a common mistake from “About Us” pages.
This extends to every single page on your website.
You should always, without fail, give your visitors direction. Even if that instruction is just to navigate to another page on your website, you always must call them to action.
It’s a concept that I constantly have to beat home with my clients. You can have a page with the greatest copy in the known world, but if you aren’t telling your audience what they need to do next then your losing a lot of potential leads in the process.
A prospective customer or client should reach the end of your About Page and never have to dedicate a single thought as to what their next move should be.
Click here to buy our product. Fill out this form to get free stuff and join my mailing list. Type in your website URL to get a free website audit.
Something. Get them to DO something.
Use real life interactions with clients to drive your About Page content.
Take a second to think about the interactions that you have had with clients in the past.
These might include times that you’ve spoken with customers on the phone, run into them at trade shows or showed up at their place of business to pitch your product or service to them.
What kind of questions were they asking?
What did they want to know?
What kind of misconceptions did they have about your product when you first spoke to them?
This is the information that your customers want to find on your About Page.
Stop guessing and split test.
The fact of the matter is that just like with landing pages — we never truly know what is working and what isn’t until we put it through the tribunal.
Split test your About Page. Get hard data about what is working and what isn’t working.
When you do have an About Page, most customers will take a peek at it before reaching out or buying your product.
Unlike straight sales pages, the better “About” may not be determined by the conversion rate. It certainly plays a big role, but I would also keep an eye on which About Page is keeping them on the website and encouraging them to scroll down and read further. We are just as concerned with their total engagement on the page as we are with ensuring that they then go on to buy a product from you.
Originally published at www.bozemanwriter.com.