As your homepage is such a vital part of your business' image, you need to think long and hard about how to structure it for maximum effect.
It's no use just focusing on the look of the homepage; you don't want it to be all style and no substance. You need to think about its function and how you are going to clearly show visitors who you are and what you do, as well as how to encourage them to delve deeper into your site.
It's not an easy task, but there are many organizations that do an excellent job of immediately drawing visitors in with their homepages. Here are ten of the best, along with the lessons you can learn from them in order to better design your own site.
Straight away this homepage tells you what you need to know in an interesting way. The heading of "Where to? Start your next adventure on Airbnb" entices the reader in, and there's a search bar to input where you want to go and how long you want to stay. Even if you'd never heard of the site before, you would still know exactly what this homepage was offering and find it easy to use.
While Dropbox's consumer homepage is also impressive, the business site is the perfect example of using subtle visuals, blank space and a direct message to great effect. The simple imagery and clean design tells you everything you need to know, emphasizing working together and collaboration.
As you might expect from a clothing manufacturer, the products are the star of this homepage. The minimalist design helps to combine text and images to immediately attract you to their products, and they do a great job of catering to all audiences without making the page too cluttered.
The watchmaker's products are all about personality and it is here the homepage shines. You are immediately greeted by a slideshow of a few elegant, quirky and interesting watches, all in different styles. The message is that there's something for everyone, and that doesn't mean producing bland, one-size-fits-all creations.
The UK smoothie manufacturer has such an endearing site that it's hard not to get sucked in. They are masters of using language to immediately hook an audience. You want to click on the "bored?" or "compliment generator" links on the navigation bar, while vibrant images with captions like "laugh in the face of winter" tell you straight away what to expect from their products.
The first thing you see on this website is a clear mission statement surrounded by a bright image with subtle animation. The whole thing does an excellent job of making it clear what the site represents in an emotive way that isn’t cheesy.
When using video on a homepage, it's easy to get too specific and try to show off all of your business offerings at once. However, Big Cartel shows how much more effective it is to present a single message with video. The combination of still images and beautifully shot short clips, all emblazoned with "We Believe in The Artist" makes it clear what the site is about and makes it visually appealing.
The interactivity on display with this page is phenomenal. The 'Will Beats Noise' campaign focused around the fact that many women face criticism online, but encourages them to feel good about having the will to do their thing anyway. It is informative, eye-opening and a stunning piece of web design.
How can you get someone into your music? One way is to let them have a play around with it, as you can do with this nifty little app from Madeon. Its simple design sucks in users and lets them immerse themselves in the site, serving as an excellent example of how to use interactivity.
Finally, this site was the winner of the 2016 Webby People's Voice award for best user interface, and it's easy to see why. The simple but effective color scheme and the intuitive interactivity work in tandem to produce an excellent site.