This piece of real estate is everything for your business in today’s world online. It’s how you articulate who you are, what you have to offer and how it can benefit the lives of your visitor.. all within about 10 words or less!
An effective headline has the power to grasp attention and influence someone’s behavior.
The behavior you would like to influence is for someone to take an action toward your number 1 business goal. That may be different for some businesses, but ultimately it’s to become a customer of yours.
So, how then do people make decisions that are outside of their normal behavior, such as to sign up for more information, pick up the phone and call or even pull out a credit card and buy?
Very simply, people make decisions because of the words that are used to influence their next action. Plain and simple. What you say and how you say it matters.
How you articulate what you have to offer, how you describe your products and services, how you present your business.. the way you tell your story. All of it matters and all of it needs to be articulated in about 1 sentence.
This is the power and the unique challenge of crafting a perfect headline.
We’re really going to focus on how to clarify your message and sharpen the words that you use through each of the following tips in this guide here. Each of these key elements as found in this guide are incredibly simple adjustments which truly don’t require a lot of work. However, if done properly, each key element will make all the difference for you and the future of your business.
The headline of your website should be strategically placed on your website’s home page. It should be placed in an area of your website that is known as the hero area or the area that dominates the computer screen or mobile phone right when someone lands on your homepage.
This hero area is located in a space that appears “above the fold.” In other words, the area of your site that is visible to your visitor without needing to scroll down.
Now crafting your message is the single-most important thing to be sure to get absolutely right as it sets the tone as your first impression with your new visitors.
After all, when someone lands on your website, you have no more than 7 seconds of any single visitor’s attention before they mentally opt-out and possibly leave to never come back. So you have to make this opportunity count. You have to make this header text area matter as it is your only shot at holding the attention of new visitors.
The key here is three-fold. You need to be clear, you need to be concise and you need to communicate value.
1. Be clear
You need to be 100% clear about what your business is and what you offer. You cannot be vague here. It’s in this real estate that you can’t afford to say generalized words or vague statements that just about anyone else could also say.
- If you’re a lawn mowing company, you wouldn’t say, “We cut everything fresh”
- If you’re a board game company, you wouldn’t say, “Fun for the whole family”
- If you’re a surfboard rental company, you wouldn’t say, “We epically shred every day”
Rather, you need to clearly communicate who you are and what you have to offer. Don’t get clever or fancy with this area because if you do, you’re essentially asking your visitor to think. And that’s a no-no in today’s world online. You need to spell everything out for them and make it brain-dead simple.
2. Be concise
You need to communicate all of this in about 10 words or less. All of it, all of it in about 10 words or less. It should ideally be one sentence. Saying too much will cause confusion as your new visitor must consume the new information, but also process it in their minds in order to make sense of it.
So think of it this way. If we have 7 seconds to make our first impression and hold their attention, to communicate what we offer, our visitor must be able to physically read our headline in 4 seconds.
That will leave them 3 seconds to process in their mind what they’ve just read. If they can’t even get through reading your headline in the first 4 seconds, you’ve already lost.
Set a stop-watch on your phone and try timing how long it takes to read through your current headline. Hit start on your stopwatch, start reading your headline and hit stop once you’ve finished. Seriously, get out a stopwatch and try this now. Don’t read fast, just read out loud at a normal pace.
If it takes you more than 4 seconds to read through your headline, you need to condense it down. Try to get this to about 10 words or less and at about 4 seconds of reading time.
Now, yes you can have a sub-headline with additional text in a smaller font size, but your main headline should dominate the hero area and be able to be read in 4 seconds or less.
3. Communicate Value
In the header, you need to not only clearly state who you are and what you offer, but you need to also focus on what’s “in it” for your visitor. What is it that your prospective customer will receive that will help them overcome their challenge and achieve their desired end result? What sort of benefit will your customer have as a result of doing business with you?
A simple way you can put this into words is to list what you have to offer, then at the end of this phrase fill in the following blank.. “So you can _________.”
Here is what we offer, so you can x, y and z.
For example, this was a huge shift that even one of the largest worldwide banking corporations had made in their messaging strategy.
JP Morgan Chase Bank had made a messaging shift away from “Chase What Matters” to their “So You Can” campaign.
Claire Huang, JPMorgan Chase’s first chief marketing officer, shared that the intent of this messaging is to focus on products that simplify lives. “Chase is trying to be faster, simpler, smarter, so you can live your everyday life.”
So essentially you can structure your messaging in this formula: We do X so you can Y and Z.
Here’s an example.
“We teach how to make a profitable website so you can make more money and spend more time doing what you love.”
So for your audience member, you essentially need to communicate 2 things in your header.
- What do you do?
- What do you offer that will make my life better?
With these two pieces both communicated in ~10 words or less, you’re onto something great!
So we’ve just walked through 3 key elements to crafting a perfect headline, which will describe who you are, what you have to offer and how you can benefit the lives of your prospective customers.
This is just 1 of 7 key elements that can be quickly adjusted on your website’s homepage that will establish some quick and early wins for your business as you continue to optimize your site for success.
Even if you implemented just 1 of the 7, you will start to see growth in your business.
This is really just the beginning. Sure you can make more sales infusing even this one key element into your site, however you will not see 10 times growth in your business. This one key element alone can’t take you from a 5 figure business to a 6 figure business. From a 6 to a 7 figure business, etc.
If you want to experience real exponential growth in your business, you need to do two things.
1. The 7 Key Elements
The first thing you’ll need to do is incorporate the remaining six key elements into your website.
We have the remaining key elements exactly detailed in a special guide and it’s all laid out here for you.
2. The WTC System
The second thing you’ll need to do is be guided through our WTC System.
Our WTC System is an online course that walks you through the processes of setting up a special system for success and we guide you through each module step-by-step.
We hold you by the hand and walk you through this process so you can be assured you’ve set everything up properly, equipping you and your business for success.
You’ve just got to unlock the remaining 6 key elements for success and also get access to the WTC System. We know you’re going to love it!
It all starts now. Get ready for an amazing ride!