I see you, sitting at your desk with Google Docs open, plugging away at your website. It’s time for a rebrand. And you’re just not sure how to write a homepage headline that converts.
The first thing that’s making you fall into the trap of fear and self-doubt is your homepage, the dreaded moment when you have to convey who you are and what you do.
Sometimes, the hardest thing is getting started.
It’s hard not to sweat this one, especially when a not-so-stellar homepage headline can drive away your ideal clients. If you don’t help them understand why you’re the one in that headline, you might just be scaring away the very people you want to help.
Totally stuck and ready to do something about it?
Then let’s talk about how to write a homepage headline!
THE WHY BEHIND HOMEPAGE HEADLINES
Whatever you do, don’t smack a quick headline on your homepage and call it a day. You definitely don’t want to type in the first thing that pops into your head. Chances are, that’s not the headline that’s really going pull its weight in drawing in your ideal client.
You have to construct a headline centered in purpose. And a great place to start is with your why. What makes you passionate about your work? How can you convey that without using the word “passionate”? Learning how to write a homepage headline starts here.
BEHIND THE SCENES
To help you out with this, I’ll use my homepage hero as an example.
If you navigate over to my homepage, you’ll see that my tagline is “helping creative brands find genuine words.” I’ll be the first to tell you this definitely wasn’t the first line I thought of.
What I wanted to convey here was the word “creative” because that describes my ideal clients! But “genuine” works because it conveys a value of my clients and readers alike— although they want to make a sale, they definitely don’t want to sound sales-y and icky.
What you’ll notice below this headline is a smaller section where I explain my specialty as a copywriter for creative entrepreneurs. This lets people entering through the homepage know what type of writing I do. In mine, I made the part explaining my specialty an H2 headline for SEO purposes even though the font is smaller.
If you’re a documentary-style photographer who wants to find leads in your city, this would be a good place to inject some SEO. This will help you get found on search engines and let your clients know that you’re the one!
Pro tip: get out a notebook or legal pad (mine are pink!) and write out as many headlines as you can think of. Don’t stop until you’ve written at least 10. Even if you think they are the worst headlines in the world, don’t stop writing!
This is a great way to generate must-have keywords that convey what your business is about meaningfully. That’s how I came up with mine!
STRUCTURES YOU CAN USE TO WRITE YOUR HEADLINE
If you’re stuck with no clue how to even structure the keywords and headline, using a formula may help. Formulas have a reputation for being tired or boring, but they’re really just structures that help us write. Plus, they’re proven to work!
Sometimes they’re just what your ideal client expects to see, and the perfect way to convey what you do. Communicating what you do through headline strategies proven to work can rock your world!
I help [ideal client] [achieve specific goal] by [list or one-liner about what you do].
You may already be familiar with Davey and Krista, the incredible husband-wife creative biz and photography experts (who also have lots of helpful resources about SEO for creatives!). Their homepage headline is totally on-point. Not only does it pose a relevant, on-brand question to their ideal clients, but it also includes a statement about who they are and who they serve. They wrap it all up with a neat CTA to interest readers!
Although lots of creative entrepreneurs have a homepage statement starting with “I help”, this one feels fresh.
It’s also a great headline that you can use across your social media to share what you do!
Start With [-ing]
[-ing Word] [ideal client] [verb] [noun]
Ooookay. Is it just me or does that look way to grammar-heavy? This one looks tricky, but it’s not that intimidating.
If you look back at my headline “Helping creative brands find genuine words,” the pieces are all there!
CTA for Your Product/Service
Designer Nesha Woolery uses this to great effect on her homepage.
Instead of stating where she’s located or who she helps, Nesha has a must-have offering as the first thing you see on her homepage. Instead of emulating a headline formula, this homepage hero is more of a personality-driven call-to-action. Although this isn’t the traditional way to learn how to write a homepage headline, sometimes a CTA is exactly what you need, especially if you’re known in your niche.
Ask a Question
Holly over at A Branch of Holly takes a similar approach to Davey and Krista by asking a client-geared question right on the homepage. It’s a question that appeals directly to her clients’ problems. She reassures them that she can solve the problem by stating that they will get it all done together!
My name is Ashley, and I’m here to help…
On the site itself, you’ll see that Ashley used some awesome code to make the banner change and retype itself every few seconds.
Why it works: Since Ashley is a coach, speaker, and teacher, a nametag-style introduction presents her fun, vivacious personality so you get to know her (not her services) first. You’ll benefit from this style of introduction if you have many facets of your business driven by your name and personality.
WHERE TO GET HEADLINE INSPIRATION
Totally lost for words? Start with testimonials. What do past clients have to say about your work? How do they describe what you did for them?
If you’re active on Instagram, take a look at your past posts. How have you described what you did in the past? What did you like/dislike about the words you said?
Use your past writings and social media as a starting point!
Although it might seem intimidating, learning how to write a homepage headline doesn’t have to be hard. With proven formulas, it’s totally possible to have a headline that really works!