18 Homepage Design Guidelines
Use these 18 Homepage Design recommendations to increase revenue and conversion rate of your store
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#1: Do you have visually simple, not overloaded homepage?
The more complex design of a homepage, the more efforts it requires to process all the information on it. Bombard your shoppers with overloaded design and they will bounce from a website. So keep your homepage design as minimal as possible. Get rid of unnecessary images, texts, elements. Use a lot of white-space.
#2: Do you put the most important things on the top of homepage?
The most valuable part of homepage is the top section above the fold. That's why the most important information should be placed there as it will get the most attention. If you want to promote any sitewide offer, place it on the top of homepage. If you want to promote best selling products or categories, put it there. And so on.
#3: Do you follow visual hierarchy on the homepage (especially on the top part)?
The right visual hierarchy makes page design simple and straightforward for shoppers. But the most important thing is that it allows directing users to where you need to. If you want to get attention to certain elements (CTA-button, value proposition, offer, product, etc), make it big, use contrasting colors and a lot of white-space around it.
#4: Do you show unique value proposition prominently on the top of homepage?
Your value proposition is the main element of your marketing messaging. So you should communicate it right above the fold on homepage. It helps to differentiate your business from competitors. It tells shoppers why they should buy from you. That's why it's critical to prioritize that content on homepage. Display it prominently so everyone will notice it.
#5: Do you have one prominent CTA-button on the top of homepage?
The primary goal of a homepage is to make a visitor to get into a shopping mode. Prominent CTA-button plays significant role in this. It should visually stand out among other elements, so users will pay attention to it and will start shopping. Place CTA-button above the fold, make it big enough, use a contrasting color compared with background and elements around it, add enough a lot of white-space around it.
#6: Do you use relevant copy of CTA-button?
If you have a "Buy Now" or "Order Now" CTA-button on Homepage, shoppers can feel pressure or that you're trying to trick them into buying something. Such copy is not relevant for the 1st step of the sales funnel. So use more relevant copy like "Shop Now", "Start shopping", "Learn more" for CTA-buttons on homepage.
#7: Do you have prominent navigation menu to guide users to the next step of the funnel?
Navigation i's a critical element of any ecommerce store, especially for visitors that come to a homepage. Good and prominent navigation helps shoppers to get into shopping mode or to reach other pages quickly and easily. So make sure that it's prominent, not overloaded, contains relevant links, sticky to the top, categories and subcategories are descriptive and easy to follow.
#8: Do you feature best products and categories higher on the homepage?
When shoppers land on a homepage, they may be confused by the number of possible options. Featuring products and categories throughout your homepage gives customers an idea of what to buy. You essentially help them make a purchase decision. It makes sense to feature best selling products, the most popular categories, new arrivals, etc.
#9: Do you highlight any deals and special offers?
The faster you drive visitors into a shopping mode, the easier it will be to convert them into customers. Highlighting special deals, current promotion, bundles and discounts can lure shoppers and encourage them to buy something. That's why you should have dedicated sections for that, it should be eye-catching and have clear CTAs.
#10: Do you show recently viewed items section for returning users?
This is very useful section for shoppers that already visited your website and browsed any products. For such returning visitors it will be very good starting point for shopping. Also it will help to personalize your homepage. But, of course, this applies only to those shops with a large number of returning visitors
#11: Do you have a section highlighting the main benefits of shopping from you?
When shoppers know that you offer good shipping conditions, convenient return and refund policies, fast customer support and other similar things, they will know that it's safe to buy here, it will remove all fears and concerns. Therefore, you need to have dedicated section highlighting all that stuff on the homepage (and site-wide too, you should always remind about it)
#12: Do you have enticing and high quality images (for products, categories, etc)?
Homepage is the first touchpoint with your company for many shoppers, so it's important make a good impression here. Bad quality of images can have negative impact on it, communicate that you are not a respectable company and selling low-quality products. While enticing and high-quality images create a pleasant first impression, attract users and influence the attitude to your company and products. So invest time and money it!
#13: Do you show any social proof?
Social proof plays so signfiicant role in decision-making right now. Shoppers carefully read reviews on the store, visit external websites with independent reviews, follow influencers, etc. They heavily rely on social proof. So it's critical to start showing such elements on homepage. It can be overall reviews, awards, certifications, logos of well-known media, etc.
#14: Do you showcase different product categories?
If you display just a few featured products on the homepage, shoppers may suggest that the scope of products in your store is very limited. To avoid this, you need to showcase other product categories (at least the more popular). It will help to communicate that they can buy many different products, hence can impact on conversions and average order value.
#15: Do you use product images to showcase categories?
Product categories showcase the type of products that you are selling. That's why it's important to have them on the homepage. But more importantly is to represent them using enticing photography and graphics. If you have just text names of categories it will be much less enticing compared with category images.
#16: Do you have prominent search bar? (relevant for stores with a lot of products)
Some buyers come to your site with a clear understanding of what they need and they are prone to use search bar to find the right product faster. That's why prominent search bar will be very handy for them and greatly simplify their purchasing process. It's also known that users who use search tend to convert better.
#17: Does your homepage looks good on Mobile devices?
Mobile traffic is expected to account for ~70% of e-commerce sales by 2021. This is the mobile-first era. So double-check your homepage from small and big mobile devices (it's often buggy or looks unprofessional). Take attention to the size of copy, placement of elements, visual hierarchy. In general, when working on your homepage, prioritize mobile UX over desktop and tablets.
#18: Do you have any scarcity and urgency triggers? (relevant for stores with time-bound offers)
Exclusivity, limited products and time-bound offers stimulate shoppers to act fast, and not put it off for later. Homepage is a good place to set such expectations that will motivate users to go faster down the funnel. So if you have any limited or exclusive offers, highlight them prominently on homepage. Shoppers should understand they can miss it, so it will stimulate Fear Of Missing Out (FOMO) feeling.
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Your homepage design is the introduction of your brand. It's the starting point for many users and it should navigate them to find what they need.

If you fail here, it will be hard to persuade users to shop from you.

That's why you should focus your optimization efforts on homepage design.
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