If you own a website, you should be asking yourself right now, “Is my homepage engaging?”
Take a good, long look at your homepage. If for one second you start to get bored, or doubt its overall captivation, you should think about adding a video.
Considering that you own your website, you probably have a favorable bias towards the overall captivating qualities of your website. If this is the case, turning to your user’s behavior metrics can be useful for an unbiased look at just how interesting your homepage really is.
So, Is Your Homepage Engaging?
As website owners, business owners, and digital marketers, we can’t read into the minds of our consumers, but you can look at their behaviors. Here’s a few metrics that will let you know if your homepage is as engaging as you think it is.
Bounce rate measures the percentage of people who visit a page on your website and leave without viewing any other pages on your site. So a bounce rate of 20% means that only 20/100 people left your site without navigating to another page.
Bounce rate is one of the main metrics to analyze when determining:
- Your homepage relevancy.
- How usable your homepage is to users.
- If your homepage is captivating.
This is why you need to focus on improving all three. But for this blog’s specific purposes, we’re assuming you have the first two down already.
Having a high bounce rate can mean a lot of different things in terms of overall user experience, but it mostly means your site isn’t worth staying on for users. This is where a homepage video containing valuable content can help drive your bounce rates down.
To learn more about bounce rates, check out this video Google posted in 2007. It’s an old video, but it encapsulates just how important this metric is for your website.
Average Time on Page
Knowing exactly how long users are spending on your homepage can be a great indicator to how engaging your homepage is. Generally, the longer your average time on a page is, the more engaging the page is for users.
We’ve seen homepages with an average time on page of anywhere from 5 seconds to 15 seconds, which is generally considered low. After adding a video, average time on a page can skyrocket to 3 minutes or more because the user is sitting on the page, watching the video.
Possibly one of the most important metrics to gauge the engagement of your homepage is through behavior flow in Google Analytics. This shows you the flow and the behaviors of your users as they navigate through your website.
You can see which pages users are visiting within your website after they view your homepage, which can be a great indicator of how relevant your homepage is to the rest of your site.
If your homepage is leading to product or service pages, and those users are converting, you know your user funnel (or customer journey) is working, and your homepage is at the top of that funnel.
So, Your Homepage Isn’t Engaging Enough. What Now?
After taking a good look at your homepage content, reviewing your user behavior metrics, and determining that you need a more engaging homepage, what do you do now?
It’s probably time to make a video!
A video on your homepage can be a powerful way to engage visitors to your website. By capturing their attention and drawing them in, you can communicate the purpose of your website and its key offerings in a concise and compelling manner.
Here are 7 critical elements of an engaging homepage video that will give your users a more engaging homepage experience.
Keep Your Video Dead Center, Right in Your Users Face
With any type of content, keeping it buried or off to the side will make it less enticing to click on. The same goes for a homepage video. Users will think a video is less important if it’s not the centerpiece of your page.
In many cases, you can place your video in the center of your homepage. This goes for specific landing pages especially.
There will be times that placing a video in the center of your homepage is just not going to work. Perhaps you have a strong call to action in the center of your homepage or a strong headline with supporting text.
In these instances, placing a call to action button to “Watch Our Video” (or any verbiage you decide to use) is a great strategy, in which a user can click the button and the video will open up in a pop up (lightbox) to view.
Create an Eyecatching Thumbnail
When your video is displayed on your homepage, the thumbnail is the main picture on your video that displays by default. Your thumbnail needs to not only be interesting and relevant to the video, but it should also look great on your homepage!
When choosing a thumbnail, you can take a frame from the most exciting or colorful part of your video, or, you can decide to make your own custom thumbnail.
Whichever option you choose, make sure your thumbnail matches the look and feel of your homepage so the video fits in nicely.
Offering Value Right Away
Nobody wants to watch a 3 minute advertisement that goes over the boring parts of your business.
You need to highlight the best parts of your business right away in terms of what’s in it for them. Get straight to the point by describing what your business is and how exactly it can help your potential consumer.
Tell them something they don’t know about your industry, or something special about your business specifically. People enjoy learning more than you’d think.
If you can teach your user an engaging fact about your business, your industry, or about something related to your company, you’re well on your way to a successful video.
Keep It Short And Sweet
Depending on your industry, a long video could be a bad idea because people aren’t always ready for a 5+ minute commitment.
Remember your goal here. You want to move your customer from your homepage to more important, converting pages such as a product or service page. If you keep your potential consumer held up with a long video, you could be missing out on a conversion.
There are special cases at times when it comes to video length. Sometimes, a longer video is needed depending on the subject. If you can offer valuable content for 10+ minutes that is engaging the entire way through, by all means do so.
But, if your industry has low click-through rates generally, the inability to offer value upfront, or an audience with a short attention span, keep your video between 1 to 4 minutes long. You should be able to fit in everything you need to say about your business and offering in that time frame.
Creativity And Production Value
This one should be a no-brainer when it comes to any type of content creation, but it is something I need to emphasize here - your video needs an engaging creative element to it - meaning, creativity is important!
Having a creative team to help with your video production can make the creative process much easier.
A standard video with decent production value can cost you thousands of dollars to produce, so be sure you have the funds to be able to afford a production quality video.
If you have a smaller business or a business you run as a sole proprietor, a modern smartphone and a couple hours of video editing can get the job done too.
Did you know the iPhone X has the ability to shoot in 4K at 60FPS? You can shoot some serious quality videos just by changing a setting in your iPhone.
Whether you spend thousands of dollars on a production team that can deliver a high quality video, or you spend under $100 and do it yourself with a smartphone, there’s always room to be creative and unique.
Convincing CTA (call-to-action)
Even the most engaging videos need a call-to-action.
There’s no point in spending time, money, and effort on a video if you don’t prompt your audience to take action.
Make your CTA powerful and unique.
By the time your video is over, in an ideal world, your audience should be head over heels for your product or service.
But if they’re not, a strong and convincing CTA can guide them to the next steps in their journey through your website.
There are several ways you can implement a CTA with your video. A clear choice would be at the end of your video in the last 10-15 seconds. Additionally, you also need to place your CTA preferably under the video as a clickable button to take the user to the next action.
After your video ends is the most crucial time period for getting users to take action on your CTA buttons.
For your CTA buttons, make sure they pop on the screen. The color of your buttons should directly contrast the colors of the rest of the page so that it is clear for the user on where to click through.
As for the copy in your CTA buttons, “Learn More” and “Sign Up” are generic phrases.
Don’t be afraid to get more creative. Depending on the type of content you’re selling or showing, you could choose to use phrases such as “I Want My Checklist Now” or “Book My Appointment”.
Our Favorite Homepage Videos
Now that we’ve gone over the crucial elements of an engaging homepage video, let’s review some great examples.
Each example uses a unique design for their page that includes a certain form of video, whether it be a link to a YouTube video, or an embedded video.
The Beard Club
Rival to Dollar Shave Club, The Beard Club offers a monthly subscription of beard products for men.
Upon opening the home page, you’re greeted with “Be A Man, Join The Club” and an embedded YouTube video with an enticing thumbnail of a bearded man holding an axe.
Surrounding the video is a wooden frame, adding to the “hearty” personality of the rest of the site’s design.
The video itself is funny, creative, and instantly describes the features and benefits of joining the beard club.
Aside from the hilarious video, you are prompted to continue on and start up your subscription with the white/red contrasted “Start Here” button.
While bearded men could find hundreds of beard products elsewhere, the overall vibe and design of the video and homepage make it very convincing to join the beard club.
Snow: The Game
This website offers the only free-to-play, open world snowboarding game. Right away on their homepage, they list an amazing feature of their product, which makes clicking on the video more enticing.
The thumbnail of the video contrasts the backdrop of the page as well in terms of colors used.
As for the video content, the video shows gameplay of all the different types of things you can do in the game. At the end of the video, it shows you exactly where you can buy the game.
The “Play Now” CTA button just below gives you the opportunity to buy the game in one of two places, and makes it easy to send users through the funnel.
If you weren’t already convinced through the video, the rest of their page is a dynamic background that lists the other features of the game in a very engaging way.
GoPro cameras give the consumer the ability to record high quality footage wherever they go, so it’s no surprise their homepage video embodies that philosophy.
Naturally, GoPro is going to dominate when it comes to producing a high quality video for their homepage, but it’s not just the video itself that they got right.
It’s the way the video is implemented into the page.
Snippets of the video plays in the background, while describing how GoPro cameras can get you more views on your YouTube videos.
If the consumer is interested in seeing more video, an enticing play button is there to watch the entire YouTube video that is embedded on the page.
After watching, users are more informed with what their latest product is and how it can specifically benefit their video creation.
By this point, the user should be ready to click the CTA, or scroll through the rest of the interactive home page that describes more features and benefits of their products.
The CTA button is cyan, which directly contrasts the background. With CTA text saying “Get Yours”, it personalizes the offer and makes it easy for the user to move through the consumer journey.
Record, Edit, And Embed Your Homepage Video Today
Hopefully, after learning the different elements of a homepage video, and seeing some of our favorite examples, you know whether or not you need to implement a homepage video.
Creating a beautiful homepage video can be challenging, and it’s going to take more time and effort than a homepage without a video, but it can really pay off.
So, be creative, have a team that can help you execute on your video, and don’t be afraid to be bold when implementing it onto your page!