Your website’s hero banner is the area between the navigation and the start of your content. It does a lot of heavy lifting by setting the tone for your site, encouraging visitors to engage with your brand and helping to establish trust. The hero banner’s effectiveness could mean the difference between high bounce rates and high conversion rates.
If your hero banner is doing its job, you’ll be well on your way to conversion – whether that’s getting a prospective client to reach out to your sales team or sending them to discover your product and service pages.
Remember, website visitors tend to form judgements quickly: it takes approximately 50 milliseconds for users to cement an opinion about your brand.1
It’s no wonder that marketers are always looking to optimize their hero banners and above-the-fold content.
Here are some tips to help give your hero banner super strength:
Keep your hero banner’s message simple. You want to inspire your visitors, not overwhelm them. Squeezing too many messages into the hero will inevitably dilute its superpowers. It’s been proven that less cluttered homepages are more likely to convert.2
2. Tell a story
The story in your hero banner needs to be told in your brand voice – reinforced by strong visuals and copy. Your website is your storefront, and you’ll want to “greet” users with an on-brand experience that showcases how you solve your clients’ problems and your unique selling proposition (or “USP”).
3. Use video and motion graphics
Video converts. About 84% of people have been convinced to buy a product or service by watching a brand’s video.2 It’s no wonder that video and motion graphics are popular choices for hero images. There are caveats: loop your content and keep it crisp, so you don’t bog down your website’s load speed. The ideal length is one or two seconds – content that is over five seconds in length is going to need optimizing.
4. Include calls to action
A call to action is usually placed in your hero banner for good reason – it’s a great way to lead visitors down the funnel. Try to be creative but concise with your calls to action. Remember, there’s more to life than “Learn more.” Use powerful imperative verbs that create a sense of urgency. “Watch,” “discover,” “read,” “subscribe,” “schedule.” Choose specific verbs that tee up a promise and give strong, direct instructions on what to do next.
5. Make it responsive
With mobile often being a user’s first interaction with your brand these days, it’s important to make sure your website is responsive (meaning it will “respond” to the screen size it’s appearing in). For hero banner content, you’ll want to ensure you engage visitors immediately and keep your objectives limited to a single goal or desired action.
To carousel or not to carousel?
There is much debate about whether you should use a carousel in the hero banner position. While many prefer the simplicity of a single message, others need to balance multiple messages. If you decide to adopt a carousel, put the visitor in the driver’s seat: avoid the auto-play feature as it may not give users time to digest the content before it advances. You will also want to make sure your carousel is optimized for mobile, including facilitating optional behaviours such as pinching, tapping and swiping to ensure a mobile user’s journey is seamless.
A/B testing can help
If you are deciding between multiple messages and creative executions, A/B testing can help shed light on what resonates best with real users. You can use this strategy to make sure your hero banner content is a true hero: saving the day and delivering new leads.
Is your conversion rate not where it should be? Ext. and our team of digital, content and UX experts can help optimize your hero banner and all your web content. Contact us today at 1.844.243.1830 or email@example.com.