How often have you visited a website, explored the products or services, then looked for the About Us page only to discover there isn’t one?
Or, as I’ve found on several websites, it’s a dull, quickly written afterthought crammed with an out-of-date mission statement that doesn’t tell the reader what they’d like to know.
It should be one of the first key pieces of content created for a website.
Because it’s often the first page people visit when they find you online and it’s also one of the highest ranked pages on a site.
Yet it’s regularly a very neglected page.
Be Friendly - Build Trust
The About page is your chance to shine. Don’t be afraid to tell your readers who you are, what your business does and why you’re the perfect solution for them. It helps you develop trust with potential customers. Your About page doesn’t have to act like a resumé listing previous jobs or education - you can create a separate profile page for that information. Instead make it interesting, funny, engaging. If you’ve had quirky life events or experiences that you can in some way relate to your business, tell their story. It’ll have an impact on your readers and help them remember you. Put yourself in your readers’ shoes, what would you want to know about you? And don’t forget to add several ways they can get in touch with you. If they like what they read and what they find on your website, make it easy for them to contact you.
Don’t follow the herd. Forget the business buzzwords or over-used superlatives like cutting-edge, world-beater, disruptive, innovative … and that mission statement I mentioned earlier. Talk to your readers as if you’re sitting across the table from them in a coffee shop, telling your story. They want to know the real person behind your business and get a flavor of the personality and culture in your company. They want to know what drives you to do what you do. And make your About page different from the rest of your website. Here are a few of my favorite About pages, to give you inspiration.
Take a leaf out the Moz playbook and use an infographic-style timeline to tell your story. It’s colorful, easy to read and describes their journey from start-up to where they are today.
Remember those quirky life events I mentioned? Well if your story includes a cool dog, a crooked federale and a cow called “Daisy Bell” no-one will be able to resist reading your About page. And that’s exactly what The Saddleback Story includes plus lots of fabulous photographs.
Doberman’s hand drawn images combined with facts about the agency, make for a friendly informal About Us page.
And going one step further is Miki Mottes, an illustrator and animator, who uses his work to demonstrate what he does. His About section doesn’t tell you a lot, but a journey through his website leaves you in no doubt as to his amazing talent and skills.
ICS Creative has a clean, classic About page with images of the team and a list of the “stuff they’re good at.”
As you can see from these examples, your options are only limited by your ideas. So let your creative juices flow and make your About page scream, “Read me.”
Your About page checklist:
Use plain language
A picture says a thousand words – use your own, not stock images
Include facts and figures if you can e.g. 99.9% on-time delivery
Add significant achievements or awards
Include your contact details
If you’re a start-up describe your business ethos and goals and what your customers can expect
Never stop tweaking your About page
What’s on your About page? We’d like to hear from you – add your comments below!
Lauren Mackenzie is a freelance B2C web content writer who specializes in helping startups and SMBs develop their content strategy. She has 20+ years experience in the corporate arena and with full service creative agencies writing online and traditional print copy. She’s also a book & web tech junkie, musician, rookie aerial yogi and avid recycler of everything. Contact her on Twitter @writevintage2.