People visit a company’s About page to better understand the organization’s purpose and to gain a sense of reputation and level of trust. Instead of boring the audience with a lengthy history or a laundry list of services, engage the audience by speaking directly to their needs.
1. Know Thyself
Honest self-reflection can be challenging, especially for companies trying to “find themselves.” While a mission statement might be a good starting point, a brand platform is a more robust document to help a company focus on its identity as a company and its place in the market.
A simple brand platform will include a section on mission, vision and values, but a more defined document includes the brand’s promise and personality. This is an internal and external statement to its customers and employees about culture and position in the industry. Going through this exercise is key to talking about a company in a meaningful way.
2. It is NOT a History Page
People care more about a company’s story than a year-by-year historical timeline of its growth. Saying when offices first opened or when a service first was offered can be great, but people would rather read about how you triumphed over adversity or had a passion that you just had to share with the world. Letting the viewer know when you started your business can be helpful if the number is relevant. If you are competing against a business that has been around for 20 years and are new to the scene, lean on your innovative nature instead of trying to force your short history into something impressive.
3. Location Photography Adds Credibility
Any person can create a website and claim to run an established, trusted business, but simply showing a physical location can underscore credibility. A business that has a brick and mortar office is most likely going to be around next week. Make sure the photography doesn’t just show an empty building — if possible, show employees interacting with customers.
If the office space is especially impressive, take time to have a professional photograph it. Consider providing visitors with a Google Business View tour. This provides high-quality photography and gives people a chance to take a virtual tour of the office or facility directly on the company’s website.
Showing the physical space can also help speak to a small business’ size and capacity without having to say how much business it does in a year. Showcasing a company’s clean, professional facilities can provide a sense of safety and quality. All of this is possible without having to say a word.
4. Don’t Make it a Sales Pitch
A company’s About page should spend more time explaining the “why” instead of the “how” or “what” of the business. Explaining why the company is in business helps establish the company as solution to a problem instead of trying to explain how that company is better than the others. Make sure to provide a list of the company’s overall services or specialties, but don’t spend too much time explaining each service. Create separate pages on the website to discuss each summary in greater detail.
About pages are often among the highest-trafficked pages on company websites. People are using the Internet more and more to substantiate an opinion or a referral they received from someone else. If they find your site and/or About page, and you spend more time telling them what they already know, they will leave the site rather quickly.
5. People Want to Know Who They are Working With
A brief profile or listing of key employees gives greater credibility and experience to the business. If the business has specialized workers with important certifications, make sure to list them, and provide more context (and therefore credibility) on those team members.
Be careful that the company’s best employees don’t get snatched away by a competing company. I recommend only listing those people that are financially connected to the business or have strong ties. It may be helpful to give a brief overview of what each person is in charge of and what they provide the company in way of experience.
6. Credentials & Awards
If a company is involved in either industry trade associations or maintains certain certifications or safety records, it is a good idea to list those on the About page. Try to provide any logos or shields of these certifications prominently on the page. Any awards the company has received also should be noted here. These two areas provide further reputation backing.
7. Calls to Action
Although it might seem like a given, putting exactly what steps the viewer should take next is imperative. By adding call to action statements like “contact us now” and “learn more,” you provide people with an action-oriented word and a promise to provide them with additional information about the company. At the end of the page, make sure to give the visitor a reason to stay on your site, rather than leaving after reading.
It’s no secret that if people want to learn more about a company, they will likely be spending time on the organization’s website. By properly structuring a company’s About page, visitors will gain a better sense of the company’s purpose and reputation. A company should use their about page to showcase why they are in business and what makes their brand different than others.