This is Part 5 of my continuing Series on "requisite pages" for your website.
This article is all about creating your "Start Here" page, who it's designed for, why you should have one, & content ideas for what to include.
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Give Your Visitors a "Red Carpet" Welcome!
Nothing says "Welcome...I'm glad you're here" like a "red carpet" welcome...
You're visiting a museum for the first time... It's HUGE, with many floors, a vast array of exhibits, and you're not sure just where to start...
Now imagine that — as you enter the grand Lobby — you're immediately greeted by an inviting Information Center, a helpful Museum staff member who offers you a Map of the entire Museum, and who escorts you over to the Information Center... The Museum staff member also asks you if you've ever been there before, and if there's anything you've specifically come to see today...
Now...that's a warm welcome and it immediately puts you at ease, knowing the Museum staff are truly interested in your visit, and they value your time!
Your Start Here page sends the very same message to your readers!
Let's see how to do this!
Start by putting the emphasis on your readers!
Put yourself in their place: what would you want to know when visiting a new 'place?'
- Am I in the 'right' place?
- Is this place going to serve me and my unique needs?
- Can I trust this new place?
- How do I find my way around to see what all is here?
- What's the most important thing I can learn?
How to Create Your Own "Start Here" Page
#1: Your "Start Here" page IS a WordPress page!
(If you seen the other articles in this Series, you already know the drill...)
#2: Really Understand Your Readers' Concerns...
Now comes the content part...and why you put yourself in your readers' shoes!
Let's see how those questions I suggested above translate into actual content on this page:
To be clear, your "Start Here" page isn't only for your first-time visitors. It also benefits your newer readers who may not have visited your site for awhile... It can help to remind them of where the most important content is located, how to find it again, and even to find out what's new on your site...
Websites are dynamic...constantly being updated (Google demands it!) and this is a great place to highlight your newest content...
Should your niche or demographic broaden to include new topics, challenges, questions -- ideally from reader feedback! -- you can also highlight those new areas you're now serving!
And... a big PLUS: It benefits you as well. I explain below!
Here are some of the best ways to do this:
#3: "Start Here" Page Design & Formatting
Just like other pages on your website, your Start Here page should be designed for scanning readers!
In this case, clarity & organization is key:
Now, you're ready to take on your own Start Here page!
By following a few simple content strategies and the example format I've shown above, you should be able to provide your readers with the extra warm welcome & get your all-important Start Here page published.
If you have your own Start Here page, why not consider sharing it in the Comments section!
If you have any questions about how to build or write your own Start Here page, please leave them in the Comments below!
In Part 6 of this Series, learn exactly what to include on other critical pages...
I discuss: Home, FAQ, and more...
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