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What is the first thing people see when they arrive at your website? You might believe that stunning images or unusual claims draw user attention. And you’re not mistaken. However, the effectiveness of conversion-optimized web design heavily depends on how high-value components are placed on the page.
In other words, the style of your website might influence how well you engage site visitors.
Of course, this does not mean you should choose a popular WordPress theme for your site merely because it has been “tried and tested.” Instead, it entails learning about people’s online behavior and employing a range of strategies to build an online space that meets their needs.
Table of Contents
- 1 What exactly is the above-the-fold section?
- 2 Above-the-fold design strategies to help give your website a facelift and higher engagements.
- 2.1 An interesting value proposition.
- 2.2 Calls to action
- 2.3 A breathing place
- 2.4 Insightful visuals
- 2.5 The primary features of your product
- 2.6 Product Explanation Video
- 2.7 Credibility signals
- 2.8 Social proof
- 3 Improve website engagement and conversion with above-the-fold optimization.
What exactly is the above-the-fold section?
The term “above the fold” is a legacy from the era of newspaper sales and publication. Since this was the area that persuaded the reader to choose that particular paper over a less-impressive competition, editors added significant, attention-grabbing news items above the line where the newspaper was folded.
The phrase has survived the transition to the consumption of digital information and now describes the portion of digital space that is visible above the scroll line on your computer.
People spend 57 percent of their page viewing time above the fold, according to a study by the Nielsen Norman Group, demonstrating how important it is for businesses to get this webpage portion correctly.
However, this does not imply that the hero area of your website must be a jumble of attention-grabbing components that barrage website visitors with sales-y messages. Instead, the goal of the above-the-fold design should be to keep website visitors interested so they can scroll, click through, and make a purchase.
Above-the-fold design strategies to help give your website a facelift and higher engagements.
An interesting value proposition.
People visit websites, blogs, and landing pages and click on links because they want to find a solution to a problem. Therefore, you must maximize your value proposition if you want to encourage website users to stay on your site, engage with your material, and perhaps become customers.
You can effectively communicate the practical advantages your product offers and alert your target audience to the benefits of using your solutions/services by improving your USP to be entirely customer-oriented.
As an illustration, the value proposition on the January AI webpage reads, “January analyses hundreds of data points to help [customers] eat smarter and live healthier.”
This USP is effective since the brand’s intended market includes those looking to enhance their health using methods supported by science. Therefore, the business is essentially using a USP that offers website visitors the desired benefits that motivated them to visit the site in the first place by emphasizing the fact that its app uses data to provide consumers advice.
The brand encourages website visitors to “Optimize the time, skill, and energy of [their] people” on the Workday landing page seen below.
The company shows a deep understanding of the problems faced by its consumers with this nine-word USP. Workday encourages website users to interact with the page (which features a helpful explainer video) by turning the value proposition into a CTA. This nuzzles visitors along the sales funnel and increases their likelihood of becoming clients.
Calls to action
High-value CTA buttons placed in this area can explode on-page conversion rates because web visitors spend most of their on-page time interacting with the information above the fold.
Investigate how to improve CTAs in the hero section of your landing page, whether you aim to create leads, encourage visitors to learn more about your products or services, or simply inform them.
Understanding where your prospects are in the sales funnel is a vital piece of the puzzle that will help you complete this task successfully. You may improve your CTAs to provide greater outcomes once you understand what your website visitors want to do.
For instance, you can use a simpler approach—like the one used on the Kopi Luwak Direct homepage—if you know that the visitors to your website are there to buy a certain good or service.
This firm employs a basic design strategy because it recognizes that its website visitors only have one clear aim (to purchase coffee beans). It is ideal for motivating potential customers at the bottom of the sales funnel to take the action.
However, it’s not a bad idea to employ different CTAs if you know that your landing pages are likely to draw a more diverse audience. On its homepage, AMZ Pathfinder achieves this. Prospects are urged to “Schedule a free consultation” with the use of the hero section’s most pronounced call to action button, which is repeated in the upper right corner of the page.
The company encourages potential clients in the upper stages of the sales to funnel to “See process and pricing,” but it also recognizes that some of its website visitors may need a little more information about its services.
A breathing place
The popularity of minimalist web design is well-founded.
One example is that less visual complexity improves website users’ first impressions, according to a study. But using minimalist web design on your SaaS or agency homepage is not just for making a good first impression.
On the homepage or landing page, use enough negative space:
- has a better probability of offering an innovative user experience because of faster load times
- provides a simple, intuitive navigation experience, has a lower bug rate,
- and increases your chances of making your site responsive.
Therefore, you could wish to remove clutter on your main pages if you want to provide an excellent UX and enable website visitors to rapidly identify the components most likely to motivate them to convert (or your entire website).
Choose the type of element that will draw users’ attention to the area of your site that is above the fold.
It could take the form of an eye-catching graphic, an engaging USP, a CTA button, or a product video. However, employing these components in overpowering ways could turn off visitors. In severe situations, it might even stop leads from focusing on the one factor that motivates them to convert.
Visit the Wix homepage for a fantastic illustration of a company that appreciates the value of simplicity.
By keeping its hero section for a value proposition and CTA (with no background imagery), this brand ensures online visitors engage with crucial aspects rather than be distracted by unimportant ones (or scroll to gather more information).
If you want to engage your audience, using images on your website is usually a good idea.
However, even though placing photos above the fold enables you to attract attention and convey conversion-inspiring messages, you must still make sure that the imagery you use on your website is significant and pertinent.
If you’re selling a useful product, for instance, you might take a more concrete approach and show how it would seem in the hands of potential clients.
SomniFix encourages website users to cease “mouth breathing” by displaying an image of its mouth strip alongside a persuasive value proposition.
Similarly, Uber uses a picture of two people beaming while holding a dish of food as the above-the-fold screen portion of its website.
Note how the portrayed emotion reinforces the value of Uber’s service while significantly relying on emotional marketing, which is frequently the key to winning over end users.
Selling experiences or lifestyle items allows you to use a slightly more ethereal design.
Because it is aware of this, Supernatural lets itself overdo it with the homepage’s primary video.
The company is aware that its target market prefers something that would add excitement to their exercises rather than conventional fitness solutions.
The primary features of your product
Most of the time, using conventional marketing strategies that draw prospects’ attention to the advantages your goods or services can offer is the greatest approach to keep them on your website. However, sometimes providing website visitors with something more tangible to hold on to will produce significantly greater outcomes.
Displaying the key features of your product above the fold is one approach to achieving the latter. After all, if you can show something, why describe it? Allowing customers to test out your product can be a brilliant method for them to experience its advantages and a useful way to support your lead-generation efforts.
Hemingway Editor is a superb illustration of this engagement-increasing strategy in the first few screens of a website.
Instead of forcing visitors to its website to navigate through multiple pages to access the free software, this company makes its web app the homepage and delegated the conversion components (such as the CTA button in the upper left corner) to the footer.
MOZ uses similar methods, but to access the function, users must first register for a free account with this brand.
And yes, use this strategy on your website to increase lead creation. However, no one can successfully implement this plan because it causes high customer trust, which MOZ enjoys because of its high level of industry authority.
Product Explanation Video
Try using video if you want to engage website visitors as soon as they arrive.
A 2021 Wyzowl study found that video is an effective format for lengthening dwell time, improving product/service comprehension, lead generation, and enhancing revenue. Consumers prefer video content over all other types, which is even more significant. The data shows that 73 percent of respondents would choose a video above text, infographics, eBooks, webinars, or a demo to learn more about products and services.
Given this information, including a product explanation video in your website’s hero section might just help you engage (and convert) visitors.
However, keep in mind that there are a few guidelines for creating effective product explainers:
Keep it brief.
According to research, videos should be only two minutes if you want people to watch them.
For instance, the SaaS company Flamingo puts a 60-second movie below their USP on its homepage.
This strategy helps the company to give website visitors a thorough overview of what the software can do without making them wade through large amounts of material or endure an endless presentation.
Stay faithful to the tone of your brand.
If your audience doesn’t expect humor or friendliness from your company, don’t pretend to be of those things.
Be precise and succinct.
Jargon use can make you appear knowledgeable, but it defeats the goal of the explainer because it immediately reduces the likelihood that viewers will comprehend what you’re saying.
To increase understanding, use visuals, animation, or graphics.
Don’t rely on your audience’s imagination to explain how your sophisticated solution works if you’re selling it.
For instance, Mailchimp’s 3-second screencast clearly illustrates how simple it is to design an email campaign using the company’s editing software.
Experiment with emotive marketing and storytelling.
Sometimes, prospects are more interested in your company’s devotion to easing their problems than they are in the features you offer. Show them you understand them by relating a story or by addressing their annoyance with a problem they’re having directly.
Check out how Asana, for example, employs this strategy to make its homepage explainer video more accessible, knowing that viewers will undoubtedly identify with the struggles a man faces when juggling remote work and being a father.
Establishing your brand’s trust is the most crucial thing you should do in the above-the-fold part of your website in specific industries, such as health or finance.
After all, it’s understandable how your conversion rate can suffer if you cannot establish your business’s reputation since over 60% of individuals are prone to distrust corporations until proven otherwise.
Showcase any relevant certifications or guarantees to establish credibility and let potential clients know they can put their trust in you without worrying about the calibre of the services they will receive.
For instance, merely showcasing pertinent awards, as SmartSites does, can persuade your audience that they can count on you to provide results.
Or, if you truly want to highlight your company’s commitment to producing top-notch goods, you might even want to follow Stampli’s example and swap out its hero image for its G2 Leader and Top 100 award badges.
Consider the enormously beneficial effects of social proof when you examine above-the-fold design strategies to increase site engagement (and help you convert more clients).
People do not trust other people’s opinions and recommendations, especially when they’re deciding about purchases that they don’t feel qualified to make.
So why not take advantage of this early in your audience’s buying process, grab their attention with interesting social proof, and make sure they get the impression that your brand is not only a company they can trust but also a highly capable organization?
There are several ways to incorporate social proof into the hero section of your website.
Display media mentions from reputable sources that your audience will trust. To explain your value proposition, use a customer story. As done by Klarna, show ratings and statistics attest to the pleasure of your user base.
Or, as Contentsquare does, mention your successful clients because you know your audience is more likely to believe what their peers have to say.
Improve website engagement and conversion with above-the-fold optimization.
Through the use of various above-the-fold design strategies, there are many methods to engage website visitors.
However, resist the need to implement everything at once when you experiment with features to include in the top portion of your website. Your conversion rates are more likely to increase because of this than decrease.
Instead, specify the objectives you want your website to attain and include tactics that will help you do so. To double your ROI, simply one idea on this list can be sufficient. So, avoid sabotaging your chances for success by trying to take on more than you need.