Every page on your website is important. They all serve a purpose. In fact, if you can point to a page on your site that does not serve a purpose, you should get rid of it today.
But let’s be honest, some are more important than others. There is a hierarchy of web pages. They were not all created equal.
Here’s my personal take on the five most important pages on your website:
1. Search Results Page
Does your website have a search function? It should. Because people use them to find what they’re looking for. A good search function is better than the best navigation. But your search results page is critical. Make sure it is not only serving the right results for the most important searches someone will do, but that it is clean and easy to navigate. Too many search results pages are not well designed, and make a website appear sloppy and cluttered.
2. 404 Error Page
Here’s an often overlooked page that I believe is very important. The page on your site that people land on when they click on a broken link or type in the wrong URL. What’s it’s’ purpose? It needs to let someone know an error occurred, sure. But it should make some attempt to point them in the right direction. Try the next closest URL, redirect them to the homepage, or give them a search option right there. Make it easy for them to continue to browse your site or you might lose them.
3. Contact Page
If people want to get in touch with you, that is great. Most times that means you’re doing something right. So make it as easy as possible for them. Make your contact page easy to find, and include as many options as you can so that people can choose how to reach you. Even better, provide contact information on all pages of your site.
4. Checkout Page
This may seem obvious, but a lot of companies don’t spend enough time optimizing this process. The temptation is there to believe that once someone enters the checkout process, you’ve already made the sale. But that’s a big mistake. More people leave during the checkout process because of surprise costs and fees or a poor user experience than you probably know about. These pages are ripe for testing. Simple wording or design changes can lead to an increase in sales without any additional traffic.
5. Home Page
This is the first page that most visitors will see, and for that reason it is always going to be one of the most important. I am a proponent of simplicity on the home page. Get visitors situated, show them who you are, and then get them on to the next page of your site. That’s the goal.
There you have it. Apologies to those pages that didn’t make it. You’re still important in your own way.
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