A few months back, you may have read an article on our site concerning how to use About Us pages to increase conversions, confidence, and brand loyalty. While I’m sure you loved the advice, you probably wanted to see an example. I figured that, so I had our wonderful graphic designer, Laura Henderson, put together some before & after mockups for our fictional brand, “Orange Walnut.”
There’s not much to say about the before page, and that’s exactly the problem. While some may applaud the minimalism (and the really attractive picture of the CEO), the content itself lacks purpose. The headers say nothing about the company, the text blocks are full of hot air and self-compliments, and there’s no call to action.
In the bottom section of the page, the bullet points express a few key concepts efficiently, but the chosen concepts lack action, relevance, and the slightest resemblance to a story. My advice: If you’re going to use bullet points, use action verbs to list out things you have done, are doing, and/or will do.
All in all, if the goal of this page was to engage readers with a story, then it fell a few feet short.
As you can see right from the beginning, this page has a lot more content, beginning with the branding and logo on a wide open banner. The bright white logo against the pale orange background are perhaps the most contrasting elements on the page. It captures the attention of the reader. It’s like a sign that says, “Welcome to our brand experience.”
Next is a set of photographs. On the left, the product rests in the wrinkled hands of an old farmer. On the right, we have the founder of Orange Walnut with his beloved dog, Wally. Words and concepts like fatherly, hardworking, loyal, traditional, warm, and autumn, come to mind and stir up emotional connections and memories.
Next, we introduce the story. The header is more than a label; it’s fun, engaging, and the tone is light enough to make even the most hardened walnut-lover grin. The text below tells a story of the inception. There’s no bragging, no mention of qualifications, and no bullet points that prove a point. It’s a story that explores a common sentiment. In this case, it’s a desire to create something better, but it could be anything.
If you sell cookies, you could tell the story of how your business really began at age nine, when your mother taught you that the secret to great cookies was French sea salt and local butter. Or, if you sell anti-ballistic missile defense systems, you could tell the story of hiding in terror under your first grade desk during cold war drills and wishing there was more than a thin sheet of plywood between you and a nuclear payload. The point is, no matter what you sell, whether its cookies or nuclear defense, you can tell a story that connects emotionally.
After the story, we see a customer testimonial. It’s a decent mix of personal feelings towards the brand, and an appreciation for their business practices. It even manages to drop one of their qualifications without sounding forced.
After that, we have a video, a header, and text, all meant to provide value to the customer in the form of education. It also sends the message that Orange Walnut cares about their customers and their health.
Certifications, Security Badges, Confidence Builders
Below that, we have a set of confidence builders, which we have presented visually. The difference between these icons and bullet points is like the difference between a resume and a trophy case.
On the bottom right, we have a picture and an address to prove that Orange Walnut is a real place with real people. We invite them to visit, knowing they probably never will, because we are selling the idea that being a loyal customer grants them the right to visit anytime. Together, all of these things increase confidence and brand loyalty. How? Customers now know where and with whom they are doing business. Orange Walnut is no longer just selling you walnuts; they’re selling you an idea: “This place and these people exist because you decide to buy.” That idea may not affect your more shrewd customers, but shrewd buyers will never make up your loyal customer base anyway.
Contact Form, Phone Number, Social Media, Policy Information
To the left, we have a contact form and a phone number. Even if most people never use these, knowing they could inspires confidence. Remember though, if they do contact you, you better answer. Then, almost at the bottom, we provide social buttons so customers can easily explore your brand further. Last, we have a link to information on returns and exchanges, which, if you’re like our clients, is why a small chunk of customers navigate to your About Us page. That’s what a good user experience is all about – predicting customer needs and meeting them before they ask.
People like to follow brands, and pay more for them, when brands are self-aware and able to present themselves in a human light. They like knowing that the brand cares about them and that their purchase supports someone. It makes the consumer part of a community, rather than a source of revenue for a faceless corporation. When your customers feel involved in a community, there’s an emotional stake in the product, not just a monetary one.
Lastly, remember that eCommerce is great because your brand voice isn’t held hostage by tired, underpaid cashiers. Instead, your brand voice remains as cheery, engaging, and delightful as the copy you write. With that in mind, make sure you invest the appropriate time or better yet hire the appropriate people (like Blue Acorn).