Why your website welcome message could be harming your coaching or consulting business

Aug 25, 2021Website Tips

If you’re a coach, consultant, therapist or service provider and your opening line on your website is ‘Welcome to my website’, then you could be harming your business. This article explains why opening with ‘welcome’ is damaging and what to do instead so that you get more conversions.

How your welcome message could be harming your business

“Hello”

“Can I speak to Mrs Tanner”

“Yes”

“Oh, hello Mrs Tanner, my name is {mumbles name so fast I don’t catch it} from {some company name I don’t recognise or catch because that was also mumbled too quickly to understand}, how are you?”

I’m thinking:

‘Who the hell are you, why are you interrupting my day and what do you want? Surely not to find out how I am?’

I take a breath, after all, they’re just doing a job (albeit badly) and reply with “I’m very well, how are you?”

“Oh, thank you for asking, I’m very well too”

Silence

What do you want?

I’m tempted to ask abruptly, “what do you want?” and I’m thinking, ‘come on get on with it and stop wasting my time’.

“The reason for my call today is that I could be saving you money on your electricity bill… {carries on without a breath talking about I don’t know what because I’ve switched off and I’m no longer listening}.

Well actually I’m listening for a break in their spiel so I can politely interrupt with “Thanks but I’m not interested”.

Waste of Time

The cold caller wasted their time and mine.

It’s not their fault, because that’s how they’ve been taught to conduct their cold call.

The same effect can happen with a badly worded first section of a website homepage (also known as the hero section).

This first section is the most important part of the website homepage as it’s the first opportunity to create a first impression.

Get this wrong and it tarnishes the experience of your potential customer AND harms your google ranking.

The Goal of the First Homepage Section

The goal of that first uppermost section someone sees when they land on your homepage (also known as the hero section) is to confirm to the visitor they’re in the right place and get them to take the next action step.

You know you’ve got your hero section working successfully if they scroll or click to view more.

The hero also tells Google what your site is about.

If the first thing a visitor sees is ‘welcome to my website, my name is xxx and I’m a {profession}’ then you’re creating a similar experience to how you feel when you receive an unsolicited call like the one above.

Think about it…

It doesn’t matter whether someone has found your website through a web search or followed your link from social media, email or recommendation, their goal is the same.

Am I In the Right Place?

They want to know ‘am I in the right place’ or ‘do you help people like me with the problem I want resolved’.

They want to know the answer to this within a split second, without scrolling or having to figure out what you do with a cryptic tagline and/or a job title/profession.

So leading with ‘Welcome to my website’ is the equivalent of a cold caller asking how you are.

It’s a waste of everyone’s time and instead of feeling welcomed, the visitor feels irritated by having their valuable time wasted (albeit seconds – but when we’re online, we become accustomed to instant gratification).

Google crawlers see ‘welcome to my website’ being the dominant message, then it too doesn’t know what your site is about and consequently doesn’t know to rank you for what you actually want to rank for (helping solve a particular problem).

When should I introduced myself?

My name is [insert your name].

Surely it’s important to introduce who I am early on?

Well actually, no.

At this early stage (a few seconds into landing on your website), they don’t care who you are.

What they care about is whether you solve the problem they’re looking to have solved.

The only exception is if you’re a celebrity.

Or possibly have celebrity status in your industry.

But until you get to that level, leave the introduction to who you are lower down the page after you’ve established what problem you solve and for who.

What about stating my profession – isn’t that good enough?

I do say what I do, doesn’t that count?

Even if you say what your profession or job title is, like coach, artist, photographer, personal trainer, nutritionist, therapist, car mechanic, plumber etc. that is still too broad.

Professions and job titles don’t explain who you work with or what types of problems you help resolve.

What text to have in your homepage hero section

If I shouldn’t say ‘Welcome, my name is xxx and I’m a {profession}’, what should my website homepage hero section lead with?

Focus on the problem that your dream client and the problem they have that you resolve.

When your initial welcome spells out exactly the problem you solve, (without wasting words actually saying ‘welcome’), that resonates with them and they will scroll or click to find out more.

Lead with what problem you solve and the people you help

If you also back this up with images of happy people who have used your product or service, then that also reinforces your message (I wrote a blog post, about images, What makes for a good website).

Stating the problem you solve and who you help early on in this hero section also helps Google understand what your website is about and you’ll rank better.

5 tips on how to construct a good hero section

1. Don’t waste words on ‘welcome’ ‘my name is…’

2. Lead with the problem your dream clients have that you solve

3. Don’t use clever/cryptic taglines or language

4. Use words that are succinct and clear

5. Use an image that backs up the message (check out my blog post What makes for a good website: image tips)

There you have some tips about how to make sure you don’t lose website visitors with a poor welcome message in the first section of your website homepage.

What next?

Helping business owners get more clients from their websites is what I do. I do that through my Super Easy Website programme (DIY) or you can get accountability with my Supercharged Website group programme or you can get my 1 on 1 help with a package bespoke to your needs.

Schedule an Are we right for each other call here.


Photo by Ben Kolde on Unsplash