The About Us page of your website hides a lie that many businesses fall for without realising it. The About Us Page lie is that it should be full of what the name suggests: content about you and your business. But that’s not what your About Us page is really for.
You’ve come across About Us pages badly blending rambling histories of businesses with the CVs of their owners. They probably trumpeted that the business or individual was the leading, the best, the fastest growing… or some other unprovable grand claim.
What’s your About Us page really for?
A one-sided celebration of you is not going to build a relationship with a potential client, which is one of the most important jobs of your About Us page. The truth is, your potential clients don’t want to hear all about you. They want to hear all about what you can do for them. That might seem like a subtle difference, but the impact of getting it right is far from subtle.
On most sites, the About Us page is the second most visited page on the site (second only to the homepage). People who like what they see on your site are going to ask themselves who you are. They're going to look for the answer on your About Us page.
The secret of a perfect About US page
The most important job of the About Us page is, yes, to tell the visitor who you are but only as much as is relevant to what your visitor might want from you. Someone visiting your site is looking to meet a need of theirs, not a need of yours (your need to make a sale). They’re on your About Us page to see if you’re someone who might have what it will take to meet their need for information, a product, a service, a solution to a problem…
How to write your website's About Us page
So, your About Us page is really about them, your clients or customers. Keep that in mind and you'll stay on track. Here are our other top tips for writing a perfect About Us page:
Check your baseline
Is your About Us page in need of a review and a re-write? Have a look at your analytics. We’ll be sure people are visiting the page, but:
a. Are they spending time on this page? If not, they should be, and this could be costing you valuable leads.
b. Are they leaving your site immediately after seeing your About Us page? That could mean they’ve decided you’re not right for them, which makes this problem an urgent one to fix.
Ask friends you trust to be frank, colleagues, existing customers or people in your target market about your About Us page. Does it convince them you’d be right for the job you’d like them to think you’re perfect for? Do they find the page interesting? What do they like best about it? What doesn’t resonate with them? People usually think they’ve understood more than they have. Test their understanding with questions. Is your page basic with too little information or is there too much?
Have a look at your competitors’ About Us pages because your potential clients will. What do you think is persuasive? What are they doing right? What are they doing wrong? What could you do better?
Include photos of you (especially if you are the product, i.e. your clients are going to be working with you directly) or of the team, office or happy clients to help put a face to the brand and help kick start that sense of relationship.
A site doesn’t have to overflow with personality, but it should reflect the character of the people who work there. Write about how you are different and how your unique skills and background will lead to the best experience for potential customers. Your About Us page needs some energy and some personality to make you stand out and to balance out the necessary facts.
Be clear about who you work for and why. Too much trying to be all things to all people makes you generic and will waste your time with bad leads.
Locate your point of difference
Focus on the primary concerns of your target market and building your credibility in those areas.
You need to give a sense of yourself or a distinct voice in your website. If you peeled off the text from your website and pasted it onto a competitor's website would the reader be able to tell that the voice had changed? If not, you’ve not found your voice yet.
Fleur Lewis is a copywriter with Taleist, which uses the skills of journalism and the art of storytelling to help their clients stand out. You might be interested in Taleist’s website reviews – have a professional copywriter look over your website to tell you where you’re losing business and how to fix it. Read more