In the olden (not golden) days of the world wide web, About pages on websites were cold, sterile, and booooring.
You would typically find a mission statement riddled with jargon and marketing cliches, along with the business model, a list of products and services, the service area, hours of operation, number of employees, years in business, and perhaps a few bios for senior leadership.
If you’ve ever heard someone say, “People don’t read About pages,” that’s one reason why.
This isn’t true, by the way. Disloyal, price-obsessed prospects might not go to the About page of a small business website, but your ideal clients – the people who are interested in building long-term relationships – will want to get to know you better.
Although About pages have gotten better, they still tend to be overloaded with information, most of which isn’t particularly relevant or meaningful to a potential client.
Give people less facts and more of “the feels,” as my daughter would say.
You can communicate basic information about the company in a few sentences. Deeper details should be reserved for product and service pages.
The About page on a small business website should focus on making people feel good about your company.
Make them feel like you “get” them. Make them feel like you truly understand and care about their problems and want to solve them. Make them feel like you can relate.
Make them feel confident and hopeful that you can help them. Make them feel like they can trust you. Make them feel like your organization is made up of good people who share their values.
This will make them feel comfortable contacting you.
More often than not, the decision to contact you is based on how someone feels at that moment.
How do you make people feel good on your About page?
Focus on the human element. The success of any small businesses is based on the strength of its relationships.
Tell the story of your organization and the people behind it. For many small businesses, including mine, the person is the brand. Use video and images that show your people being themselves.
Tell the story of how the business started, why it started, and who was instrumental in getting it off the ground.
Explain what drives you each day. Share a brief story of how you solved a problem or made someone’s life better.
Use language and tone that sound like a real-world conversation and show your personality.
Be natural. Be yourself. If you’re trying hard to “be authentic,” you’re overthinking it. Just say what you feel.
Yes, your About page is the one page on your website where it’s okay to focus on yourself, but you still have to do it in a way that’s relevant, relatable, and appealing to your ideal client.
Tell your story, but don’t ramble incoherently. Storytelling should be strategic. Focus on what’s meaningful to someone who’s considering doing business with you.
The small business website as a whole should convey what you do, and the value of what you do, in a way that matters to your ideal client. Every page on your website helps to communicate your value proposition and competitive differentiators.
Information and facts need to be shared to accomplish these goals. But the primary job of the About page is to make people feel good about your organization.
It sounds so simple, but people want to be happy. They want to smile. Especially when they’re bludgeoned with negativity at every turn.
Think about how people will perceive your organization if you make them feel good.
When all other things are equal in terms of products, services, and cost, especially if you’re in a highly competitive field, the stories, values, and experiences you share on your About page, when taken together, could be the differentiator that causes someone to choose your organization over a competitor.
People, not products.
Connecting, not selling.
Stories, not a resumé.
Less facts. More feels.
You probably feel more of an emotional attachment to your About page than any other content on your website. That attachment can make it difficult to know what to say and how to say it strategically. If you need help identifying and organizing your most compelling stories and telling them in a way that makes your ideal client feel good, let’s talk.