(This post may include affiliate links. Here's my disclosure statement for more info.)
Your hero section is one of the most important parts of your e-commerce website. I already preached about the sins of carousels as heros. Now I have to talk about what you should do instead.
To clarify, a hero section is the top, first block of real estate on your landing page. A landing page is usually your homepage but it can refer to email sign up pages, limited time offers pages, etc.
On your website, you usually have a blank slate to start with. On Etsy, you only have your main banner image, logo, shop info and your profile pic to the right side.
First thing is first, I want you to write this down. What is the most important thing you want your customers to know. If you can only say ONE thing in ONE second, what will that be?
Think about this while we look at an example.
This is Asana’s current homepage. It is VERY simple and clear. They have one message to say and they expertly wrote it in a way that tells you the benefits. “Keep your team organized and connected” is the benefit they offer that they want you to know with their one second. Then they have a very brief explanation to back up that benefit. Then a low risk call to action (try it for free).
They even build trust with the user by showing major brands that use their platforms.
Let’s look at what Etsy does:
They have a one sentence headline to tell you what they are all about. “Handcrafted, vintage, custom or unique, it’s on Etsy”. That is the clearest way to explain what Etsy has to offer. No carousels here. Instead they have two main sections under the headline.
First section is three blocks. “Find comfort in creating” is plugging into the DIY and crafting trends. You’ll notice this was written during the Covid-19 pandemic so it is no accident they would push crafting right now while everyone is stuck indoors! It’s also intentional to mention home decor next to it.
Under that, they list benefits and back it up. Benefits likes this are usually effective when written with one sentence or just 2-3 words. An icon helps visually separate it from the blocks above it. They build trust and validate their first claims of having unique, custom and handcrafted or vintage items.
What Did We Learn?
Both of the examples above prioritized their messages and what would be most relevant to visitors. They did not waste valuable landscape with pretty pictures unless it validated or complemented the message. Asana only used brand logos to build trust. Etsy used images that would complement their message for what is most relevant to shoppers right now: DIY and home decor to people stuck at home.
What is your biggest benefit to your potential and current customers? What validates that? What can build trust with them?
Etsy sellers it is important for you to make the best use in what little you have. Create a banner with a very clear, simple message. Your shop profile pic should be your logo. Your shop tagline should be clear what you are because it is indexed by Google. An example for a tagline: “Satirical T-Shirts for Vegans”. This says what you sell and for who. If you don’t have your target demographic pinned just yet, at least write what you sell.
Hopefully this gives you an understanding of what makes a strong first introduction to your customer. Prioritize and edit. Good luck!