How to Optimize Your About Page for Ecommerce Conversions

Written by Brenda on September 16, 2014 Blog, How to sell online.

e-commerce-aboutYour “About” page is one of the most visited on your site. As such, it’s one of the most common entry points into your sales funnel. For the uninitiated, the sales funnel is a nickname for the entire process that takes a viewer from clicking an inbound link on your page to buying something. The minute a lead clicks on a link that leads to your website, they’ve entered the funnel, which is why your website’s whole design should contribute towards pulling them deeper in. So, as you might’ve imaged, it’s vitally important to put the effort into crafting a good one.

Used properly, it can even do a lot of the heavy lifting of converting leads into sales, and an effective one can go a long way towards making you look like a friendly, trustworthy business. Which is important, since people tend to buy from brands they’re familiar with, who they trust, and whose image they like. Makes sense, right?

Stories and Value

Your about page’s single, most important goal is to spell out what your business can do for your target customers. What unique value can it provide to this particular reader?

One effective vehicle you can use to convey this information is a story. Stories will usually do a better job of holding your reader’s interest and getting them into the “spirit” of your company than plain old marketing-speak. And if you can give them an understanding of who you are and why you do what you do (beyond just money) as well, you’ll see a return on the time you invested.

However, the key words here are “give them.” The about page, like the whole customer experience, is about the customer, and although the story you’re telling may be about you, it needs to be geared towards informing them how your business will benefit them.

In order to do that, try to imagine your about page from your target customer’s viewpoint. Once you have a good picture of your customer in mind, ask yourself a few questions:

  • Does it give them evidence that they can trust you?
  • Does it prove that you’re good at what you do?
  • Does it provide a clear reason why your business is the one they should buy from?
  • Will they come out of reading it more assured that you won’t rip them off?
  • And finally, does it give the distinct impression that your company is run by real people who care about them, instead of making you look like just another faceless corporate entity trying to sell them stuff via the impersonal medium of the Internet?

Much like content marketing, you should also carefully consider your demographic and what topics they’re likely to find interesting, and incorporate those into your about page. Remember, your goal is to get your customers in the frame of mind to like you and want to support you. It’s a balancing act, to be certain, but it’s one that you need to learn to achieve if you want to see success.

In addition to compelling text, there’s another major component that you need to consider when crafting an about page.

Photos and Graphics

If you want to portray yourself as the face of your company, it almost goes without saying that you’ll want a photo on the about page. Specifically, a photo of your face.

Use a high-quality image: no phone selfies allowed, unless it fits in with the overall vibe of your business. Hiring a professional photographer with a DSLR may seem like an unnecessary expense, but it will do wonders for your image and the sense of professionalism you convey. Although, it’s worth noting that if you have a friend with a serious camera and a decent amount of photo experience, they can often get results that, while not quite as good, are still more than passable.  Just as long as the final image is crisp, well-lit, high-res, flattering, and better than you could take yourself in the bathroom mirror, you’re probably good.

Optimize for SEO

Yes, SEO applies to your about page, too. What, did you think you were going to get off easy here?

Keep your title under 70 characters and your description under 150 characters. The content in the body of your page should be at least 300 words.

Provide alt text and descriptive titles for your images so search engines can more easily crawl them. Even if you’d hoped to send customers to your landing page instead of your about page, remember that any inroad to your website is the potential first step into the sales funnel.

Include your physical address on your about page, as it will help with local SEO, and consider using schema text to increase the ease with which search engines will notice it. And finally, sprinkle a keyword or two throughout the text in order to make sure you get traffic from people searching for things related to your field. This will likely come naturally. After all, if your about page is discussing your company’s history and what it is you do, the content is going to include relevant keywords.

Simplicity is Key

Despite the number of factors you need to consider while writing one, it pays to keep your about page simple and modest. “Simple” meaning: avoid clutter, cut down on links (especially ones that lead away from the sales funnel), and minimize the number of design elements on the page. Keep the text short – remember, attention spans are shorter than ever -, the text easy to read, and avoid verbosity. Tell only one story, and resist the temptation to go into detail about your company’s every feature.

That brings us to the “modest” part.  Try to avoid bragging. Your customers know that if your business is really as awesome as you say it is, you should be able to produce objective proof, by way of customer reviews, sales figures, awards, etc. instead of having to come right out and say “we’re awesome.”

And for both, avoid industry jargon and buzzwords like the plague. Remember that your about page sets the tone for your company, and most customers wouldn’t prefer to do business with a company that appears too boring or grandiose.

As for the title of your about page, there is no one universally-accepted answer. “About us,” “Meet the Team,” “Our Story,” and so on are all equally acceptable. But if you’re interested and have the free time, it may behoove you to do multiple tests and see if any particular title noticeably affects conversions.

Many About Us pages have gotten better results by not titling it “About Us” at all and instead opting for “The [Company Name] Story.” The human brain, it seems, loves a good story and is hardwired to respond positively to even the promise of one.

Conclusion

if you take nothing else from this article, let it be this: At the end of your about page, place a call-to-action button that links to your landing page so you can immediately bring visitors into the sales funnel. Someone who just took the time to read through your company’s history is more likely to be interested in supporting you than a random newcomer, anyway.

And that about covers it for now. Any more tips or tricks you’ve found helpful? Any particularly striking examples of well-written about pages you’d like to share with our community? Please share them in the comments!

Image source: Serge Kij

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One Response

  1. Adrian
    September 17, 2014 at 11:12 am #

    Thanks Brenda, I did some SEO on my about page, but it was not optimized at all. Your post did remember me, doing that quickly. And now, my SEO plugin gave me a green button, thats all OK.

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