Welcome to what many think is the trickiest page of a website: The About Page. Tricky you say? Is it about you? Is it about your customer? Do you need to share your Starbucks order and 10 other favorite things? What really matters on this page? The options are dizzying. Let’s figure it out together! Today we’re going to learn how to design your About Page in a way that connects your passion and expertise deeply to how you can solve the needs, wants, and desires of your ideal customer and compels them to say yes.
But wait… who is the about page actually about?
This one is probably up for debate among designers and copywriters, but I’m in camp:
It is about your ideal customer.
Most people think the about page is about the company (or the person(s) behind the company). A catch all for how long you’ve been in business, how many people you’ve served, how many awards you’ve raked in, and the snazzy press you’ve received.
All of those things are good things.
But on their own, they do little to connect with the person on the other side of the screen. If you remember the off the cuff conversation your website has with a potential customer from this post, you know that your website has the power to do the major sales work for you.
Many people approach the about page like they would a professional biography for a networking event brochure. The problem with this approach is that it almost always completely lacks any real personality.
You may add in a “Favorite Things” section or a cute quote, but it can feel like lipstick on a pig if you don’t design your about page in a way that continues to foster the conversation and actually connect with your ideal customer.
Personality matters now more than ever in purchasing decisions. In 2017, Splendid Insights put out a Global Wedding Market Report after polling over 15,000 couples on what led them to make their purchasing decisions for their wedding. When asked, “When hiring wedding professionals, how important is their personality in your decision making process?” A whopping 63% said it was very important in their purchasing decision process.
Makes sense since over 90% of couples today are in the Millennial generation. Millennials do their research and are internet savvy. They have 987 tabs open at once in their web browsers to find the best solution for their needs and know that there are enough fish in the competition seas to find someone they connect with personally.
And while you may or may not be in the wedding industry, I firmly believe that personality in the customer purchase decision making process dominates across all the major creative industries. It is why Influencer Marketing blew up in 2016. People buy from people that they like, know, and trust. That’s the beauty of small business!
So how do you marry personally connecting with your potential customer and highlighting that you are the expert in one page?
Let’s work it out!
Lead with the story, not the trophies
I want you to think about your website about page like the next 5 minutes of the conversation that we started on the Home Page.
When your potential customer clicks to the About Page, small talk is over. You’ve swapped names and shared a glimpse of what you do. By clicking over to the About Page, she’s ready to settle in, get to know you, and find out if your approach is the right fit for her.
Let me say that again: Small. Talk. Is. Over. This is what separates magnetic brands from the competition.
Remember, people buy from people they like, know, and trust.
Think about how you would come to like, know, and trust someone.
If you were to ask someone to tell you a little bit more about what they do and they immediately dived into the fancy degrees they have and all the accolades they’ve received, you might be impressed, but if we’re being honest, probably a little put off. “Like okay, great, but how do I know if you can actually help me?!?”
This is not a question you want your potential customer to be scratching their head with.
Unfortunately so many websites fall flat because they are designed across the board with that third person “professional small talk bio” bulleting out the elevator pitch, jazzy awards, and a dash of life about how many kids you have and where you live at the end.
We all have the bio. There is a time and place for it. But your About Page isn’t it!
Leading into the About Page with storytelling is a much better way to build a connection with your ideal customer.
An easy way to go about storytelling on the About Page is to explain why you got into your business in the first place! If you lead in with your story, just make sure you tie your actual customer into it.
This is how my About Page starts. I briefly share what spurred me into my entrepreneurial journey through the storyline of the two dreams I’m chasing: motherhood and business-hood. It is my story, yes, but it is written and shared intentionally. Spend all of 3 minutes on this site, and you’ll realize there are quite a lot of facets and layers to MMC. I’ve been told a time or two that you stay a while and get lost in the details here! My About Page serves to show there is a real gal living a real life behind all the nerdy strategy advice and biz growth talk. It is specifically designed to give you a peek inside how I approach business differently and build connection with the girl on the other side of the screen who is also rockin’ a bun and leggings just trying to build something meaningful through her creative passions, too.
You can also lead in by telling the story of who your ideal customer is. I did this in my Showit 5 Website Template, Leftover Peonies, with the template mock brand, Everly Events. Everly paints a picture of why the details matter to her ideal client. She shares a glimpse into what excites the Everly Events Bride and how she gets her ideal customer’s desires.
The storytelling lead creates space for the personality behind your brand to shine!
Now that you’ve built rapport, it is a natural time to share those professional highlights. But remember, we’re having a conversation on our websites. If you wouldn’t talk about yourself in a face to face chat in third person, don’t do it on your website. Even if you are running a team (Use we instead of I!).
Ideas to Include in your about page
Idea to include: Statement of Belief. What do you believe about the work that you do and why it matters? The About Page is a great space to tell me about it!
An Interactive Favorite Things Section from The PJ and Rhinestones Showit 5 Premium Website Template
Idea to include: A Favorites Section. I still love a good collection of your favorite things as long as you’ve built a little personality into the rest of the page. The point I wanted you to understand above is that these Fave Things shouldn’t be the only bit of personality on the About Page!
An Interactive “Fun Facts” Section from The Bun Up Showit 5 Premium Website Template
Idea to include: Something Interactive (Clickable). Stop the scroll with a fun and interactive section. A play on This not That (where you choose things you love!), a series of fun facts (like mine!), a True or False style quiz, your brand core values, a map of where you’ve traveled and where you hope to go next, or a sliding timeline of your life and brand are a few ideas to get your wheels turning!
Idea to include: Testimonials. Social proof is one of the most powerful ways to compel your potential customer to purchase. Highlight the most compelling parts of the testimonials you’ve got and use an image of your customers or your work if you can!
A clean collection of featured press logos in The Leftover Peonies Showit 5 Premium Website Template
Idea to include: As Seen On/ Trusted By Logos. Break up all the body copy from the story telling and your professional highlights with a logo collection representing prominent press you’ve received or memorable brands that have hired you in the past. This is another great form of social proof!
Idea to include: A sampling of blog posts that show more of your personality and brand story. The goal with these posts is to build on the story you lead in with on the About Page. Connecting the dots across your website is key! (Don’t have any posts that line up with your storyline? Hint hint: Write a few!)
Once you’ve built your lead in story, follow it up with the highlights and social proof that points to your expertise, and add in any fun interactive elements, it is time to close the About Page to convert. Just like the home page, I want you to wrap up this page with a compelling call to action. Keep your main goal in mind! If you want to book more clients, you may point them to your services or contact page. If you want to grow your email list, you may incentivize them with an opt-in lead magnet. Whatever you do, just don’t leave your potential customer hanging! It is your job to point her to the next logical step!
Curious to know if your website actually converts? Download your free copy of The Fast & Free Way to Figure Out if Your Website Converts to learn how to use the same free tool the pros use to visually see what on their website converts and what needs to be tweaked in real time (Hint: This is NOT about Google Analytics!).