For too many online companies the About Us page is the elephant in the room, and often the most awkward thing to write. It’s a shame because analytics often shows the page as one of the most frequented on any website. Imagine a ceremonial elephant adorned in his embellished head plate, raising you above your competitors. This could be your About Us page if you show it the care and attention it deserves.
The good news is your about page doesn’t require several hundred pounds of vegetation on a daily basis, nor is there any real need for expensive antique rhinestones.
The bad news is crafting the perfect about page is easier said than done. Many find it difficult to strike the right balance between selling themselves to their customers and driving them away with a self-focused approach, which helps explain why the pages are so often neglected.
Start by talking about your audience, not yourself
Human nature dictates that we are, first and foremost, concerned with our own problems. While some of us may give to charity or volunteer in our spare time, when it comes to searching for products or services online, we’re all about ourselves and what a brand can do for us.
Blog Tyrant is a great example of a blog that is focused on its visitors. The first thing you see when you land on their about page is a video titled “About Me and You.” The text that follows is then split into two sections, “About Me” and “About You (The Tyrant Troops).”
Let your customers do the talking
When you are thinking of trying out a new hairdresser, dentist or even a fish and chip shop, you don’t base your decision on what they say about themselves. You turn to those around you. By including a few glowing (and up-to-date) customer testimonials on your about page, you can create a hub of information.
Include different forms of media
Make your about page a feast for the eyes by considering the use of photos, timelines, videos or infographics. If people are going to seek and find your about page, it makes sense to capture their attention for as long as possible, and this is precisely what PPC Scotland does. Their timeline incorporates strong image and design while still providing visitors with the key information they need.
Tell your story
That’s precisely what a client of ours, ITS, has done with their About Us page. Unfortunately it’s not something we can take credit for personally, but it still embodies everything a great story should have. It starts at the beginning, documenting their modest founding, in 1981 as a 150 square foot shop, all the way to modern day, with plenty of photos along the way. It’s great to see the quality of the photos changing through time, almost like a family scrapbook. Customer ratings and social icons make this page even stronger.
Include your address and contact details
Many people are still hesitant when it comes to parting with their money over the Internet and are thus keen to know you aren’t simply looking to fleece them to make a bit of extra cash.
Cut out the jargon
Writing in acronym-infested jargon might make you feel clever at the time, but it’s boring and it’s cold. People won’t remember you. What they really want when they land on your about page is to learn, in simple unambiguous terms, precisely what you do.
Ask for other peoples’ opinions
Don’t be afraid to ask employees, friends, peers, even clients, what makes you stand out as a business. When you have worked somewhere for a long time, it is tough to see your brand the way customers might see it. An objective opinion can help.
Make sure it reflects your company
In our quest for the perfect about page, we came across some really extravagant examples. Some had really impressive videos, special features or high tech designs. All of those examples were extremely applaudable, but will only really work if this fits in with the rest of your website, your industry and your company as a whole. It’s easy to lose sight of who you are in your mission to create the best page possible.
There is no magic formula for about pages. If there were, you probably wouldn’t be 2,000 words into this blog. A good way to treat the process of creating such a page, then, is as a work in progress.