TechSoup.org The place for nonprofits, charities, and libraries

Is your home page immature?

Is your home page immature?

  • In her article Is Your Home Page Immature?, Indi Young of Adaptive Path identifies ways you can help your home page grow up, highlighting your organization's message and turning the page into a more effective marketing tool.

    Do you consider your home page immature? What are some of the ways you think that nonprofits can get the most out of their home pages?
    senior editor, TechSoup
  • This Qualcomm website, to me as a potential visitor, as opposed to a marketing professional, looks horrible.  Corporate pages that look like this are one of the main reasons I do little on-line shopping.

    Why do they fill up half the page with photos of people I don't know or care about, and use private marketing language that communicates nothing?

    What is a BREW?  I'm certainly not going to click on another page filled with irrelevant information to find out.  What is MediaFLO? 

    I know what a Quarterly Cash Dividend is, but what is a On-Time Sampling of Second-Generation HSDPA S....? Maybe they could put a picture of it instead of that irritating female wearing a hardhat and grabbing her phone as she jumps on a trampline that, for some unknown reason the entire web production team seemed to feel was more important than acutally being useful and informatiive to the site visitor.  Maybe if they spared a few more letters in their story leads, the website might be bit more inviting.

    The search box doesn't look very helpful.  In my expeirence, they are a waste of time - it's like trying to find something in the index.  If you know the exact word, it's OK, but if you're trying to find the technical manual for a specific product, or help for a specific issue, fuggetaboudit!

    All the different colors are visually irritating. There must be six variations of blue, and they don't mix well together.  And the visual center of the whole page is her hat?  Is there some kind of corporate link between Qualcomm and Red Hat?  Does the same corporate conglomerate own them both?  What's that about?

    I don't think it's a co-incidence that two of the most successful websites on the internet, Google and Craigslist, have plain, no-nonsense, visitor-centered homepages that are not paeans to corporate executives or marketing gurus or other egocentric power-grabbers.

    Amazon is a good example of the opposite, an information-rich homepage, but focused on getting visitors information they can use.  They don't have a bunch of marketing language, books are called books, electronics are called electronics, etc. And you don't have to wait for the whole page to load if you just want to look up a specific product.  Their search engine works pretty well. 

    Thanks for giving me an opportunity to vent on one of my favorite peeves.

  • MargaretBartley
    I don't think it's a co-incidence that two of the most successful websites on the internet, Google and Craigslist, have plain, no-nonsense, visitor-centered homepages

    Margaret,

    I am with you on this one. I really don't find the corporate 'look alike' mode that appealing. However, it is harder to think like your users then like your company!

    Have you worked with information architecture, or user design techniques. I find them very interesting. I've only skimmed the surface, but at one point I was doing quite a bit of research on it. I remember going to sites of the experts in information architecture, and the navigation was so smooth you almost didn't remember how you got to where you were going, but you still got to the right place. It really was like smooth surfing.

    Sasha

    ________________________
    Sasha Daucus
    www.FundRaiserSoftware.com
    www.FundRaiserBasic.com
    Volunteer TechSoup Moderator