Your website sucks because it wants to be a movie
This topic was generously suggested by Viv Amatuzzi.
Video is king, amirite?
Seriously, we’re out here watching nearly six hours a day:
With all those hungry eyeballs, it seems obvious that you should produce a slick, stylish video explaining why your product and company are so amazing. Give it some jaunty background music and plop it up there at the top of your homepage. Right?
Not so fast.
It pains me to deliver this news, but people do not visit your website with the same goals and mindset they bring to Netflix or ESPN. They’re looking for information, not entertainment.
And even the greatest product explainer video of all time - directed by Martin Scorcese, with an original score by Hans Zimmer - will be ignored by the vast majority of visitors.
A video is not searchable the way plain text is. It’s not copy-pasteable. It’s not skimmable. It requires turning the volume up. And most importantly … nobody particularly cares about your cool video, except you and your leadership team.
Here's what you can do
If you absolutely must make a video, go ahead. If you’ve already made one, don’t worry - you’re certainly not alone.
Just keep it out of the homepage hero section.
Instead of relying on a video, iterate your way to a heading, subheading, and (optional) visual that convey what problem your product solves, or what amazing outcome it delivers, and for whom.
Put that at the top of your homepage.
If you have videos that answer visitors’ questions, by all means add them to the site. Just put them a little further down on the homepage. Maybe place them deeper in the funnel - on a Product page, or How It Works page. But remember that not everyone wants to watch them, and not everyone can. So make sure the information they contain can easily be found in text form.
Bonus: Looking to get more views of the videos you’ve added? Be clear about how they’re helpful, and how long they are. (“See how it works in 30 seconds” is way more inviting than “Watch the video.”)