The Most Important Website Element

The Headline is number 1

I can hear you screaming your answers through your computer. “The Graphics!” “The Title Tags!” “The Auto Responder!” “The CMS!” Most of you unfortunately, are not even close. The most important website element is…the headline.

Did you know you can increase the effectiveness of any advertising, including your website by as much as 400% by adding or changing the headline? This is not some new ninja secret to get your website more effective. The headline was a feature of the work of the early advertising pioneers like Claude Hopkins and Albert Lasker.

The headline is used as an attraction mechanism still today in newspapers on the front page of the newspaper and also in magazines. These newspapers and magazines fight for readership on news stands in most cities and countries.

Yet I am constantly amazed by how many websites that fail to have a headline on their website. We have now moved from the information age into the attention age. The attention span of the people visiting our websites is getting shorter and shorter. If you’re a website owner, take a look at your site analytics.

How long do people stay on your site? Most people would have a lot visits that last no longer than 3 seconds. In this time, the site owner has not sufficiently engaged the visitor and they have clicked away, looking for the best solution.

So how do you write a headline? The good news is that the process has already been done by millions of other advertisers. You need to search for the best performing direct response ads and model the headlines you see. The headline needs to engage the reader and provide a clear benefit that is specific to the reader.

One of the most ripped off ads of all time is John Carlton’s ad about the one legged golfer. This headline contains 4 major benefits that any golfer would surely love to have. A headline like this is pretty powerful, the reader is engaged instantly and is compelled to read even further.

So look for ads that you can model off and tweak to suit your market. You might need to re arrange your landing page to fit the headline in and make it a feature of the page. Consider reducing the size of the header banner or removing it all together.

Consider moving or re-styling the navigation menu. It will be worth the effort and response rates will improve because of it. The most important website element is the headline.

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