4 Ways to create a GREAT hero headline (+ examples)—the ‘Write Your Own Homepage’ series
When someone lands on your site, they enter into a conversation with you. Question is: will they engage?
(Image credit: Noa Ratinsky)
What happens when someone visits your site?
Do they engage, or do they—literally—bounce?
That depends a whole lot on your hero section (= the welcome screen of your homepage, before users have to scroll).
The hero section alone will not usually make a sale or convert users. But it should:
✅ State your unique value proposition
✅ Clarify what problem you are solving for whom
✅ Entice users to continue reading
Of course, the headline has “helpers,” like a sub-headline, bullets, a CTA, a click trigger. (More on those in my next post.) Together, they give a full picture of your key differentiators.
Still, the headline itself is critical.
Opening with a wishy-washy headline is like starting your conversation with a big ole “buh bye.”
Instead, you want to lead with a headline that does one or more of the following:
1️⃣ Provides clarity
2️⃣ Invites curiosity
3️⃣ Grabs attention
4️⃣ Names a pain
Here are 10 websites with hero headlines that fit nicely into one of these 4 categories.
Let’s have a look at what they’re doing, and why it works.
1. Clarity-driven headlines
These headlines are simple. They’re clear. And they never leave your visitors guessing. This can mean spelling out what you do, or what solution you offer.
- Spell out what you do:
- Spell out the solution you offer:
2. Curiosity-driven headlines
These headlines cause visitors to engage almost automatically. Posing a question or having them fill in implied information is like challenging your visitor to an intellectual duel. Will they accept?
- Ask a direct question:
- Make users fill in gaps (with their minds 🧠):
3. Attention-driven headlines
Attention-Interest-Desire-Action. That’s AIDA, a classic copywriting formula often applied to homepages because it works. There are so many ways to grab attention. Here are just 2 examples.
- Lead with a pattern interrupt or unexpected statement:
- Say it in a word. Or two:
4. Pain-driven headlines
These types of headlines are less common, since homepages are a catch-all for visitors with different levels of awareness and different pains. Still, when feasible, a pain-driven headline can be extremely effective.
- Lead with a pain point:
There you have it, folks
Four different directions to take your headline in.
Give it a try. For bonus points, see if you can come up with 4 variations of your headline—1 for each category.
And here’s a secret 🤫: You don’t need to nail it in one go.
You can test and re-test how various headline options perform until you hit on the one that seems to leave your visitors saying, “Yes, yes, yes!”