How to Write an Effective About Us Page

Your small business website's About Us page is far more important than you think.
aboutus
Tell your company's story on your About Us page so that visitors can understand your mission and values. (Photo: Rawpixel.com/Shutterstock)

You may not give your site’s About Us page a lot of thought. It might seem kind of pointless — a bit of puff about you and your business, nothing more.

In reality, digital marketing experts consider the About Us page one of the most valuable pieces of virtual real estate on your site. Taking the time to create a compelling page can pay dividends with every visit.

Marian-Schembari

“Many sites start with ‘I.’ ‘I’m an accountant…’ Start with ‘you’ instead. If you start with ‘you,’ you’re already better than 99 percent of the sites on the internet.” -Marian Schembari (Photo: Marian Schembari)

Related: How to Create a Powerful FAQ Page for Your Small Business Website

Why it’s important

It’s true that your About Us page is unlikely to rank very high in organic search results. And few if any users will land on this page when they first arrive on your site. But check your Google Analytics — you may find that the page gets a lot of traffic nonetheless.

Why? Many visitors check the About Us page before making a purchase decision. Marian Schembari, founder of Oh Hai Copy, specializes in writing About Us pages, and she emphasizes their importance.

“If you land on a site and something there interests you, you might wonder who these people are, what makes them tick, what makes them different, if they’re trustworthy. The About Us is where you provide that kind of information to seal the deal.”

Once you understand that this is the key purpose of the About Us page, it becomes clearer how to create a successful one.

Start with a value proposition

Schembari advised, “Many sites start with ‘I.’ ‘I’m an accountant…’ Start with ‘you’ instead. If you start with ‘you,’ you’re already better than 99 percent of the sites on the internet.”

Matt McDermott

“I look at the About Us page more as a Why Us page.” -Matt McDermott (Photo: Matt McDermott)

Your About Us page should include or even begin with a value proposition that puts your customer front and center. Describe not just what your business is, but what is unique about what you offer and why visitors should care.

Matt McDermott, creative director at marketing agency idfive, said that as he prepares to write, he asks clients questions like:

  • Why is your business here?
  • Why do you matter?
  • Who would care if you suddenly weren’t here?

“I look at the About Us page more as a Why Us page,” said McDermott. “These questions help to push clients beyond the typical — and often self-indulgent — founder’s story and more into a consumer-focused narrative.”

Related: 7 Small Businesses with Killer Value Propositions

Tell your story

After you relate your value proposition — what’s in it for the customer — turn inward. Visitors often want to know about your mission, your achievements or a personal story that explains why you created this business. Not sure what to say? Think of it this way: When you’re at a party, what anecdotes do you share about why you started your business or how you got started? These stories that resonate with you personally are the ones that intrigue other people.

This part of the About Us page humanizes your business in a way that can make all the difference when visitors are assessing you against competitors.

Schembari related the story of how she chose a wedding photographer for her recent wedding. “The wedding photographer had this wonderful story on his About Us page about how he quit his day job after finding his parent’s wedding album. He wrote that he wanted to create a legacy for other people that they too can pass onto their kids. I read that story and knew he was the right one for us.”

Related: Brand Storytelling: How to Use it to Boost Your Small Business

Give visitors a next step

Despite the interest visitors may have in your About Us page, it’s a dead end on many sites, meaning there’s nowhere to go from the page. “It’s probably the page with the highest bounce rate on your site,” said Schembari. The bounce rate represents the percentage of visitors who exit the site after visiting a page rather than going to another page on the site.

Don’t make visitors try to figure out where to go next or they’ll simply leave. Instead, provide some call to action. Invite them to sign up for your newsletter or give them a link that takes them to your products page, menu page or reservation system, whatever is appropriate for your business.

Make it fun and welcoming

Make your About Us page welcoming and, if it’s appropriate for your business, fun. A liberal use of photographs and even video can further humanize your site and make the page an endearing experience.

brandon-na

Add testimonials and customer reviews to your About Us page for credibility, says Brandon Na, principle consultant at Seattle Organic SEO. (Photo: Brandon Na)

Brandon Na, principal consultant at Seattle Organic SEO, suggested, “You can add testimonials, reviews and even case studies that help prove who you are and your authority.”

Looking for some inspiration? Schembari suggested a few sites that combine all these elements into an engaging and personable experience. They include ItalianFix, CalcWorkshop and Elsa Isaac.

Related: Simple Animation Adds That Will Make Your Website More Interesting

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