We were recently asked to give feedback and re-write some pages on one of our client's website. Believe it or not, one of the most troublesome pages to optimise (both from a business and SEO perspective) is the 'about us' (or equivalent) page! Most companies and organisation don't ordinarily spend a lot of time thinking about the humble 'about us' page but will always assume there will be one and that their agency or SEO consultant will magic one up for them.
Larger organisations can get away without one, however, for smaller businesses it can actually hold significant value for the business. Generally speaking, any company information not vital to clients or customers can be relegated to the 'about us' page. This doesn't mean it should be sent to die or be forgotten, far from it, it can and should be treated as another avenue to sell your business to your target audience.
What type of content should an 'about us' page display?
Depending on the type of business, it may be relevant to have a brief history of the company, what inspired you to setup your small business, display owners and other staff members' details or provide industry specific information among others.
The back story: It may be dull and mundane to you but people love a good story and this is one area that can help differentiate your small business from others. People want to know your story, what inspired you, who you are, whether it is a family owned business and how long it has been established.
Be personal: People relate to people. This is probably the one area that will set your business apart from the competition and larger companies. Having a short bio and photo helps your potential customers relate to you as a person. Whether you do home visits or have a shop-front, psychologically your customers will be familiar with you which provides for a more friendly dynamic when you first meet or when they first walk into your store. It associates your brand with you and helps customers understand that they are not dealing with an unknown person hiding but a real person they can identify with who understands their need.
Your USP: The 'about us' page is also great for shouting about what makes your products or the services you provide different from the rest, what sets you apart and the added value that you are able to put forward. As much as it's about you, don't forget that you are still trying to sell your business to customers and clients. Highlight them and explain the value it holds.
Page furniture: Don't forget your calls-to-action and other page essentials which will encourage your visitors to make contact with your business. Have your contact details clearly displayed on the page, add your social media links and feeds if you have recent content posted on your social channels, e.g. a Twitter or Facebook feed - this provides another channel for your customers to interact with you as well as encouraging sharing. Display any credentials and badges. Link to other internal key pages so your visitors don't hit a dead end. It's also a great area to link out to other local businesses you work closely with who compliment your business and this has additional SEO benefits which we will cover in another blog post. I'm not a fan of testimonial pages but having genuine customer endorsements scattered around the site in key places as well as on your 'about us' page helps build trust and confidence.
Your 'about us' page should not just be there for the sake of being there. Adding a mix if not all of the above (if relevant) will not only add positive SEO value but will also help your potential customers identify with you and understand what your company is about. An effective 'about us' page could help sway indecisive customers in your favour when thinking about contacting you and buying your products or services.