Website layouts

The Best Website Layouts for Emerging Startups

The United States has the highest concentration of start-ups in the world; currently, more than 70,000 are looking to make their mark, according to Startup Ranking. But only 40% of start-ups become profitable, with competition being the biggest challenge for these companies.

Having an online presence is crucial for the success of a startup in today’s business environment. Consumers, when testing or trying out a brand or service for the first time, will automatically go online to see if the business in question is visible.

A dedicated website will therefore provide much needed exposure to many of these businesses and give them insight into how potential customers are reacting to the product/service on offer.

A slow or even poorly constructed website could therefore have a significant impact on business growth. Websites should portray what a startup does as a business, and what it stands for, while effectively communicating its brand; start-ups will not only want to capture the interest of new visitors and potential customers, but also of investors.

There are several ways to achieve this, and formatting has become an essential element. For startups, there seems to be a certain web design format that allows them to present themselves in a particular way to stay competitive against their competitors.

This article presents the perspective of a number of experts in the startup field to better understand the best website layout for a new startup.

A solid homepage

It is no longer necessary to know how to code to establish a presence on the web. Many website platforms exist for start-ups to build a platform for and at little cost – some website builders are even free to use.

To ensure the success of a start-up, websites will need to attract significant amounts of traffic. This is where a prominent landing page and social sharing features come in. The landing page should provide visitors with an overview of what the product/service provided is and why it is currently better than the rest of the market supply.

“You need to start with a solid landing page,” says David Soffer, founder of startup news site TechRound. “It’s the first thing people see when they visit your website and successful start-ups often have a strong message or tagline explaining how they are different from their competitors and what they bring to the table, just at the top of the page.”

Effective websites will be able to tell consumers and investors what the startup does, what visitors can get from their offer, and how they can get it quickly. In terms of brand awareness, some businesses may choose to use a tagline to draw attention to the business name; this is normally integrated into the wider branding of the website.

In general, start-ups tend to use big fonts and bright colors in their homepage design. Soffer also notes that a lot of businesses include graphics or images that move or change color as the user scrolls.

“It’s a great technique that demonstrates imagination, enthusiasm and proactivity towards the brand,” he says.

Given the nature of start-ups, it’s also crucial to ensure there’s a strong ‘call to action’ – where visitors can sign up or submit their information. This message can be further reinforced if companies include statistics or data to back up their claim or vision.

Like well-established brands, start-ups also have the opportunity to showcase their achievements on their homepages. This will not only help build trust around their brand, but also showcase their growth in the market. Startups shouldn’t be shy about flaunting companies they’ve collaborated with, rewarding one, or any positive media coverage they may have received.

Social sharing features are also good to host on the homepage, to allow visitors to share a startups page with their networks. Social media integration has long been best practice for website design and most website builders will have this feature within their platform.

Details, details, details

One element of a startup webpage that is arguably overlooked is the “About Us” section. Unlike well-established small or large brands, these sections – regardless of the sector – impose responsibility on the founders and partners of the company.

When trying a new product, consumers are often interested in why the product was created and where the idea came from. Understanding the background of the founders often sheds light on both the experience of those running the business and where the innovation originated.

Startup founders are often involved in public relations and other initiatives to help grow their brand. As a result, the faces of the founders, the team, and all senior members often feature prominently on these pages. This not only makes the people running the business more visible, but also more relevant to consumers and investors.

Additionally, if the start-up has secured funding, there may be information about the funding partner and their involvement.

Andrew Speer of fintech start-up Capital Bean says the ‘About Us’ page is “very important in building confidence with potential new customers who are seeing you for the first time”. He notes that while startups can choose to showcase the journey from idea to product and why they are different from their competitors, there is an opportunity to tell a story.

“[For start-ups these pages are] detailed and well thought out, they are not small and thin on content,” he says

The interaction with the website as a transaction

Another important element of a startup’s website will be the page where they transact with customers – this can be through a download, free trial signup, or paid subscription.

Startup websites usually offer good deals to attract new customers, and displaying prices through tables is a very popular theme for platforms and subscription businesses. Transparency has been key with all new ventures and ensuring there are no hidden costs will be key to building customer relationships.

In some cases, if a customer leaves a startup’s website, there may be a pop-up window giving the customer one last chance to purchase the product/service.

Newsletters and staying in touch

Very early stage start-ups may not have launched their value proposition yet, so it is common for these companies to present a data capture where potential customers can leave their email address to receive more information. information.

For more experienced and regular entrepreneurs, who are used to generating interest or who have already acquired public relations, regular traffic is likely to be more common. Therefore, having a landing page and a clear form to keep in touch will be effective.

Thought leadership

A very common feature for new start-ups is to include a dedicated section for thought leadership articles. Articles can be contributions from the team or from industry experts who have given their opinion on a hot topic.

When Dime Alley – a US-based lending services company – launched, its website was filled with articles dominated by data and statistics. Dime Alley author Ben Sweiry said it was a tactic to ensure the company was positioned as a resource from day one.

“Over time, we’ve included guest contributions from other experts in our industry talking about the future of the sector – and that’s always a great start for a startup, especially sharing it on LinkedIn and trying to make a name for himself,” he says.

Industry dependent

There is no doubt that the type of industry or product offered will have an impact on the design and layout of the website in question.

For example, a start-up that launches an app will usually only consist of a few pages to encourage consumers to download the app rather than spend time on the site. In these cases, companies have often opted to have a single website page that is systematically divided into digestible blocks or frames.

For platforms, there may only be a handful of pages. However, once a consumer signs up for a free trial or logs into their account, access to the rest of the platform is unlocked. In some cases, it’s as simple as the Google-like homepage; all you have to do is click a button and you’re ready to go.

For start-ups trying to make a difference through wellness or health, visuals become much more important. Additionally, content creation or thought leadership aimed at getting a positive message across are more common.

However, the biggest indicator of what a startup website should look like is just one click away – look at the competitor.

Companies that have been in the space for a long time will already have a concrete idea of ​​what tone works well with the audience; they will understand the user journey and have refined the wording used in their messaging over time.

Using a competitor’s website as a template – while ensuring there is no copyright on the brand – is a good way for start-ups to understand where they are unique and what message can be used to position them as a competitor in the space.