Why are most of the About Us pages on business websites boring as hell? How can you write a killer About Us page for your business?
Keep reading to learn about:
- 5 most common About Us page mistakes (and how to avoid them)
- The REAL purpose of your About Us page
- What to write on your About Us page (and in what order)
- 3 About Us page examples for small business websites
- About Us page FAQ
Why most of the About Us pages suck
…aka “5 most common About Us page mistakes”
Most of the About Us pages on business websites can put a prospect to sleep faster than a sleeping pill — a phenomenon that boils down to just a handful avoidable mistakes.
Mistake #1: Self-focused copy
If on your About Us page, you say “we/ours” more often than you say “you/yours”, you lose your prospects’ attention. They don’t care about you. They only care what you can do for them and whether you’ll do a good job.
Mistake #2: The wrong kind of jargon
There are two kinds of jargon:
- The right kind of jargon: Industry terms your prospects understand and use to describe their current situation, problems and desired outcomes. Use it to show your prospects you know and understand their field.
- The wrong kind of jargon: Words and phrases that you think sound “smart” but carry zero value for your prospects (and, if we’re honest, even for you if you come back to read this copy of yours a week after). Kill it with fire 🔥🔥🔥
Want to know if the wrong kind of jargon has infested your About Us page?
Check out the image below. Unlike the usual Bingo, if you find more than 3 phrases that you use on your About Us page, you have a problem.
Mistake #3: No photos of real people
And by “real” I mean “the ones who belong to your company”. Not the one you found on Shutterstock. Not including the images of yourself and/or your team is a lost opportunity to make your prospects like and trust you more.
Mistake #4: No credibility enhancers
Testimonials (better, case studies) belong on the About Us page like on every other sales page. You’re trying to convince your prospects how great you are. But they won’t believe you if all they have is your own words.
Mistake #5: No call to action
Don’t leave your prospects hanging. Offer them a natural option to move further down your sales funnel.
Funny story: If this was a real life conversation you had telling someone about your company, none of this would happen. You’d talk using clear and natural language, and you may even brag about your latest success.
So why is it different when you try to explain the same things online?
My guess is because of the misconception you have regarding the purpose of your About Us page.
The purpose of your About Us page is…
- tell them about your mission, values, philosophy or passions
- present them with your CV or tell them your company’s story in every detail
- show them every award and badge you have
The purpose of your About Us page IS:
- reassure your prospects that you’re the right choice
- …by telling them ONLY the things that will make them see you as a likable expert,
- …and do it in a trustworthy way
Meaning, if a piece of info doesn’t make your prospects like and trust you more, or if you make claims you can’t back up, it doesn’t belong on your About Us page (or even your website).
Which brings us to a one million dollar question:
What to write on your About Us page (and in what order)?
A simple but effective About Us page template
Here’s a super simple but effective About Us page template you can steal:
- Hero section:
- Clear page title
- What/who you are
- As main selling points as you can weave into a short paragraph
- Start a conversation:
- Show your prospects you understand their problems
- Give them relevant details on who you are and how you work
- Client logos (only if your prospects know these companies)
- Testimonials that support your main claims
- Introduce your team (if applies):
- Ultra-short bios with relevant details
- More credibility enhancers:
- One-two testimonials
- Or featured case studies + a link to view more case studies
- Call to action:
- “View all services”
- “View my portfolio”
- “Check out my book”
- “Download this ebook”
- “Contact us”, etc.
Tip: Base your section headings on questions and goals
Struggling to come up with the section headings? Think about what questions your prospects are trying to answer on your About Us page and/or things they’re trying to do, and use them as your subheads. Below are some examples.
- Who we are
- How we work
- Meet our team
- Get in touch
- What is it?
- Who developed it?
- Two-three most important questions prospects may have. For example:
- Do I need skill X to use this piece of software?
- Can I use it off-line?
- Will it sell my data to third parties?
But every template is only as good as the words you fill it with.
How to uncover the best words to describe your business: 3-step process
Just to clarify: the best words doesn’t mean the fanciest words or the words that sound best. Rather, it’s the words that increase your chances to convince your prospects to hire you (even if these words are “zombie apocalypse” — something you’ll on the About Us page example #3).
Step #1: Find out what eases your prospects’ fears
Think about how your prospects may complete these sentences:
“I didn’t like that the last person/company I worked with was…”
“I’m afraid this person/company will be…”
Now, revert these words to get their positives counterparts. For example:
- can’t handle critique
- missed deadlines
- keeps me in the dark
- refuses to explain things
- handles critique well
- always keeps me updated
- takes time to explain
- + synonyms
Step #2: Uncover their expectations
Think about how your prospects may complete this sentence:
“It’s important to me that this person/company is/does…”
- based in Canada
- wasn’t founded yesterday
- cares about our business
- I can trust them
- + synonyms
👉 Combine words and phrases you uncovered in step #1 and #2 into one list and remove repetitions. Try to weave in these words into your About Us page copy wherever possible: from the description of your company, your services and your process to selecting the testimonials to feature on your page that use these exact phrases.
Step #3: Avoid the irrelevant
Unexpected turn of events: Think about how your prospects may complete these sentences:
“It goes without saying that this person/company is…”
- doesn’t miss deadlines
“I don’t believe that this person/company is…”
“I don’t understand what … means”
- digital transformation firm
- high-end software products
“I don’t care that this person/company…”
- wrote 1230958 lines of code
- drank 423 cups of coffee
- wants to help 1000 companies as their mission
- prides themselves on unparalleled services
- has a certain philosophy / vision
- have certain hobbies, kids, pets
👉 Avoid those words and phrases on your About page (duh!)
A word of caution: Mind the context
Indeed, very often, your prospects
don’t give a rat’s ass don’t care about your philosophy, vision or mission. Or about your or your employees’ hobbies and family situation.
But there are some cases when this info may be important to them.
How to tell?
Just think about whether mentioning it influences the prospects’ buying decision.
For example, the prospects of non-profits or cause-driven companies may care about their philosophy and vision. That’s literally how they select what cause to donate to or what clothes to buy.
And for the prospects of psychiatrists or life coaches, it’s very important to connect with you on a personal level. Which you can help them do by telling them more about your personal life: your past, your family and your interests.
Also: I’m not saying that you should NEVER EVER mentioned anything that your prospects don’t care about.
Of course, you can. It’s just a matter of balance.
Make sure that 90% of the stuff that’s on your About page are things your prospects care about. The rest 10% are all yours to share your baby pics, your pets’ names, the most embarrassing moments of your life or whatever else you feel like.
But ok, enough theory. It’s about time to look at some About Us page examples.
About Us page examples for small business websites
Here is a funny thing about selecting “do it like this” examples of web pages.
A page make look and read fine (impressive, even) at the first glance, but actually perform badly. Or look like it was designed in the 90s and written by a 5th grader, but drive leads like crazy.
So, the only way to make sure the About Us page examples I show you also work was to take the pages I wrote myself and for which I have the feedback from the owners.
Example #1: About Us page for an IT company (Crafty Penguins)
Crafty Penguins is a Linux IT consultancy based in Canada. To create their About Us page, I used a very similar outline and the exact same 3-step process to uncover the “best words” described in this article.
If you want to learn more about the strategy behind this page, check out this video.
Try this on your website:
- Add a short text in the banner that describes you/your company filled with adjectives you uncovered during the 3-step process
- To describe your values, create a section “How we work” that consists of 3-4 small subsections around one of your values each
- Add a quote from CEO
I didn’t want generic, boring cliché content that appeared to be syndicated. And Gill created really good copy that resonates with our target clients.
Example #2: About Us page for a business coach (Rinzen Project)
Tami Irogawa McGonigal is an executive coach, trainer and speaker based in the UK. The challenge of writing her About Us page was to share just the right amount and the right kind of personal information to make sure her prospects can connect with her without boring them / bloating the page with unnecessary details.
Try this on your website:
- Use professional photographs
- Notice how just a couple of custom graphic elements make otherwise super simple design look memorable
- Think about what emotions you’d like your web design theme to evoke. Here, we went with the soothing earth tone on purpose, as Tami’s prospects struggle with a lot of stress and pressure.
I sought Gill’s help to improve the copy on my website. Wow. My voice is still very much there – just sharper and sleeker.
Example #3: About Us page for a small software company (Relax Software)
How do you write an About page for something as “exciting” as a piece of financial software?
Turns out, it’s not that difficult. Think about your school times and your favorite teacher who could make the most boring subject exciting. How would he/she write your About Us page?
If you want to learn more about the strategy behind the page I wrote for Relax Software, check out this video.
Try this on your website:
- The more complex your offer, the simpler should your language be
- Use your prospects’ questions as section headings
- Features are as important and can be as exciting as benefits
- Don’t take yourself too seriously
The new site not only looks great, but also communicates what I’m selling and the benefits to customers effectively and quickly.
About Us page FAQ
I can’t think of any other questions around About Us page for small business websites at the moment. But maybe you can.