A problem I encounter with most of our ecommerce clients is they have boring about us pages. Sorry to say this, but it’s true. Thankfully, with the right framework, you can easily learn how to write an about page that’s compelling and builds trust with your ideal customer.
Many wrongly assume their about page should be a long historical tale. Unless you’re a historic brand with a fascinating narrative, you need to find a unique angle that engages your potential customer without resorting to bland, cliche phrases.
More than explaining why someone should hand over their hard-earned cash, your about us page should allow a peak behind the curtain. Your team, culture, and values should be on full display.
It doesn’t matter if you’ve selling nuts, bolts, and screws or Swiss timepieces, your brand has an interesting story that deserves to be told. Here’s how to write an about page that acts as a magnet to your ideal client, drawing them closer to you and nearer to purchasing.
Do You Need An About Us Page?
Ask any web designer, and they’ll insist on creating an about us page. Some will have a good reason why and others will state it’s a given of every good website. However, it’s a good question to ponder.
An about page allows you to explain why your brand exists, explore the values you’ve built your business on, and bring a more human element to the fore. It should help build a stronger relationship with your target customer and not be a boring necessity demanded by a web developer.
Finally, it should expand upon well-placed teaser paragraphs on the home page and contact page that act as an elevator pitch. Your brand’s voice should be consistent throughout your website.
Again, the goal of your about us page is to build customer relationships and make a more human connection. Your target customer should be excited to purchase from you after reading your about page. If they aren’t, you have room to improve!
Where Should It Live On Your Ecommerce Store?
There’s no single best place to put a link to your about page. Some will want it in the very top navigation bar, along with the option to view cart, and a link to the contact page.
Others will place it in the footer among a list of links to important pages such as the delivery/return options, contact, and FAQs.
The important thing is that your visitors can find it. So it doesn’t matter if it’s at the top, bottom, or floating! Just that it can be easily found and read.
Why Do Most Of Them Suck?
I was interested when researching this topic for this article to see so many brands with turnovers in the millions still using boring, cookie-cutter about us pages. Surprisingly, some of the best examples of brands with an excellent about page were small businesses!
Most suck as people focus on trying to be clever and not on what the user should know to make an emotional buying decision. In short, if you’re not moving the emotions, you’re asking your potential customer to make a logical choice, and so they’ll look for the cheapest option.
The other extreme is long boring articles that cover the brand’s history over the last 200 years and read more like an essay than a captivating piece of content that’s designed to inspire.
Many pages I observed didn’t include the basics such as a team photo, the names of major team members, or even opening times for customer support. With these elements missing, these stores are likely to lose easy sales.
How To Write An About Page That’s Compelling
Start by creating an elevator pitch for your brand. You have 100 words or less to use, so make it punchy! It might take you a few attempts but you’ll find by doing this exercise how you talk about your business changes for the better.
Next, expand this short paragraph using the 5 W: Who, What, When, Where, and Why. Let’s explore these and how to effectively use them when writing an about us page.
Start with Why
Your reason for existing should kick off the show after the elevator pitch prelude! Hopefully, you’re in business for more than the money and can explain in a little more detail in the section.
Avoid cliches or generic statements, such as “We’re here to serve you the best selection of tennis rackets available” or “I couldn’t find the right shoes for my weird-shaped feet, so I opened a shoe shop!“
Instead, ask yourself why you wake up every day and are excited to work in your business. That’s part of your why.
If you’re lucky enough to own a family business that dates back a hundred or more years, you should research the founders and their story. You’ll soon find their why, and hopefully, it aligns with yours. Marrying the two in your about page is a great way to create a compelling story.
When your business started
Some businesses, don’t have a particularly interesting story regarding when they were founded. So you might feel safe skipping this section. That’s fine.
Others will have a captivating reason behind when the business was started. Again, keep it brief, interesting, and to the point. With a historical brand, you might want to have a history page that more fully covers this element.
What you do with excellent
Talk about what makes you excellent. Is it a particular product range, brands you stock, or custom options? Don’t list random product categories or brands. Instead, craft a few sentences explaining why you focus on those brands or product categories.
Who is behind the brand?
Your business could be you and your dog. Great. Get an amazing photo of you together and paste it onto your about us page.
Should you have a slightly bigger team, having a team photo is a must. Firstly, it shows that you are humans behind the store and not robots (or worse, scammers). Secondly, visitors to your website will have a better idea of who to talk to when they need advice or support.
It’s worth having a short bio of key team members along with a headshot of them. Nothing too fancy, but make it easy for customers to identify who they need to talk to that can help answer their questions.
Where to find you
It’s a massive mistake to forget to include your location, phone number, and contact email, on your about page. If you have 4 locations, it’s worth including details on each store, including a map.
I know that having a phone number, email address and physical address on your ecommerce store will increase the amount of spam you receive. That’s a given. However, it will help customers feel safer dealing with you as they can contact you with ease.
Don’t Include These Elements!
When you write an about page for your ecommerce brand, there are a few things you should avoid.
It’s not about you
Sounds strange, I know. But your customers care about solving their issues and not how you’re amazing and win lots of awards or had an interesting founder in the 18 century. Few want a history lesson!
Try to explain to the visitor, why they should hand over their hard-earned cash. Make them the hero of the story.
The most compelling copy is conversational. You feel like you’re talking to an old mate over a coffee. No one wants to read dense-looking paragraphs in an article that look similar to an essay.
So keep paragraphs short, and use images and subtitles to break the copy into more manageable chunks.
You’re a fun person, doing exciting things with your ecommerce brand. Allow the brand’s voice to shine. You’ve spent years honing it. Otherwise, you’ll seem boring and out of touch. Be you on the page!
Complex language or jargon
Keep your copy simple and to the point. It’s fine to use slang or swear words if that’s part of your brand’s voice, but it’s best to stay away from fancy words and jargon. They don’t make you sound intelligent. Sorry to say!
If you do want to use jargon or industry terms, create a glossary page that helps visitors understand what you’re talking about! That way you’re educating them while building trust. A win-win!
Do Show Off Your Team And Culture
If you support local causes, talk about them. If you stand for something unique, mention it. Don’t hide behind being a faceless corporate entity. Your customers will decide to buy from you based on what they see on your about page. So shout about what makes you special!
Using Your About Us Page To Build Trust
The more your about page talks directly to your ideal customer, the more they’ll feel at home with you. So when you write an about page, keep asking:
- Does this section project our brand in line with our aims?
- Will our target customer emotionally connect with our text?
- Is our personality on full show?
- Will the reader still be engaged at the end?
- Does this section build trust?
Examples Of Excellence
All of what I’ve written will help you somewhat, but the following examples will bring to life the ideas I’ve shared. Take time to study each of these and borrow elements and ideas that appeal to you.
In three short paragraphs, GAP spells out their unique history and how that translates into their current business model.
I might be a little biased here, Loake are my favorite formal shoe brand. On their about page, you’ll take a brief tour of the brand’s 140+ year history. There’s even a note from the current Managing Director, that adds a unique personal touch.
You’ll probably have heard of Jo Malone, but her new business Jo Loves might be new to you. They don’t have a typical about page! Instead, they focus on Jo and telling her story using video, text, and images. It’s a powerful piece of content that moves emotions.
Luxury interiors retailer LuxDeco offer an exciting peak at what they do. By focusing on their clients, the brands they stock, and key team members, we get a sense of how they operate and what they are capable of.
Mixing humor, a good story, and an interesting back story makes the Bulldog Skincare about page stand out. It’s also concise, showing you that everything is possible! Plus, dog photos!
As I enjoy the occasional cigar, It’s worth including Smoke King, who are a UK-based, family-run tobacconist. They use plenty of photos and gifs alongside witty captions to tell their story.
Where To Start With Writing An Enticing About Us Page
Sadly, you won’t nail your about page on the first try. That’s to be expected. It will take a few rewrites and tweaks. Plus, as your business grows and develops, you’ll want to come back and amend your page.
The best starting place is to sketch out what you’d like to say, some rough subheadings, and what images you need. From here, I’d advise you spend time working on your elevator pitch. Remember you have 100 words or less to tell someone about your ecommerce.
100 words aren’t that many, so you’ll need to work hard on being concise, compelling, and educational.
From there, you can create a robust plan and start writing sections, trying different subheadings, and taking photos. Don’t try and get it done in a day. Instead, take your time and build a page you’re really proud of.
Remember, Don’t Be Boring!
Now you have a much clearer idea of how to write an about page for your ecommerce business, the next step is to take action.
My final piece of advice is to get help from an external source when editing the copy. This way, it won’t be boring or riddled with spelling mistakes as multiple people have checked it.
Do ask customers to give feedback on your new about page and refine how it looks and feels using their input. They are, after all, the people you’re trying to reach and convert into raving fans!
Last month Izabela saw her search traffic from Google increase by 400% using 3 SEO tips we taught her.
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