Types of Pages

This section covers best practices for writing home pages, section landing pages, and content pages.

Home Pages

Home pages are the top-level pages of the site. Home pages introduce and draw visitors to the content within the site.

When developing a home page, you should:

  • Write and design home pages so they are easy to scan
  • Provide an introduction to the content on the site
  • Provide users with easy access to the main sections of the site, including subsites.
  • Include many links to the key content on your site to help users find what they need quickly. Use the "Quick Links" box to highlight this key content.
  • Promote the content below the home page and encourage the reader to go deeper into the site.
  • Include headlines and short summaries to show the reader the news or other special content that resides deeper in your site.
  • Use the middle of the page to "push" your main message (the eye travels to the middle of the page first, then to the left, then to the right).

Section Landing Pages

When a site has particularly deep content, they need landing pages. If you have a subsection or area on your site where subpages are grouped together, a landing page can be used to describe these subpages. These pages introduce specific sections within a site and link to deeper content within that section. Jared Spool of UIE calls these "gallery pages."

When writing a landing page, you should:

  • Write and organize pages so they are short, concise, easy to scan
  • Write pages so they make sense when found out of context, via searches, links, and bookmarks
  • Provide an introduction to the section's content
  • Provide links to the top levels of content in the section.
  • Make it easy for users to find what they need. Include surrounding text if the link is not descriptive enough.
  • If you have many links to deeper content, group similar links under the same subheader.

Content Pages

Content pages are the lower-level pages on your site that provide the in-depth material of your site.

When developing content pages, you should:

  • Write content pages so they are relatively short, concise, and easy to scan
  • Write pages so they make sense when found out of context, via searches, links, and bookmarks
  • Break up long blocks of text with meaningful headings and subheadings that reinforce the main points of the page. See Page Elements for more details.
  • Use bulleted or numbered lists instead of long paragraphs
  • Write short paragraphs with short sentences. Sentence variety is good, but too much complexity will prevent a skimming user from grasping your point.
  • Put your main points in the first paragraph or two. Help users quickly determine if the page has what they need.
  • Incorporate calls to action into your content.
  • Write content pages so they are informative, not promotional, in tone.

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