“The day I understand something from ‘About us’ section of a company website, I would say, I have achieved something in journalism.”
Thus posted one of my journalist connections on LinkedIn a few days ago. It was quite a ‘comically serious’ kind of statement, the serious aspect of which actually cannot be ignored. As a PR professional, it set me thinking as to what exactly is one looking at when she/he visits the ‘About Us’ segment of a company’s website.
Who visits the ‘About Us’ section?
There are various categories of individuals who would visit the ‘About Us’ section of a Corporate website. It could be designated professionals from other companies who are looking for business partners or scouting for potential vendors. Or it could be people from the relevant trade (Healthcare, BFSI, Auto, Education, Hospitality, etc.), who are looking for information on a company’s products and/or services. It could even be individuals who are passionate about something or need something and may want to check out if a particular company/brand can actually help them with their passions or needs. Then there are media persons who might want to know more about a company’s products or services, for them to decide whether the company is worthy of a story or not. And then there would be the stock market enthusiasts (Brokers, Analysts, and Investors), who before getting into the ‘Investor Relations’ segment, may just want to take a peek into what the company exactly does. And last but not the least, there are job seekers who may have seen a posted employment opportunity but want to learn more about the company before applying for the role.
Where do companies go wrong?
On several websites, the ‘About Us’ sections are merely a few hurriedly written lines…many a time even placed at the footer. It’s there just because ‘website rules’ say that ‘About Us’ has to be there, and not because it serves a concrete purpose. It’s very unfortunate that many Corporates look at the ‘About Us’ section as a compulsion rather than the ‘first interface’ to connect with their target audiences and other stakeholders.
Most of the time, in any introductory communication with prospective customers/stakeholders, Corporates just share their website link prefixed with ‘For further details, you may visit our website’. In most of these cases, ideally, it’s only the link to the ‘About Us’ section that should be shared…and it should communicate enough for them to be convinced about the company’s stature, reliability, and consistency.
How to make a good ‘About Us’ section?
The ‘About Us’ section is an opportunity to outline a company’s story, its vision, its mission, and most importantly what makes it stand out from the clutter.
For an impressive ‘About Us’ section, a company first needs to figure out its unique personality that needs to be portrayed, and then word and design it in such a way that it makes for an intriguing read.
A good ‘About Us’ section does not just convey a company’s story…the segment also helps it sell its products or services. When visitors become acquainted with a company’s story and are able to relate to it, they will be more inclined to purchase from or do business with it. A well-planned ‘About Us’ on the company website can actually help achieve this.
And when it comes to journalists, they expect the ‘About Us’ sections to be clear, accurate, genuine, and transparent…because if they are looking to do a serious and responsible story, they would compare the contents of the section with inputs from various stakeholders (employees, customers, shareholders, and even the surrounding community) before bringing out their story.
An ideal ‘About Us’ segment should be educational, informative, proof/testimonials oriented, beneficial, engaging, convenient to navigate, and accessible from any device. It doesn’t need to tell a long story, but should definitely provide the visitors enough information for them to have a positive view of the company.
The views and opinions published here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the publisher.