How to write the perfect about us page
One of the key pages on any website or blog is your about us page – but it’s also the one most people struggle with. To help you create the perfect copy, we share our expert copywriting advice.
Your about us page is probably one of the most important on your website or blog. It’s not just where readers or potential customers can get to know you better and learn about your story – it’s where you start building a connection that will lead to loyalty and sales.
A great about us page will establish your credentials and personality, and initiate an emotional bond with your audience. It’s an essential ‘must-have’ for pretty much every single website and blog, and often one of the first pages that visitors read.
So it’s worth taking the time to get it absolutely perfect. And yet, so many businesses get their about page completely wrong!
The two biggest mistakes people make on their about us page
Many business and bloggers make one of two big mistakes on their about us page:
- They don’t think it’s important so spend little care on it.
- They think readers want to know everything about them.
Your about us page should have enough information on it that readers can get a sense of the person or business behind the products, services or blog. It should look like some thought and care has gone into it.
But at the same time, it shouldn’t be a lengthy collection of every minute piece of information about you – readers aren’t that interested!
Most people just need enough information that they can scan to find out anything that is interesting or useful to them. So try to avoid being:
- Too long.
- Too boring.
- Too me, me, me!
- Too detailed.
- Too off-brand.
How can you do that? We’ve put together some guidance for writing perfect about us page copy.
Write for your readers
Before you write a word, be really clear about who you want to read your about us page.
Ideally you’ll already know this, as your website will be part of an overall, well-considered marketing plan. But if not, here are some questions you need to think about:
- Who is your ideal customer?
- What’s the problem they need you to solve?
- What do they care about?
- What do they find interesting?
- What about your story will resonate with them?
- What will convince them you’re the person or business for them?
Remember, that your about us page isn’t in fact about you at all. It’s for your readers and potential customers. It’s there to tell them that they can like, trust, read and buy from you. And order to achieve that you need to really know them, and write with them in mind.
Set your tone
Once you’re clear about who you’re writing for, you need to think about how you’ll convey your message.
What’s your personality – your brand tone of voice? For example, are you friendly? Helpful? Professional? Funny? Authorative?
Before you start writing, take a few minutes to consider what impression you want to convey to people. Then write a list of adjectives that describe the personality of your business or you.
When you write your copy, check it back against that list of adjectives, and make sure it reflects them. If it doesn’t, rewrite until it does.
Tell your story
People love stories, and this is your opportunity to tell yours. It’s also a fantastic chance to convey qualities like authority, experience, trust and success without obviously spelling them out.
If you can, pick an angle for your story that people can remember and that will make it interesting. Some ideas include:
- How you came up with your idea.
- How you overcame hardship to pursue your business.
- Your personal or career background.
- How long ago your business was started.
- Why you were inspired to start your business.
- Your vision for your business.
(If you’re really stuck for ideas, just think about the who, what, why, when and where of your story, and start with them.)
Your about us page is your chance to start building a personal connection with your potential customers or readers, so let your personality shine through when telling your story.
And to achieve this, try to avoid writing in the third person if possible. Just compare these two sentences:
- From the moment Hannah began her career, she loved copywriting.
- From the moment I began my career, I loved copywriting.
Which is warmer and more personal? Which makes you feel that you’re really listening to the person behind the business – and therefore makes it easier to connect with them?
Tellingyour story as ‘I’ or ‘we’ draws the reader in and helps them to feel like they’re really getting to know you. And if they know (and like) you, they’re more likely to take their relationship with you to the next level.
Even if you could easily write pages and pages on your passion for your product or blog topic, and the fascinating story of how you started your business or blog, don’t.
Most visitors to your site want to quickly scan a page and get your key message from it. If they open your about us page and are confronted with hundreds of long paragraphs, they’ll probably just close it down without reading a word.
So make your about us page look as inviting as possible by keeping your copy as brief as you can. By all means include (some) interesting details – as long as they’re interesting or useful to your target audience – but in general, write less rather than more.
Break it up
Where possible, break up your copy with subheads and bullet points, too. Not only does this make your it less daunting to read, but it also makes it much easier to scan quickly.
This means that even if someone spends only a couple of seconds looking down your page (which many readers may well do), you can make sure they get your key messages from your subheads.
Also think logically about the thought process of your reader, and make sure your copy follows a clear direction, and doesn’t jump around confusingly between points.
Move people on
One thing you should take into account when writing every page of your website, is what you want visitors to do next.
Once you’ve captured their attention and got them onto your site, you want to keep them there, and drive them to a page that will encourage them to take the next step – whether that’s to buy from you, to sign up for your mailing list or to get in touch for more information.
So make sure you provide readers with clear direction (and incentives) to take the next step in their sales journey with you on your about us page.
This could be encouraging them to provide you with their email address, or click through to another page.
Check out your competition
Once you’ve completed your first draft, have a look at your competitors’ about us pages. How do they compare? Have you missed any tricks? Do you stand out enough from them?
Is the proof or experience they present more convincing than your own? Can you pull out more from your own story? Are you selling yourself enough?
Look at length, too. How do the well-written about us pages compare in length to yours? Have you written a lot in comparison, or too little?
Come back to it cold
At the point where you’re happy with your about us copy, put it to one side and do something different. If possible, leave it for a day. And then come back to it and read it cold.
What do you think? Do you still like it? Is it clear, easy to read and original? Can you shorten it? Does it make sense? Do your subheads help tell the story?
Don’t be afraid to rewrite sections if you’re not happy with it – and if you like, show it to someone you trust (someone honest but positive) and ask their opinion.
Take your time and get it perfect
Your about us page is a vital sales tool, so take the time to get it just right. With some thought and work, it should be perfect – perfectly you and perfectly in line with what your readers are looking for.
So if you haven’t started writing your about us page copy yet (or, after reading this, think it may need some reworking!) you can now write with confidence – and create a perfect about us page for your customers and readers.
Want to read more about websites and copywriting?
You’ll find more great advice in these articles:
- Five things your business homepage MUST include
- Learn the secret of writing powerful headlines
- How to write a blog people will want to read
- 12 easy steps to writing a brilliant newsletter
Photo by Jodie Cook