How to Write an About Us Page – Authentically & Effectively
Updated: Jan 23, 2020
Tips for writing a great about page that does what you want it to
Writing an about page for your business can be a rather bothersome endeavour. Particularly if you’re grappling with trying to express yourself authentically and you just don’t feel right being all me, me, me! What stage are you at with your page? Have you done it? If so, how do you feel about it? Do you think it’s getting the results you need? If you haven’t written it, what’s stopping you?
I feel your pain. Even as a professional writer, I found writing an about me page for my website harder than doing it for my clients. You might actually be pretty nifty with a keyboard, but it’s definitely more challenging writing about yourself than somebody else.
And (I’ve done the field research) if you ignore it, it doesn’t go away.
I could alleviate your stress by telling you it doesn’t matter as long as you have some information up there on your site. But that would be a big, fat lie.
The bottom line is, a bad about page won’t put everyone off. But it will put some people off. Why make life harder for yourself?
A quick reality copywriting reality check...
People get bored. Really quickly. If you don’t hook them, a lot of people will just click away. Your page needs to be instantly engaging. (Unless your target audience consists of those unusual types that read every last plaque in a museum).
You may have a beautifully designed website (complete with all the right fonts and colours) but, alas, a pretty page isn’t enough. You want your visitors to do something. For that, you need the right words.
The Importance of Creating an About Us Page
Your about us page is one of the most important pages you’ll ever write. It’s crucial to your digital marketing strategy and should be in your business plan. Why? Because it’s where you can start to build that essential connection with your potential customers.
For the small business or business owner, there is one key ingredient that you need to get people to buy from you or use your services, and that’s trust. If people trust you, they’re more likely to want a long term relationship with your business.
Your company description is a fantastic opportunity to start to inspire trust in your website visitors and turn them into customers. So, I’d suggest you don’t waste it.
I’ve found that the problem with a lot of people’s about pages is not necessarily that they have grammar mistakes, or even that they’re poorly written from an English perspective – they just aren’t doing what they’re supposed to do.
Quite often they end up looking like CVs, and let’s be frank, the majority of people really aren’t online to read CVs!
Put yourself in the shoes of your prospective customers. Perhaps they found you on a Google search or social media and they’re not really sure what you do.
They might have an inkling about you from some of your other marketing efforts or through word-of-mouth. Or they may know a bit more about you and what you do.
Either way, they probably don’t yet know why they should have anything to do with you.
Like I said, your about page is a wealth of opportunities. It’s an opportunity to:
start building a relationship with your client/customer;
inspire a level of trust in you and your business;
position yourself as confident and credible;
make a great first impression;
be authentic and transparent about what you’re trying to do;
express your values;
and ultimately to sell whatever it is that you’re offering.
Sound appealing? Let’s get into how to actually write the thing then.
How to write a business description: 10 top tips
1. The Golden Rule: It’s not really about you!
Where a lot of about pages go wrong is that people really take the us or me bit to heart. You have to remember what you’re trying to do here. People only care about the bits about you that are relevant to them!
Your page is actually about how can you help your reader. It is where you acknowledge their position, their problems, what’s brought them to your page, and you address these.
2. Break up your text
A dirty great wall of text is a turn-off. Most people skim read and then get stuck in if they like what they see. Make it easy for your clients/customers. There are recommendations that 200 words is the absolute maximum, but I would suggest keeping them under 100 for optimal readability.
Bullet points and numbers will also help you to break up the text and make it easier to digest.
3. Use images
If you have a professional, friendly picture of yourself (and if you don’t – get one), stick that up on your page. This will help you to humanise you and create trust.
Other images will also help to break up your text and make it more enjoyable and easier to read. Infographics are always a good shout for explaining different aspects of your business.
4. Say why you do what you do
Tell your audience what gets you out of bed! Demonstrate your passion for what you do, and talk about why it’s valuable.
Outline your mission statement and describe your values. If your values match with your target audience, you’re onto a winner.
5. Build trust
As well as telling your story, you want to include things like what you’ve achieved, who you’ve helped, and what results you’ve had. Be specific about what you’ve done or what you do.
Testimonials and links to your previous work will also help to inspire trust.
Tip: If you have them, raw figures are a great way of doing this, for example, “82% of my clients said that therapy helped to improve their quality of life”.
6. Write like you speak
Ditch the corporate persona. Bin the jargon. Humanise your business. Someone in your industry might know what you’re talking about, but do your clients? That is the benchmark.
7. Have a call to action
Remember, you want your reader to do something. That might be to buy a product on your website, to call you for a consultation, or to sign up to a newsletter. Invite them to do so, and make sure you have working links to wherever you want them to go.
8. Call it what it is
Please. Call it ‘about’. People don’t want to be fiddling around wondering where to go on your site because you’ve named your page something ambiguous like ‘the journey’.
9. Don’t waffle
Keep it interesting, but keep it brief and cut the fluff. Some of the best about us pages are really short. That doesn’t mean you can’t have a long about page, but you need to think about what your reader needs from you and make that your goal.
10. Take inspiration from elsewhere
Read other people's pages. There are tons of examples for inspiration – search stuff like: ‘about us sample content, sample about us pages for websites’, etc.
You could use an 'about us template' for guidance, but don't stick religiously to it. It's important to find the structure that works for you.
Most importantly, check out what your competitors are doing. Does it work? Doesn’t it work? Take the things you like and use them to inform what you’re doing.
Now you’ve had the low down on writing an effective about page, you’ll now probably fall into one of three categories:
A: “Yes! I am going to go away and absolutely smash my about section and get tons of lovely customers and clients.”
B: “Hmmm, I’ll give it a go but I might need some extra help getting it just right.”
C: “Yeah, okay, I see what you’re saying. But I just don’t have time to do it/I am not a natural writer/I want a professional writer to knock me up something super.”
If you are person A – brilliant! Get out there and do it! Test your page, see if it gets results, and remember that you can keep tweaking it until it’s right.
Bs and Cs – don’t beat yourself up if you don’t feel totally confident writing your about page. Send me a message and we can talk about how I can help you.