Users need to understand if they are at the right place, and if so, how they can move on to accomplish their task at your site


Create a home-page that introduces the site to users and that helps them to get on their way on the site

From www.accenture.com

Use when

Every website has a home-page. It is like the front door of your house. For most users, it will be the starting point for navigating through your site. Typically, the home-page will be your most requested page of the entire site.


The home-page is an important page, it is the front door of your site. Users that found your site intentionally need feedback to confirm that they are in the right place. For other users that don't know you very well, you need to make clear who is behind the site and what there is to find. The home-page is often packed with stuff, but although it is ok to indicate what the site is about, putting a lot of stuff on the page is not always good. When links are buried in a christmas tree of page elements, users will not notice it. The home-page must balance navigation, branding, content, and promotion elements. Be careful not to make your page too full, users can only notice a couple of things at a time.

On a more conceptual level, the home-page has three functions:
Which exact elements are part of the home-page highly depends on the site. It will be different for every single site out there. Other less important issues in home-page design include having a proper title defined, and a nice simple/guessable URL.
The home-page is a special page. It is therefore quite normal that it has a slightly different layout than the other pages of the site. Nonetheless, some level of consistency should be retained so that the home-page and other pages clearly "belong" to the same site!


The home-page is all about making a first impression.

More Examples

This example from www.nike.com is a good example of a very "empty" page. The Nike brand is so strong that they don't need to spend much words to establish identity. The navigation is very clear and users easily find their way.

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1 comment has been added to this pattern.

Chrissie, 8th April 2008
I'm not sure that the home page is always the most visited. Many users start at Google, which deep links people right to the page that has the content they're searching for.

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