It seems like a no-brainer to put your mission and values and corporate vision on your website. But does anyone actually care?
Some things to consider:
On our site, we look to convert users into new business. This is a pretty common primary focus for most websites. If you’re selling something, your goal should be for customers to buy it.
Mission and values statements tend to be internal messages. The intention is to communicate a guiding ethos for the company as a whole. What they don’t often do is speak to a potential customer’s needs.
You can say your goal is to become “the premiere provider of x in North America,” but what do I care? As a potential customer, I care about the problem that I’m trying to solve. Tell me how your product or service fulfills that need.
It’s important to consider if your positioning is unique or if your competitors are saying the same thing. Sometimes cliches are cliches because they’re true. There’s often a real grain of truth in every overused saying.
But when every other business claims to “provide high quality service,” the message becomes diluted–fast.
Your users are smart. As they click through your site, they’re gathering information and making judgements.
The more someone tells me their product is going to change my life, the less likely I am to believe them. This could be because we’ve been burned by too many infomercials. Or it might be because as a society we’ve learned to be skeptical.
You’re innovative? Show me examples of how your product is breaking convention.
You have superior customer service? Give me easy ways to get in touch with you.
Your mission is to be considered the best? Show me testimonials from former customers who already believe that you are.
None of this goes to say that you should scrap your mission and values or vision statements. They have merit if they truly guide you as an organization.
Instead of making these statements the main focus of your about page, bake the sentiment into your website copy. A friendly tone of voice does more to convince me that a corporation is inclusive than reading about it in a mission statement. I’ll believe you’re on the cutting edge if I read blog posts demonstrating your novel approach.
Ultimately, it’s about providing users with the proof they need to draw their own conclusions. This will go farther than a set of mission and values statements in capturing and holding the attention of your audience.