Elisabeth Voress

5 Must-Have Pages for Your Website

Blog Post created by Elisabeth Voress on Mar 11, 2019

As you begin to plan your website, you may be wondering about the content you should provide and best practices for making those decisions. We recommend that you start with 5 critical pages: Home, About Us, Contact Us, Officers, and Activities.

 

Home page

Once you've decided on the purpose of your website, think of your home page as a billboard or your 3-minute elevator speech to broadcast that message. What is the key information you want to convey? Perhaps it's a welcome message from your Chair. It's critical to provide clarity around who you are, what you do, and what you offer. Encourage your audience to interact with you through calls to action (e.g., "find out more..." and "Join us..."). Adding an engaging image helps users identify with you, and clear and consistent navigation makes it easy for visitors to focus on what they're looking for.  If you think most visitors to your site are already familiar with your group, you may want to add details on what’s new or upcoming, or recent activities and calls for participation.

 

About Us page

This page can give more details about your local section, technical division, or group, providing more insights about your group and its members. It can tell a story about your activities, values, goals, and successes. You might want to include history or a map, or perhaps a video that highlights some of your ongoing or outreach activities.

 

If you'd like to include information about the ACS, here's some language and links you can include:

 

About the American Chemical Society

The American Chemical Society (ACS) is the world’s largest scientific society and one of the world’s leading sources of authoritative scientific information. A not-for-profit organization chartered by Congress, ACS is at the forefront of the evolving worldwide chemical enterprise and serves as the premier professional home for chemists, chemical engineers and related professions around the globe.

 

Common Links to ACS

Meetings

https://www.acs.org/meetings

ACS Network

https://communities.acs.org

Regional Meetings

https://www.acs.org/regionalmeetings

Careers

https://www.acs.org/careers

Find a Job

https://chemistryjobs.acs.org/searchjobs/

Get Involved, Stay Involved

https://www.acs.org/getinvolved

ACS Matters Newsletter Archive (member-only content; requires login with ACS ID)

https://www.acs.org/content/acs/en/membership/acs-matters.html

ACS Branding Guidelines

https://www.acs.org/content/acs/en/about/branding.html

 

Officers Page

This is the page where you provide information about how you've organized the leadership of your group. Many groups include head shots to make their volunteer leaders more recognizable, details around their particular roles and what they entail, and their areas of interest and past activities with the group.

 

If you choose to include contact information such as email addresses for your officers, you may want to consider generic email addresses (or email addresses already publicly available such as on a university site) for public-facing pages using your group's domain (e.g., chair@acsXYZsection.org). You should take care in posting personal information such as emails and phone numbers.

 

Contact Us page

Make if easy for people to get specific information they need, want, or can't find on your website. Depending on your resources and traffic, you may want to provide a physical address, a general email address, or perhaps a chat feature. Be sure to indicate the expected turnaround time for a response.

 

Another option is a contact form, which you can set up with structured and/or required content areas. Submitted questions are forwarded to an individual or group for response. Vendors such as Wufoo and Formsite have available products (including free starter versions), and your website host may also offer a contact form. If you choose to use one, be sure to consider how you will manage responses (e.g., who will do it), what your expectations for turnaround time are, and whether you have created a body of standard questions and responses you're likely to receive.

 

Activities page

This page might contain details for events that your group sponsors or coordinates, including meetings, awards, ongoing education offerings, and outreach. A calendar of events can give members and potential members an idea of the breadth of activities you're planning--either in person or online. Including relevant details like registration, directions, and opportunities to volunteer at an event can expand the number of participants. Including videos, transcripts, and photo albums from past events can also be a way to spread the word about the variety of opportunities available,

Outcomes