We spend a lot of time on the first impression.
We make sure the homepage shows the best content, most relevant discussions, and most exciting events. This gets more people to register.
But it’s pretty easy to get people to register (especially when registration is free).
People will happily take a few seconds (and only a few seconds!) to enter a few details to satisfy a mild curiosity, take advantage of a small opportunity, or stay informed with what’s going on (how many newsletters do you receive each week?)
It’s the second impression that matters. If you’ve revealed everything on their first visit, the second impression is worse than the first.
The second impression should surpass the first impression (and the third should surpass the second).
Most of the time, as you’re designing your onboarding journey, you want to provoke two states of mind here; surprise and awe.
- Surprise – “I didn’t know I needed that!”
- Awe – “that’s an incredible way to do [x]”
For sure, make a good first impression. But don’t set the bar too high for your second impression. Remember it’s a journey, in each step of the newcomer journey, surprise and awe newcomers. Surpass their expectations on each visit.
(p.s. also remember 80% of your visitors won’t see your community homepage).