Live Demo Homepage: A New Web Design Trend

live demo homepage

Looking for accurate information about live demo homepage? Can it increase the conversion rate of your Singapore business website? The current Singapore website development industry is incredibly fast-paced. Every day, consumers are bombarded with new products and services. This has prompted businesses to find creative ways of standing out from the competition by finding new ways to differentiate their products and services. Days, when long-form homepage was the best way to drive traffic and generate leads, are over! Or at least, they might be.

Over the past few weeks, we have noticed several Singapore websites testing or adopting a new homepage format. This new trend is different from the long-form format we are used to. The live demo homepage format encourages visitors to try your software/service right there on the homepage, without having to create a demo account.

Unconventional Homepage

While this format is not brand new, it has only recently gained popularity as more and more Singapore sites are starting to use it. Using a live demo video on the homepage may seem like a natural step when using the live-demo format, but there’s a step in between.

You can cleverly use a little animation that looks like a GIF to demonstrate your software. This offers your visitors a glance at your software/service which is important for generating leads. For example, if you have an impeccable product that’s superior to your competitors’ but don’t have a live-demo but your competition does, newcomers are most likely going to sign up with them. But why? Because they get to see how the service is going to help them. People are highly visual, but more so the modern consumer. They are used to seeing things in action and getting hands-on experience quickly.

live demo homepage

The next step is to offer your visitors a working demo of the service that your Singapore business website provides. Unlike other lead magnets, having a working demo allows your visitors to preview your service without having to sign up or provide any details. This is particularly important as it demonstrates the functionality of your service/software. It allows you to demonstrate the ease of use and the power of the service to your potential client.

An interactive live demo homepage is an effective way of enticing site visitors to try your product. You can use a focused animation that highlights how your software delivers on the promises made. The animation shows how each software component executes the task to fulfill your claims. Visitors can actually click into the software and get a feel for how it would be like to use the software. This interactive approach is very effective and will give you a fighting chance against your competition. Concisely, the live-demo and a responsive ecommerce website design will help your Singapore business to reign supreme. 

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The biggest advantage of using a working demo is the quality of leads it generates. In most cases, potential customers or users sign up for free for trial accounts just to get a feel of the service/software. While these leads can sometimes be fruitful, you will have to invest a lot of time and manpower to follow them up. You will also need a great degree of salesmanship to convert them into buying customers. This type of lead generation can also prove difficult to track, especially if you don’t have a measure in place to track how often and how much people are using their trial accounts.

A live-demo homepage is easier to track. You can easily determine whether it will work for your Singapore business website by linking to a demo account from another site and measure the number of logins or traffic it receives.

What’s Wrong with The Traditional Long-form Homepage?

One can argue that traditional long-form homepage format is based on erroneous thinking. Why? You may ask. Let’s look at its format because this is where the main problem lies. The top of the homepage usually tells the visitor what you do, and how your services can help them. For example:

  • Powerful, easy to use responsive mock-up template
  • Instant, polished and professional results

While this is great for SEO, it doesn’t do much for lead generation and conversion. This is because it’s built on the premise that the visitor is encountering your brand for the first time, or randomly finds websites by stringing random words, which isn’t the case.

live demo homepage

The homepage is the first place your visitor lands when they visit your Singapore website. It’s where they are first introduced to your brand and products/services. So the nature of this introduction is highly important. For the case of the long-form homepage, the meta description in your website header may entice a website visitor to visit your page after searching for it, for example ‘easy to use responsive website template’.

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But then, you must remember that when someone visits your website, they aren’t looking to find out what your company does. They want to find out how your company will help make their lives easier. How do you do what you do, and how does it set you apart from your competitors?

A long-form homepage format doesn’t adequately answer these questions. But this is where the live-demo homepage format shines. Having a live demo on your homepage provides your visitor with in-depth information of your product/service and clearly demonstrates to them how your product will benefit them. They get hands-on experience on the functionality of your product, which can boost conversions.

Potential Pitfalls of the Live Demo Homepage Format

While this new trend provides for an exciting homepage, the live demo format isn’t perfect. Although it significantly speeds up the registration process, it doesn’t allow users to try out the service before submitting payment details.

So if you have a service or software that requires users to input payment details before they can start using it, a live-demo homepage can be problematic for you.  Also, if you don’t offer free trials to your users, this format may not be suitable for you.

The live-demo homepage by design is quite minimalist. Since it provides the user with an in-depth look into the service/software features and functionality, it doesn’t make sense to then write about the product/service in a bid to encourage visitors to convert. This negates the need for a benefit-based copy, which would have allowed you to have a clear call to action and as a result maximize on lead generation and conversions.

Setting up a live demo homepage isn’t a breeze. You will need to have some technical knowledge especially if your product is primarily designed for offline application. You will need everything from using API calls to linking the demo account to your homepage. While this may not be a big problem, it still isn’t something you can whip up; optimise and test it against your current homepage to be sure that it will reduce web development time.

When is it Appropriate to Use this Format?

Basically, this homepage format isn’t appropriate for everyone. So you need to closely examine if you need a live demo homepage for your Singapore business website. If any of the issues discussed above ring true for your website, then this format may not be the best for you.

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However,  there are some circumstances where having a live-demo homepage could make a huge impact:

  • An overwhelmed sales/support team
  • Poor quality leads

If your sales or support team is overstretched, it won’t be able to adequately cater to your customers. This means their questions won’t be answered satisfactorily, and some customers will fall through the cracks.

You don’t want potential clients hitting the back button and failing to convert due to lack of sufficient information about your product. This is where the live demo homepage comes in. It will provide your visitor with information about your product and how it works which lightens the workload of sales and support team. Although there are other ways of addressing this problem, a live-demo homepage is one way of solving the problem.

It’s also a great way to set the expectations of your potential clients. As the site visitors get taken through the service, they get to see the steps they will have to take as a new user. For example, if you have an e-commerce platform, you can create a live demo homepage animation showing your site visitors how to get their online store up and running. The demo can also demonstrate how to connect their social accounts and add products.

As I stated before, a live-demo format can help you reduce the number of poor quality leads. This will save you both time and manpower which you can then dedicate to serve the high-quality leads generated by the live-demo efficiently.

Final Thoughts

While the live demo homepage is far from replacing the long-form format, it’s certainly a contender. Live-demo homepage appeals to the modern consumer who has a very short attention span. Unlike the long-form format, you not only get to tell your visitors about your product, but you also get to show them how your product works.

This insight into your product will help you demonstrate how it intends to deliver on your promises to the customers. It will also cut down on unsuitable leads allowing you to focus on leads that are more likely to convert. We, MediaOne, has a team of professional Singapore website developers who can create and customize a live demo homepage for your business. Contact us today for more details. 




About the Author

Tom Koh

Tom is the CEO and Principal Consultant of MediaOne, a leading digital marketing agency. He has consulted for MNCs like Canon, Maybank, Capitaland, SingTel, ST Engineering, WWF, Cambridge University, as well as Government organisations like Enterprise Singapore, Ministry of Law, National Galleries, NTUC, e2i, SingHealth. His articles are published and referenced in CNA, Straits Times, MoneyFM, Financial Times, Yahoo! Finance, Hubspot, Zendesk, CIO Advisor.


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