“About us”: the good, the bad and the missing

"about us" page with nothing to sayAbout us pages come in 3 flavours:

1. Corporate babble – meaningless waffle about “management teams”, “strategic partnerships”, “proactive solutions”. Sometimes “stakeholders” creep in as well. If you hide the company name then these pages would fit any organisation from NASA down to Rotherham Pet Supplies Ltd.

If you are a me-too company with a me-too website then this style will suit well.

2. Heroic personal story in the Victor Kiam genre:

“I made my first Badass Snow-Board from a sheet of titanium I found in a dumpster…”

People love stories and this type of page can be a back-up if the rest of your site is failing to tell the company story with layout, images, and copy.

E-commerce hot-shot Johnnie Boden tells a great story without even mentioning what he sells:

“After five burglaries, one office dog, nine Christmas quizzes, twelve nights spent in the warehouse…”

Every other page on the Boden site is selling the dream – and this page tells us that Johnnie is living the dream as well.

3. The missing about-us page. Amazon don’t have one. Neither do Apple. Zappos? Zilch. All rely on the rest of the site and the power of the brand.  And they want you to get on and buy something – not read empty spiel.

How many real-life shops have a museum of company history? Photos of the directors? Maybe they use the space for better things…