The landing page. Its the start of a narrative, the beginning of a relationship, and if you’re good — the opening of a great story.
Sometimes, the product is the hero. Sometimes, its something else entirely. However, the common thread is that the great sites start showing you the road to walk down, paved with yellow bricks and all.
In the first example above, we’re looking at The North Face:
The story is clear, and comes at us from all directions. The North Face isn’t just slinging product — they are collaborating with top athletes from multiple disciplines to bring us awesome stuff. Cool photography and immediately believable.
It’s about adventure, adrenaline, and athleticism — in some out-of-the way spots all around the world.
The second example above is from the Yoox site over the holidays.
Here, the story is a little different. It’s colorful and fun. Its evocative of the holidays, and the heartfelt silliness that comes from hanging out with our loved ones. Its playful, hints at presents (and who doesn’t love presents) and extremely interactive. Each color had a different scene with relevant product and a similar spirit.
Indeed, you can click right on the scenes to start getting lost in the store.
Finally, one of my favorite storytellers: J.Crew.
Sure, the landing page shows you product, and good landing pages do that. But it does more — it starts telling you about the reason you came there. Were you looking for a cashmere sweater => come right this way.
No? That’s okay, maybe you came looking for a suit.
You’re thinking about fabric, and the clothes, and before you know it, you imagine the places you’ll go, and the things you’ll see in the sharp new threads that you could have in a few clicks.
Ultimately, it doesn’t matter whether the shopper was looking for cashmere or a suit. The juices are flowing, the pictures are inviting, and the story of what might happen has begun.