Can your biotech website hold your audience’s attention? Two facts tell us how hard it is. First, biotech is a highly competitive market with an expected annual growth rate of 15.83% from 2021 to 2028. Second, people form an opinion about a website in less than two-tenths of a second, often from landing on the homepage. The bottom line is whether or not your homepage can hold its own in a booming industry. We’re taking a two-part look at 10 winning biotech homepages.
We’ll take a deep dive into 4 winning biotech homepages. So let’s start by looking at what goes into creating a winning website.
Remember your homepage objectives.
Before jumping into the homepages, let’s start with a framework of what any homepage should accomplish:
- Create the right first impression
- Provide valuable, high-quality content to your key audience segments.
- Effectively and quickly drive visitors to pages that matter to them.
- Reinforce your brand through visual and written content.
Cover the main content areas.
Biotech companies have different goals, scientific demands, and competitive challenges, and their websites will reflect these differences. At the same time, addressing most or all of the content areas below will increase your chance of meeting your homepage objectives:
- The company’s mission and values
- The Unique Selling Proposition (USP), including the market need, the scientific challenge, the company’s solution, and why it matters
- The science and technology behind the challenge and the company’s solutions
- The scientific and managerial expertise of the leadership team
- Current technologies, programs, and products—along with the research or drug discovery pipeline
- Investor or partner information
The Winning Biotech Homepages
No homepage is perfect (if you find one, tell me!). Still, we can determine which homepages work, why they work, and where they might improve. So let’s go! have problems.
Winning Biotech Homepages #1: Mirati Therapeutics
According to its LinkedIn company page, “Mirati Therapeutics is a late-stage biotechnology company whose mission is to discover, design and deliver breakthrough therapies to transform the lives of patients with cancer and their loved ones.”
This homepage hits the mark, especially in communicating the company’s image of boldness and growth. There are a lot of great aspects of this site, with only a few blunders.
Mirati’s mission is right on the hero image: “We’re tackling Cancer Head-On.” It’s straightforward, plus the subhead incorporates many ideas into just two sentences. Nicely done.
A Bold, Branded Look:
The deep purple hero image really pops, as does the cool animated image. The white copy and large font size stand out well, the aqua accents are effective, and the logo’s usage successfully reinforces the brand. Some sections look a bit cluttered, but creating distinct color blocks keeps it in check. The overall impression is vibrant, with good functionality.
Huge Consent Box:
There’s a lot of information on this website, but the home page sticks to a few basic areas with minimal copy and CTAs. In these sections, large headlines and CTAs enhance readability and functionality, especially for mobile. The well-planned navigation bar shows the full range of information available and how to find what you want.
A Clear Story of Growth:
The homepage tells a clear story of how Mirati is a dynamic, growing company that’s on its way to meeting a big challenge. Starting with the hero image, the headline shows they’re actively taking on a big health issue: We’re tackling cancer head-on.” The subheading is also active, with the text “best-in-class targeted therapies” highlighted in aqua.
Below the hero, the next section talks about Mirati’s current work, with intros about two key programs (with nice animations and a CTA for each). This is immediately followed signs of a growing company.
The first headline, “Mirati is developing a pipeline of novel therapeutics,” has a CTA to “Explore the Pipeline.” Another type of growth is highlighted in the career section, with the headline “Become part of something bigger.” Even further, “bigger” is highlighted in blue! Need more proof of a company on the move? Just scroll to the large News section, which provides teasers to four recent press releases. The message couldn’t be clearer.
The menu is interestingly laid out with an eight-item main menu (although I don’t think “Home” is necessary). These are separated into two groups:
- Five have general information about the science and the company.
- Separated out above those nav items, in a smaller font, are three audience-focused items (Investors & Media, Careers, and Contact Us).
This is a clever solution that creates multiple pathways, without the nav items looking squished or overwhelming.
This simple footer has clear contact and privacy info, plus social widgets. Unfortunately, the huge pop-up cookie banner hides the entire thing until you close it out.
Winning Biotech Homepages #2: Beam Therapeutics
Beam Therapeutics is a public biotechnology company that develops precision genetic medicines through the use of base editing.
This site hits all the high points that should be on a homepage. It’s attractive, well-messaged, and has a good flow. There is more text than some other sites, but only enough to get the point across. Well done!
Successful Look: The home page is crisp, with pleasing colors that reflect the logo, plus good use of contrast and white space. Also, the diagonal design element creates interest, looks modern, and reflects the logo. The hero image has a subtle animation that adds interest but doesn’t distract. Each section is distinct and easy to digest.
There’s a user-friendly primary menu (including Contact)—nothing superfluous. The “Learn More” CTAs are very visible and have descriptive labels, such as “Learn About Our Portfolio” and “Meet More of the Beam Team.”
Beam hits a lot of important points and does so with clarity, starting right from the hero image. The homepage clearly outlines the brand’s USPs and focus on innovation, plus it provides a multi-faceted view of the company—its vision, values, personality, scientific expertise, and leadership. A lot is packed in, but it’s never muddled.
Shares Company Values and a Story of Growth:
From headings to paragraph copy, this homepage gives the impression of being a solid, forward-looking, innovative company that has a great culture. The section’s headings tell a story that includes what they do, the foundational science, and their approach and “portfolio.” They give a lot of real estate to their team and culture, showing they value their employees. We also see a big, bright News section that further gives the image of a company that is growing.
Audience Target: Beam successfully addresses two key audiences:
Audience 1 – Investors:
This public company speaks the language of investors, many of whom might not have scientific or technical expertise. The company takes the time to explain the science and how their pioneering work relates to it. A major “News” section shows that a lot is going on. My one suggestion would be a nicer submenu for the Investor section.
Audience 2 – Job Seekers:
They have lots of positions to fill—and it’s hard to find qualified staff with the necessary expertise. Bean wisely highlights their culture with a “Meet the Beam Team” section that includes a casual team picture and friendly wording about their values—not just stuffy leadership! Another bonus is that there’s a Boston Globe logo showing that it’s among the “Top Places to Work 2020.”
Winning Biotech Homepages #3: Lubrizol CDMO
This website is for the CDMO Division of Lubrizol Life Science Health (LLS Health), a leading pharmaceutical contract development and drug product manufacturing organization. You can get to this website through the pharmaceutical portion of the LLS site, but the Lubrizol CDMO site looks like a standalone site.
This is a good example of how a large site can have a well-organized, homepage that is easy to comprehend, and cohesive—rather than cluttered and overwhelming. The message of being a leader is clear and cohesive throughout. However, the homepage has two important issues—and they’re quite important: a problematic logo and the main headline.
Clean and Interactive:
The homepage is interactive from the start with a hero that includes a button to a professionally produced video—an up-and-coming trend. While not the boldest color palette, a modern design is created through strong use of the primary lavender color, the aqua accent color, plenty of white space, and color blocks with minimal copy and clear CTAs. The font is contemporary and easy to read.
Easy Navigation and Functionality:
This is a big site, and Lubrizol’s well-planned navigation and layout prevent confusion. There are six main tabs on the top navbar, including a contact button and a search element. While some tabs have large submenus, they are broken into logical, easy-to-understand groupings. The user interface includes a color change when you hover over menu items. The CTA buttons on each section are highly visible.
Messaging Their Leadership Position:
This homepage consistently conveys that Lubrizol CDMO is a well-established industry leader that stays on top of its game.
- Just below the hero are three updatable feature boxes (Currently they highlight two articles and one event). Not a bad idea for a big, dynamic company that wants to convey its ongoing industry leadership.
- Below the feature boxes is a well-messaged description of the company that mentions experience, expertise, technology, and uniqueness.
- Next, the homepage highlights three USPs (Unique Selling Propositions), each in its own clickable box. This element establishes leadership by showing the company’s breadth, depth, and custom solutions.
- Next up are sections for their two key product areas, which grab attention with bold headlines, plenty of white space, and striking technology-focused photos. Again, the teaser copy includes leadership messaging.
- Near the bottom, there are large boxes that graphically highlight the most recent of their monthly blogs, another signal that Lubrizol has valuable information to share with the industry.
- The homepage further establishes leadership and trustworthiness with a slider containing customer testimonials.
Contact Form Issue:
The contact form requires multiple fields of personal information. That’s not bad in itself, but its placement on the homepage might be off-putting, as it creates work for the user, butts up against the industry’s privacy concerns, and can be distracting for top-of-the-funnel users who just want to look around. And one of my pet peeves: I hate a button that says Submit!
The Logo Problem:
The site is for the “CDMO Division of Lubrizol Life Science Health (LLS Health).” Unfortunately, the graphical logo at the top-left is accompanied by the text “HEALTH CDMO Division.” You don’t even see the name Lubrizol until you start reading further into the copy! This inadequate logo appears at the top of every page, which is a real miss for branding.
That said, the footer has the graphic logo with the accompanying text “Lubrizol Life Sciences.” It’s a mystery why this logo isn’t used in the top-left nav area (and hence on every page)! On a positive note, the shape of the logo is reflected in several design elements for subtle branding.
The Acronym Problem:
What is the acronym in the main headline? The main headline, A CDMO for all phases, assumes knowledge of what a CDMO is (there is no explanation anywhere on the homepage). I had to leave the site to find out it’s a Contract Development and Manufacturing Organization. If you use an acronym, make sure everyone likely to enter the site will understand it.
Winning Biotech Homepages #4: Ambys Medicines
Ambys describes itself as “a biotechnology company focused on discovering and developing regenerative and restorative therapies for people with advanced liver disease.”
Some will love it, some will hate it (especially on their first visit). At first glance, it’s dramatic and engaging, but the functionality is far from ideal. However, there’s good branding, messaging, and content organization. On balance, I call this a win—but you’ll have to judge it for yourself.
Distinctive, Bold, and Engaging Look:
The homepage is very interesting, memorable, and says a lot about Ambys. You land on what looks like a splash screen that is animated with four high-quality fade-in images of scientists or managers in shades of gray. The contrasting white headings and subheads feature an oversized (if clunky) font. Logo-orange accents—including the prominent Learn More button—are effectively used. Overall, the homepage creates intrigue, has a cohesive message that highlights USPs, and tells a story.
While there’s a strong first impression, the immediate functionality was a problem for me. To display the navbar, you need to click on a stylized menu icon—I had to take a second to figure it out. Too much thinking, too much time. Perhaps a bigger problem for UX is that when you click the Ambys icon from inside pages, you go back to the splash screen and have to open up the navbar again.
Good Content Organization:
Once the navbar is open, the primary menu items contrast nicely in white and the labeling is clear. If you hover over any primary menu item, its submenu items will display horizontally beneath the primary menu. Hover over submenu items and they turn blue. The look and interactivity gave me the impression that the company was creative, modern, and not afraid to try new things. But still, the extra clicking was a real turn-off.
Wrapping Up Winning Biotech Homepages Review
The homepage of a biotech company has a big job—and there are many contributing factors. As you develop your website, think of all the factors mentioned here and how your homepage can reflect the best qualities (and avoid the poor ones). For the best results, work with a top-notch interactive agency like Ladybugz Interactive that has experience in the biotech industry.