11 Important Tips for Making Better Landing Pages
Your website is the hub of all your marketing efforts. All of your emails, social posts, and search ads lead back to your website, and when they do, they need somewhere to land. You can build as many landing pages as you want — pages for sales, specific campaigns, particular channels, and even unique products — but the most important thing is to convert the visitors on those pages to paying customers. Here’s how to do that.
1. Include Critical Elements
The purpose of a landing page is simple: turn visitors into leads by collecting information from them, usually in exchange for a promotional offer or piece of downloadable content like a whitepaper or webinar. To facilitate that transaction, use this essential landing page checklist:
- A headline
- A description of the offer
- A visual component
- A form for capturing information
From there, you can customize your pages according to user data (we’ll elaborate on that more below). You might choose to add a subheadline to clarify the content or some extra elements like testimonials or security badges to reassure anyone that their submitted information will be secure.
2. Focus on Navigation
In most cases, a landing page’s primary purpose is to keep users on the page until they’ve converted by filling out the form. As such, you want your page to be completely free of distractions, including links to other elements of your site. Remove your main navigation and menu from the landing page, leaving your logo in the top left corner to link to your homepage. Once your customers complete the form, the button they use to submit can link them to your homepage.
The exception might be a landing page focused on a particular new product or short-term promotion. In that case, your priority might be to direct your customers toward the rest of your catalog. Create a focused version of your main navigation that leads people to the product categories you’re promoting.
3. Remember the CTA
You’ve set up your landing pages at the receiving end of particular pieces of marketing. Whether they’re search ads, social posts, or emails, those marketing efforts each have a CTA to entice your customers to click on them.
Your landing page needs to create a seamless transition between the CTA they clicked on and the offer they came to see. Use the same language — if the CTA says “Download the whitepaper now,” the landing page’s title should mention the whitepaper, and the CTA on the landing page should use the word “Download.” The goal is to show your visitors as seamlessly as possible that they’ve come to the right place.
4. Keep it Simple
A landing page serves a particular purpose, and every element on the page should be in service of that purpose. Stick to a title, a short paragraph, a visual component to spice up the page, and add a form to collect information. If your visitors want to know more about your company, they’ll find it on their own. The landing page is just a tool to drive conversions, not to educate or inform.
5. Emphasize Value
If you’re looking to collect visitors’ information and turn them into qualified leads in return for a whitepaper or other piece of content, your visitors need to know that they’re getting a fair deal. The copy on your landing page should not only explain what’s in the piece of content, but it should also emphasize the value of the offer.
For example, if you’re offering a whitepaper about building better landing pages, don’t just say that the whitepaper includes “tips for creating better landing pages” — say that better landing pages can increase conversions by 60 percent. By showing not only what’s in the content but what they stand to gain from reading it, you’ll entice your visitors to convert.
6. Encourage Sharing
One of the most helpful things your visitors can do is to bring in more visitors. To enable them to do so, add social sharing buttons for Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and email. Prospective customers tend to trust their peers more than they trust marketers, so a testimonial from a visitor can be a powerful tool for driving additional traffic to your landing page.
7. Don’t Ask for Too Much
When you ask for information, keep it brief. The only information that you should require from your visitors is their name and email address. If you feel it would help the lead nurturing process, feel free to ask for their job title, company, phone number, company size, and other pieces of pertinent information, but keep in mind that requiring too much information can be a deterrent.
Instead, keep your forms short and work with what you have. A first name, last name, and email address should be enough to find the person on LinkedIn and fill in the rest of the information you need. With the right CTA software, you can even populate those fields automatically. What’s most important is to get the lead nurturing process started.
8. Don’t Use “Submit”
People don’t like to “submit” to anything, so avoid that language at the bottom of your forms. Instead, as we mentioned earlier, connect the wording on the button to the offer itself. If your offer is to download a whitepaper, use the word “download” or the phrase “get your whitepaper.” Make the button big and appealing — we’d even recommend coding the button to go from gray to a bright brand color as soon as the necessary information is in the form.
9. Use Rich Media
There aren’t many landing page elements to focus on, so make them pop. In place of a simple photo, consider including a GIF, short video, or interactive image. Design isn’t the most critical piece of content on the page, but it can help give the page a unique look and feel that will make your page stand out.
One side note: don’t add audio or a video that users need to click. Audio is annoying, and a clickable video is a distraction from the business at hand of directing your page visitors toward filling out the form.
10. Make More Landing Pages
Landing pages are simple, lightweight, and generally not indexed. They won’t slow your site down or negatively affect your SEO, so there’s no downside to building as many of them as you want. Don’t hold back — if there’s a particular segment of your customer base you’d like to speak to, a product or piece of content you want to promote, or a specific campaign you’re running, make a landing page.
You can combine as many factors as you like. If you want to build a landing page for your end-of-year sale that only appears to the top 20 percent of your customers when they click on a Facebook ad, you can do that. Landing pages should be easy to build and duplicate, so the time investment is minimal.
11. Test Everything
No part of your website is static, and your landing pages are no exception. A/B testing your landing pages is one of the most powerful tools at your disposal to optimize imagery, calls-to-action, buttons, copy, design, and any other element of the page. Don’t underestimate the potential of optimization: according to President Obama’s Director of Analytics, the campaign increased engagement by more than 40 percent by testing four buttons and six images on their signup page.
This tip goes hand in hand with number 10 — the more quickly you can create new pages, the more iterations you can launch and test, and the faster you’ll arrive at an optimal design and unified landing page strategy.
The Bottom Line: Content Matters Most
These tips will fall flat if you don’t accompany them with high-quality, relevant, timely content. Both the copy on your landing page and the content you’re offering your customers as an incentive to fill out the form should be consistent with your brand, targeted to your personas, and sympathetic to their needs.
Building dozens of landing pages can feel overwhelming, but you can create as many as you need when you have a custom-built website and access to a bespoke back end. If you’d like to hear more about our landing page optimization services, get in touch!