Are you considering to boost sales by putting up a fancy landing page and push your marketing efforts? You must have heard about landing page being an effective tool in your advertising campaign but before you actually go ahead and build one, it is important to understand what a landing page is.
A landing page is a standalone page except for your website aimed usually for paid traffic through Google AdWords and other channels.
The sole purpose of a landing page is conversion whether you want to generate leads or build click through page for an ecommerce site. Creating a high converting landing page takes deep understanding of its mechanism and user behaviors. It is not about having great graphics only, it involves strategic planning of your copy, performance, user interaction, page flow and a prompting call to action. As the legendary Steve Jobs once said, long before most of us actually understood it,
“Design is not how it looks, design is how it works”.
You might have the best aesthetics but if you have a poor copy, or if your page does not load instantly, your design efforts are a waste!
Here are the top considerations for building a high-converting landing page
Speed and Performance Optimization
No matter how great your page is, if it doesn’t load within the first 3 seconds, your users will navigate away. When including hero images, product features, revolution sliders and fancy effects in your page, it is critical to optimize your page for speed and performance.
The idea of having a landing page is to keep it clear, simple and direct. Do not overwhelm the leads with too much information rather keep it precise and only include the key benefits of your offer followed by a call to action.
Action Item: Check your page with Google tools to see its optimization and load time for mobiles and desktops. Here is an example:
UI and UX for a landing page
A landing page is one of the best ways to promote your product/service to the desired audience. Since most landing pages are goal oriented like increasing subscribers, increasing product sales, collecting user emails or boosting conversions, your UI and UX must align with this goal. For building yourself a stellar landing page, keep these points in mind.
- Have a single and precise conversion goal. (For instance getting more sales.)
- Instead of fancy design, focus on intelligent design. Simplicity is the key to a great design. Only include elements that are necessary for your user and avoid elements that play no part in functionality. Every element on your page must support your conversion goal.
- Have a visible and OBVIOUS CTA (call to action). More on CTA below.
- Provide social validation in the form of testimonials or customer stories.
- Avoid using long content and if necessary break it up with bullets, formatting and subheadings so that user can easily skim through it.
- Do NOT include the navigation. (More on this below)
- Design and follow a hierarchy that leads your user from start to the goal being achieved.
- Include quality images (stock photography) of your product or the ones that clearly emphasis the key benefits of your offer.
Landing Page Flow
A logical flow for your page is as critical as the actual content. A rule of the thumb is to have:
- An engaging heading
- Key benefits
- Testimonials or social validation
- Call to Action
However, this may not apply to all landing pages since some of them have lengthier content and complex structures. This is where you have to be patient. Build your logical flow, take some time to review it, improvise it and go through it as a user. Keep repeating the process unless you have the perfect pitch. For simpler landing pages the above flow holds true, like this one from optimizely:
However, if you have a lengthier landing page, you might need to rethink your flow. You may place multiple call to actions at the end of each section in your page. Here is an example from DayChamp.
Landing Page Copy
A high converting landing page copy takes more than just writing skills, it takes technique. Conversion is the science of mind and you have to look at it from your user’s perspective. Your copy must have:
A killer headline
The first thing your user will see in your page is the headline, make sure it is engaging enough. A good technique is curiosity gap while writing your headline.
The curiosity gap is the space between what we know and what we want to know.
This means you give your users some information and keep them hooked for the rest. Some good examples are:
- Is your content marketing turning customers off? (Kapost Blog)
- From oh shit to aha (Neil Patel)
- Fastest and Easiest way to craft newsletters that get clicked
You see that these sentences don’t show a full picture. They just give the reader enough to continue reading the rest of the post and find out what is it that is turning my customers off, or how did Neil Patel go from oh shit to aha what’s the story behind his success that I can replicate too. It is so powerful that Copyhackers ran a test that revealed using the curiosity gap led to a 927% increase in clicks on their pricing page.
Focus on benefits
Another critical thing to consider while crafting a winning copy for your landing page is to talk about the benefits not the product. Customers want to know what’s in it for them rather than what it actually is. Don’t emphasize on how awesome your product/service is, rather talk about how it can solve problems for your customers and how it will be a great addition to their current options.
Lastly, A/B test your copy with different variations, like in the example from copy hackers above. Don’t expect to hit a homerun on your first at-bat. Test and improve unless you get the results you wanted.
More on How to craft a great landing page copy by marketing guru Neil Patel.
No Navigation Landing Page
This might come as a surprise to you but your landing page must not have menu navigation items. Remember you have one goal oriented landing page right? The links in the navigation bar distract the customers from that goal and may lead them to other pages which kills the purpose of having a landing page in the first place.
Getting rid of the navigation bar for landing pages has been a hot topic lately, where hubspot did 5 landing page variations and saw an improved conversion rate of 28-32% in pages with no navigation bar. Minders and other websites also experienced increase in conversions after removing the menu bar. However, the most significant results were seen by Yuppiechef where they saw a 100% increase in conversion rates after removing the nav bar.
Call to Actions
The call to action is the decisive element in your landing page. Every marketer wants this button to be clicked the most. This is why it is important to understand the best practices for call to action size, color, shape, and copy.
- The size of your call to action should not be too small since most users access the internet through a mobile device. It should have enough white space around it and be an appropriate size for different screen sizes. It is the driving factor for your page so it should be highly visible and clear for your users to access.
- The color of your CTA must be in contrast with the background. For example if you are using a grey background pick an orange or blue or any dark color for the CTA that goes as per your brand.
- Don’t get too creative with the shape of the call to action. Use round or square buttons that you are already using in the rest of the design. Avoid having a star shape as your CTA since your user wouldn’t be able to tell if it actually is a clickable button or just a design element. Understand user psychology while creating your CTA. If they are accustomed to seeing CTA in a certain place and a certain shape then you should follow this while crafting yours.
- Copy of your call to action is the most critical element in having users click it. Most companies think that buy now, or download etc. are good CTA copies. However this is not the right approach. You have to show the user what is in it for them. Instead of saying download free eBook, say improve your sales conversions with this eBook.
See that the call to action by Hootsuite is clear enough. User knows that clicking on this button will take him to a page where he can find more about company business plans. A bad example of a CTA is:
- Similarly using the right words on your CTA is very important. The top most persuasive words in English language are:
Try including them in your CTA copy. Also words like limited offer, hurry up, start, stop and action words are a good way to show urgency and prompt your user to take action. For further help go through these examples at hubspot blog. Read this for great CTA copy examples
A landing page is a powerful marketing tool for driving sales and capturing leads IF PUT THE RIGHT WAY. Hope you have learned enough to start practicing on your own page. If you have any questions or feel that I have missed anything, you are more than welcome to comment below.
Best of luck!