The Landing page is the most crucial page on your website. You have a few seconds to convince visitors that your product or service is right for them which is why landing page optimization is so important.
In this post, you will learn my landing page optimization best practices & secrets along with real life landing page examples.
What You Will Learn
- How to use landing page optimization to increase profits
- How to analyse your landing page
- The crucial things every landing page needs
- Real world landing page examples
- My personal landing page best practices
Introducing Evgeniy Garkaviy
I have been working in SEO and Pay Per Click marketing for over 4 years.
I have helped many small businesses in the UK and Germany reduce the cost of customer acquisition and helping them get the maximum out of their marketing investment.
I am a Google AdWords certified partner and contribute regularly to www.temi.co.uk which I co-own. I have vast experience with PPC and landing page optimization and offer a range of PPC services to my clients.
Landing Page Optimization Made Easy
It is very easy to create a landing page but it is also just as easy to screw it up.
A lot of landing page designers wrongly assume they know what a user will be looking for on your landing page. But that really depends on what action you want the user to take.
A poorly designed landing page can end up costing you a lot of money – I will show you exactly what you need to do and what you should avoid with my landing page best practices.
Using Cheesy Stock Photos
The majority of landing pages all suffer from the same problem of using very similar stock photos.
Men and women in suits shaking hands: if the page offers some business services.
Workers smiling: in some research companies, developers.
Girl with the headset: online stores where a happy manager will help you…
You get the picture.
Using boring images like this is killing your conversions.
You may think that successful people on landing pages gives you creditability and trust, but most people do not trust them and that includes me.
Use Google search and you will see many similar landing pages using the same images.
A page containing a funny or engaging picture is much more likely to catch a users attention like this one-
It is much better than boring men in suits shaking hands. What do you expect to see on a page that offers car insurance?
I guess it might be a car, but you must think deeper and find something unique that will be interesting for your potential customers.
Having a good headline helps to gain peoples attention spending more time on the page and browsing around.
The headline is one of the most important factors on a page to help you communicate with visitors directly. The best headline has a clear proposition and call to action.
A good exercise to go through is to imagine your page without text – just the headline, call to action and form.
Would you take action based on just the headline? If you would your headline is perfect!
Have a look at the page below-
Where is the headline? “Get Started Now” is the call to action. The video is there, but that is all.
From this, I can’t even understand what this page is offering. The headline is critical, even simple text like “SEO agency in Birmingham” would help.
Using video on a landing page can be hit or miss. If you have a lot of mobile traffic its likely they won’t be able to load or watch the video which will hurt conversion.
Take a look at this landing page design that makes great use of the headline element-
Landing Page Is Not Relevant To The Advert
It is important that your landing page is highly relevant to your advert. You need to make sure you place relevant text that helps inform users properly.
Sometimes you need to use a long form landing page with lots of text and sometimes it needs to be short and punchy depending on your business.
Don’t forget that Adwords has a “quality score” that is “an estimate of how relevant your ads, keywords, and landing pages are to a person seeing your ad”.
Therefore, if you have a relevant landing page to your ad, you will have a higher quality score (from 1 to 10). At the same time, the higher quality score means lower cost per click for your adverts.
Who doesn’t want more traffic for less money?
You should make your sure landing page-
- Shows the benefits of your offer.
- Tells the user what they should expect after taking action.
- Is specific.
For example,I saw this ad-
The ad says “Full Time Professional Shaman When You’ve Tried Everything” but when you visit the landing page it isn’t really relevant to the advert. There is no header or call to action.
This would be much better if there was a clear headline directly relevant to the advert with a clear call to action.
Your landing page should only focus on a single offer. If you have more than one offer on your site, then you must create a separate landing page for each offer.
Some people think that such information as testimonials, mobile version, and great brand descriptions must be on a landing page to build trust.
The truth is that this usually only confuses visitors and stops them from taking the action you want them to take.
You should remove all distracting elements from the page that does not contribute to the main call-to-action.
What are the biggest landing page optimization problems with this page?
- It has 3 offers – Why do I need SEO, On/off page package & 100% allowed methods.
- The call to action isn’t clear
- All 3 offers take you to the same page
- Anyone searching SEO and clicking an advert, already knows they need SEO
Instead of giving users 3 different choices that all lead down the same path, they should just offer 1 choice. Making people choose is highly damaging to conversion.
Let’s take a look at a good example-
This landing page design has-
- A nice photo
- Short registration form at the top
- Clear headline
- Good content
This makes it very easy for the user to take action and sign up.
Poor Call To Action
This is one of the most important parts of any landing page.
After clicking your ad, people must immediately understand what you are offering. They will not spend much time browsing your page if there is no clear call to action.
This is especially true if you are selling something: people do not buy if they do not understand what they are paying for.
Your call to action must be well designed and stand out from the rest of the page. Don’t forget to mention what visitors should expect after clicking the button.
A good “thank you” page is very important, too. Your goal is to keep the user engaged after they have taken action. Add social buttons to your “thank you” page for extra bang for buck.
Let’s take a look at a bad example-
There are quite a few things wrong with this landing page example-
- It was a PPC ad but what should I do if I want to continue with the site? The only button “Get in Touch” (looks like a button but actually isn’t) appears on the footer.
- People do not like to make a call. They want to get in touch via email or chat at first.
- For the long landing page; it is better to repeat the call to action twice: at the top and in the footer.
- They design landing pages. Really?
Here is a much better example-
What you will notice with this landing page example is-
- Very appealing design.
- Offer is quite clear: Sign up now for £1.19 per month.
- Suitable list of benefits.
- Call to action appears on the top and at the bottom.
- Offers live chat and telephone support.
- Sign up button is exactly the right size and quite visible. You can see that it is the most important area of the page.
This is a fantastic example that has all of the landing page optimization best practices applied to it.
Poor Design Structure
There are many landing pages that have attractive designs but the visual hierarchy is poor.
An effective landing page must have-
- Clear, readable font size.
- The same for image size. People like to see big images because bigger images mean improved conversion rate.
- Clear & bold headline.
- Call to action button must stand out.
As I said previously, if your landing page is long, then it is better to repeat your primary call to action.
This allows the users who scrolled down to read your full content to sign up easily as well.
If you are selling something like clothes or bags, then you can consider adding some other elements to help with conversion.
Something like a delivery countdown near the buy button that will encourage potential customers to make a purchase immediately.
For clothing, you can add “select a size” button – useful tactic if you want to make shopper reach a quick decision.
When a user has taken action once, they are likely to take action again. Selecting the size prepares them to hit the buy button.
Phrases like “only 2 left” can also help make a quick sale.
Asking For Too Much Information
The less information you ask for on your landing page the more people will convert.
The ideal number of the form fields on a landing page is 3- name, email address and password (if you are requesting registration), city (if you are selling something), etc.
In fact, the only information you need is their email address because once you have that, you can obtain the rest of the information later.
People do not like to share their personal information because they worry about their privacy.
That is why you need to include a statement assuring that their personal details are safe and will not be shared.
Just add some text stating that fact on your registration form and the page will look more trustworthy.
Here is a bad example-
They have 7 fields for the “Free SEO analysis” offer. But wait; the 7th field “website address” is not even required.
At the same time, they’re asking me formy first name, last name, email, company name and telephone number.
What do they need my company name? In my opinion, 3 fields would be perfect for this offer-
- Website Address
How can you send me SEO audit if you do not even know the URL for my website?
Here is a much better form in the same niche:
Only 4 fields. In addition to the 3 main fields I mentioned above, they added “message field” where you can ask something about prices, additional services, etc.
Wrapping It Up
Your landing page can make or break your bottom line profits. A good landing page lowers advertising costs and deliver more customers per dollar spent.
But a bad landing page can easily see you burn through your advertising budget with little to show for it.
Matt showed how important a good landing page with his Facebook advertising tips last week.
If you struggle to make good landing pages you can just use LeadPages landing page optimization software which has lots of time tested high converting landing page templates to choose from.
Anyone can make awesome landing pages with their simple interface and the increases in conversion is more than worth it!
Check out these website design best practices.
I know Matthew is using LeadPages quite heavily across the blog and RankCracker at the moment!
Have you got any other landing page optimization or design tips?