Conversion optimisation and measuring ROI are critical components of any online marketing activity, particularly in paid search marketing. However, without an effective landing page to “seal the deal” once a visitor clicks through from your pay-per-click advertisement, you run the risk losing potential leads and revenue.
What is a landing page, you ask?
A landing page is an entry point to your brand’s website that is typically not the home page. It is usually tied to a special promotion or unique service offering. Landing pages should appear when a consumer clicks on your ad with the primary purpose of creating a relevant, targeted and conversion orientated destination for your target audience.
Using a landing page has a number of benefits. Firstly, it shortens the overall conversion process, which is a critical part of reaching today’s time-poor consumers and businesses.
Furthermore, your landing page creates a ‘first impression’ of your brand. Many customers will judge decide within the first 8 seconds of clicking through from your ad if they are going to bail or stick around!
Finally, a landing page can make your website more relevant to a specific search query, thus boosting your quality score, ad rank and overall position on the search network (while lowering your cost per click).
Now that you understand the importance of landing pages, you are probably asking how you go about creating one that maximises your conversion opportunities and recoups your investment.
Here are 7 landing page tips that are sure to help increase your conversion rate and ROI.
Everyone at one point or another has heard the expression “K.I.S.S”. If you haven’t, this is a simple acronym for term “Keep It Simple Stupid.” It implies that most systems work best if they are kept simple rather than made complex. The same principal should be applied when creating your landing page.
Be a minimalist! Don’t include excessive content in the form of information, links, interactive games, non-specific pictures or video that will over crowd your page. The sole focus of your landing page is to get your target audience to commit to your desired action (i.e. purchase or sign-up). Be sure to get straight to the point. Use simple headlines and use bullet points to detail how your offering can benefit the visitor.
Keep them on the page
Don’t give visitors the opportunity to become distracted and leave your landing page. You’ve put the time and effort into carefully crafting your keywords and ad copy to get them there, now you need to keep them there!
Ensure to limit the number of ‘exit points’ from your landing page so your visitors remain focused on completing the overall goal. Do not offer links back to the home page, additional information or other products (at least not yet)! Your goal is to sell your offer, and the only thing these links can do is reduce your conversions. Everything the visitor needs to know about your service or product should be succinctly summarised on your landing page. There should be no need for them to exit into your main site. If you need to include additional links, such as privacy or terms and conditions, use a Lightbox to overlay your text on the current page.
Use multiple and clear calls to action
Be sure to make your desired behaviour very clear to visitors from the outset, as they may not know what to do once they arrive at your page. Your conversion buttons (e.g. buy now, book now, enquire now, sign-up) should be large enough to stand out. You should also add multiple calls to action throughout the page. This is particularly important if you have paragraphs of detailed text. Don’t leave your visitors with the need to scroll up and down the page in order to take action. Instead, constantly remind them no matter where they are on your landing page.
Don’t promise more than you can deliver
When a visitor clicks on your pay-per-click ad, they expect whatever the ad has promised will be delivered on the next page (i.e. the landing page). If you promised free shipping, a promotional code, a sign-up form or downloadable content, then be sure to follow through with this promise in a prominent position. If you fail to meet these expectations, your landing page will not resonate with your visitor, resulting in a high bounce rate and fewer conversions.
Build credibility and trust
Be sure that your landing page builds credibility and trust with your prospective customers. This can be accomplished in a few ways, including the use of a privacy statement, an SSL certificate, contact information, logos of trusted partner or product service guarantees and customer testimonials.
Include a ‘Thank-You Page’
If you are not including a ‘Thank-You Page’ as part of your landing page strategy (or even worse, you don’t have a Thank-You Page at all!), then you are going to miss out on some great opportunities. A Thank-You Page ensures that your new customer is not left with nowhere to go once they have completed their transaction. The last thing you want is to send your customer back to into the world of search engines, where they can navigate directly to a competitor’s site and make another purchase.
Adding more elements to your Thank-You Page, such as a link back to your home page, online store or a recommended product, can extend the site visit and result in further conversions.
More importantly, a Thank-You Page is the easiest way to track conversions and measure your ROI. Just because a user clicks on your pay-per-click ad and views your landing page, it is not a sure sign that they have successfully converted. Setting up your Thank-You Page as a URL destination goal in Google Analytics however, will allow you to accurately track how many of your visitors purchased your product or submitted an enquiry.
Test, experiment and have fun!
As with any best practice in marketing, your landing page needs to be continually tested and improved throughout your campaign. Experiment by trying different headings, layouts, text fields, content length and even styles until you find the execution that proves most effective in converting your visitors.