Our team is often asked by prospects and customers how we use Instapage for our own campaigns. From personalization, AMP, managing bulk updates to pages, multi-step forms, and more — there is no shortage of ways we take full advantage of the platform.
Today’s article details several examples and design best practices from our expert team as create post-click experiences for each campaign.
Personalization: ad-to-post-click experience
If you’ve ever come across any paid search, display, or retargeting ad by Instapage before, you’ll know that — post-ad click — you arrived at a unique page connected to that ad. Sending ad clicks to a dedicated post-click experience is a best practice we tell everyone.
Generating the best results (conversions) is not just about using unique standalone pages for each respective ad online. It’s more about personalizing the experience for each prospect we come into contact with. Only then can we expect the best results from our digital advertising efforts. Let’s look at a few examples.
Clicking this Google ad:
Goes to this post-click experience:
Compare that to this example where clicking this ad instead sends you to this new experience:
Both experiences use the exact same URL, except the last UTM parameter:
It may not look like much on the front-end to the untrained eye, but that personalization would not be possible without the server-side dynamic audience targeting. Effectively, what is happening, is we inherit the sophisticated targeting built into the ad platforms with UTM parameters.
CEO & Founder Tyson Quick explains:
“We use personalized post-click experiences to increase conversions because being relevant to potential customers when they choose to engage with an ad is critical to the success or failure of not only that ad, but potentially your ability to ever acquire them at all. By not sending your campaign/ad group/ad traffic to a highly relevant post-click experience, you are essentially telling your potential customers that you don’t understand or even care about them.
Post-click personalization is the most important thing you can do at the top and middle of the funnel.”
We use server-side experimentation to provide unique experiences without sacrificing page load speeds for users (where client-side falls short). For more details on the differences between server- and client-side personalization, read this article.
How Personalization is different than A/B split testing
With A/B testing, you set the traffic split in Analytics to any combination you wish (50/50, 75/25, etc.). Personalization does not involve traffic splits. To clarify further:
- A/B testing serves page experiences at random to your audience
- Personalization shows the exact variation you want to the targeted audence you choose
So, provided you set up your UTM parameters correctly, if your ad talks about integrations, the post-click experience will only feature integrations content. Conversely, if the ad touts publishing to WordPress, only that is featured on the page.
For more details, go here to see why Personalization is better with A/B testing.
AMP: for the fastest loading pages
You likely know that mobile device usage has long-surpassed desktop usage across the world. Knowing that, and wanting to provide the best experience for mobile users, our team has created several AMP post-click pages for mobile audiences.
For instance, if you were on a mobile device and happen to see this display ad:
Clicking through shows you this experience where you can request an AMP demo:
Not only is the message match consistency identical, but the page loads near instantly — creating the best possible experience for anyone who accesses the page on mobile.
Instablocks™ & Global Blocks: for scaling & managing bulk updates
Other software like to boast they have capabilities to scale landing page production and manage page updates by touting features such as optimized templates. Templates are great for getting pages published relatively quickly, but they only take you so far. But what if you needed to update:
- Your corporate branding and need to reflect those changes on all post-click experiences?
- The copyright year on every page? Or…
- All your product screenshots everywhere?
Templates won’t do you any good in managing those changes and updates.
Global Blocks can save you a ton of time and headaches from those design changes. See how to create a Global Block in the first video below and watch the changes take effect on multiple pages with a single click (second video):
Example: How to create a Global Block
Example: Updating branding
For 15 additional use cases on when to use Global Blocks, go here.
(*No other post-click software offers this functionality.)
Collaboration: for efficient workflows and design feedback
Designing post-click experiences used to be a real pain. The communication workflow was scattered across email, mocked-up screenshots with design changes, Slack messages, and face to face meetings. Now, it doesn’t have to be with built-in team collaboration because your entire team can communicate, provide feedback, and resolve any issues in a centralized location — the Instapage builder:
Graphic Design Manager, Rafal Bogdan, elaborates:
“It’s hard for me to imagine what our builder would look like now without this feature. Collaboration is one of my favorite features in our builder because it allows me to quickly share my ideas and keep all team members in the loop, saving a lot of time, and avoiding any confusion during the review process.”
(*No other post-click software offers this functionality.)
Multi-step forms: for better lead qualification
Our conversion team does a lot of A/B testing throughout each campaign: ads, landing pages, emails, etc. For some pages in particular, like our Enterprise demo page, we need to qualify prospects who submit the form by requesting more information beyond just the typical name, email, and phone number. Meanwhile, we don’t want to overwhelm people with a long form.
Director of Brand, Jonathan Pantani, explains:
“We know that consumers have to surpass a small psychological barrier in terms of commitment by revealing their personal information like name, email, or phone number. So by requesting less personal information like what problem they are looking to solve, we get them into a flow where they are slightly less likely to abandon because they’ve committed to the process.”
To strike the best balance, we use multi-step forms that enable us to collect the necessary information without scaring people away from a demo. See how we do it, here, with three steps:
When we A/B tested that three-part form sequence, we saw an 18% increase in conversions.
Design best practices from the Instapage team
Now, let’s review some specific best practices we always include to maximize user engagement, conversions, and showcase benefits.
No header navigation: to keep people focused on the page
This tip is often the first thing we suggest to digital marketers new to the post-click experience concept. Here’s why:
- Post-click experiences are designed for conversions
- Websites are meant for a browsing experience
So it makes sense that websites have header and footer navigation menus. They are catch-all experiences.
Every single post-click experience that Instapage has published has one thing in common: there are no navigation menus. Even the Instapage logo is unlinked because we want people focused on that page and that page alone. That means there are only two ways off the page: by converting through the form or clicking the X in the browser tab.
Here is an example post-click experience without navigation (compare it to our homepage which has a list of navigation items):
Two-step opt-in forms: to simplify pages and increase engagement
Similar to multi-step forms, double opt-ins allow you to keep visitors engaged without scaring people off by requesting personal details. With two-step opt-ins, the visitor only sees the form after they’ve taken action by clicking a CTA button:
White space & z-pattern layout: for better user experience and increase engagement
Landing page design really is an art because if you don’t understand user-experience principles, you will likely waste a lot of time without much to show for it (leads, conversions, sales).
When anyone reaches any of your post-click pages, you want the pages to load near-instantly, stay engaged, and ultimately convert through the form. White space and z-pattern layout go a long way to ensure people stay engaged because they won’t be overwhelmed with information.
Look at this page. Below the company logos, notice the zig-zag pattern as you scroll down. Each section is highlighted with a related visual and supporting copy. The natural viewing pattern is left-to-right, top-to-bottom — starting with copy:
Designing the page that way also lends more balance to it. Had the page included every image on the left, for example, it would be unbalanced. Instead, both design principles encourage the visitor to process the information easier and continue scrolling down the page.
Social proof: to highlight customer results and prove our value
Since Instapage is best applied to digital advertising campaigns, and post-click experiences are often the first impression people see of us, we must prove our value immediately to every prospect who arrives on our pages.
To do that, we always feature customer logos and testimonials from valued clients. If you noticed, most page examples featured in this article included a form of social proof. Here’s a few more:
Experiment with different layouts
This final tip shouldn’t be overlooked because A/B testing is one of the most important things you can do with post-click experiences. We’re not just talking about changing CTA button colors or text. Rather, it’s about experimenting with the order and content of your page layout.
For instance, depending on your audience and what they’re looking for, placing testimonials closer to the top of the page could be the nudge they need to convince them that your offer is what they’re looking for. Combine that with images and copy that speaks to your audience (are these testimonials coming from people I can relate to?), and you’ve got an even stronger section layout.
But perhaps your audience’s biggest reservation isn’t whether others are seeing success with your product, but the steps needed to launch the solution either through a demo or a full launch of the solution. What’s it going to take to test this solution or for my company to start seeing value?
Others still might prefer to see your pricing at the top of your page since price is their biggest determining factor for moving forward. You can’t truly know the answers to these questions without testing different layouts and content.
Take full advantage of the Instapage platform
These are just a few examples and best practices from our team to show you how we practice what we preach. We’ve established an efficient workflow and continue to use a variety of product features with each page design.
Get an Instapage demo today and experience the power for yourself.