Just as I know that the sky is blue and that the whole Miley Cyrus twerking thing is now old news. I am also aware of the following fact; every marketer who creates a landing page is positively giddy over the opportunity of seeing countless conversions and that same marketer is heart broken when the aforementioned doesn’t happen.
Not every published landing page gets love!
And more often than not that’s because a bulk of the landing pages that are published every day in the landosphere really don’t deserve conversion love.
Because they neglect the magic 12 letter word that gets landing pages all the conversions that they deserve. Yes, I’m talking about optimization.
If you have abandonment issues and a bad ROI that’s because you left optimization out of the equation when you sat down to create your landing pages.
What you need my dear friend is a lesson, a lesson in optimization. And that’s exactly what you’ll be getting today. So grab your pen and paper and get ready for Landing Page Optimization 101. For your ease (and my own) I’ve broken down this guide into carefully crafted 25 landing page optimization (LPO) tips.
Optimization tips that are so easy to understand that they are virtually idiot proof, you can’t go wrong even if this is your very first landing page.
Chapter 1: The Blueprint
You need to have some prerequisites nailed before you actually sit down to create your landing page. Great buildings are constructed from great blueprints, so, to build successful landing pages you need to have a solid landing page blueprint intact.
1. Narrow it down to one objective
Define your landing page goals, what is it that you want to achieve through the page? Do you want to increase your form submissions, sign ups or do you want pure sales.
Having one clear objective helps you streamline your entire landing page campaign- when you’ve narrowed down what you want to see this helps you build consistency for your campaign.
2. Research your audience
What problem are you trying to solve with your service and whose problem is that exactly? The answers to these questions will help you identify who your target audience is. And once you’ve found that out, you then need to spend every waking moment researching on what exactly your audience wants.
What are their hopes and dreams, what do they want from life? This information will help you better your product.
After you’ve researched your audience, another good idea is to research your competitors, doing so helps you get a fair idea of what’s been done and how you can do something that’s different in your respective niche.
Chapter 2: The Basics
Before we start to talk about what you need to with your testimonials and CTA button, it’s vital that we get the basics down. Because getting these fundamentals right will help you take a so-so landing page to conversion greatness.
Build a strong foundation for your landing page and your visitors won’t flee from it.
3. Always direct traffic to a carefully crafted targeted page
I should never see you doing this one- never send your valuable traffic to a busy homepage because that’s the best and fastest way to lose a customer. All your “traffic” needs to be taken to a “targeted” page- a page that’s especially built for the kind of traffic that’s coming its way.
A Landing Page!
I know you carefully crafted your homepage, but that doesn’t mean that you should send all your traffic to it. Build a landing page for the offer that you wish to promote at a specific time and then send the relevant traffic to that page.
What’ll follow then is sure to be a high conversion rate- because unlike your homepage your landing page will give your visitors the right answers that they were looking for.
4. Consistency all the way
From the PPC ad that takes your visitors to your landing page to the page itself- everything should be in perfect harmony that means design, messaging and tone. Don’t show them a duplex on the ad and a donkey on your landing page.
Be consistent always.
5. Get right to the point
The average time that a visitor spends on your landing page is just 8 seconds! Remember this when you sit down to design your landing page, don’t bore them with jibber jabber. Get right to the point and get them excited to hit that CTA button.
If you have a product that requires more than the usual description, just make sure you write the description in an engaging manner- juicy lines that your visitors don’t regret reading.
6. No navigation links please
If there’s one thing that you absolutely need to take away from your landing pages, it’s your nasty navigation links. Why would you want your visitors to leave the landing pages that you spent so much time and effort optimizing and publishing?
Seriously…. why would you?
Of course you wouldn’t do so deliberately, so the next time you set up a Landing Page please refrain from using these detours.
7. Keep your CTA button and primary messaging above the fold
Though this is not a hard and fast rule as some landing pages do need to be longer but as a rule of thumb always keep the CTA and lead capture form above the fold.
In order to get conversions you obviously need your visitors to fill out your Lead Capture Form and click on your CTA button. To ensure that your visitors do both of these actions it’s good to keep both these elements above the page fold.
If your visitor has to go looking for your CTA or your form, you can simply forget about converting that visitor.
8. Have more than one CTA on long pages
If your landing page is longer than usual, you need to make sure that you have put on the page, more than just one CTA (call-to-action). So, when your visitor does go below the fold to read the rest of the information they don’t forget why they came there.
There should be a CTA below the fold to help jog their memory.
9. Experiment with your landing pages
Mix things up on your landing pages once in a while. Switch it up not just to make things interesting but to experiment what will get you more conversions. If you’ve had an image on your landing page, change it with a video and it’s likely to increase your conversion rates.
Videos help increase your prospects understanding of your product by 74%, 80% of online users remember the videos that they’ve seen online, 80%! And your visitors are 64% more likely to buy your product after they’ve seen a video.
10. Social is the way to go with your landing page
Going social with your Landing Pages is very important for conversions, so, set up pages that are social media friendly. Make it easy for your visitors to like and tweet your targeted landing pages.
Doing so will bring new visitors into your conversion funnel. Plus, social media proof is also a good way to increase the trust factor for your pages and by extension your campaigns.
With this our basics section has come to an end, what we’ll now proceed to is something that online users aka your visitors are extremely worried over while clicking any button or submitting their information on any form; Trust and Credibility.
Chapter 3: Fostering Trust and Credibility
From cute little grandmas to Goth teenagers, everyone is on the internet these days, and even though they are from wildly different demographics, everyone is looking for one thing when it comes to entering their information on a lead capture form- security.
Optimization isn’t just about making your CTA big or coming up with an attention grabbing headline; it’s about a lot more- from landing page testing to security, for this section however we’ll just focus on the latter.
11. Brand consistency
I’ve said this before, and I’ll say it again, if your PPC or banner ad and landing page don’t have anything in common, then you’ll lose your customers in a snap.
Having your logo on your ad and landing page will certainly do wonders for your conversions.
12. Can I have your number?
Just by seeing that the company that they’re about to buy a product/service from has a phone number present makes visitors let out a sigh of relief.
A phone number makes you and so your landing page more legitimate.
13. No spam please
Refrain from using phrases such as “Best Whitepaper You’ll Ever Read” or “Best Deal Ever” because that just makes you sound like a crappy salesman and throws your credibility right out the window.
Be authentic. If you really do think that you’re offering the best deal ever, please prove it with some stats. Have a poll or survey and then put its results up on your landing page.
Does this offer sound credible to you? How is this the best way to buy health insurance? Where’s the proof?
Look at the Salesforce landing page now, they’ve given stats to support their claims.
Which offer would you sign up for?
14. Annoying pop ups
Pop ups aren’t always necessarily bad if you know how to use them in the right way that is. But if your pop up is only asking “Are you sure you want to leave this page” please scrap it- scrap it now!
Of course they want to leave the page, that’s why they clicked the close button- don’t embarrass yourself and your offer.
15. Get yourself endorsed
Just as toothpaste companies get dentists to recommend their brand and celebrities endorse hair coloring products. You need to get credible and relevant authority websites to recommend your product or service.
Who wouldn’t want an endorsement ABC, MTV and the Walt Disney Company?
Once you do that your visitors are sure to sign up with your service as soon as they come on your landing page.
16. Don’t pretend to be something you’re not
Never exaggerate on your landing page, only write verifiable facts because the truth is bound to come out and if you’ve written anything except facts on your landing page your visitors are sure to leave and never return.
Because who would trust a liar. Would you?
17. Make use of testimonials
Nothing can sell a product better than a loyal customer whose singing praises about your amazing product. This is because customers often think alike, which is why they trust each other’s opinion.
Including true testimonials on your website really helps with your conversions, you do need to make sure however that the testimonials are honest and descriptive, just including a customer quote saying “Amazing Service” doesn’t really persuade your visitors. Try adding testimonials that tell an inspiring customer story to get the most clicks on your CTA button.
18. Don’t ask for too much on your forms
When you choose to ask too much information on your lead capture you turn off your visitors. I know everyone says Lead Capture Forms need to be short. However, deciding the length of your Lead Capture Form essentially depends on what kind of leads you hope to get via your Landing Page, because while shorter forms lead to more leads, longer forms lead to fewer but quality leads.
Marketers get more leads with shorter Lead Capture Forms because more visitors are willing to fill them out and the opposite is true with longer forms. However, with longer Lead Capture Forms marketers get good quality leads, which isn’t possible with just getting your visitors’ name and email address aka the short version.
The length of your Lead Capture Form depends on the end goal of your campaign or offer; so, choose wisely. Don’t ask for your visitors’ phone number just so they can sign up for a free newsletter.
When your visitors will understand, they’ll be more comfortable to hit that CTA.
20. A professional landing page design
When your landing page is designed professionally, your visitors immediately know that you mean business. Because it’s only when you take your landing page seriously will they take your page seriously too.
Which service are you most likely to sign up for?
Chapter 4: The Testing
21. A/B test the hell out of your landing page
Testing your landing pages is a vital part of any successful landing page strategy. When you test your pages you drastically improve the amount of conversions you receive. A/B testing is a simple way to test changes to your landing page against the main design and determine which ones bring you more conversions.
The key to A/B testing however is to keep on testing and improving your landing page over and over again! Don’t have a testing tool yet, Instapage offers a simple system for A/B testing landing pages.
22. Test your CTA
The CTA button is one landing page element that is tested most often as most marketers link this element more with their final conversions than any other element on their page.
You can try putting different texts in your CTA button; going for something other than just the “Download Now” or “Submit” button.
You can change the shape, size and color of your CTA button; these small formatting changes actually make a huge difference on your conversions.
23. Test your lead capture form
Lead capture forms create a lot of friction, which is why they need to be just perfect if you want to get the most conversions. When doing A/B tests you can try the following variations with your forms
Longer lead capture form VS a shorter contact form and a form with no fields VS a form with multiple fields.
24. Test your headline
Test out the following variations with your headline
- Humorous VS Serious headlines
- Benefit Driven VS Informative Headline
Do you like this?
- Swagger VS Action Headline
- Short VS Long headlines
- Large Font VS Small Font headlines
- Left Aligned VS Right Aligned headlines
25. Use plenty of white space
Whitespace affects the readability of your landing page, with adding just a trickle of whitespace around your landing page elements you increase the reading comprehension of your page; plus your page looks ordered and clean.
Alongside whitespace you also need to make sure that your landing page is formatted properly i.e. it has proper margins and paragraphing; this also factors in to the readability of your page.
You are now a landing page optimization star! Go on build your next landing page and dare it not to get any conversions. Just do it!
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