If you use inbound marketing for your business, you probably have the same dream that we all do... creating that one landing page that turns every visitor into a lead. Its a nice dream to have, however, the reality is, you will never convert every visitor into a lead. You can have plenty of visitors coming to your site, but if your landing pages aren't converting, you will never get the leads you need to grow your business.
It can make you want to quit and try something else, but don't panic! There's a better way. The first step is to take a look at your numbers to see what visitors do after they get to your site. Your landing page is the final step, the place where visitors go to convert.
You can have an award winning website and PPC ads that drive tremendous amounts of traffic to your site, but if you don't have a killer landing page it's a lot like fishing without a net: you can hook that big one, but you won't be able to get him on the boat!
Traffic is great, but if you're not converting those visitors into leads, what's the point? You need to get your visitors to take action! Let's explore the anatomy of a landing page and what makes it work. Let's look at some of the elements that make a landing page a conversion machine.
You may have some landing pages on your site that are working, but can work better with just a few tweaks and these best practices might be all that you need to turn that mediocre landing page into a converting machine!
What is a Landing Page?
OK, this might be a refresher, but let's take a look at the anatomy of a landing page, what it is, and its intended purpose.
A landing page is a web page designed to help you capture your visitor's information through a form that they fill out on your website. A well designed landing page will target a specific audience either through email, pay-per-click advertising or a prompt on your website. Landing pages should be specific and cover a single topic, for example promoting an ebook, and promoting a webinar would be two separate landing pages.
Landing pages can be used to allow visitors to download free “premium” content like an ebook, white paper or report, sign up for informational webinars, sign up for free offers, trials or demos of your product, or subscribe to your newsletter.
Landing pages allow you to specifically target readers, offer them something of value in return for their contact information, and nurture them through your sales/marketing funnel to eventually convert them into qualified leads and ultimately lead to a sale.
Whether you page is designed to address existing leads, new leads, or customers the goal is the same; to capture your visitor's interest for what you're offering and use this opportunity to further nurture them down your marketing funnel to the sale.
Answer Visitor Questions, FAST!
As we dig a bit deeper into the anatomy of a landing page we find that effective landing pages answer four key questions for visitors within a few seconds. The quicker your visitor can find this information the more likely they are to engage with your landing page.
- What is your offer, exactly? - Look at it from your visitor's perspective and answer the question, “what's in it for me if I give you my contact information?”
- What are the benefits of your premium item? - Explain why the reader needs this information. Does it address specific pain points, solve pressing issues, or provide valuable information?
- Why do they need it NOW - Create a sense of urgency around your offer. Use phrases like “limited time offer” or “available until a specific date.”
- How do they get the offer? - Make it as easy as possible for your visitor to convert. Ask for the minimum amount of information you need to get the lead qualification process moving. You'll have plenty of opportunities to gather more information further down the road.
If your landing page answers these questions fast, you're halfway to the conversion process. So how can you create a page that quickly answers these questions, but still provides additional information to educate your visitor and begin to develop the trust needed to close the sale? Read on!
Landing Page Best Practices
If your landing pages are working but could be working better, or if you are creating ones, here are a few key elements to consider. If you have existing landing pages, consider tweaking these elements and see if your conversion rates increase. If you're starting fresh, pay particular attention to these elements to make your page really stands out.
Write a Compelling Headline
In terms of the anatomy of a landing page, your headline is the first thing visitors see. Making it powerful and compelling can instantly increase your conversion rate. When possible use relevant keywords or keyword phrases in your headline it'll improve your search results too!
Align Your Copy With Your Headline
If your landing page headline and copy don't line up, visitors may become confused and bounce. Keep them aligned to create a smooth transition for readers. Alignment improves your bounce rate and Adword Quality Scores!
Align Your Offer With Your Target Audience
Do you notice the trend? The most important element effecting conversion rate is alignment. Your product offer must match your prospect's needs and copy as closely as possible. If your audience isn't interested in your offer, the best headline and award winning copy won't help.
Craft A Catchy and Persuasive CTA
Your call-to-action is second to your headline in encouraging conversion. Keep it short, five to seven words is about right. When possible use action verbs that indicate value like, “Get our free report,” or “ Create my account” not passive words like “submit.”
If your offer is aligned with your audience it will have value to them. Your copy must convey that value so visitors understand how it can help them. Value creates desire which will boost your conversion rate.
Ask For The Least Amount Of Information Necessary
Your prospect is taking the time to read your page and sign up for your offer. They won't fill in a three page form to receive it. Keep it succinct. If you can make do with a first name and email address do it! You'll have plenty of time to gather additional information as they move through the lead process!
Creating an effective landing page isn't difficult it you take the time to align your message and offer. Use best practices and test your pages to determine if they are working. If not, re-tweak and reassess. Your landing pages can help you to increase sales and grow your business. Take the time to do it right!
One last tip, make sure to include responsive design elements to make your pages effective on mobile devices. As more people use mobile devices, landing pages that aren't optimized for mobile can cost you sales. OK, now get to work!