A landing page is not your home page – although many business owners believe that it is.
Your landing page is the page that a potential customer gets after clicking on a link in your resource box – or as the result of a search engine link. The page is designed to display content relevant to the article they read (or the keywords they searched for) and is optimized specifically for those keywords or phrases in search engines.
(10) Tips for Creating Smooth, Effective Landing Pages
- Your landing page needs to be directly relevant to the content your reader just read…ie: the reason they clicked on your link. This may seem obvious, but you’d be surprised how many people write about yoga, and then send their readers to a landing page on debt consolidation!
- Create more than one landing page. If you only have one product or service to sell, then you can optimize your home page to accomplish your goals. However, if you have more than one book, report, CD, service or other thingamabobber to sell, then you’ll want a page for each category – or each item.
You must make sure that the content on each of these pages is unique! Don’t just change a few words here or there. Don’t duplicate – or you may not get the listing in search engines that you’re looking for.
- Don’t skimp on design. Nothing tells a visitor to surf on more than a web site with a poor or dated design. If your site looks like it was created with HTML 2.0 then most likely your reader is going to assume either a.) your technology and ordering platform is not safe or b.) you are behind the times and should be hawking encyclopedias door-to-door rather than selling online.
Unfortunately, you can judge a book by its cover, particularly on the Internet and you’ll lose conversions if you don’t look the part.
But before you spend thousands on new web design, remember that function comes first – and a functional and clean site will work well for anyone. Keep the design clean and the functionality will speak for itself.
It’s WAY more important to have a working order or newsletter sign-up form, than a Flash video on your landing page.
- Demand action! OK, well, at least call for it – nicely, but firmly. You want your call to action to be noticeable and exciting, but not annoying. Think of your call to action like a toddler. You want to say “Can I have some ice cream, pretty please?” and look adorable while your asking – rather than the much more annoying and whiney, “Gimme some, gimme some, gimme some now!” (Think Veruca Salt in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory).
- Be clear. Make your call to action readable, simple and powerful. Offer something in return. Use large text – but not obnoxiously large. Use a font that is clear and in a color that contrasts with the rest of the page. Use images to break up the text, but not so many that the content is lost.
- Break it up. Put your most important information up top and break up supporting points into a bulleted or numbered list.
- Make the sale. Try not to send your visitor to another page unless you have to. Make the sale right there. If you’re looking for newsletter sign-ups or registrations, put the text field right there in front of them. If you want them to buy now, start that process. You can always send them more links and information after you put the money in the drawer!
- Keep it simple! Don’t put all of your options on your one landing page. If you have different plans or customizations – save them for later. Your goal right now is to inform and convert your visitor – confusing them with different plans and options will only make them surf on.
- Get physical! OK, well maybe not physical, but interactive at least. Create a landing page that gets your viewer doing something. Have them sign-up for something, follow you on Twitter, friend you on Facebook or order your product!
- Testify! Have some great testimonials? This is where to use them. Engender trust and respect from your viewer by showing them other customers’ (good) opinions of you.
Remember that landing pages need to be integrated into your overall site structure so that they can be organically searched and indexed.
Utilize some of these tips (not all will apply to every landing page) on your new landing page(s) and let us know what’s working for you. Have another way to give your readers a smooth landing experience and convert visitors into customers? Leave a comment and let us know!