Landing pages are one of the handy tools that marketers have in their arsenal. When used correctly, landing pages do an excellent job of engaging people and keeping them on track with the desired action, whether it’s signing up for a free trial or giving an email for a monthly newsletter. Plain and simple, landing pages make it easier for people to convert and result in quality lead generation. But you can’t simply create landing pages and hope for the best. You must take the time to perfect these pages so that they execute flawlessly.
Landing Pages: Why they Make all the Difference
Before we dive into the steps for creating killer landing pages for your SEO strategy, let’s take a moment and talk about why landing pages are as important as they are.
Some of the benefits to landing pages include:
Conversion Funnel Path: Landing pages have one main goal in mind: to get people to convert. They are short, simple and direct, navigating people through the conversion funnel path. Visitors are more likely to sign up or provide contact information on a landing page as opposed to being on the main website.
Filter Audiences: Someone who clicks on your PPC ad will probably have different interests than someone who comes across you on social media. Rather than having one landing page for everyone, you have the option to create unique landing pages that cater to your different audiences.
Easy to Test: When you have unique landing pages, you can easily test them to see how they stack up to each other. A/B testing allows you to see which designs, messages, images and call to actions are most effective with your audience so that you see better conversion rates across the board.
Data Collection: When collecting objective data about your audience, landing pages are there to provide it. Key metrics include visitors, bounce rates and total conversions. You may then use this information to influence upcoming campaigns, customer service initiatives and future sales.
Well, there you have it. Some of the many benefits of landing pages and why they should be part of your overall marketing strategy. Let’s move onto creating an awesome landing page that will generate the results you’re looking for. With it being the start of a new year, now is an excellent time to update your landing pages appropriately.
Claim a Custom URL
Whether you’re building one landing page or a series of them, you’ll need a custom URL. You may be tempted to include a lot of keywords in the page, but refrain from doing so to avoid being penalized. Instead, host a landing page on your root domain with a custom tail end to the URL such as free-trial or twitter-promotion.
If you are running several inbound campaigns, create custom URLs with names according to the source. This keeps the landing pages well organized, prevents confusion and allows you to measure which strategies are bringing you the most success.
Get the Branding Right
A landing page is just as important as any other marketing tool and should be treated as such. When a user clicks on a PPC ad and is brought to your landing page, you don’t want to present something that is boring or unrelated. This will increase the likelihood that the user will bounce off the page.
Take the time to create engaging, relevant content that matches the core message and feel of your brand. In addition to the content, the design should be consistent with the rest of your brand’s marketing material in terms of color, layout, font and overall messaging. Remember, your landing page may even lead visitors to your website, so you want it to be an extension of your main site, not a separate entity that confuses people.
Be Simple, Concise and Direct
One thing that many marketers find hard to balance with landing pages is the need for engaging, relevant content that is also short and concise. It’s not uncommon for marketers to squeeze too much information on the page. We know that you’re eager to share certain things about your brand, but you have your entire website to do this. Your landing page should be kept simple.
Use two or three lines to keep visitors on track with converting without distracting them. They don’t need to know the history of your company or the ingredients you use in your products to convert. They can go to your social media profiles and company website to learn about this. Limit the use of clickables or distracting images. Instead, create a page that leads to one final goal: conversion.
Collect Only the Information You Need
Most landing pages include a form that the visitor fills out with their personal information. They may fill out their information to receive a monthly email newsletter, begin a free trial or to be contacted for a free quote. Keep this form minimal. Although you may want to collect as much information as possible, only collect what you need. If it’s an email newsletter you want visitors to sign up for, you only need their name and email address. If it’s a quote or consultation, a phone number may be appropriate.
People are becoming more particular about who they hand their information over to and why it’s needed. You could have a great landing page, but if the form requires too much, it could deter visitors from converting. Be mindful of what you need, and ask for no more.
Create Compelling Copy
Let’s talk a little more about the type of copy that should be included on your landing page. We’ve already discussed that it should be direct and to the point, but how can you make text of this caliber interesting as well? The truth is, it probably won’t happen overnight. It takes time to perfect the content so that it matches the needs and interests of your target audience. This can be done by using various messages and writing in different tones, then A/B testing the landing pages to see which copy is most engaging for your audience.
You’ll find that many successful landing pages include information that is written in easily digestible bites. A list of bullet points, sections of information that include 1-2 lines, a short paragraph underneath a catchy headline, etc. Do not keyword stuff, but do use an SEO-focused writing approach.
Define Your Incentive
When you have built your landing page, ask yourself these two very important questions:
What’s in it for the user?
What’s in it for you?
You could hit home on every aspect of the page, but if it doesn’t clearly define why someone would want to move forward with the desired action, you’re going to miss out on your end goal. Why would someone want to provide you with their name and email address? Is the payoff worth it? Are they getting access to new products, valuable content or a free trial? Be sure that your wording clearly indicates what the person will get for filling out the form.
On the other end of things, you should also know what you plan to do with the information once people have converted. Do you plan on offering free trials, 30-minute consultations or member-exclusive content? How will this benefit your business? Will it generate new leads, encourage people to buy your product or create engagement on social media?
Landing pages are not set in stone. You are free to change them as you see fit, especially if you find that certain things are not working. As you learn more about your audience, you’ll be able to fine tune your landing pages so that they speak to your audience and capture their attention effectively.