The World Wide Web is a big place. That’s great for your business: it opens you up to potential customers across the globe. Of course, every other company wants those same customers. That means that even though you have many people to sell to, you also have a lot more companies to compete against. Customers are well aware of the fight for their attention, and they’re picky about who gets it. The average person spends just six seconds on a website before deciding whether or not to stay there – for mobile users, it’s a mere five seconds. Talk about a tight window!
So you not only have to make sure you stand out online, but you also need to capture your audience quickly. How do you do that with your company’s site? After all, you have a home page, most likely along with many other pages: about your company, the services your offer, subpages that go into detail about those services, a contact page, a support section, and maybe more. How can you be thorough while also being straightforward enough to grab someone’s eye in only six seconds?
In short, you probably can’t. But that’s where landing pages come in.
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Landing pages are just that – where you want potential customers to “land” after a targeted search for your field, service, or wherever else you’ve focused your marketing efforts. Where one website used to be enough, you now need to create specific, individual pages that serve specific purposes. How popular are landing pages? In just the last ten years, Google searches for “landing page” has increased nearly 10%. Your competitors are using them, and your customers are expecting them.
The main purpose of a landing page is a featured “call to action.” This is what you want the customer to do while they’re on the page. Is it to download an eBook to learn about your expertise? Is it to sign up for a consultation? The key is to keep it simple: clearly state what you’re offering and how the customer can get it, and don’t bog the page down with too many details – you’ll get to those later, and a landing page just gets your foot in the door.
Landing pages are important, and what you include on them is important, too. Here’s what your landing pages should feature – and why.
The headline is the first impression you’ll make on a potential customer, and if you do it poorly, it will be the only impression you make. Your landing page should start with a headline – something catchy that reflects why the customer is there. It seems obvious, but as the first thing someone will read you need to get it right. Remember, landing pages are for people looking for something specific, so make sure the headline matches that. If people feel like the link they followed is misleading or useless, they’ll leave.You can also use a secondary headline that goes into a little more detail while still allowing you to keep your main headline concise.
Tip #1: Your headlines need to say exactly what the page offers. Remember: you only have six seconds, so don’t make it too wordy!
A picture is worth a thousand words, so that’s what comes next. (A picture, not a thousand words!) This should relate to the context of the page. Choose an image that’s representative of your company, your brand, or the specific product or service you’re trying to sell. Also keep mobile customers in mind. Simple images that work well on a small scale can help keep customers using phones and tablets on your page, and they help give the page a less cluttered look.
Tip #2: If a picture is worth a thousand words, what’s a video worth? Including a video on your page increases conversions by 86%!
The copy on your landing page is crucial. You want to keep the page as clean and simple as possible, but at the same time you might find yourself having to explain or sell something. Make sure your copy is clear and that what you’re saying can be grasped easily. Consider using bullets to really make points stand out. The copy should also be representative of your brand, as well as be appropriate for whatever audience you’re trying to reach with that specific landing page.
Tip #3: 16% of landing pages don’t have navigation bars, and those pages see a conversion increase of 100%. You don’t want customers leaving the landing page, so make every word it count!
The call to action is arguably the most important part of your landing page. After all, it tells them the reason why they’re there! Choose something that will stand out against the rest of the page so the customer knows that that’s where they need to go. Make it enticing and irresistible by highlighting what needs to be done and any value it has: Mozilla gained 500 additional downloads of Firefox by testing a call to action that said “Download Now – Free” as opposed to “Try Firefox 3.” It told customers what they needed to do (download the browser instantly) and why they should do it (it was free).
Tip #4: 90% of visitors who read your headline read your call to action. Make sure it’s simple and clear!
Supplementing the call to action is usually a form for the customer to fill out. It’s a trade off: the customer gets access to an eBook, presentation, or consultation but for the price of some information about themselves. It generally includes contact information but can also ask about industry, what exactly they’re looking for, and other items that let you know who this person is that took the time to fill out the form. Make the information easy and obvious; the last thing anyone wants is to be annoyed by the process, especially if it’s easier to just hit the back button.
Tip #5: The optimal number of fields on a conversion form is seven. Too few and you won’t get enough information about the customer; too many and it feels like a chore to complete!
Your business will likely have a lot of different customers out there, and that means many different types of customers. Creating buyer personas is a great way to learn about these customers: what they’re looking for, what their goals are, how their decision-making process works, and more. You use that information to craft your content, and landing pages are no different! Don’t just settle on one landing page because you’ll be missing entire segments of the market that are looking for what you offer, just maybe not how you’re offering it. You want to make sure that you’re communicating with them they way they want to be spoken to. Make many landing pages and use different images, videos, copy, and calls to action so that you’re targeting all of your potential customers!
Tip #6: Companies see an increase of 55% in leads when they increase from ten landing pages to 15. Companies with 40 landing pages get 12 times as many leads as those with five!