Do you currently use landing pages as part of your overall digital marketing strategy? If you do, you’re in good company.
But while you’re probably spending a good chunk of your time and money attracting prospects to your website, how much effort are you placing on optimizing your landing pages?
At the end of the day, many websites do not have a traffic problem, but they do have a conversion problem.
So what’s the answer?
I reached out to a bunch of digital marketing/optimization kingpins to get the lowdown on what makes a good landing page. Here’s what they said:
1. Stef Grieser – Head of Global Markets, Partnerships & Events at Unbounce
Start with the goal of your landing page and work backwards.
“Your website isn’t your landing page. A website’s homepage is typically designed to provide a general overview of a business. Your landing page should focus on a specific campaign goal.
“The single more important thing you can keep in mind when creating a landing page is to identify your campaign goal. Every landing page should have one goal. And only one goal. Not one primary goal with three supporting goals and a few bonus calls to action sprinkled in here and there. One goal.
“Before you create a page – before you even think of the URL– you need to decide on the single goal of that page. And everything else – copy, images – should support and strengthen that single goal.
“Take a look at Unbounce customer – Indochino. This landing page has one goal: to book an appointment for a suit fitting in Austin. And it worked. Here are the crazy good results of their tailor-made, singular goal-driven, campaign landing pages.
“One goal! Especially if you are driving paid ads to campaigns pages. It works.”'Start with the goal of your landing page and work backwards' - @smgrieser on landing page optimizationClick To Tweet
Stefanie Grieser is Head of Global Markets, Partnerships & Events at Unbounce, the easiest way to build and test custom landing pages, website popups and sticky bars.
2. Rodolphe Dutel – Founder of Remotive.io
Self-assessment is difficult.
“When you spend a lot of time working on your project, it may be hard to self-assess how good your landing page is. One of the best things you can do is to identify folks in your target audience and ask them to take a look at your website. Either by sitting next to them or hopping on a Skype call. Try and see what they are instinctively attracted to. It will help you simplify and unclutter the first impression you’re serving to your visitors. If you have a lot of traffic, try out HotJar, they deliver great insights!”'Simplify and unclutter the first impression you're serving to your visitors' - @rdutel on landing page optimization.Click To Tweet
Rodolphe Dutel is the founder of remotive.io, the world’s largest community of remote workers. He’s been featured in publications such as TIME, Forbes, and FastCompany, and prior to founding remotive he was Director of Operations at Buffer.com
3. Abra Miller – Award-winning Digital Marketing Consultant and founder of abramillar.com
Be clear and concise.
“Your headline should be clear and succinct. You might want to use a subheading to clarify what you’re offering but don’t be tempted to throw too much at it. Your copy should be short and simple. Try bullets with key benefits and a clear image of what you’re offering, whether it’s a product, whitepaper or email newsletter.
“Anyone looking at your landing page should be completely clear on what they’re getting. If you’re unsure, run your copy by a friend or colleague who hasn’t been involved in the project.”'Your headline should be clear and succinct. Your copy should be short and simple' - @AbraMillar on landing page optimizationClick To Tweet
Abra Millar is an award-winning Digital Marketing Consultant based in Nottingham, UK. With experience in working both agency and client-side, she now works with a range of businesses and charities to help them gain visibility online.
4. Talia Wolf – Conversion optimization specialist and Founder of GetUplift
Best practices belong in a blog post, not on your landing page.
“While there’s a lot of advice out there on how to plan the perfect landing page, these “tips” rarely work and aren’t design to give you the uplifts you’re really looking for. The only way to get people to say yes to whatever you’re offering is by planning and designing a landing pages based on your own in-depth customer-based research.
“Plan and launch landing pages for your customers, landing pages that address their specific hesitations and concerns and form emotional connections based on their emotional triggers. To truly create a high-converting landing page, build it according to your goals and your audience’s. (Psst.. Grab Talia’s complete guide to landing page optimization).”'The only way to get people to say yes to whatever you're offering is by planning and designing a landing pages based on your own in-depth customer-based research' - @TaliaGw on landing page optimizationClick To Tweet
Talia is a conversion optimization specialist who generates more revenues, leads and sales for her clients using emotional targeting and persuasion.
Talia is the founder of GetUplift, has taught on stages such as Google, MozCon, CTAconf, Search Love and many more and was recently listed as one of the most influential experts in the world for conversion optimization.
5. Jake Burgess – Copywriter (and free advice-giver) at jake-burgess.com
TL;DR Craft a sick lead magnet.
“What’s the goal of any landing page? To get something off the reader, right? Usually contact details.
“Fundamentally, it’s about selling. Most designers/copywriters focus 95% of their efforts on A/B testing copy, colours, layouts, reader profiles…
“And that’s all damn important.
“But you can’t forget it’s a sale! That means giving something to the reader. Take the time to write/create/design an attractive and useful lead magnet, that’s tailored to your audience, and the conversion rate will skyrocket.
“Because in the minds of your reader, it’s no longer a hard sell; it’s a free bargain. A “worthless” email address for a valuable e-book, consultation, webinar, white paper, etc.
“Trust me, once you convert a few visitors, that lead magnet becomes a rewarding investment. Give your readers something they want, and get landing pages that actually work.
“Kerr-ching!”'Craft a sick lead magnet' - @jakemburgess on landing page optimizationClick To Tweet
Jake Burgess is a Copywriter (and free advice-giver) at jake-burgess.com – follow Jake on Twitter @jakemburgess
6. Nicola Dunkin – Founder of My Words Work For You
Always fulfill your promises.
“As with any other pages, make the benefits to the user landing on that page loud and clear. The page has to fulfill the purpose, too e.g. if they were directed from an ad, it needs to fulfill the promise of that ad.”'Always fulfill your promises' - @Wordsworkforyou on landing page optimizationClick To Tweet
Nicola is a freelance content writer. Her company, My Words Work For You, began in 2013. Since then her words have contributed to the success of businesses across the UK.
7. Vince Golangco – Founder and CEO of WhenInManila.com
Keep it simple.
“The best landing pages keep it simple and stay focused on their purpose. If you want a visitor to do something in particular, like leave their email address, make that clear.
“Some landing pages are over complicated and lose their overall impact as a result. Visitors often get side tracked by something else on the page and can even forget what they were there for.
“Don’t leave anything to the imagination.”'Keep it simple' - @VinceGolangco on landing page optimizationClick To Tweet
Vince Golangco is the founder and CEO of WhenInManila.com, the biggest blog/online magazine in the Philippines, garnering over 10 million impressions per day.
8. Natalie Simmons – Founder of Thumbs Up Marketing
Simplicity is key.
“Make it crystal clear that the visitor is in the right place by ensuring the page answers their search query. Simplicity is key if you are to get your audience to absorb the core message quickly, so be bold and be to the point. Then entice and persuade so that they are compelled to stay and find out more. Just as important is your CTA. Keep that simple and as clear as possible. Every element of the page is about moving your visitors through that sales funnel and converting them into prospects or customers.”'Simplicity is key if you are to get your audience to absorb the core message quickly, so be bold and be to the point' - @ThumbsUpTweeter on landing page optimizationClick To Tweet
Natalie Simmons is the owner of Thumbs Up Marketing, a freelance marketing consultancy based in Darlington, County Durham. Her little business is all about helping people. She’s there for local businesses who need a bit of direction and support, providing quality, friendly marketing advice and services without the jargon that aims to get the very best return from a client’s marketing spend.
She’s also a mother to two teenage girls, a wife and a bit of a fitness nut. She enjoys pork pies, red wine, cake and painting.
9. Jonathan Aufray – Co-founder and CEO of Growth Hackers
The goal of a landing page is to convert.
“So, to convert, you need:
C = Clear Call to Action
O = Offer
N = Narrow Focus
V = VIA: Very Important Attributes
E = Effective Headline
R = Resolution – Savvy Layout
T = Tidy Visuals
S = Social Proof
“Therefore, my best tip for landing pages is to test the hell out of them. You need to experiment titles, CTAs, testimonials, the copy, etc… This is only by testing that you will find what works and what doesn’t for your market and your audience. Those experiments will allow you to improve your conversion rate.”'Test the hell out of them' - @StartGrowthHack on landing page optimizationClick To Tweet
Jonathan is the co-founder and CEO at Growth Hackers. He helps startups, SMBs and entrepreneurs grow with digital marketing and growth hacking. He helps them drive traffic to their websites and apps, generate leads, improve their conversions, automate their processes, increase their sales and get a positive ROI.
He’s lived in 7 countries and has done business with companies and entrepreneurs from 70+ countries. He loves meeting new people and discovering new culture.
10. Neil Henry – Co-founder and COO of Creative Mindscape
Test, test and test again.
“I’d say the most important thing is A/B testing with a couple of different versions of your landing page. Because people use many different devices with different screen sizes and in different settings – on the go, in the office, at home, etc… creating multiple versions and measuring effectiveness is really important when creating highly effective landing pages.
“Considering the important parts of the page such as what is above the fold? Is the messaging and call to action clear? Can people navigate the page easily, whatever the device? There are many such questions all of which dictate success or failure of a landing page. Because of all these considerations you really need to A/B test.
“I always suggest these 3 principles when A/B testing:
- Who is our target audience? What device type do they predominantly use, what setting will they be in when viewing the page, when and how do they like to be presented with information online?
- What is our conversion goal? Based on the target audiences interest level in the landing page, and opportunity it presents for them. What are you trying to achieve from the ‘interest’? Direct sales leads, website traffic, new subscribers, social media interaction?
- What are we offering? Once you have answered 1 and 2 above you have a clear picture of the best type of offer for the target audience and the conversion type you are after. In short, what is it that will entice them to ‘convert’? A discount code/promo, a free ebook or consultation, etc?”
Neil Henry is the COO and co-founder of Creative Mindscape. Lover of marketing, psychology, tech and all things sport. Family man with a passion for living life outside the rat race and chasing your own dreams.
11. Tony Gavin – Intelligent Marketing Sensei at tonygavin.com
My #1 Tip for Creating a High Converting Landing Page: No Escape!
“Okay, so it’s really two tips in one. If you want a high converting landing page, first up you need to keep visitors on that page! That means no outbound links to social media pages, no menus taking them to other web pages and definitely no outbound buttons inviting visitors to CLICK HERE, unless of course HERE is exactly where you want them to go.
“Leading on from that is having just ONE consistent call to action. If you want visitors to call you, ask them to call and provide a highly visible phone number. If you want them to fill in a form, ask them to fill in that form. Keep visitors on the page and be 100% clear and consistent about what you want them to do. Your increased conversion rates will speak for themselves.
“Here’s an example from my own website”'Keep visitors on the page and be 100% clear and consistent about what you want them to do. Your increased conversion rates will speak for themselves' - @tonygavinesq on landing page optimizationClick To Tweet
Tony Gavin is an erstwhile accountant, serial entrepreneur, web developer, digital marketing veteran and lover of all things marketing automation and artificial intelligence.
When he’s not flitting between his home in Manila, Philippines and his family and clients in Australia and elsewhere, Tony occasionally takes the time to do some actual work, and comes up with totally intelligent marketing ideas that www.work!
12. George Collins – Co-Founder of Gaming Redefined
UX plan, test and deploy
“For me, the first step is to map out the entire journey your customer goes on – before they hit your landing page, whilst they are there and once they have left. I’d suggest starting at the point they first engage with you (e.g. Facebook ad or organic search), then move through the necessary steps required on the landing page to enable a sale, and finish with the actions carried out once the sale is made and the customer has left the site.
“Tip – if you need some inspiration why not compare your competitors’ journeys?
“Once you have your journey mapped you need to check it is as frictionless, relevant and specific to the acquisition channel as possible. When you compared your competitors’ journeys, what did you love enough to want to steal and what did you want to avoid?
“When we talk to our clients about mapping journeys we often talk about creating multiple landing pages to enable the deployment of messages, buying steps and a call to action that are specific and relevant. We believe it’s one of many things that increases the likelihood of conversion.
- How easy is it to get to the point of conversion?
- Are there distractions that cause the user to fall out of the journey?
- Can you make the journey quicker?
- Are you monitoring the journey behaviors of your users?
- Are you testing journeys specific to the channel, offer, product?
“Remember, a landing page is one part of the whole sales journey, you want to get the visitor through the funnel as quickly as possible and you want to convert those visitors into customers.”
George Collins is the co-founder of Gaming Redefined, a full service, digital first Gaming initiative focused on creating change within the Third Sector.
13. Berenice Smith – Award-winning creative and designer, and founder of Hello Lovely
“There needs to be a clear purpose. A goal that is enabled via clear navigation, engaging words and great, intuitive user design. In short, earn its keep like all the pages on a website.”“There needs to be a clear purpose. A goal that is enabled via clear navigation, engaging words and great, intuitive user design. In short, earn its keep like all the pages on a website” - @hihellolovely on landing page optimizationClick To Tweet
Berenice Smith is a graphic designer with over twenty years practical experience at senior level in agency and publishing houses. Masters qualified in graphic design and typography, she creates print, web, digital, branding and marketing material that enables her clients to do business better. You can find out more about her at Hello Lovely – www.hellolovely.org.uk
So there you go. Hopefully, this expert roundup has given you some inspiration for your next landing page. Maybe you’re now going to revisit some you’ve already got published.
I’d love to hear about your own experiences with landing pages. Leave a comment below or tweet me @JDevonshire
I’m a full-time freelance writer and Managing Editor at Creative Mindscape who is lucky enough to call the tropical paradise that is the Philippines my adopted home. In my spare time, I love to dabble in cryptocurrencies and play with my three young children. One’s a stressful, non-stop rollercoaster ride; the other is cryptocurrencies.