Hi, nice to meet you! Can I get yo’ numba?
This is an unfortunate scenario that can be found all over the internet. No, not internet dating and lame pick-up lines. I’m talking here about irresponsible landing pages. Please, don’t be that guy. It’s time to learn where you’re going wrong with your landing pages so they actually start converting and stop harassing people in ways that are detrimental to your brand.
Landing pages are all about conversion. Tweet This!
Design for the end user, decide what action you want them to take and drive them to it.
Effective landing pages should have the following six elements if they’re going to convert (and that’s why landing pages exist!):
1) Value Proposition
2) CTA (and/or a form)
3) Your logo & who you are
5) Measurement Capability
6) Good Design
1. The Value Proposition
The value proposition is where your landing page makes a promise about what value it will deliver. You tell visitors why they should take action. What are you offering? Tell people immediately or they will leave the landing page. There should be ONE clear value proposition per page. What are you offering and how are you different from everyone else out there offering the same thing?
Also, don’t mismatch your pre-click message and post-click message. Your LP headline and your link verbiage should match exactly or visitors can get confused or feel like you’ve made a false promise and taken them somewhere they didn’t want to go.
2a. The Call To Action (CTA)
CTA buttons should be high contrast when compared to the rest of the page and they should be strategically placed to catch attention. Eliminate distractions- the only way to proceed from the landing page should be your CTA button. No links to your homepage, no navigation, nothing. Don’t distract people from what you want them to do. And whatever you do, DO NOT include social sharing buttons. Let’s be real here, nobody shares landing pages. It also helps to create a sense of urgency (‘Only 10 available’, ‘Sign up now’, ‘Reserve your spot today’…). Do not use “Submit” as your CTA button text. Submit? Goodbye!
2b. The Form
Many landing pages have forms. These may or may not be necessary, depending on the purpose of the landing page but if you have one, there are some rules to follow.
Don’t ask for too much. If you’re going to include a form, make it a simple one. Oh, you want me to give my phone number or address? Oh yes, please call me during dinner and send me junk mail. What’s next, my dental history? My soul? Don’t ask for too much. Give some to get some- Free guides, white papers and discounts are all good giveaways to exchange for an email address. Effective offers help prospects move through the conversion funnel. Give someone a brochure about the benefits of goat’s milk and they’re much more likely to trust you as an authority on goat’s milk. The next time they interact with you they’re already thinking about your company in a certain light and they’re already inside the funnel.
3. Who You Are
Always include your logo and explain who you are. Unless you’re Oprah or Apple you probably need to include a little bit about yourself. Always have your logo on your landing page so visitors know who or what they’re looking at. This ties in with the next LP element…
Why should someone believe this offer? Social proof is powerful and can be shown in a variety of ways. Testimonials, positive press, a list of customers, statistics, you get the idea. Even one quote from a happy customer can help build credibility. Giving out personal information requires some trust and displaying a little social proof can build the trust you need to capture an email address.
5. Measurement Ability
Always have a way to measure your landing page performance. Using marketing automation or Google Analytics it’s easy to track how effective your landing page is, but you have to set it up correctly. It’s not complicated and it doesn’t take a lot of time, but it is a big deal if you want to know what’s working and what’s not.
6. Good Design
A landing page represents who you are as a company. Don’t be “that guy” or in this case, “that landing page”.
Choose images and graphics that are relevant to your offer and your company. We’ve all seen that woman with the headset. Is your boardroom really full of models or did you buy a cheesy stock photo? Let’s be honest here. Just say no to generic stock photography.
Use white space, colors, font size, etc. to highlight what’s important. Your headline and what the landing page is about should be immediately apparent, so put it at the top and in big letters.
Your CTA should be an obvious button and should stand out from the rest of the page. Don’t clutter everything up, let the focus be the focus. Resist the urge to write an essay. Keep it simple- say what you need to say and nothing more.
There are many ways to put those elements together. Some are good, some are bad and some are just plain ugly. Here are seven examples to help you emulate the good, avoid the bad and get your landing pages to convert.
->Plenty of credibility here with the testimonials and customer logos
->High contrast CTA button
->Great value proposition and benefits are clearly presented
->”Submit Form”. Seriously? That’s the best you could come up with? We’ll forgive them though because in the orange below there are 3 sliding images and each CTA button has better verbiage.
->Too long and too busy. There are 3 different sections here. Are they all necessary? You have to scroll down in order to see everything.
->Good value proposition that’s highlighted immediately and clearly.
->They are asking for way too much personal information! I would not want to hang around and give all those details.
->”Submit” again. Scary. Also, it’s hidden at the bottom and while the blue does stand out against the white, it blends in with the rest of the blue in the ad and doesn’t jump out at you.
-> Good contrast for the CTA button
->”You can start right now” Creates a sense of urgency and sounds positive.
->Stop guessing, start knowing…what this landing page is about. There is too much text here, period. ‘Know you’re safe’ is a scare tactic. This landing page goes into detail about 3 different things which could each be their own landing page with the amount of information provided.
->The CTA button- “Find cards” makes it clear what you will do once you click and the button is the only green element on the page.
->No credibility here. You want me to fill out a survey and don’t even have your own logo on the landing page?
->Boring design. Just because your one image is a mouse with flames on it doesn’t mean this landing page is suddenly cool.
->False promise- Here’s what I clicked on to get to this LP:
There is a discrepancy between what I clicked on and what I went to. I thought I would be able to find my new credit card, instead I have to fill out a form to see if I’m pre-qualified for one.
->Great credibility- testimonials and logos build trust
->Layout is well organized
->Good value proposition, of course I want to speed up my social media!
->Good CTA button- contrasting color and motivational text
->The arrow shape directs you to the CTA button
->Not much. I might suggest that they make the user logos all one color so they don’t distract from the HootSuite logo or the rest of the page.
->Great social proof
->Great CTA button. The color stands out, the verbiage makes me want to click on the button, and the icon on the button draws my attention and makes it clear that this is a software download.
->Clear value proposition
->No logo. Who are you RAD Studio? Whose landing page am I on? If I’m not sure immediately, I’m going to leave your landing page and go back to pinning outfits I can’t afford.
->High contrast CTA button- there isn’t red anywhere else on this page, so those buttons really stand out.
->Clear offer- I can get 250 business cards for $9.95
->The top line creates a sense of urgency with “the price will increase in 2:59:31″…with that counting down I’d better choose a template fast!
->Enough white space, instead of paragraphs of text they have stuck to 3 basic reasons why they’re worth your time and they show 2 examples of what they can print for you.
->The satisfaction guaranteed symbol and “over 1,000,000 satisfied customers” really makes me feel comfortable using them.
->I think this landing page is well done to optimize conversions, can you find anything that could be better?
Hopefully this post gave you some food for thought on designing and implementing your next landing pages. I would love to hear your stories!