What is a landing page?
Let’s start with the basics. A landing page is a marketing channel commonly used in when advertising on Google, or other paid search engines or paid display ads on social media or elsewhere. The idea is to create a unique and specific page for your advertising campaigns so that users who click on your ad group fall exactly on the page with the relevant information, therefore strengthening your ad score and helping you in the Google Ads auction. You won’t be able to find this page from the website map, it is only accessible via the link you provide.
Unbounce puts it pretty succinctly:
“Landing pages are focused on a single objective that matches the intent of the ad that your visitors clicked on to reach your page.”
Let's look at the differences between a real landing page and a company's homepage. Below you’ll see the results for the query: Make Music Online. If you click on the sponsored ad, you’ll land on the top page, (aka a landing page) that refers to the ‘Time Limited Offer’ from the ad for Sountrap, a service that lets you create your own Music online with their actual homepage. If you click the unsponsored link, you’ll land on their homepage which has a little bit more info than the regular landing page.
So in order for your landing page to be effective, you should start by defining your ultimate goal. Some landing pages are about collecting emails for your email marketing and lead generation, some are about providing additional information on your products or services.
Then, there are two principal aspects to consider when planning your landing page: the layout and content.
The debate is eternal, is design or content more important? Whereas the content is very important to convert your campaign visitors, if they can’t access the content due to a poor layout, then everyone loses.
Keep it simple
The first rule for landing pages is to keep it simple. You may want to show off all of your services and products, but that’s what your main website is for. Landing pages should have one end goal, and therefore a simple design is key to converting visitors.
For example, we chose to be really meta and give you an example of a landing page for a company that helps you create landing pages.
Unbounce’s Landing Page from October 2019
Impactful and on-topic messaging above the scroll bar
One of the pieces of advice that you see online is keeping the Call to action above the fold.
Sometimes called ‘the fold’ (a callback to newspapers), the part of the webpage that you can see before scrolling is the most important part of your page.
But what the website Neil Patel suggests, is that the placement of the call-to-action isn’t as important as the reason why people are clicking on it. What we would argue then, is that you should put your CTA wherever you want, but make sure the principal messaging is above the fold.
In a study on Human-Computer interaction by Nielson Group, researchers found that people will only stay on a webpage on average for 10 to 20 seconds but when the messaging is clearly communicated on the front page, you can extend that time by a few seconds.
The last aspect to keep in mind when creating a landing page is to make sure it is mobile-friendly.
According to StatCounter which analyzes 2 million different websites stats, over the past 12 months, 53.66% of visitors were on mobile devices compared to 46.34% for desktop.
By this, we don’t just mean responsive, although that is essential as well. We mean your mobile landing page should be built for mobile-first, and not as an afterthought. Your mobile landing page should have less content overall, and the text should be minimized to avoid drowning out your message. More and more phones are taking precedence and having a site that is not created with that in mind is really just shooting yourself in the foot.
As we touched on earlier, it’s important not to overload your page with content. You should focus on relevant and pertinent information that is directly related to the content of the ad in order to prevent page bounce.
With that in mind, here are some ideas to help convert your visitors.
Case Studies and testimonials with your actual clients are a great way to convince a potential customer who has come this far. This is one of the best pieces of content a digital marketing expert can produce. This can be in the form of quotes raving about your service or product, a video testimonial with your clients or others. Check out this testimonial video with Phelps Agency by YumYum.
Speaking of video...
It’s clear that video is becoming more and more important in today’s online marketing. According to a recent Wordstream study, “51% of marketing professionals worldwide name video as the type of content with the best ROI.” If you are looking for inspiration for different types of videos, check out this article about the best corporate videos we’ve seen lately.
The right images
If your landing page is product-based, having the right images is going to be essential. In many cases, the landing page is going to be the first full interaction people have with your site, once they’ve clicked on an ad, so it’s important to put your best foot forward with professional and beautiful photos. If you need help scaling your visual content production, we have a couple of ideas about that. I am just going to leave this little ad here…
One of the classic techniques to getting people to click on your call to action is to offer something. What you can offer will depend on what you can create in your content strategy. You can ask your visitors to register for an online class, a webinar, an event, a meeting, the sky is the limit. Similarly, you can ask them for their email address in exchange for a download, like a white paper, an ebook or a tool like a checklist.
Finally, one last technique for creating the best landing page possible is to run testing. There are two types of simple tests you can run to make the most of your landing page. User testing and AB testing.
For user testing, simply have someone nonaffiliated with the page test it out, and watch how the interact with the design. Do they focus on the text, the design, and do they click your CTA?
For AB testing, the principal is basic, you create two pages with comparable content and you compare the results, to see which page has a better conversion rate.
If you apply all of these tips, you are well on your way to a successful marketing campaign.