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How To Create A High Converting Landing Page

Today’s guest post is from Oli Gardner.  This is a two part post, the second part will be published tomorrow – Enjoy!

You’re do loads of awesome marketing: ads, promos, contests yada yada yada. And you send all that hard earned traffic to your homepage where people lose the information scent from your ad, get confused and leave.

You need a landing page. Landing pages are targeted specifically the intent and content of your ads.

In this post we’ll learn how to construct a high converting landing page by examining:

  1. The anatomy of a landing page
  2. Some landing page examples critiqued for conversion

Then tomorrow we’ll finish things off with a crash course containing 9 tips to ensure your landing pages are converting as well as possible.

Let’s begin today with…

Part 1: A Quick Landing Page Anatomy Lesson

There are 7 main elements to consider when designing your page.

  1. Unique value proposition in a concise headline

This is your intro to your prospect and should match the message that you promised in your ad, ideally in a way that explains the benefit your solution provides.

  1. Image/video showing context of use

Remember the goofy squinty guy from the SlapChop ads? Of course you do. He was awesome, and demonstrated the product “in use”. That’s context and whether it’s a cheap vegetable chopper or an online SaaS business, showing your product or service being used will get you more sales, guaranteed.

  1. Core benefit statement(s)

People hate reading. So keep your main points in bullet form, not big paragraphs, and make them focused solely on the benefits that people will get from using it. A feature is meaningless without an associated benefit. Always think “How would this help people?”

  1. Request for data (and a fair value item in exchange)

Every B2B marketer wants one thing above all else, email addresses. Remember this phrase: “Match the quantity of the data you’re asking for with the size of the prize.” People need to feel like they are getting value from their personal data in order to convert. Two ways to do this – make amazing content or make the form super short – ideally both.

  1. A strong call to action (CTA)

Your CTA should use principles of conversion centered design to stand out from the rest of the page and leave no doubt about it’s purpose. Aside from the design, a crucial aspect for your CTA is what it says – copywriting, especially for conversion can be challenging.

One good tip is to ensure you describe exactly what will happen when the button is clicked. Never say “Submit” – say “Download my free ebook” – big difference, and it lets people know they are making a good click. A good rule of thumb is to complete the sentence “I want to…”

  1. Trust elements

Would you buy from a company you didn’t trust? No one. So what can you do increase the trust of your landing page? Here are a few things you can use:

  • Testimonials: Make them authentic and try to use video if you can. And don’t be afraid to ask your customers if they are willing to help.
  • Twitter comments: Show a live stream of people saying nice stuff about you.
  • Endorsements: Show the logos of media placements or high profile customers.
  1. Post-conversion socializing

Want to take advantage of warm leads? There’s no better place than the confirmation page of your lead gen page or cart page. Use this opportunity when the lead has expressed intent, and ask for something else, like a follow or newsletter subscription.


Part 2: Examples of Good Landing Pages

Now that we’ve covered what goes into making up an effective landing page, let’s check out a few example pages, and run through a short critique of each to see what they’re doing well, and what could potentially be changed or optimized via an A/B test.

 

What works – It’s all about the benefits

People want to know how your product/service can make their life/work better. There’s no better way than writing in terms of benefits.

  • The image supports the implied benefit of the process; a happier family in control of their finances.
  • The bullet points take the benefits further, leading you to a more positive feeling about your situation.
  • The CTA caps it all off nicely by indicating that theres a solution there for you.

Things to change or be tested

They’ve done a really good job here, so I wouldn’t really change much. They could make the form shorter, but the target demographic for this page should be motivated enough to complete it.

  • If you were to remove any forms fields choose: Verify email, alternate phone and city.


What works

  • Directional cue: People need to be guided, so I like that they take you from the benefit statement to the action area by using an arrow.

Things to change or be tested

  • The headline is more of a branding/naming concept, rather than a descriptive title that explains the purpose of the page. The explanation in the black section is a more powerful message. I’d move “Web Marketing 2.0” to the header opposite the logo.
  • Take advantage of the white space below the form to display a supporting trust element such as a testimonial.

 

What works

  • Directional cues: Even better than the last example, this page makes great use of arrows to direct your attention through the flow of the page and it’s benefits.
  • Strong CTA copy: The copy explains exactly what you’ll get which is what every good CTA should do.
  • Guarantee: At the top right there is an excellent guarantee statement, which is repeated at the point of conversion – the CTA. The no-risk factor will lead to higher conversions.

Things to change or be tested

  • Example logos: The value proposition of this page is getting logos made – so show some examples to improve the trust in the company’s design skills.

Now you’re well on your way to craft compelling landing pages for your campaigns. As a final note, hop on over to a landing page we put together just for Duct Tape readers.

– Oli Gardner

Oli Gardner is Co-Founder & Creative Director at Unbounce – The DIY Landing Page Platform. He is an opinionated writer, primarily on the subjects of landing pages and conversion rate optimization. You should follow him on Twitter @OliGardner.

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