You do love a good looking landing page, don’t you?
Bright color palettes, attractive and free flowing layouts, personalized visuals. The unique combination in the right proportions is designed to appeal to customer sensibilities.
But a landing page has much more to offer than just plain good looks alone. It’s no fun to grab your ‘go-to template’ and clone it every single time. Where’s the adventure in that?
You should design and develop a landing page that you would not be embarrassed to present to your CMO. Hence, creative exploration should drive your audience, wanting to convert.
Before you get started towards creating a high converting landing page, let’s get one thing straight. Great landing pages do not follow the ‘one-size-fits-all’ mantra. However, there are certain elements or landing page best practices to help you create one that successfully converts.
Pro tip: Even if you have a Eureka moment where you decide to cram everything in one page, well, think again. Learn to ask the right questions first.
In this article
Asking the Right Questions
Before you start creating your landing page, make sure you have answered these pre-landing page questions.
Q1: What is the Goal of Your Landing Page?
Think carefully about how you want your visitor to act once they have reached your landing page. Do you want them to sign up for an emailer, fill out a form, download a manual or eBook or perhaps make a purchase? The initial step is to understand and define your goals even before you start creating your landing page.
Q2: What is Your Landing Page Contending Against?
Copying the right strategies is possibly the sincerest form of flattery. So, if you see that your competitors are doing something that is working for them, there is really no harm in giving it a try too.
Q3: Who is Your Audience?
Even if you think it’s really silly, knowing your customers’ hopes, dreams and aspirations can help you meet their expectations and requirements so much better. In fact, it is going to be an extremely difficult job to write a copy that persuades them to bring their business to you if you honestly do not have an idea about who your ideal customers are and speak their language. So, go all out in Hannibal Lecter-style and get in your audiences’ heads.
Q4: How Did Your Customers Arrive on Your Landing Page?
Find out where your users are going to come from and craft appropriate communication accordingly. Research shows that business websites have experienced an increase in conversions by 55% when they have between 10 to 15 landing pages as opposed to those with less than 10 pages just drives this point home. In fact, when companies have created more than 40 landing pages, they have experienced a conversion jump by over 500%.
Therefore, if you know the source of your users, be it Facebook, Google or any other digital channel, having a tailored landing page for individual ad groups truly holds a lot of value. And it’s just plain common sense.
12 Key Landing Page Best Practices for Skyrocketing Conversions
Let’s start by figuring out the key landing page best practices. Remember that your application of these learnings will depend on how your direct market responds to various features and elements. After all, you want your landing page to work for you and get the job done.
1. Ensure That You Develop Landing Page with Relevant Content
Your visitors have reached your landing page with a pre-defined objective. To make sure that the visitors’ agenda is met, you must highlight to them that arriving at this destination has been relevant.
Perhaps a striking headline can keep them engaged until they get a chance to scan the entire content of the page. To showcase the level of relevancy, you must emphasize to your visitors that they have picked the right brand, service, product, offer, deal, information or experience that they were searching for. And a catchy headline can get this job done quite easily.
Additionally, having a pop-up live chat plugin can also keep your audience hooked onto the page. Conversing with an agent can also help in bringing the relevancy of the page into more prominence.
Example: Startup Institute posted a student application form via a landing page. The headline and a short Q&A on the side made the goal of the organization quite clear. Along with that, the applicants were free to ask questions via their live chat option too. This ticks all the right boxes for a highly converting landing page.
Tip: Use decent sized fonts to grab reader attention often resulting in better returns.
2. Don’t Forget to Include Reinforcing Sub-headlines
A catchy headline is meant to attract the visitor’s attention. But what is it that is going to make them stick around, going over the dreaded 0.05 milliseconds? An attention grabbing sub-headline, of course.
As you craft your content for your sub-headline, it must reiterate the message and page relevancy that was originally communicated to the visitor through the main headline. Plus, it must be persuasive.
Placed right below the main headline, the sub- heading offers a slightly more in-depth insight into what the visitor can expect to get from scanning the entire page.
Example: Check out the landing page for Berkshire Hathaway that clearly defines their value proposition in their sub-heading. Alternatively, if the main heading content constitutes a problem, the sub-headline can offer a solution.
Tip: Include social proof that combats any possible confusion or distraction questions.
3. Focus on the Information Architecture
Presentation is absolutely the focal point of a successful landing page. What comes into play here is the information architecture that should adhere to the following guidelines of having a clear, crisp design.
Here you also need to come to a decision about your navigation. No doubt, it should be simple, upfront and contain all the necessary information. Steer clear of anything too complex such as a pop up menu as that can create a distraction for your visitor. The result – stalled conversions.
While some experts believe that you should completely do away with a menu, not having one at all can create a poor user experience. Especially if your visitors are looking for more information and they cannot find an easy way to navigate to it.
Example: Airbnb’s Host Page makes a core promise at the heart of the page with a clean cut menu and a simple hero visual. This gives the visitor a chance to explore all relevant information accessible instantaneously before deciding to share their personal information.
Tip: Compromise between an absolute reduction and top-level menu options to allow visitors the opportunity to browse the site.
4. Consider Putting in Some Striking Visuals
Everyone knows that content is king, but an eye-catching visual is no less than the queen. Studies show that 65% of people are adept at visual learning and storing over 90% of the information in the form of visual data in their brains.
That said, putting in striking visuals as part of your landing page layout is a no-brainer. Be it static images or videos, imagery today plays a key role in landing page conversions. It builds up visitor perception that drives them towards closing the sale.
Example: Happy Egg has managed to put together a complete visual stunner. They have a video running in the background, showing kids smiling and enjoying their meal. The marketing experts always feel that smiles are contagious and are bound to leave every visitor feeling light and positive.
Tip: Use high quality and resolution images for your landing pages that should be relevant to the product or service that you are offering. You can even make use of user feedback software solutions where you create a dummy design. Just send it across your employees in the office to know what seems appealing and what needs to be changed in the design to understand better whether the page will help get more conversions or not.
5. Reward Visitor Time on Your Page
You have successfully convinced your visitors to remain on your page. The next step is to justify why they should give their valuable time on your website.
This is where you get the opportunity to really explain the core offerings of your product or service. Unless you can make them understand the USPs, they are just lost causes. The best way to move forward is to communicate your offer in a straightforward manner.
Try spinning your explanation incorporating the main headline. Consider a combination of elements like headline, sub-headline, image and separate paragraphs that can aid in further elaboration.
Example: Starbucks Rewards landing page has a simple design with a subtle dose of color usage. Scrolling down the page, the user can view the benefits of signing up for the Rewards offer.
Tip: It is better to tailor your explanation focusing on user benefit rather than just harping about product or service benefits alone.
6. Have A Logical Flow
Even if your landing page has the best quality content, you can continue to lose out on qualified prospects if the flow and structure of the page are not logical. With a coherent flow of communication, your visitors will be cognitively engaged. Offer them a step by step process that leads to conversion.
Begin by explaining the reason why the user has arrived on your landing page prior to listing your product or service USPs. Highlight user benefits, share credible testimonials and then end with your CTA.
Remember to demarcate your content sections that add to the visual appeal as well as readability factor.
Example: Everyone wants to do their bit for the community in their unique way. That’s why UNICEF designed a landing page – ‘Take Action’, that offers visitors the option to donate, volunteer, and work with the organization. If users need more information, they can opt to receive newsletters by clicking on ‘Connect With UNICEF’.
Source: UNICEF Take Action
Tip: Shorter landing pages with limited exit points and CTAs positioned at the end of the page influences the flow and boosts conversions too.
7. Design Content to Address Pain Points
It is human psychology that you will look for the easiest route to accomplish things. And that holds true when it’s the question of common pain points that your products and services can help get rid of.
Therefore, landing page best practices demand that you should clearly define what’s at stake and how will your customer gain by going to your brand. Customer testimonials can also be another complementary medium to address these pain points. Whichever route you opt for, ensure that the problem is accompanied by a viable solution.
Example: Postbox’s landing page addresses an audience pain related to email management in the headline. Along with that, it also mentions a relevant solution making this a landing page that has a high probability of conversions.
Tip: Do not limit yourself to resolving pain points only. Add an element of emotional pleasure in it too.
8. Supply Enough Reasons to Support the Response Decision
For your prospect to generate the response that you desire, the content and the landing page experience has to be just right. Without all the required information, your visitor will never move closer to the reaction funnel.
So, what determines that the information provided on your landing page meets with user expectations, adheres to landing page best practices of web design, etc.? You can try using personas by sharing typical information needed and addressing the gap relative to what you deliver providing the right explanations.
Example: Media Company Condé Nast got the landing page right because it successfully communicated the proposition which was bound by a time limitation. Hence, this increased the user’s sense of urgency to consume the deal before its expiry.
Tip: Focus on user benefits which is a key element that drives user responses. Having a short FAQ section will also help. Moreover, if you see there is restriction towards adding additional information or the page would look too cluttered, then link knowledge base articles to terms you’d like to explain that expand more customer pain points.
9. Have Trust Builders in Place
Trust builders are an essential component in landing pages best practices. To drive prospects towards becoming your customers you will first have to persuade them of others who have used your service or product and are more than happy to endorse it.
Establishing credibility through customer recommendations and testimonials is also easy. While the views of key marketing professionals, influencers and industry experts count, the average customers are looking for something more real. Give your everyday reviewers some real estate on your landing page by adding their names and photographs.
Example: Masterclass landing page has included relevant student testimonials at the bottom that realistically portrays feedback, reviews and recommendations on their various online tutorials.
Tip: Let your prospects view your social feed through your landing page in real time that highlights the confidence and transparency in your service or product.
10. Trigger Appropriate User Response Via CTAs
The design of the landing page must ensure that the visitor is involved in the minimum number of clicks to get their desired response. Ideally, the data should be captured on the first screen without the user having to scroll down at all.
That said, if the response mechanism rolls over, then having a scrolling CTA can possibly generate a greater click through rate. For any CTAs to trigger the appropriate user reaction must contain attention grabbing headlines with ad copy that is direct. Include words in your Call to Action that creates an effective scent trail that users of the site can follow.
Example: Drive with Uber is a landing page that addresses a common user pain point which is work schedule flexibility in the very headline. The form which is a part of the CTA is placed on the first screen allowing prospects tons of opportunities to convert instantly.
Tip: Before you get your landing pages up and running, make sure you have use focus groups in place to test out which CTAs work best.
11. Designing Responsive Landing Pages Is Not Enough
Gone are the days when you would get away with designing responsive or mobile friendly landing pages. To be in the race, you have to seriously look into designing landing pages that are for your mobile devices alone.
Remember that 51% of shoppers say that they use mobile devices to find new brands and products. This means that if your landing pages are not equipped to meet the demands of smartphone savvy shoppers, you are losing out on a gigantic slice of the business.
Having responsive designs will not get the job done as these landing pages are primarily developed to cater to the desktop audience, not any other devices.
Example: Paypal desktop and mobile landing pages have been designed absolutely differently. Each asset caters to its specific audience behavior and expectation. This results in enhanced performance of the respective pages.
Tip: Custom design landing pages for individual devices once you’ve had the opportunity to map your customer journeys.
12. Run A/B Tests
You have followed every guideline in the best practices list. In spite of doing that there is no guarantee that you will get everything right on your first attempt to get rolling with a super successful landing page.
That’s where A/B testing enters the picture. The theory suggests that you design two versions of the landing page adopting different types of visuals, imagery, copy, color themes, etc. This is because people tend to unknowingly respond to even the most subtle of differences, in different ways.
Example: Slack’s landing page ticks most of the right boxes but falls short on key aspects. For instance, the page has multiple exit points such as the Slack logo, Sign In, See Customer Stories and more. This is one reason why this page should be A/B tested.
Tip: Try running each landing page over a 7 day period separately and monitor performance, traffic and any conversions. Have a contact form in place to capture feedback which you can then track in the backend with a helpdesk system.
Over to You
A landing page is no ordinary website terrain. Giving customers what they want definitely takes some research. By getting your best practices bang on right will give you a definite head start to where you may well find yourself miles ahead of your closest competition.
Asking the right questions and working towards the core messaging of your landing page is one of the best practices you can adhere to. That’s because your landing page is not just your business asset but also a way for your brand to create an impression for the first timers who are likely to purchase from you.
Keeping that in mind, we’ve created a list of landing page best practices that help to create more conversion opportunities for your business.