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10 Rules You Should Know About Effective Landing Pages

September 4, 2016


10 seconds. That’s how much time you have to convince your landing page visitors that they’ve found a place that will fill their need. If you don’t convince them in those 10 seconds, you’ll never see them again. That’s why it’s important to optimize your landing page to turn those 10 seconds into whatever time it takes them to make the response you want from them.

What does it take to get them to quickly recognize that they’ve found the right place? Here are 10 tips to make sure your landing page is the right place for them.

They’ve come to you with a need that they want to be filled, not for a game of hide and seek. The temptation on a landing page is to try to jam as much as possible into it so you’ve covered every possible customer need. What visitors want, though, is for a solution to jump out at them.

Make your design simple. Pare it down to only what is absolutely necessary to lead visitors to a conversion. The quicker visitors can see that you have their solution, the better chance you have of getting that conversion.

Similarly, avoid the temptation to make every page of your website accessible from your landing page. Your landing page has one purpose: to lead your visitors to take a specific action. Don’t distract them from going in any different direction.

Your headline has one job: to stop visitors in their tracks and get them to engage with your landing page. There are many ways to do this. Pique their curiosity with question or statement that hints at a solution to their need. Make a bold statement that challenges them. Whatever way you do it, make sure you make it irresistible enough to entice them to stay on your landing page for a solution.

Avoid the temptation to talk about yourself, the history that led you into making your offering or why you want to be the one that solves their problem. Talk about them. Don’t try to convince them rationally to take the step you want them to take. Get them to convince themselves emotionally.

Tap into their emotions with emotionally resonant words, such as discover, easy, results, proven, guarantee. Get them to feel the decision to move forward with you is the right decision rather than to think it is.

Show your visitors testimonials from past customers, endorsements from organizations they trust (such as the Better Business Bureau or Verisign) or places where your offering has been featured in the past. Even stock graphic badges that merely restate your guarantees – despite those graphics having no organization backing them – inspire trust better than just presenting your guarantees in the text.

Don’t assume visitors will take action on their own. Don’t assume they’ll even know what to do. Rather than a timid “Click Here” or a vague “Submit,” tell them exactly what to do. Remind them of how it will benefit them. Show enthusiasm over the step they’re about to take. You want there to be no doubt in their mind about what to do or why they’re doing it.

Once your visitor gets to the point of sharing their information with you, be sparing in what you require them to give. Your relationship with them is only beginning. They’re testing you to see whether you truly have the help that they need. Don’t overwhelm them by asking for information that they don’t clearly understand you need in order to give them what you offered. Usually, only a name and email address is enough – and sometimes only an email address.

Once they’ve opted in, show them that you appreciate the trust they’ve placed in you. Sincerely thank them. Give them what you promised. And, if you really want to make a positive impression, include an additional bonus that goes beyond what you offered.

Mobile computing means that your website will appear on devices with varying screen sizes, making a one-size-fits-all website design an annoyance to whatever visitors don’t view your website on a device whose screen size matches your design. Make sure you use a responsive or adaptive approach that fits your web page to visitors’ devices instead of showing them an awkward, partial view of your page.

Make sure also that your page loads quickly. Research shows that nearly half of web visitors expect a page to load in two seconds or less, and 40% will leave if loading takes more than three. If you want your landing page to be seen, make sure visitors see it quickly.

Just as you need to start your content strategy with a clear plan in mind, you need to follow through after your website is completed. Test it to make sure you have the right combination of design elements, navigation, content and other elements to get the best return out of it. You can check any lists of writing services for content help.  A variety of A/B testing tools will enable you to test one variation of a part of your page against an alternate version of it to ensure you are getting the best possible return.

Is your landing page using its 10 seconds of visitor decision time to its best advantage? Strip it down to just the essentials. Make it clear that filling their need is your No. 1 concern. And keep improving your website so that it ever more effectively communicates that their search for a solution can stop with you. You’ll see results in ever more conversions.

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