Creating an effective landing page is key to achieving high-converting sales pages on your website.
A landing page or lead capture page that looks visually appealing does not necessarily lead to high conversions.
Keep reading, I'll demystify the process of creating the best converting landing pages for you.
What Is a Landing Page
The primary goal of a great landing page is to drive conversions to reach your marketing goals. Landing pages or lead capture pages may be home pages, single pages within a larger site, or a single sales landing page promoting one product on the website. It depends on how you set up your business model.
A web page promoted via advertising and prospects "land" on the specific page for a single purpose. We call these specific pages of a site landing pages. It may be the homepage or an inner page.
Whether you designate a page as a landing page depends on the purpose. Some build their business landing pages to run a one-time launch of an information product to promote it heavily for a short time.
Running paid advertising such as Google Ads or Facebook Ads makes sense because you focus on visitors' conversion on these landing pages. Therefore, the number one goal of landing pages is to convert.
Remember, a confused mind always says no. A high converting landing page focuses on one offer. All call-to-actions (CTAs) zero in on that one goal.
Focus on what your customer wants to accomplish. If the product solves a problem for your potential customers, you've got a winning offer.
It usually works when you promote a tested and proven offer that converted before. The exception to this is if it is a new product on the market. A well-designed landing page promoting a crappy offer few want will fall flat.
Main Benefits of Effective Landing Pages
Promote a Singular Product or Highlight a Special Sale
The singular focus of a landing page drives the visitor to fulfill the goal set out by you. Whether it is to promote a special sale or a product launch, the goal is a sale.
When the landing page focuses on a single purpose, it is easier to identify any potential issues with the offer or product. It also allows you to hone your set of target keywords to match the product.
Simplifies the Buying Process
A good landing page that converts moves your prospects down the funnel in an efficient manner. Visitors are not confused by multiple offers or distracted by items in the right sidebar.
The Secret Behind Good Landing Pages
Is there a proven formula for creating the perfect landing page?
Unfortunately, there isn't a hard and fast rule.
Depending on the industry, audience, purpose, product, messaging, cost, and value proposition, the best landing page designs vary greatly.
However, there are simple guidelines to follow to ensure a higher chance of success.
We cover these in the landing page elements below. These elements stay relatively constant because of enduring human nature.
The key to identifying well-designed, well-written landing pages that work for you is to TEST.
Perform A/B testing studies to identify the top-performing landing page before going all out to promote it. Analyze the results and troubleshoot any issues.
Never stop testing. Work at it, and you'll better your best.
You may also use tools to gather detailed user data such as heat maps, scroll maps, and user recording sessions.
How to Create a Landing Page That Converts
The most crucial factor in designing a landing page that converts is knowing who your customer is. It's essential to know your buyer persona and understand this ideal customer well.
The next critical factor is knowing what the marketing goal of the landing page is. Possible goals might be:
- Building an email list for email marketing
- Launch a new product
- Offer a special discount on a service
- Promoting a one-time, time-sensitive offer
Think about how you want to deliver your message in the offer headline and copy. What problem(s) are you solving for your customers? What is the outcome you want them to achieve?
Next, research your keywords. Think problems and solutions, not product names (unless it is a well-known brand. Be customer-centric when researching suitable keywords to include on your landing page.
What you have now are the basic building blocks for landing page content.
Now, you're ready to assemble them with a few other essential elements.
We will highlight landing page examples along the way. Let's get started.
7 Essential Landing Page Elements
Here are all the essential elements of a sales landing page. With very few exceptions, we recommend incorporating these elements into your landing pages for the greatest probability of success.
1. Compelling Headline
An excellent headline grabs the attention of the visitor and compels them to read further because of its promise.
A good headline is crystal clear. It's better to be precise than clever. Save the cleverness for another day. Make sure the benefit you are delivering is clear to your prospects.
Brainstorming a killer headline will take some time, but it is worth it. For some help with this exercise, refer to our copywriting guide and resource. A great headline always uses a good marketing hook.
DoorDash makes it clear what they offer with their delivery service: Your favorite restaurants delivered. Simple and to the point.
Netflix's simple and straightforward headline gives you everything you need to know in a concise headline: unlimited movies, TV shows, and more. It's simple to get started, and you begin by entering an email address.
For Khan Academy, they pulled off the difficult challenge of having a homepage that also functioned as their landing page. They targeted multiple audiences on the same page - teachers, schools, students, and parents.
2. Persuasive Sub-Headline
Your sub-headline is placed directly below your headline. It should persuade and provide a little more detail on what to expect.
Your headline makes them stop and look. The job of your sub-headline is to give your landing page visitors a reason to stay. These two complement each other to do the most important tasks of a landing page.
As with the headline, refer to our ultimate copywriting resource for more ideas, swipe files, starters to jog the mind, etc.
ConversionLab's landing page shows you how to design a landing page that converts with few distractions and a straightforward call-to-action to 'Get a Free Consult' button displayed in the middle and on the top right corner of the website.
Slack provides a team collaboration solution and explains it without too much text, drawing the visitor through the explanation with graphics, screenshots, testimonials, and other social proof.
3. Engaging Visuals or Videos
The human brain processes an image 60,000 times faster than text.
Videos also drive engagement. According to research by Aberdeen Group, marketers who use video in their campaigns achieve 34% higher conversion rates. Wyzowl discovered that 68% of people prefer to learn about a new product or service through a short sales video.
See how Blue Apron built a landing page with many of the essential elements. They made it simple to understand what they offered. Their home landing page also uses a video background for added interest.
Always keep in mind that your video content must match your message and offer.
Pictures add interest and help to relieve fatigue if your landing page contains a lot of text.
Where appropriate, you can also incorporate gifs to break up the monotony of text.
If you are selling a physical product, make sure you have a picture of the product. Even if it is an ebook or downloadable report, people still like to preview what it looks like in an image. For software, demonstrate some of the key features via video and add some screenshots of the software in use.
TransferWise engages with a clear headline and subhead along with a form that shows you how much it would be to send or receive money. A big green box to 'Get Started' takes you to the next step.
Additional thoughts on the use of visuals and videos
Show product in use, so you enable your prospects to visualize how they will benefit from it.
Make sure you use high-quality images. If the product images are low-quality, chances are people will not buy from a site that sells it.
See how Getty Images uses their stock photos to feature their product.
When you use video on your sales landing page, ensure the audio is clear. The video should be of high quality so prospects can see details, such as in a software demo.
Here's an example from Live Off Your Passion using a video explainer:
4. Engaging Copy
Whether short or long-form, make sure you maintain a strong ad scent throughout. Explain the benefits, not the features.
Here's an excellent example of how Apple differentiated features from benefits.
Features tell and benefits sell. Which one of these iPods would you have chosen if presented with the information above?
The one on the right will win hands down...
Sometimes, your visuals will do most of the work for you, and you don't have to write a lot of long-form copy.
If you go the long-form route, include plenty of white space between sentences and keep paragraphs very short.
Away from Pain, Towards Pleasure
Always remember that humans move away from pain towards pleasure.
At Art Of ROI, we use a tool to help our clients uncover what the 'Before and After states' look like for the customer using a product.
You want your prospects to understand that you feel their pain and have a solution that fixes it. Help them visualize how the After state looks like after using the product/service as a way to future-cast.
What are their emotional desires? Is it to be loved, recognized, compensated, or accepted?
Using supporting images will also draw out their emotions of the Before and After state.
IMPACT Branding and Design offered a free downloadable guide that promises you'll generate more leads from your blog. Their CTA button further drives home the point that reading the guide helps you 'generate more conversions.'
5. Trust Indicators
There are a variety of ways to instill trust.
Customer Testimonials/Social Proof
ClassCreator showcases the effectiveness of their education product with their social proof. You get accompanying graphics with their statistics and social proof of over 90,000 Australian teachers using it.
Tasters Club built an excellent homepage featuring many wines and spirit drinks, along with testimonials from happy customers.
Intercom builds credibility by stating that over 30,000 companies use their service and displays logos of well-respected companies such as Sotheby's, IBM, Microsoft, Udemy, and Shopify.
Casper designed a homepage that shows you what should be on a landing page. They make a clear offer front and center for their Black Friday promotion. They included statistical evidence of better sleep using their products and provided testimonials from their customers.
If you collect any contact details, assuring visitors with a "No-Spam" guarantee also helps ease their worries.
Display all the awards, badges, certifications, and other qualifications to build trust.
If you want to boost your sales, be sure to add badges and seals where appropriate. In a test done for Clean Energy Experts, a solar energy solutions provider, a Verisign trust badge's simple addition resulted in a 137% increase in sales.
Trust badges are especially helpful for small-medium businesses (SMBs). SMBs don't have the name recognition of a Walmart or Amazon, so they need that extra boost of credibility and trust.
In choosing what to include, focus on the badges from the most well-known companies such as PayPal, TRUSTe, Verisign, Better Business Bureau, Norton, and McAfee.
If collecting payments, put your customers at ease with well-recognized seals and badges.
Barilliance found that 75% of shopping cart abandonments were due to concerns about payment security.
If you are collecting payments, having an SSL secured website displaying HTTPS and payment trust badges instills confidence. Select the ones most trusted and recognized and display those.
For e-commerce sites, including any of these safe checkout badges also help.
These seals add credibility to your site and trust.
For many service-based businesses, having a Better Business accreditation builds a significant amount of trust. Each year, about 173 million people search BBB.org to check business ratings. Clicking on a verified BBB badge leads to the BBB site.
Third-party trust seals require an application followed by a review of the site before being allowed to place their badge.
6. Guarantees or Warranties
All customers love guarantees, yours will be no exception.
Great marketers offer guarantees to assure customers that they don't have any risk of trying the product.
It's also a way to show that the company stands behind their product 100%.
Popular guarantees are 100% money back if you're not satisfied. If you offer a service or info product, you may even add that you'll give them $100 for their time if they tried it and it didn't work.
Place your guarantee near your call-to-action for the added push towards conversion.
In addition to the copy stating the guarantee, you may also include a 100% guarantee badge.
In the absence of an explicit guarantee, you may mention things like:
- Award-Winning Support
- 100% US Customer Service Reps
- We Take Security and Privacy Seriously
If you're offering a warranty, state it clearly and make sure you send them a warranty card together with the product.
7. Clear Call-to-Action (CTA)
You've done a lot of hard work up to this point; now it's time to close the deal.
If you don't have a clear call-to-action (CTA), all the effort will be for naught. A good CTA converts visitors into customers. It turns a good landing page into a successful landing page.
Here's what you need to keep in mind when designing your CTA:
Years of conditioning lead people to expect a button naturally. There's no need to try something new if it already works.
The bigger your button and the more visible it is, the better. Maintain your CTA above the fold (what you see on the landing page without scrolling) and readily available throughout the page.
There have been some tests done, but nothing has been conclusive about what colors are best for the button since different tests reveal different results. The most important thing to note is that the button color stands out within the landing page and contrasts nicely with the background colors.
See how Geico uses the tail to draw the user's attention towards the entry form.
Geico drives you straight to requesting a quote with the red button to 'Check Your Quote' next to a zipcode entry box. The subtle feature of the tail is a bonus.
Use compelling copy and avoid using 'Submit' or 'Learn More.'
Nanigans uses action-oriented language that implies results with 'let's talk performance.'
RocketLawyer varies up their CTA with 'See all documents,'' Make legal documents,' 'Get started,' and 'Try it free for 7 days'.
Shopify makes a clear CTA to 'Start Free Trial' above the fold and on the top right corner of their site.
The best converting landing pages have the seven essential elements of a great landing page. A well-thought-out and well-designed landing page will turn an endless stream of your prospects into buyers and increase your profits.
Use the key components of a landing page mentioned above to transform your landing pages into your best converting landing pages.
Who knows, a blog might feature your landing page one day as one of the best examples of landing pages.
About the Author: Anthony Yap is a digital marketing expert who builds landing pages and custom funnels for businesses. Contact us for a free consultation regarding your needs.