9 Landing page design tips

Landing pages are the hub of all inbound lead generation efforts – every campaign that you run, event that you host and funnel offer that you create should be tied back to a landing page. With so much focus on driving traffic to landing pages, you ought to make sure your design not only presents your brand in a positive light but is also effectively attracting and converting targeted traffic into qualified leads.

We have designed hundreds of landing pages for our clients, tracking the results and continuously conducting iterative tests along the way. Here are 9 landing page design tips you can use to start converting more of your traffic:

1. Write click-worthy titles

On average, 8 out of 10 people will read the headline copy, but only 2 out of 10 people will read the body copy. Writing an attention grabbing headline is critical to capturing interest early and engaging visitors towards conversion.

Writing a title for a funnel offer is really no different than writing a headline for the front page of a newspaper. You need the headline to be descriptive enough to let the viewer know what the content is about, yet intriguing enough for someone to pick up the paper and read the article – or in our case click on the link and download the funnel offer.

The better your headline, the better your chances are of converting a viewer into a lead.

2. Optimize for search

Landings pages that haven’t been optimized for search are simply losing out on valuable, qualified search traffic. In general you want each of your pages to have at least 250 words. Google doesn’t measure for this minimum threshold of words on a page, however as Jill Whalen points out, “250 words is simply a good amount to be able to write a nice page of marketing copy that can be optimized for 3-5 keyword phrases”.

Each landing page should have a unique, keyword focused title tag and meta description. Further, your main headline should feature your target keyword and be wrapped in H1 tags. For those of you who are less familiar with technical SEO and basic HTML, putting your headlines in an <H1> tag essentially tells Google’s web crawlers that these words are the most import words on the page and can help to improve your organic search rank.

These components of landing page design tend to be the “lowest hanging fruit” for search optimization, yet they are often overlooked.

3. Remove the navigation

Unlike other pages of your website that are designed to be more informative and educational, landing pages are completely conversion focused. With this in mind, removing the navigation from your landing page design will focus the viewers attention on exactly what it is you want them to do – fill in their contact information to access your exclusive content.

4. Describe the contents & benefits of your exclusive content

It is important to use consistent messaging throughout the conversion process. This includes your calls-to-action in blog posts or PPC ads and the description of the exclusive content you are offering on your landing page. Each of these descriptions should accurately describe exactly what the user will get when they take action on your offer. Accurate descriptions help to build trust, avoid user annoyance and improve lead quality.

5. Use color strategically

Just like any other page on your website, color has a big impact on how a user scans your page and interacts with your content. While there is no end in sight for the debate over which color is best for buttons on landing pages, there is one thing for certain – the more you can tastefully draw attention to the “Download Now!” or action button, the better. This is the one action that you want visitors to take when they view your landing page.

6. Establish trust

Often times the traffic that you are sending to your landing pages, specifically at the top-of-funnel, isn’t overly familiar with your organization. If you have earned any recognizable certifications, awards or badges, displaying them on your landing page can help visitors quickly validate your organization’s quality credentials.

7. Leverage social proof

As a continuation of our previous point, highlighting testimonials from current customers or surfacing active social media discussion about your product/service on your landing page can also help to establish a sense of trust. Visitors gain confidence in your organization when they see that similar people or organizations are happily using your product/service.

8. Test form length

The optimal length of the form on your landing page depends on a number of factors. Do you want more leads? Do you need more qualified leads? How valuable is the offer that you are presenting? What stage of the sales funnel is your landing page targeting (TOF/MOF/BOF)?

In general, if you want more leads it is suggested that you try less required fields on your landing page forms. Want higher quality leads? Ask for more information – this will help weed out some of the people who are just checking out your content for informational purposes.

We have tested forms that converted higher with less required fields and in a few cases we have identified instances where forms actually convert higher with more required fields. Every landing page has different goals, each funnel offer has a different perceived value and every business is attracting different buyers. Testing is the only way to identify what works best for your specific case.

9. Make sure it’s mobile friendly

As of late 2013 it is estimated that over one third of all internet traffic now comes from mobile devices. And, to put it simply, few businesses are doing so well that they can afford to exclude a third of the market.

For growth-focused organizations, the increasing popularity of mobile devices means that our landing pages need to be designed to responsively conform to the screen size that the viewer is using. Responsively designed landing pages do just that by providing a consistent experience for every visitor now matter if they are using a mobile device, tablet or desktop computer.

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