How to Create Quality Landing Pages: The Definitive Guide
If you are running an email or a pay-per-click (PPC) campaign, one of your goals will surely be to grow your conversion rate. This is where creating quality landing pages will be of the utmost importance to you. Unfortunately, a lot of content marketers (especially those a bit less experienced) are not 100% confident in their abilities to build landing pages that will make their visitors convert. They usually think that creating a landing page is science, and while it is true that they are different from your regular blog posts (they serve a different purpose after all), creating a landing page is not at all that difficult.
Well, just like I showed you that creating white papers isn’t all that difficult, in this post, I will show you how you can make your own, quality landing pages that convert, from scratch. So if you’re interested, keep reading.
4 Questions All Landing Pages Must Answer
Every landing page, no matter the product or service, industry or company, need to give an answer to questions the visitor will have in order to serve its purpose and convert them.
For instance, this landing page by Moz nicely answers all of these questions:
- What are you offering? What will the user receive in exchange for giving you his or her information? Is this a fair trade for them? Does it solve their problem or satisfy their need?
- What value does your offer have for the visitor? The visitor must receive a clear benefit from your offer. Your offer’s value needs to be greater than that of your competitors, at least from the user’s standpoint.
- Why the user can’t wait? You want the visitor to take an action now and to click on that call-to-action (CTA) right then and there. “I’ll think about your offer” aren’t the words you want to hear from people visiting your landing pages. Don’t pressure the user to click a CTA, but create a sense of urgency that they can’t deny.
- What does the user have to do? You will, of course, have to ask for some information from the visitor. A form is one of the most important elements of a landing page, but it is also one where you can seriously hurt your landing page and converting efforts. Don’t ask for more information from your users than you have to. Keep those form fields to a minimum and make the CTA clear in what the user needs to do.
Keep the Landing Page Simple
Landing pages are not the same as other types of content like blog posts,or case studies for example. Each element of the landing page needs to serve its specific purpose and there should be nothing in there that can distract the visitor from taking an action.
This means that your landing pages should have:
- A clear CTA
The good CTA is vital for making a quality landing pages. If your landing page isn’t doing its purpose and converting, the first thing you should look at is your call-to-action. Where a lot of people make a mistake is not first knowing what is the goal of the landing page they are creating. WIthout a clear goal, you can’t come up with a CTA that the visitor will want to click on.
A CTA should be clear, concise and to-the-point. This is not the time to show-off your literal prowess. Every other element in the landing page, such as the design, copy, images, layout, heading and the rest are all there only as the support cast. The real star of the landing page is the CTA.
You will probably want to include the CTA more than once in your landing pages, with the above the fold position being the most important, but that doesn’t mean you should neglect what’s below the fold. It largely depends on where the customer is in the buying journey. Those that have already decided or are on the verge of purchasing from you probably won’t need to read much of your copy other than a persuasive CTA. Others will still be undecided, but you can get them on your side after they scroll a bit down and find the CTA below the fold.
Here’s how Shopify does it right with their CTA, which both creates a sense of urgency with the words “Start Today” and is clearly visible against the background (smart use of colors):
- Don’t allow the design to discract
The design is another component of the landing page that you need to pay close attention to. It is also probably the least favourite, especially for those whose skills lie more in writing persuasive copy, rather than in design. But you can’t make a landing page, without a good design.
If you are not incredibly skilled at it, I wouldn’t suggest trying to design your own landing pages. The results probably won’t be the most satisfying for you or the visitor. Instead, team up with a good designer and together create some badass landing pages. Or, if you don’t know a designer (you really should), you can always use a landing page creator like Instapage.
Ultimately, you want the design to complement the body copy and vice versa. A simple landing page is more likely to convert than the one where there’s too much going on. With that in mind, limit the number of things users can click on. The only clickable elements should be the CTA, your home page and one or two links to more information for those on the fence.
- Use Persuasive and Clear Copy
A landing page is not supposed to inform, but to persuade. As such, your copy should be clear and to-the-point, not creative and witty. Be ruthless in cutting out anything in your content that doesn’t serve a singular purpose of persuading the visitor to click on the CTA and fill out a form on your landing page.
Landing pages are not supposed to be long-form content like whitepapers or blog posts. The user is already invested and anything that detracts him or her from clicking the CTA has no place in your landing page. Keep the copy short, clear, to-the-point and above all, persuasive.
One thing that you should be careful of is the font you are using. If you want people to read your copy, don’t make this difficult by using an unreadable or tiny font. The font should be large enough for easy reading, but not too large to distract (don’t put all of it in a headline-sized font.
- Go Easy on the Visuals
One or two images are all you need for your landing pages. More than that will only make the page a mess and dilute the message that you are attempting to convey.
The images should, of course, supplement the copy, fit nicely in the overall layout and design and play its role in persuading the visitor to click the CTA.
When it comes to other types of visuals, like videos, just avoid them in your landing pages. The idea is to get a quick reaction from the user, not having him watch a video before deciding. And whatever you do, don’t use gifs or memes. The landing page is not supposed to be funny, but persuasive.
When a customer finds its way to your landing page, they’re close to buying. They need just a bit more to help persuade them to your side. I hope this post will help you create landing pages that convert in the future.
Do you have any questions or comments? Let me know in the comments below and don’t forget to like or share this post.