09th July 2021
The anatomy of a high converting landing page.
You don’t need us to tell you the importance of a purpose-built landing page for encouraging users to enquire about your product or service. But what constitutes a strong landing page in 2021?
Today we’ll take you through general best practices for building landing pages, and more importantly share what we’ve learnt from designing landing pages for our own clients over the years.
Types of landing pages.
A landing page is a page specifically built to convert visitors into leads, and are sometimes called “lead-capture pages. Before we go into the key elements of a high converting landing page, it’s important to differentiate the different types of landing pages you could build. Or rather what kind of landing page you should build, depending on the goals and span of your campaign. We believe there are 3 main types of different landing pages…
1.Integrated landing page.
The first is a landing page integrated into your site’s structure and is consistent with standard page templates and navigation for the website. So this will look like any other page on your site. For this reason, they may not be optimised for conversion (contact form above the fold, more prominent CTA button, etc.) but just designed to match the rest of your informational content. What is more, because they are integrated into the main site, the user may get distracted and explore other pages on your site.
Take a look at one of our own landing pages to see what we mean. We have built landing pages for each of the sectors we work in, which includes Hospitality, Film and Television, B2B and Property and Architecture.
This page has clear CTA buttons, including one placed above the fold. Our agency services are also clearly presented, in a written and visual way. There is even a client testimonial at the bottom of the page.
2. Campaign landing page.
The second is a single landing page specifically created for a campaign with a different look and feel, typically with the top navigation removed. These are essentially ‘stripped down’ pages which focus on converting visitors from an online ad campaign. These ad campaigns usually require a user to complete a very specific action like filling out an enquiry form or completing a purchase. These pages are usually stand-alone and don’t provide too many links to your main site. This way, the user’s attention stays on the task at hand
Depending on what stage of the funnel your campaign is targeted at, users may not be at the right stage in the buying cycle to convert. Although a landing page like this is likely to increase the single visit conversion rate due to simplicity – limited choice and simplified messages, it may not offer sufficient information for site visitors not in ‘buying mode’.
The Scorecard page we created for ContractPodAi is a great example of a campaign landing page. Users can complete a questionnaire to find out the state of contract management in their organisation; a great interactive way to engage prospective clients, and the page simultaneously acts as a lead generation tool for ContractPodAi.
This brings us onto the third landing page type: a tabbed landing page or microsite. These pages are separate from the main site for your business, but provide the user with more information, allowing you to build trust no matter what stage of the funnel they are at.
It’s important to note that there are SEO implications of building a microsite. These should be built for paid or social campaigns, rather than trying to rank in organic search. When you create a microsite, you are essentially building a site from scratch, so the site’s authority will not be as strong as your main business site. For this reason, you may need to consider a PR or link-building campaign in order to allow these new pages to rank in organic search. You should also be wary of duplicate content between the new microsite and your main business site. For this reason, we would recommend adding canonical tags to these pages.
We partnered with British Red Cross to deliver the One Kind Thing campaign encouraging people to help change the lives of those in crisis through the power of kindness. BRC was able to customise the content on the microsite to different types of audiences they chose to target with their digital advertising campaigns. In 7 weeks they managed to convert over 3,000 users, who chose to engage in various activities such as donating money or clothes, as well as volunteering their time or hosting a tea party!
In short, there is no right or wrong landing page type to use, you just need to think long-term about where your campaign is likely to go, how long it’ll last, and the overarching goals.
Elements of a high converting landing page.
Once you’ve settled on a landing page type, have a look at our take on what makes a high converting landing page:
1. Call to Action Placement
Before we advise you to strictly put your CTA buttons above the fold, it’s important to consider the overall goal of your landing page, as well as the user intent. Is it an informational page, or a page built purely for lead generation?
Not every landing page is designed to convert to sale. Some landing pages are built to educate potential customers or for brand awareness. Baring all of this in mind, the CTA placement needs to be in line with the goal of the page. If you need users to digest and read your copy, don’t distract them with an obnoxious CTA that will take their attention away from your content. Instead, use the CTA button which complements your other content and encourages your users to take a natural next step.
2. Don’t underestimate your headline.
A strong landing page should have a clear message, and clear action you’d like your user to take once they have understood your intended message. You should be able to communicate this message, and why your potential should care about your brand in clear and concise terms. Your landing page headline (and subheadings) provide a key opportunity to promote the value of your offering when the user first lands on your page. It is what their eye is likely to be drawn to first, it’s important that you grab your reader’s attention in a few seconds. You can’t be too wordy, try to stick to 10 words or less.
Most effective landing pages showcase your message or offering with the headline and use the sub-heading for further explanation of the offer or to share the value proposition.
Don’t forget, you have about 8 seconds to convince users your offering is worth investing time and money into, so it’s essential that your offer and value proposition are clear and convincing.
3. Keep messaging consistent.
It’s so important to make sure what you offer in your advertising/social copy aligns with what you’re offering on your landing page itself. The headline on your page should match up to your call to action too.
If people click on a CTA for a free offer to find out there’s a catch on the landing page, you’ll instantly lose their trust. Similarly, if your headline is inconsistent with your CTA, it might lead to confusion, and the visitor might wonder if the CTA is linked to the wrong page.
4. Think about your target audience every step of the way.
Making your page easy to digest and navigate is key in ensuring that your prospective customer engages with your page and makes the desired steps. Simple things like making sure your page loads quickly and your page is mobile optimised can go a long way. There is nothing worse than wasting money on a click for a user to just be put off by your brand instantly with Google say that a one-second delay can impact mobile conversions by up to 20%.
Beyond the technical elements of your page, think about your ideal customer’s daily routine and pace of lifestyle. Are they likely to have lots of time to spend reading, or are they more likely to engage with facts and figures? Try and step into their shoes and envision how they would receive the information you want to convey. Are they likely to be more visual or will they respond to the more emotive approach? Your previous marketing and advertising activity may be able to inform this. If you are not able to answer these questions about your prospective customers, you may want to consider conducting focus groups or running heat mapping tools like Hotjar on your site.
5. Build trust.
Don’t forget about the emotions which come into play when you require a user to part with their money. It’s not always just about your price points and the quality of the product itself. How your brand makes a user feel will also be a key factor. It’s crucial to include more than one method of contact on your landing page. This could be a phone number, a physical address, an email address, and social media links. This information will help build trust and showcase that you’re a legitimate business.
If this landing page is the first time your prospective customer has come across your brand, it’s even more important to ensure your methods of contact are up to date. Make sure and your phone lines/contact forms are being monitored, for any enquiries you may get which will be the difference between converting a user or losing them to a competitor.
Testimonials are also a gamechanger for building trust! Real insights from real clients will do wonders for your conversion rates in the long term. These can be in the form of mini-case studies or real quotes from previous clients. Adding photos of real people (ideally the person who has provided the testimonial) will also add to the success of these. Featuring the full name of your customer will also improve relatability and drive trust too.
When asking for these testimonials, try and get your client to be as specific as possible, to avoid looking like a fake review written by a marketing team. Don’t underestimate a glowing testimonial, 79% of consumers say they trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations from friends or family.
6. Tailor the experience to the channel.
Has this traffic come from social media or paid ads? Users will be in different headspaces depending on what part of the internet they are on. For instance, if a user has come from a paid search ad, we know they are already in need of your offering, or something related to your offering, as they have taken the step to type something into a search engine. For users like this, who will never have heard of your business, you need to have your USPs front and centre. You need to show why you stand out from the other competitors who are running ads alongside yours.
On the flip side, for social ads, where you may be running ads to people who have visited your site but not converted, you may want to drive traffic to a different landing page, where there are fewer introductions, but more of a focus on the product. This is where it may be beneficial to have some internal links pointing to other areas of your site
So, as you can see, there is no clear manual to follow to build the ‘perfect’ landing page, however, there is a blueprint you can follow and apply to your audience and offering. If you need any guidance, you can always get in touch with our team.