Image courtesy of Steven Depolo
The landing page is one of the key aspects of a marketing campaign. Whether you write an email, send out a postcard, or advertise on the radio to get your target market interested enough to engage, the landing page is crucial to a successful conversion.
Nonetheless, companies miss the mark on landing pages each and every day. And I’m not just talking about little local companies whose websites resemble a business card. I’m talking about the national P&G brands that pay hundreds of thousands of dollars on television commercials, and then tell you to visit a disorganized website to learn more. Once you get to that website, you have to search the siteto find what you’re looking for because the landing page wasn’t targeted, or worse-they send you to the homepage of the site.
The Homepage as the Landing Page
This is NOT the ideal landing page. As I discussed in my post, The Importance of Landing Pages, nearly three years ago, the company home page is NOT always the best landing page. In fact, it should almost NEVER be used as the landing page.
Instead, take your audience to exactly where they want to go. Ideally, each message should take the audience to a unique and targeted page intended just for them. For example, I received a mailer from Amazon containing a coupon for $5 off of a diaper purchase. The landing page URL was perfect- amazon.com/baby. It was short, easy to type, and easy to remember. However, the page wasn’t targeted for baby diapers, rather, just everything baby.
Don’t Make Visitors Work for What They Want
Need an example of an extremely targeted landing page? Rob Wolf, a freelance marketer, brings those who view his Twitter profile and click on his webpage link to a targeted bio page on his website- intended solely for those Twitter users. Because Twitter communicates in 140 characters or less, and therefore Twitter users may wish to receive their information quickly and easily, Rob explains who he is in a few bullet points. Although this may not be a sales page, it’s a great example of an extremely targeted landing page.
The point is that if you want those who “click through,” or are interested enough to respond to the call for action and visit your landing page, you want to make them work as little as possible if you expect to see a large conversion rate. Take them exactly where they want to be and give them exactly what they want.
Creating an optimal landing page doesn’t always have to be a lengthy process. If you use the research that’s been conducted on what’s successful and what’s not, then you only need to follow a few guidelines to ensure a successful campaign.
Optimize Your Own Landing Pages for Success
I’d be happy to walk you through this process if you feel that you need a little guidance. Already have a landing page in action? I’ll conduct a landing page evaluation to assess its potential effectiveness and usability, and deliver a detailed report on what you’re doing right, and how things could be better. A full website optimization is also available. For more details on these and more services I provide, visit my Services page, or feel free to contact me for additional details and/or pricing.
If you want to learn even more about how to optimize your landing pages in order to maximize conversions, check out Tim Ash’s book: Landing Page Optimization: The Definitive Guide to Testing and Tuning for Conversions. This book, released in January of 2008, has had much praise about how it will enable you to stop guessing at the best design, and educate you on what studies have said the best practices are for maximizing your conversions. Check it out!
Engage In the Conversation
Have you noticed any campaigns with very superior, or very poor landing pages? Please share your experiences and thoughts with a comment.