Landing Page Optimisation: Best Practices To Improve Your Conversions
When it comes to PPC campaigns, getting caught up in putting together the perfect ad for Google’s SERPs is easy. From the initial keyword research, to writing compelling text that captures attention, putting together your ads is a substantial task in and of itself, but it’s your landing pages that will help to push leads towards that final conversion. For this reason, your conversion rate can rely heavily on how well you’ve optimised your pages to encourage this.
From your headlines and CTAs (Call to Action) to intelligent and user-friendly design, we’re exploring some of the best practices for your landing pages that will improve your conversion rates.
Why You Need To Optimise Your Landing Pages
While linking to your website through your PPC ads is useful for the main homepage, producing a landing page that’s tailored entirely to the service, product or action you’re promoting can compile all of the necessary information in a short, concise way. Fully optimised landing pages are thought to provide conversion rates of up to 27%, a significant rise from the 6-7% median, but the benefits don’t just end there.
By optimising your landing pages, you can increase sales by tailoring your content to a specific purpose, improve the quality scores of your main ads by appeasing Google’s crawlers, produce a better ROI from your ad campaigns by encouraging conversions and, quite simply, improving your businesses overall profit intake.
Why Isn’t My Current Landing Page Converting?
If you already have landing pages and your conversion rates are especially poor, there could be any number of reasons as to why this is the case. The digital marketing world is a competitive one, and users are becoming more and more particular about the content they read and engage with and for this reason, even the smallest issue or mistake within a landing page can cause them to bounce away and search for an alternative.
Some of the most common mistakes include not understanding what your potential leads want, poor design, inadequate headlines, a lack of consistency, poor CTAs and a lack of clarity about what the page is trying to do or sell. If you’re receiving high volumes of traffic but very few of the visitors are converting, you’ll need to collect a range of data and adjust your landing pages accordingly. This is where landing page best practices come in.
So, What Are The Optimisation Best Practices?
Optimising landing pages works in a similar way to optimising your website, with the key difference being that your landing pages will be built with a single purpose in mind – to convert. Whether that’s signing up for a newsletter, downloading an eBook, making a purchase or subscribing to a service, having a clear, concise and fully optimised landing page can help encourage potential leads to make that final move.
So, how do you go about optimisation?
The Headline Is Your Greatest Asset
As with any good piece of content, you need to think carefully about your headline. While it’s difficult to determine exactly what will make the perfect headline, taking a look at ongoing trends at the time of building your headline and keeping it sharp, concise and entertaining is crucial. After all, the headline is the first thing your potential leads will see when they click through to your website. However, there are a few statistics worth taking note of, not least including the fact that headlines of eight words can result in a 21% increase compared to longer titles, and 38% of people prefer list-based headlines.
‘Listicle’ headlines won’t always fit the service or product you’re trying to promote but taking a look at what your audience are looking for it crucial. No user will enter any query on Google without search intent, so capturing the intent of your ideal customer can help you to clarify your goal and improve your conversion rate.
Intelligent Design For Forms Is Invaluable
Forms are one of the biggest culprits for lost or failed conversions on any landing page, which is why you need to pay particular attention to their design. Generally, interactive forms outperform those that are single-step, not least due to the lack of intimidation factor. Being faced with a single form field, such as a question or entering your email, is much less intimidating than a full-length form featuring several questions. Similarly, saving asking for personal information until the last step can make them more likely to fill them in, to avoid losing the progress made with the rest of the form. Additionally, you can add a progress bar to build motivation for form completion.
Optimise For Motivation
According to a professor at Stanford, encouraging users to do something either requires increasing their motivation, or making the action easier to perform. However, while the ability to complete a form or make that final conversion is important, you first need to optimise for motivation. After all, they aren’t going to utilise that ability unless they want to.
Creating a sense of urgency, playing on pain points and offering a solution to avoid missing out or being ‘in pain’, each play their part in creating an emotional response that ultimately encourages a user to make the final move.
Less Is Often More
The more you add to a landing page, the more there is to distract from the action. Unlike homepages or main service or product pages, a landing page doesn’t need an abundance of information. You just need to list the key points, enough to convince your visitor to purchase or take some form of action and so adding blocks and blocks of text may distract them or turn them away. Content can make or break any one landing page, and so you need to ensure that it’s high quality, yet concise and relevant. Every user will have an intention behind visiting your landing page, so it’s important to make sure you are capturing this within the content, whether that’s the text, an image, a video or even the form itself.
Keep Things Consistent And Relevant
Another leading cause for high bounce rates comes in the form of a lack of consistency – this is between the ad and the landing page. There’s nothing more frustrating than clicking onto an advertisement, only to discover that the landing page has nothing to do with the ad, or that the information you were searching for isn’t there. Make sure that the landing page you produce features any offers, information or features that were promised within the ad copy.
From the ad, through to the landing page and all of it’s copy, you need to ensure that design, message, tone and information are all consistent. Users click on links for a reason and if they don’t find the answer to their query or intention within your landing page, they stand a higher chance at clicking away before reading a single word.
Make It User-Friendly
Google favours user-friendly websites, which is precisely why UX optimisation is a vital part of SEO in today’s digital marketing landscape. Landing pages, while not directly a part of your website, need to keep UX in mind too. Your visitors value their time and so ensuring that your landing page is simple, to the point and scannable is vital. Keep information to a minimum, reduce or eliminate the need for navigation and ensure that they can get the information or complete the interaction without needing to click away from your landing page when possible. If they do need to click away, make sure that any external links are a direct link to a contact form, purchase process or the product/documents that they want.
Similarly, you need to ensure that all of your landing pages are mobile optimised. 58% of all site visits came from mobile devices in 2018, which is a clear show that you need to keep your landing page mobile device friendly.
Tailor Your CTAs
While some of the traditional call to action phrases are still effective today, utilising unique and tailored buttons could help to improve your click through rates (CTR). First of all, it’s important to make sure that the button is exactly that – a button, and a clear one at that. The text on the button, however, may take a bit of extra thinking. What will your customers be looking to do? Could this be summarised in a few words?
If the answer is yes, coming up with a compelling CTA is simple. After all, those looking to download a free eBook could respond well to a button simply saying ‘Download Our Free eBook’ or those making a purchase might react to something as simple as ‘buy now’. Depending on your branding, you can be creative with your text, but typically, some of the key phrases and words proven to encourage conversions include:
Create A Sense Of Urgency Or Scarcity
On a similar strain to your CTA, creating a sense of urgency with your landing page can encourage users to take that final action. By tailoring your copy and the features on the landing page to suggest limited supply or limited time, you can help to push users just that little bit more towards making a conversion. While you can’t physically make them take that action, integrating design that plays on the fear of missing out (FOMO) can play on a visitor’s pain points enough to encourage them to make a purchase or complete an action.
However, too much of a push can create anxiety for a user. Features like countdowns have become commonplace and while a small amount of consumer anxiety can be useful for companies, too much can actually have the opposite effect. Utilising text, your headlines and your CTA to produce this kind of urgency or scarcity is often sufficient, so it’s important not to overload your landing page or your customers with the idea of scarcity and, as a result, anxiety.
How Fast Does Your Page Load?
In an age where consumers want access to their information and products instantly, even a single second delay in loading speed can result in a 16% decrease in customer satisfaction, 11% fewer page views and a 7% loss in conversions. For this reason, you need to get your landing page up to speed and make sure it stays fast.
According to QuickSprout, 47% of people currently say that they expect pages to load in two seconds or less, with 64% of mobile users wanting four seconds or less, so it’s important to get yourself up to speed. The average load times are nowhere near as efficient as the ones expected from customers, so those that can get within the two second mark are likely to see higher conversions and consumer engagement with their landing pages.
One way to speed up the loading speed for mobile pages is by using AMP – or accelerated mobile pages. AMP creates faster, more streamlined pages thanks to their lightweight format. The HTML is much simpler than a standard webpage and through following streamlined CSS rules, these pages can often be loaded in less than a second. With Google announcing that they will be pushing for adding AMP technology to their standards and guidelines, it’s worth jumping on this bandwagon in plenty of time.
Tackle Potential Objections Before The Visitor Can Ask Them
Consumers second guess everything they can find a fault in and it’s our job as marketers and businesses to provide solutions to these before these consumers can click away from our pages. For this reason, you’ll need to spend some time working out what your potential concerns could arise before you even begin designing your page. Put yourself in your customer’s shoes – what do you want to know? What concerns might you have about the product, service or action?
Some of the common concerns customers have include:
- What they can do if they don’t like a product
- How they pay for the product
- When they’ll receive the product or service
- How much it’ll cost
- Whether the product or service is trustworthy or high quality
You can answer these questions within the landing page, provide simple links to any pages that might answer the questions in more detail (e.g. shipping information, return policies, reviews) or install live chats and easy contact information so they can speak to your team directly.
Landing pages offer a valuable way for us as marketers and SEOs to offer concise, relevant and important information to our potential customers. By bringing together all of the relevant information and designing your landing pages towards a certain goal, you can encourage new and returning visitors to make that final conversion, whether it’s a purchase, signing up for a service or taking another form of action.
For more information regarding our PPC services, how we build landing pages or how we can help you and your business, simply contact a member of the team on 0800 088 6000, today.