The Internet Marketing world is abuzz with how you must create special landing pages for every marketing campaign and every traffic segment. However, there are still many mistakes that we commit with our landing pages that ensure the entire process goes to waste. Here are the top 5 mistakes you need to avoid to get the great conversions you always wanted.
1) Headline mismatch
Wherever the visitor comes from, the first thing she sees is the headline. Your headline must do one of the following, and do it really well:
1 Sum up in a few words what it is you have to offer – The best headlines are those that immediately let the visitor know what you’re all about and enable them to make quick decisions.
2 Continue a conversation – If your visitors are coming from a specific PPC campaign, then the headline must further the conversation that the ads started. Example, if your ad says “Get an online degree in Cat Psychology” your headline must specifically continue talking about how the visitor can easily sign up for a course that teaches and provides certification on how your little Tiger thinks. What won’t work is a headline about pets’ eating habits.
2) No big fat Call-to-Action
Remember this and remember it well: every landing page on a business website has to have a purpose. And since every landing page has a purpose, they must all have a big fat Call-to-Action. That is, there has to be a clear, unambiguous instruction to the visitor on what to do next. Pro tip: if the visitor has completed a purchase on your website and is on the “thank-you.php” page, don’t assume it’s over. Now’s the best time to show them offers or promotions that might be of interest to them.
3) Not enough white space
You know why is it important to have white space on a landing page? Because it forces you to think of the most important message you want to tell a particular target segment and communicate only that much, keeping the page free of any distractions. Trying to cram in too many messages for too many people is a sure shot of way sinking your conversions like a cannon shot. Which means that your landing pages, just like your advertising, must be highly targeted to a specific customer segment.
4) A lead generation form that asks for too much
We marketing folk love data, and try to extract as much of it as possible so that we can slice and dice to our heart’s content and target visitors down to the color of their aglets. Which is why our lead generation forms are so large, the FBI would love to get their hands on them. However, what we don’t realize is that all those extra information fields are actually a pain to the customer. A pain that the visitor quickly takes-care-of by closing the tab. Therefore, keep lead generation forms down to the minimum. If a piece of information is only useful to personalize things a little more for the customer, maybe you can ask for it at a later stage.
5) Not A/B testing it
A/B testing is the practice of splitting two different versions of the same page among your visitors and seeing which one converts better. If you have landing pages, not A/B testing them means you’re losing out on a lot of the quick wins that are available to you for only about 20 minutes of your time (think of alternatives, setup test, include in website <head> tag and go live).
Targeted landing pages have shown to increase conversions over directing visitors to generic home or product pages. However, you must be careful to take care to execute your pages correctly to gain the most out of them. I hope these tips help you avoid some common landing page pitfalls. If you have some of your own, please share them in the comments.
This guest post was submitted by Siddharth Deswal who works at Visual Website Optimizer, the world’s easiest A/B testing software. He’s been involved with web development for about 8 years and actively looks to help online businesses discover the value of Conversion Rate Optimization. He tweets about A/B testing, landing pages and effective marketing tips on @wingify