Your Complete Guide to Creating Effective Landing Pages: Best Practices

May 2021 · 7 min read

When you search for a product, service or information or explore the internet, you hit on landing pages all the time. You might not even realize you are on one, but this particular type of page is critical in moving your target audience from a prospect to a customer.

Share

Facebook Twitter LinkedIn
Creating a good landing page takes careful consideration, planning and testing. This is a complete guide assembled from the most up-to-date landing page best practices to help you or your designer boost your conversion rates using the right messaging and the correct structure.

How To Create an Effective Landing Page Design: The Right Messaging

Getting your messaging right is crucial. You need to immediately capture your audience’s attention, keep them on the page long enough to read through your offer, and then complete the lead form. If you lose your audience at any stage, then you’ve lost the lead. Now, no homepage or landing page is 100% effective, but you can increase your conversions with the right landing page copy and page structure.

Focus Headlines on the Why

Visitors decide within seconds whether the link, button or ad they clicked on is worthy of their time, so you need to make an excellent first impression. Landing pages typically have a bounce rate of anywhere from 60%-90%. To grab their attention, create a headline that lets them know why they should stay. When you focus on why they need whatever you are offering — or what benefits they’ll receive — they are more likely to stick around.

Make Your Offer Relevant

The offer you make has to be relevant to your business’s services or products. The entire reason you create the offer is to move your prospects further along the sales funnel. Don’t offer them a product or service that you don’t provide. Sure, you may get many contacts from this sort of approach, but they aren’t necessarily genuine leads.

Include a Visual Component

Humans can make logical decisions, but even these are driven by emotions. In an article for the Annual Review of Psychology, the authors state, “Decisions serve as the conduit through which emotions guide everyday attempts at avoiding negative feelings (e.g., guilt, fear, regret) and increasing positive feelings (e.g., pride, happiness, love), even when we lack awareness of these processes.”

Emotions are powerful drivers, and images or videos are the fastest routes to tap into them. When you include images or videos, you get better responses. Consider these facts about the importance of adding a visual element to your landing page:

Using images or videos leads to more conversions because people prefer visual content to text, and they spend more time on pages with visual content than those without.

Include Testimonials and Social Proof

Today’s website visitors are tuned-in to marketing strategies, and they are often suspicious of being “sold” on a product using typical pitches. They want proof. They want evidence. According to Big Commerce:

  • 92% of all customers read reviews online before they make a purchase.

  • 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as they trust recommendations from people they know.

  • Nearly three-quarters of all consumers say they trust businesses with positive reviews and testimonials more than those without.

  • Customers are 58% more likely to buy after engaging with testimonials.

  • Customers spend an average of 3% more on products and services after engaging with testimonials or reviews.

Testimonials can authenticate your products or services, as long as they are also authentic. Use real testimonials from real customers.

Check Your Messaging

You want to ensure that the message you create on your landing page meets target audience expectations. Your ad and your landing page should carry the same message, or you’ll turn away your visitors. The content, visuals, form fields and offer need to all convey related information.

Create a Clear Call to Action (CTA button) and a/b test it

You have a goal: Get new leads. This goal requires people to take action, so ensure the action they need to take is explicit. Use straightforward language, such as “Get It Now” or “Call Us Now” linking to your company phone number and make your button stand out. Marketers understand how important it is to get the CTA right, and they’ll test different buttons, phrases, fonts and contrasting colors to determine what works. A CTA that hits the mark can increase conversions by as much as 49%.

Create a Thank You Message

How many times were you reminded to say “thank you” when you were growing up? When your visitors follow through and take the action you want them to take, it’s a good idea to send them to a “thank you” page. Not only does it give you a place to thank them for their interest, but it also potentially gives them a favorable opinion of you and serves as an opportunity to point them to additional relevant content.

How To Create an Effective Landing Page: The Right Structure

Getting your messaging right is a significant part of the equation, but you also need to make sure you structure your landing page for success. Following these guidelines for landing page best practices can decrease bounce rates and improve conversions.

Limit What You Ask For

As mentioned earlier, people are reluctant to give away personal information, so don’t scare them off by asking for too much. Carefully weigh what kind of information is helpful to you. Most of the time, you can get away with asking them for just their name and email. If you gather any other data, be sure it is clearly relevant.

Keep the Important Content Above the Fold

What visitors see when they first open your webpage is referred to as “above the fold.” The most important information should be visible without scrolling down. Your CTA and offer should be above the fold. When you have too much information to make it all visible when your page opens — which happens more often than not — provide visual indicators that cue visitors to scroll down.

Optimization: Eliminate the Distractions

Since a landing page has one clear goal, it’s a good idea to remove anything that distracts your visitors from accomplishing that goal. It might be tempting to include additional CTAs or direct visitors to other areas of your website but doing so draws them away from the page's purpose.

Create a Responsive Page

In 2020, there were 4.28 billion cell phone users worldwide, and 90% of those who use the internet access it through their phones at least some of the time. By 2025, an estimated 73% of the global population of internet users will access the internet solely from their phones. In 2019, 37% of Americans already primarily used their phones to get online, many even opting out of broadband connections at home.

You may use your computer to design your landing page, but you need to make sure you design it with devices in mind. Your content should be accessible, clear and easy to navigate no matter how the visitor is accessing the page. Computers, tablets, and cell phones have different interfaces, so you’ll have to create a responsive landing page for the user device.

Optimize Your Page for Search Engines

According to Google, its “search algorithms look at many factors, including the words of your query, relevance and usability of pages, expertise of sources, and your location and settings.” To increase visibility, you need to optimize your page for search engines. When you use keywords on your landing page, you increase the likelihood your landing page shows up in organic searches. Furthermore, if you create ads using keywords, make sure they are included in your landing page.

Make Your Load Times Fast

Think about how frustrated you get with web pages that don’t load quickly. Your visitors feel the same way. Even a one-second delay can decrease page views by 11% and conversions by 7%. Optimize images and videos to ensure faster load times and remove anything you don’t need on the page.

Give It a Test Run

After you’ve designed your landing page, you need to perform an A/B testing and tweak it. If you have different images or CTAs in mind, conduct A/B split tests to determine which one produces better results. Don’t be afraid to update your page regularly!

You may be able to create a landing page quickly. After all, none of the steps is too difficult to complete. If you want an effective landing page, it takes a bit more expertise to get good results. Hiring a website designer can be well worth the investment for those who don’t have the time or resources to create landing pages that work.

Where To Find a Website Designer

DesignerHire is a site dedicated to helping you find the best website designer for your needs. There is no signup required to use the services. All you need to do is answer a few questions, and algorithms get to work creating a personalized list of sites to hide designers for you. Get started now and get on your way to a landing page that converts!