PPC Advertising ,
Search Engine Marketing
You are probably already aware that Google AdWords determines what a particular cost-per-click will be based in part on the quality score of your landing pages. Let’s face it not all landing pages are created equal. When it comes to PPC advertising in particular when you are paying for every click it becomes essential that your landing pages rock conversion rates every time. A high priority should be set on creating landing pages that are designed to improve your conversion rates which will optimize your advertising budget.
Here are a few essentials to keep in mind when creating and testing your landing pages.
Relevance is always the highest priority.
This means that the landing page must align with the ad copy for starters and especially when it comes to landing page headlines. Your ad should be specific to what you have to offer and your landing page is an extension of that message. Think about what it is you want that visitor to accomplish once they have arrived.
Your headline should be absolutely clear without requiring any interpretation.
You should always remove as many obstacles as possible for the user. Remember you just paid to get them there, the easier you make the process the more inclined a user will be to complete it.
Prove your value as soon as possible and don’t forget to state the obvious!
- Identify their pain points as quickly as possible.
- Provide the answer in how you solve their problem?
- Demonstrate what you have that no one else does?
- Explain why your product better than the competition?
Make the page short and easy to navigate
Nothing loses a customer quicker than landing on a page that is overwhelming and difficult to navigate. You have very little time to attract their attention, pitch your offer, and close the deal with a completed call to action such as a contact us form which collects their information in exchange for a great article that has unique and beneficial content they could not find anywhere else. Reduce the clutter wherever possible. Never allow the page to get off topic with multiple links that may distract a user from achieving the conversion goal.
Landing pages should never have any unnecessary clutter occupying such limited space. Think of one task and one mission only. Show your visitor exactly what they need to see in as little space as possible. No long elaborate speeches on how wonderful your product is and how it can do everything they ever dreamed of. The longer the text on the page the less likely a user is to stay and look, let alone complete a form for more information. This is where images and videos can really help convey your message without requiring a tremendous amount of text.
Forms should always be above the fold
There should never be any scrolling required to complete this task. You want to consider the safe zone which will accommodate most modern browsers. The form should fall in line with the natural order and be visually appealing as you scan the page. It should only require the minimum amount of information necessary to accomplish the task. The longer and more complicated the form, the less likely a user will be to complete it.
Never asked for information that is not relevant to what you are offering. The trade off must be equitable for both parties. If you are offering a fabulous article it is appropriate to request very basic information such as name and email. It is not acceptable to ask for too much personal information such as credit card numbers. While this may seem obvious it is very easy to forget to tailor your landing page forms to match the specific forms purpose and not just a boiler plate template that is used on every page.
Perfecting the Call To Action
There are many different approaches in how to accomplish the task of getting your visitor to complete the intended action but for the most part your call to action must stand out and grab your user’s attention. Once they have gathered the necessary information, made up their mind that they would like to proceed. Your call to action should be the next logical step to getting what they want.
The call to action should clearly identify what it is they should do next in a way that motivates them to do so. There are many different trigger words that work better than others and many of them are dependent upon what action you are trying to get them to perform. Focus on trust factors and benefits. Is it Free, Safe, Quick or Easy? Is it a download whether that’s a pdf or software? Will they have instant access? Think of the most important factor in what it is they will get with that action and go from there.
Establish Trust and Loyalty
A user has that has landed on your page has many options. If they arrived at your destination from search keep in mind they selected you from a list of options. If they do not get the information they desired in a way that makes them absolutely comfortable the odds are they will leave your page immediately and keep looking elsewhere.
Consider the following
- Testimonials are a great way to share what others have said about you.
- Trust Certificates and Guarantee Seals go a long way in eliminating fears about security or reputation.
- Press mentions are also very impactful in establishing a sense of comfort.
Test, Test and then Test again
Odds are there are some unique aspects of your audience, at least there should be. The only way to truly identify what content, call-to-action or form requirements work best for that audience is to actually try several versions in an A/B test to see how each approach will perform. You should always test one thing at a time with a continuous rotation of different tests.
Here are some of the basics that should always be covered.
- Headlines should be tested in conjunction with the ads.
- Location of the form whether on the left or the right.
- The length of the form and the organization of the fields.
In addition to testing it is also helpful to get user feedback implementing surveys or polls. There are several free or inexpensive solutions such as SurveyMonkey that are easy to use and can provide insight on user preferences.
These are a few simple guidelines that should help you design landing pages that effectively improve conversions and increase your user experience.