Not sure what a landing page is or what elements it should have? Landing pages have a specific purpose, but once you’ve got it nailed down, they’re easy to understand. Let’s unpack the history of landing pages, what they are, and more. By the way – if you’re wondering what a good bounce rate for a landing page is, we’ve got info on that too!
The History of the Landing Page
The general consensus according to Omniconvert is that the IT department at Microsoft developed landing pages in 2003 as a way to market Microsoft Office. That said, we were unable to find definitive evidence that it began with Microsoft.
What we can say, though, is that they came about in the early 2000s with the goal of generating leads, typically by subscribing to an email newsletter, and driving conversions, typically by clicking a CTA. Since that time, they’ve expanded to have two uses: the transactional one we’ve already discussed, and as a reference.
Though they have different goals, the web design basics for them remain the same.
How to Identify a Landing Page
Not sure how to identify a landing page? Check out this analogy…
There are many kinds of friends. We all probably know that friend who tries to do too much: maybe they own a business and tackle every type of project imaginable. You can talk to them about anything. That’s great, but it’s a bit of roulette sometimes because you never know what your discussion topic will be.
Then there’s the friend who has a laser focus. They have one goal in mind, and nothing can sway them from it. They’re straightforward and to the point. Maybe you met them at soccer practice and you know that everything you talk about with them will be soccer-related.
A landing page is the web page equivalent of the second friend. There is a clear goal in mind. There is no confusion about the purpose of the web page or what it does. As MailChimp describes it, it’s a “standalone page that a person ‘lands’ on after clicking through an email, ad, or other digital (asset).”
In other words, if you see a clear and concise web page with a specific purpose, chances are it’s a landing page. Landing pages typically have one CTA or the same one repeated multiple times, and offer clear benefits – but we’ll dive into more about how to craft a good landing page in the next section.
Landing Page Strategy: What to Do
There are some elements that, more or less, are found on every landing page. Here’s what you’ll need to know to create a landing page!
Here are the elements that you can include:
- A compelling headline. The headline should be clear and hook the attention of your target audience, compelling them to read more.
- A tagline that provides more context/conveys your key message. Reinforce the message that got your target audience to click onto the landing page in the first place.
- CTA(s). Most experts agree that one CTA is enough for a landing page, but some feel compelled to include the same one multiple times. Whatever you do, don’t choose CTAs to multiple places. It detracts from the focus and benefit of using a landing page!
- Description. Whether you choose to tell an important story, or use bullet points to talk about the product/offering, use this section to provide more information.
- Benefits. Highlighting key benefits is a good way to compel people to click. After all, that’s one of your main goals here!
- Testimonials. Social proof is huge. You can include testimonials in written or video format to show your target audience how you can help them succeed.
- Videos. Even if you don’t have a video testimonial, you can include engaging and informative videos on your landing page. Videos consistently earn a higher ROI than other marketing methods. In fact, 92% of marketers agree on this!
Best Practices to Implement a Landing Page
Adding the right elements to a landing page is important, but there are some other best practices you should keep in mind:
- Focus on the offer. Your offer should compel the audience to click – which means that you’ll need to be sure you’re adding value. Very few are willing to give up their personal information for nothing – so you need to make it worth their while.
- Match the advertisement. If people arrive at your landing page after clicking an ad, it’s important to keep the messaging and branding elements consistent. No one wants a “bait and switch,” so consistency is key.
- Take advantage of SEO. Even though most of the traffic on your landing page will come from other means (email, social, and other marketing efforts), be sure to optimize for SEO to get it in front of as many eyes as possible.
- Declutter the page. You should remove navigation options for your landing page. Why? Because the landing page has a clear goal and nothing should distract from it.
- Test! A/B testing is a good way to see which landing page is the most effective. While some marketers encourage you to make the two options as different as possible, others recommend swapping out a single element at a time. While this undoubtedly takes longer, it’ll give you a clearer picture of what’s working and what’s not.
Great Landing Pages are Well-Designed
What do web pages and gymnasts have in common? It’s important to stick the landing! If your goal is to drive more conversions by having a solid landing page but you don’t have the time to create one, we’d love to help! At Matcha Design, we stay on top of best practices for landing pages, service pages, blogs, and more. Contact us today for help designing your landing page!