10 Tips for Landing Page Optimization

A good landing page serves one purpose and one purpose only – getting your visitors to take the specific action you’ve defined for them. Whether that action is purchasing a product, signing up for an email list or submitting a lead to an offline business isn't relevant. The only consideration you should have when it comes to designing and optimizing this valuable real estate is whether each design decision you make leads visitors towards the completion of this singular action.

And really, the only way to know if the specific elements you’ve included on your landing page are serving this single purpose is with split testing. By comparing different versions of your landing page against each other in order to determine which option is truly more effective.

Here are 10 tips for landing page optimization:

1 – Test your headline

The headline you use on your landing page represents the absolute first thing you should split test.  Given that the average website visitor only spends a few seconds analyzing your web content before deciding whether to engage further or click the “Back” button, these few short words of text are absolutely critical in encouraging conversions.

To start split testing this element, brainstorm a few potential headline variations, using established headline formulas if you have trouble coming up with new ideas.  Then, enter your different variants into Google’s Website Optimizer in order to determine which combination results in the most sales or conversions.

2 – Test your image selection

Images capture attention and can prove especially effective in controlling the path your readers’ eyes travel across your landing page.  However, the specific images you choose plays a role in determining how effective your landing page will be, as pictures can convey powerful subconscious associations to your website visitors.

If you aren’t seeing the level of conversions you’d like when it comes to your landing pages, try testing different images in order to eliminate any unintended cognitive dissonance within your readers’ minds.

3 – Test your image placement

In addition to the specific images you use, test where you place them on your website.  Because pictures can be used to draw attention, position them strategically in order to move your visitors through your landing page and focus their interest on key elements of your conversion process (for example, your “Buy Now” or “Download Now” buttons).

4 – Test your website colors

Although the impact of color psychology is often disparaged by analytic types, know that it’s a very real phenomenon.  The specific colors you use on your website convey powerful feelings and associations to your readers, and if the colors you’ve chosen for your landing page aren’t in line with what your visitors are thinking, you could be killing your conversion rates.

Take the time to study up on the different concepts associated with various colors and then test the combinations that best promote the emotions you’d like your readers to experience on your landing page.

5 – Test your content structure

There are hundreds of different ways to structure your landing page – from all text to multiple columns to video sales pitches.  Unfortunately, there’s no way to know which particular style will work on your particular landing page until you test these different options!

To start, try adding a persuasive video clip to your landing page, as these interactive elements have often been shown to be more engaging to readers than plain box of text.

6 – Test your bullet points

Few web content readers take note of every single word found on a given page.  Instead, we jump around, skimming through the elements that jump out on us and extrapolating from the main points we pick up in this way.

This is what makes the specific bullet points you use in your landing page so important.  Test different variations – each of which call out a separate set of features and benefits – until you find the combination that’s most engaging for your website visitors.

7 – Test your call to action

At some point on your landing page, you’re going to ask your readers to take action – and the specific way you do this can play a major role in how successful your sales and conversion efforts are.

As soon as you’ve exhausted some of the more impactful elements in this list (specifically, your headline text and the images you use on your landing page), try launching a few split tests designed to uncover the most effective call to action for your readers.

8 – Test your “Click here” button

Whether you’re selling products or simply gathering information for offline follow up or email list inclusion, the particular details of your “Click here” button can play a big role in your conversion rate.

As an example, consider the following case study carried out by popular blogger Glen Allsop upon the release of his Cloudblogging product.  By split testing the two following versions of his checkout button, he was able to achieve a small improvement in his conversion rate – which translated to a big impact on his overall income!

A few of the different elements you should consider testing when it comes to your “Click here” button include:

  • The wording you use immediately preceding your button
  • The color of your button header text, button outline, button background and button text
  • The specific wording used on your button
  • Any authority indicators you use (in this case, the credit card images displayed below the button)
  • Any benefit descriptions included around your “Click here” button

9 – Test your testimonials

Not all landing pages will include testimonials, but if you do decide to make these powerful indicators of social proof a part of your website, you’ll want to be sure they’re working as effectively as possible!

For starters, test whether their inclusion has a measurable impact on your conversion rate.  If you find that using testimonials on your landing page contributes to a higher number of sales or conversions, move on to testing the specific testimonials you use, including their content, length and personal identifying information (ie – reviewer’s name, image, city, URL and more).

10 – Test your authority indicators

Authority indicators are graphic symbols included to encourage trust between you and your landing page visitor.  For example, if your business is a member of the Better Business Bureau, you may include their logo on your landing page in order to build trust with readers who may not otherwise be familiar with your brand.

If you do decide to include these elements, you’ll want to carry out split tests to determine where they’re most effective on your page, as well as which images and specific indicators contribute the most to your conversion rates.

Bonus tip – Test your overall marketing strategy

So far, all of the potential tests we’ve looked at revolve around specific design elements within your website.  However, while you can test these elements over and over again until you’re blue in the face, be aware that external factors may be causing lagging sales or conversions as well.  For example, it doesn’t matter how good your landing page is – if you’re sending the wrong traffic source to your landing page, it’s never going to convert for you!

For this reason, if making changes to your landing page design elements isn’t having the impact you’d hoped for, consider taking a more holistic look at your marketing strategy.  Consider testing different traffic segments, as well as the features and benefits of the products or services you’re selling, in order to increase your odds of experiencing landing page success.

Image: 401K

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