8 Essential Lead-Generating Landing Page Characteristics
By Jonathan Ebenstein, Managing Director, Marcum Strategic Marketing
Marketing success, at the end of the day, comes down to your ability to connect marketing to sales. The path through the buying journey for every customer starts with some form of marketing interaction (e.g., digital advertising, thought leadership, brochures, website, etc.) and ends with their taking the necessary action to purchase a product or service.
From an online marketing perspective, landing pages are an essential marker on the buying journey. They can affect everything from your social media presence to the way you attract customers and convert leads.
Why Are Landing Pages Important?
In order to close sales, you need to secure leads—ideally, qualified ones. This is what landing pages do. They generate leads by capturing information about prospective customers on your website in exchange for branded content or experiences (e.g., ebooks, email newsletters, webinars, industry events, free product trials or demos, memberships).
What Are Best Practices for Landing Pages?
Below are eight best practices you should implement on your landing pages to ensure you are maximizing the ROI of your digital marketing investment.
1. Remove Main Menu Navigation
Whether via social media, digital advertising or call to action links from your e-newsletter, you’ve spent meaningful time, money and resources routing a qualified lead to your landing page. The objective now is to capture and convert them by focusing their attention on filling out and submitting your form. Landing pages that include the menu navigation found on the rest of your website provide a distraction and easy means of escape from the landing page.
2. Limit Friction Around the Form
Friction refers to the number of different elements on the landing page that compete with one another for the user’s attention. The lead generation form should stand out as the focal point on the page, so be mindful of putting too many additional elements around it. Put too many and you’ll risk lowering conversion rates.
Put the Form Above the Fold
Heat mapping has shown that user engagement is highest above the fold (i.e., at the top of the page). This makes the real estate at the top of the landing page the best location to place the most important elements (e.g., CTAs, forms, etc.) that are responsible for securing on page conversions.
4. Remove Unnecessary Fields from Your Form
The number of fields on a landing page can be a balancing act between business needs and user experience. As marketers, salespeople and business owners, we want to collect as much information as possible. Conversely, site visitors are extremely reluctant to spend time filling out form fields in exchange for access to an offer—and they spook easily. Research has shown that as the number of form fields increases, conversion rates decrease, which is why best practices dictate that you limit the number of form fields on your landing pages to 3-4.
5. Have a Strong Call-To-Action (CTA)
Having a submission form alone is not enough. In order to maximize the number of leads and minimize the number of users who “bounce” off the page without filling out the lead form, you need to have a visually appealing CTA that is action- and benefit-oriented.
6. Less Is More When it Comes to Copy
Similar to the number of form fields, keep your landing page copy brief. The more time someone has to spend on your landing page the greater the chance they won’t convert.
7. Demonstrate & Deliver Value
The biggest hurdle to clear for landing page conversions is overcoming a site visitor’s reluctance to provide their contact information. To do so, it is essential that you clearly and concisely convey the value of the offer in a compelling manner. Ways to accomplish this include:
- Create a compelling headline
- Include a brief summary that includes bullet points of what the visitor can expect to receive or read
- Demonstrate on the page a sample of the content they’re going to receive (e.g., screen capture, pull quotes, copy snippets)
- Testimonials from others
- A relevant and engaging image
8. Include Social Sharing
Your audience can be your best and least costly marketers when they like and share information about your company’s products and services. Take advantage of this by adding share links to your landing page. Doing so will encourage website visitors to share your content with their friends and business contacts. These are likely to be people with common interests, thus making them good prospective customers as well.
Landing Page Wrap-up
Clearly, there’s a lot to consider when designing landing pages, but if you’re trying to generate leads for your business without them, you’re missing out on a big opportunity to turn website visitors into something more.
Interested in creating lead generation forms that are optimized to convert visitors into leads and customers? Please contact Jonathan Ebenstein at 440-459-5965.