Research shows that a website’s landing page has between 2 and 5 seconds before a user makes the decision to keep reading or move on. Knowing that your landing page has only a few seconds to grab the viewer’s attention, you need to make sure you are following these website landing page best practises.
The Landing Page
A landing page is the page that a visitor will see first, when they are on your website. More often than not, this is your homepage. But if you are using ads and back-linking techniques to send potential customers to other pages on your site, then those pages are landing pages as well. Promotional offer pages make for great landing pages, and you will always want your promotional offer pages to follow all of these landing page tips.
You want your landing page to have aspects of a homepage, which it will if it’s your homepage. You will also want it to have aspects of (or at least links to) your contact page. It should feature at least some of the following, to be effective:
- Large, attractive graphics
- Very targeted information
- Blatant emotional appeals
- At least one really clear call-to action
- Simple forms to fill out
- An embedded video
All of these features of your landing page should be at least partially present above the fold.
Does Your Website Need a Separate Landing Page?
That depends. If you have good control over the destination URL (for example, if you are using Google Adwords) then your website would do really well with an attractive landing page.
If you have a landing page that is specifically targeted to the same audience as your ads, with the same content, then your ad will be much more effective. If your ad’s destination is your homepage, but it was an ad for a special promotion, then your potential customer may give up trying to find the promotion on your website.
Any ad venue that allows you to choose the destination, will be the most effective, if you have a targeted landing page for that content.
Tips for a Great Landing Page
- Have specific, targeted content to follow through on the ad that drove them to your site
- Think up a killer headline
- Offer a deal—it should be an immediate call to action (‘limited time only’ works well)
- Less is more—white space will draw the eye directly to the important content
- Short contact form—make the form so simple to fill out that they do so without thought
- Bold contact info, for customers that want to talk to you now, instead of filling your form
Don’t Ignore Your Homepage
Even with a few specifically targeted landing pages, the homepage is where most visitors will enter your site. This is especially true if they are existing customers, or if they’ve found you through an organic search. Not every one of these tactics can be applied directly to your homepage, but if you use the ones you can (like writing a killer headline) then your homepage will make a great landing page. If your home page is your landing page, you should always make sure that it links to any promotional pages, as well as your contact page.