Landing pages and sites are not the only and definitely not the main communication tools. Companies use social media communities, chats, Insta stories, video channels, and a million other tools, and they have to develop and grow all this orchestra. The site, however, is the place where you host your brand, and the landing page is one of the main points of contact with a visitor.
We've developed this set of recommendations over several years, at first for internal use. Now we're happy to share it with you; this is an ultimate algorithm for creating a functional working page that will tell about your product and set up its promotion the right way. The described order of actions can be applied to any communication tool, but for simplicity, we will use a landing page as an example.
Search engines have learned to emulate the user's interest. SEO strategies are increasingly focused on the behaviour of a person, rather than search engines. Thanks to this, commercial texts can now be as natural as human speech.
Our best advice here is to use simple language. Word your thoughts just like you were speaking with your user, answering their questions. It's a good idea to start with something like: “Hi, John”, and continue the letter to your character. When you finish, just erase the intro, and the letter will become more human.
Insert images to show everything that is better described in non-verbal form. Demonstrate the product as if the users themselves held it in their hands. Video content has already become something ordinary: today, if you have something to say, you turn on the camera on the phone and just tell about it. You get the content straight away, and place it on the site, on Facebook, or on the landing page. If this approach worked well, it might make sense to create content with professional teams, so that your following videos are spot on.
Checklist. What should we do in terms of content to create a perfect landing page?
- Understand what questions the user might have about our product.
- Pick a simple, emotional and understandable headline – so that the user can understand where they are and what they are being offered.
- Avoid double meanings; the reader is supposed to have no doubt on the benefit they get from scrolling the landing page.
- Understand what barrier prevents the user from accomplishing a targeted action (doubts, a source of distrust, a problem).
- Find reasons for overcoming the barrier. Remove meaningless slogans, fact check our texts.
- Make the main answer to the main question most visible.
- Compate our landing page with references, adopting the best practice and finding out the differentiation points.
- Offer the user a benefit, before demanding an action from them.
- Build an engaging storyline that helps to overcome the barrier.
- Offer the user benefit in a clear way by adding a benefit button.
- Find the arguments that the user will believe, such as customer reviews.
- Use video for the demonstration, especially if we need to evoke emotion, explain the process or create a need.
- Rreplace the text that explained a certain structure with a scheme.
A good site today is not the one that is well programmed or has a trendy design. The emphasis has shifted to content and analytics because anyone can create a functioning and good-looking site.
If you need a site for testing a hypothesis, just open Tilda or Webflow, select a template, find a couple of pictures on the Internet and write a couple of simple sentences. It’s fast, free, and no designers or programmers will be needed.
Pay more attention to a competent structure that will fit well into the user scenario, and to useful content that will answer all the questions. Such a landing page will work and sell well, even if it’s been built in a day using a free template. A stunning layout is less a priority than helpful content.
- The page has a clear hierarchy: contrast and subordination.
- The user sees a noticeable and clear call to action.
- There are no blocks with the same importance on the screen.
- There are no random intervals, colours, and font sizes on the page. There is a simple and clear system of visual techniques.
- We use fewer fields in the form, words in the headline, words in the text, design elements, columns in the layout, transitions to other pages, borders in the design.
- We remove captcha from absolutely everywhere.
The main rule is simple – try to get rid of everything that doesn't help the main person to make the main action. .
A little tip: after you have thrown out all the unnecessary stuff, try to get rid of something else; it will improve the quality of the page.
What do you need designers and developers for?
UX-designer is the person who will help you along the way. Designing behaviour scenarios is a much more important part of designers' work than creating beautiful designs.
After you have confirmed or refused the first hypotheses, you can realise (usually that’s exactly how it happens) that you need to do something that the ready tools can’t cope with.
Alternatively, you may want to add even more “beauty” to the page. At times, it will be necessary to incorporate some pieces of business logic into the script. And that’s when it’s time to call a designer and a developer.
To be honest, when a client comes to us with an unverified hypothesis, we usually suggest: “Let’s do a quick test with Webflow first? And when we will see how it actually works, then we can spend more time and money”.
To check the effectiveness of the page, it is not enough to just install the web visitor counters. In order to get the full picture, we recommend adding tags into the site code and setting up Google Analytics interfaces.
In general, web analysts have become less dependent on developers. Earlier many of them still ignored Google Tag Manager, today they prefer to manage tags and configure mobile apps for marketing programs independently, without the help of programmers.
As a result, the analysts have learned to analyse the actions of users more deeply and began to calculate the economics of clients behaviour: not just conversion, but how much is earned on a particular client, in euros and cents. For instance, we at JetStyle have switched from performance marketing to a more effective model – unit economics. Now we operate with such terms as capital turnover and final profit. We can calculate revenues from a single user more accurately, and therefore clearly understand what is happening in a specific segment of the audience, where we lose and where we earn.
- Set up the analytics systems.
- Link Google Analytics to Google Adwords.
- Identify macro conversions – the main purposes of the site: sale, call, application, use of the test period.
- Select micro conversions, which show the interaction of the potential client with the page, and intermediate steps towards the main goal: subscription to the newsletter, download of the user's manual, switching to a specific page, etc.
- Set up tracking of macro and micro conversions on the site.
- Decide if you need call tracking. If you don't implement it, then, at least set up sending requests from the site and track the viewing of contacts.
- Check the settings of the analytics systems: the web counter is set correctly, the data is collected properly, the information about the target actions is collected, the requests from the site are not lost along the way.
The landing page will not bring any sales if the technical side fails. The success of the campaign also depends on how fast the page loads, how it looks on different screens, whether or not it will look too small on an iPhone 5 display. You don’t need to check anything manually or by sight anymore, as there is a specific tool for almost every item of the technical checklist.
- The page is displayed correctly in common browsers. It's a good practice to support the browser if at least 1% of your audience has it installed.
- The page is viewed well on various devices (desktops, mobile, tablets).
- The forms work, the applications come to the recipient. Check manually that they do come)
- The goals set in the analytics system work well.
The most common mistake is to publish the page and then just hide and wait for the results. Tell everyone about it!
Your challenge is to bring as many visitors as possible to the landing page. Not just anybody – they should be your target audience that performs a target action.
Start with contextual advertising – it is work with hot demand, which means that you show the ads to those who are already looking for your product or service. Traffic from a correctly set up context will always be the highest converting one. However, it is always not enough, and soon you will want more.
Then you should add targeting to your advertising sources. This traffic has a lower conversion rate. With the help of the targeted adverts, we create demand: we show the ads to people who have not asked for it. Nevertheless, this will bring more benefits than just some media advertising, which can be seen by everyone.
- Check your ads to see that all banners correspond to the landing page's message.
- Make sure that you have linked advertising services to analytics systems.
- Use UTM tags and think of a single standardised system of the UTM tags to monitor the effectiveness of sites, ads, audiences.
- Set up a collection of retargeting audiences before the launch of the advertising campaign.
NB! When launching an advertising campaign, we recommend that you immediately set up the function of collecting retargeting/remarketing data and set up retargeting campaigns to show the ads to those who visited, but did not send an application, in Google Adwords and social media.
After all this is done, it's time to keep an eye on the conversion. We look at the WebVisor and heat map data to understand how visitors behave on the landing page. If users can’t see some elements at all, for example, they don’t scroll down to them, then we correct the structure.
We segment the traffic. We define segments by various parameters – resolutions, browsers, devices, etc., – and look at the differences in the conversion. If we see something that gets out of the picture, we look for the cause. We had a case when the site conversion on the desktop was twice as high as on the mobile. It turned out that there were a lot of CTA buttons on the desktop and they were always in sight, while there was just one button in the mobile version, and it was only at the beginning of the page. As soon as we fixed it, the situation improved immediately.
We analyse the feedback. People from the landing page call to the call center, send an e-mail or a message on our social media. We can see if managers and technical support staff answer the same questions from the users over and over again – this means there’s clearly not enough of this information on the site. We go back to the first two steps of the checklist and edit the message on the page.
Today there are more and more automation tools in each sphere that can do half of the work for you. It’s already quite obvious that it is the development of a scenario in statements, preparation of the content – that is what is needed for a high performing landing page and that is what it's really worth paying for. The idea and its implementation matter more than the technical execution. In this sense, possibly, design agencies, numerous studios, bureaus, and digital companies will increasingly take on the role of producers and content providers, rather than just technological contractors.
We can perform an audit of your landing page or develop one from scratch to solve your business task. Get in touch to talk via email@example.com.