successful landing page

Landing Pages 101: 5 Essential Elements for a Successful Landing Page

You’ve probably heard the dreaded term ‘Design by Committee’: the design methodology (or lack of methodology) that drives the typical corporate website.

Marketing wants a video demo and a “How it Works” page. Legal wants a complete page dedicated to the disclaimer. The CEO wants a link to his latest speech at the widget convention. Support wants to put that annoying pop-up support icon, and HR wants a prominent “Apply for a Job” link. The one thing that didn’t make it on the home page was the “Try Now” button for your new product or service.

You’ve never been involved in that frustrating scenario, have you?

Well if you have, take heart, so have lots of us. One day somebody invented The Landing Page, probably one of the greatest online marketing tools ever invented.

The Landing Page was specifically created to help you drive conversions. And conversions is the online marketer’s number one job.

You want visitors to convert into subscribers. You want subscribers to convert into webinar participants. You want webinar participants to convert into leads. And you want leads to convert into customers.

But there are so many ways to build a landing page, and it’s hard to tell in advance, without the benefit of several weeks of testing with an A/B testing tool, which design and copy will convert better.

Lucky for you, thousands of marketers before you have conducted thousands of real campaigns and have learned through experimentation, trial and error what works and what doesn’t.

As a result, there are some foundational best practices you should consider when you design your landing page.

We list five of the most important right here.

#1. Successful Landing Page: Keep It Simple

One of the biggest conversion killers is confusion. You don’t want your landing pages to look like your “designed by committee” corporate website. Your landing pages needs to be focused on conversion.

Get rid of sidebars, navigation menus, unnecessary graphics, buttons and text. Also, don’t go crazy on design. This is business, not art. We’re trying to drive conversions, not win awards.

#2. Successful Landing Page: Have a Singular Purpose

We love choice –it’s the mark of an advanced economy. But choice is very bad for conversions on your landing page. The “Paradox of Choice” more often than not paralyzes our visitors into not making any choice at all.

Dedicate your landing page to one conversion goal. If you have another goal, create another landing page for that.

#3. Successful Landing Page: If Content is King, then Clarity is Queen

Don’t be overly clever with your written copy and graphical elements. And don’t be subtle…subtlety is great for novelists, but terrible for landing pages.
You need to be very clear what you want your customers to do: CLICK HERE is the online marketers most useful pair of words. Don’t use “Please” or “We would suggest” or ‘Maybe.” Tell your visitors exactly what you want them to do. It works like a charm.

#4. Successful Landing Page: Keep Your Promise

Do you want to annoy your customers (and Google) at the same time? No? Ok, then your landing page must fulfill the promise of the Google Ad, the email subject line, the Tweet, or the postcard you just mailed.

Some of the biggest failures of online marketing campaigns have happened when the visitor clicks a link because she was promised something in the title or header, and finds a landing page that had nothing to do with the title.

Keep your promise and your conversions will go up. Sounds simple, right? But it’s amazing how many online marketers miss this one.

#5. Successful Landing Page: Test and test some more

No matter how many “best practices” or “rules of thumb” you learn about, there is nothing like testing different landing pages, and different elements within a landing page, so you can improve the effectiveness of your online marketing campaign.

Are conversions lower than you expected?

  • Add a bigger call-to-action button, and test both versions (the one with the big button and the original one) using an A/B split test tool, and see which converts better.
  • Use the words “Click Here” on one version and “Sign Up Now” on another version, and see which button gets more clicks.
  • On one conversion form ask for a full name and email address, on the other one ask for just the first name and email address.

Some of the best landing pages are those that have been tested almost to perfection. The end result is a landing page that keeps converting and converting and converting.

Your Next Steps

You have the essential elements for launching a successful landing page, but do you have to go to your IT guy or designer to create one for you? Is your current landing page platform hard to use?


Try Lander today. Start converting. Do it and you're winning!