How to Design Your Landing Page For Conversions (Best Practices)
A website is needed once you decide to become an online entrepreneur.
You have placed all of your efforts, time, and money to build a website that looks professional.
Probably, you have done one of these things:
- Buy stock photos;
- Watched videos and read books about online marketing;
- Hired blog writers or you wrote them yourself;
- Studied SEO or hired an expert;
- You studied analytics;
- Spent a lot on advertisements; and
- Spent hours planning and creating products for sale.
But, your sales and conversion are still low.
“What’s the matter!?” You’re losing so much time and money. You’re frustrated and discouraged. You wonder what’s wrong about your plan, contents, or website.
Websites are our representatives. They speak so much about our products and our services. And how we relate to our customers.
But most visitors do not buy or get our services. They left in a few seconds. Some may come back. Oftentimes, they don’t.
Most of us think that our website is our doorway to success. Yes, we should build websites that look professional. But, there is a place on your website that you should put great attention to.
You don’t have to rebuild your whole website. Just pay attention to your landing page.
No matter how big your advertising budget is. But your landing page speaks a lot about the success of your online business. A little change on your landing page can cause great changes in your conversion rate.
What is a landing page?
A landing page is a place where your ideal customers “land on” after clicking your ads or post.
Here are worthy functions of a landing page:
- This is the first page that your visitors know about you.
- Gives that valuable first impression from your visitors.
- Where you get their name and email to become your subscriber.
- Place your lead magnet.
- Persuade your customers to try your products or services.
- A dedicated page to give your offer to a targeted group.
- Focus your customers on what your offer is about.
- Start to build a relationship with your visitors.
- A close-up look inside your website especially if it’s a long-form page.
- There are no links to other pages on your site.
The right landing page turns haters to fans. And it is where you make or break it to turn a visitor into a subscriber. Because every subscriber is an opportunity to sell what you have to offer.
One of the mistakes that you can make is if you lead your visitors to your homepage after they clicked an ad or post.
A homepage is important, I agree with this. But there are also disadvantages when you use your homepage:
- Distract customers on what you offer.
A homepage has a lot of different information that your visitors will encounter
- They will get tired.
They have to navigate or scroll a lot to find the information that they want.
- It’s a lot of extra effort.
They will not waste their time to look for information just for a freebie
You want to make it easy for your customers. And they should have a fun experience on your page.
- People have a short attention span.
You only have five seconds to grab your customer’s attention. And make them stay on your landing page.
- Busy lifestyle.
We have a lot on our plate. We have work, family, kids, and other stuff to take care of.
Thousands of websites offer the same products that you have. It will be easy for them to click another website that offers the same stuff.
How to create a landing page
A landing page requires a strategy for it to be successful. It is not that having one is already enough.
It is not just about visuals or colors. It is about its ability to convert a customer. So, an understanding of how a landing page works is important.
There are different types of landing pages – a squeeze page, sales page, and long-form pages.
Here, we will not deal with the technical part or software to create a landing page. But we will go through 20 steps that you should go through to put this together. And there are four categories that you need to consider for this:
- Five keys on above the fold.
- Five elements of a landing page;
- Five answers to give to your customers; and
- Five questions you need to ask when checking other landing pages.
Then, we will have actual case studies of real live landing pages. So you can see how these work in the real world.
Five Keys – Above the Fold
Above the fold is everything that your new site visitor sees before they scroll down your page. It is the first thing they see before anything else.
It is derived from how you fold a newspaper. The top half of the front page of a newspaper or what you see on the front page of a newspaper when it is folded. And where the important story is placed. It is what captures the eyes of the buyer.
The above the fold section of your landing page is important because it is what creates the first impression. When your ideal customer does not find this part interesting, they would likely close your page. Even before scrolling down it.
So you should spend some time on how you design your above the fold section.
And there are five keys to success that you need to follow for any type of landing page, regardless of how long the length is.
Key #1 – Congruence
Your landing page should also speak about what your ad or blog is speaking. It should be a natural progression from the reason why your ideal customer clicks your ad in the first place.
Once your visitor clicks an ad or a blog post, it means that he is already interested in your product. Or maybe wants to know more about you. So, don’t ever disappoint your visitor when they see a different page as what he expects to see.
If your advertisement is about cars. Then don’t put pictures of cakes and ice creams on this section. It should also be about cars. I know this is an exaggerated example.
Your visitors clicked on the car ad because he is interested in it. Not about cakes and ice creams. So, he would just close this page. Because there is no connection. You failed his expectations.
Key #2 – Avatar
Make it personal. Target only one customer persona or avatar.
Talk as if you’re only talking to him. That you know about his pains. And you are a good friend that he can count on.
Key #3 Clear call to action
Your call-to-action (CTA) must be one and specific.
You have to identify that one action that you want visitors to take. And remove all other options.
Your CTA should also be related to your headline and sub-headline.
It also helps to make a CTA button with a benefit. A benefit is an offer that you give in exchange for their contact information.
You can also create a sense of urgency like a countdown timer, or how many seats are left in your webinar. But don’t lie that you are fully booked already though it is not. People will find out eventually.
Your reputation can get easily damaged when you lie. Because the internet is just a small place. And words travel like the speed of light.
Key # 4 Minimal commitment
You don’t have to sell to your visitors at once. Or tell them to pay you $5,000, and you will make their lives better.
A simple request for a name and email will do. You can ask more or sell something as they go through your sales funnel.
Key #5 Length
And this is all above the fold. And that is less is more here. So when it comes to creating your landing page, the question isn’t how much information can I fit on this page? The question should be, what’s the minimum amount we can do on this page to get that commitment and action that we’re looking for?
Let’s go through two long-form types of landing pages.
Case study – Lifebook masterclass of mindvalley.com
This one is a shorter form landing page. This is from mindvalley.com. They offer a web masterclass about their Lifebook products.
The entire landing page is long. But we will focus on above the fold here.
When we look at the landing page, we can study its details using our five keys.
Congruence- I saw this in an advertisement where the two hosts speak about the masterclass. I can’t show the actual ad though.
So there’s congruency between where people came from. And where they ultimately landed on the landing page.
Avatar — This makes it very clear that this is for someone who doesn’t have a direction or purpose. There is a lot of type-A personalities out there who have their goals. And look forward to achieving them.
So someone who already has their goals figured out. And they don’t have a lot of self-doubts. This is not for them.
Call to action – A giant yellow button “Reserve Now”. There is only one action necessary to join their masterclass.
Minimal commitment – They only asked for name and email. There is no reservation fee that they require.
Length – The rest of the page is focused on how to build rapport and authority. There’s a lot of information about the two presenters. And how the masterclass has been helpful for other people.
Case Study – Jason Bond
Jason Bond teaches about stocks. This is a different niche compared to the MindValley example.
You’ll notice the layout of this page is very similar until we get to the last key, which is the length.
- The video that starts auto-playing is one of his YouTube ads. They watched a YouTube ad. And now they’re watching the same video on the page.
- Who is this specifically for? You’ll see that it talks about increasing your portfolio’s performance. If you don’t have a portfolio, then this isn’t for you. If you’re a beginner
And so that’s immediately letting everyone know who is a beginner and is just getting started, trying to figure this whole thing out, that this isn’t for them.
- The call to action is to join now.
- It only asked for a name and email.
What differentiates Jason Bond’s landing page from MindValley’s example, is it is longer. And is focused on building trust.
Jason Bond is a stock trading expert/consultant. And his business deals with big amounts of money.
Let’s talk about your retirement fund. He must convince his ideal customers that he is credible and trustworthy. Of course, he knows that most people will be skeptical, and needs more information.
So, what he does to build a lot of trust and confidence among his customers is he puts a lot of proofs of credibility.
- Logos/trust seals
- Links to media publication
The length of your landing page is determined by how much information you think you need to persuade your visitors to take action. Your goal is to make them comfortable so that they will subscribe when they reach the bottom of the page.
Five Elements – Entire Page
So now let’s go ahead and look at the entire page. And the five elements you need to have a successful landing page.
The entire landing page is like a little picture of your website. There is the headline, the benefits, the about us, testimonials, and disclaimer.
It’s like you have to cherry-pick small information from your website. Then place it all here.
Element #1 Grab attention
We need something that’s going to immediately hook our new website visitor within the first five seconds. And then if they need more information, we’ll do that in short paragraphs or bullet points.
Element #2 – Call to Action
If you have a very long landing page, you may place a call to action button in the middle. Even though the usual buttons you can see are on the top and the bottom.
Because as your visitors scroll down the page, you try to persuade them that you can help them. And to also remind them that they need to make an action.
Humans tend to get distracted so a little reminder will not harm. It is also important that your call to action are the same. You can have two or three CTA buttons but it is for the same purpose.
Element #3 – Credibility
You need to build credibility with your visitors. Because they don’t know you, where you from, or are you legit.
Credibility can be shown through testimonials, logos, or your clients, or whatever license you have or your organization has.
People only do business with someone that they can trust. Because every business involves money. You could not blame them, of course.
Element #4 – Give more information
You can give more information by showing who you are, what kind of a father you are. Or maybe you support some charities.
This is to convince your visitors that you are a real human being. You can also add information about what you do outside of work. This could be your hobbies, sports, talents. Or do you love dogs and cats? Something that people could relate to you.
You can also do it by putting a video on your landing page. As a picture says a thousand words so a video says a million words. There are words that you cannot write but you can do it on video.
If you are shy to speak in front of a camera, you can hire a vocal artist. Or you can set up a small studio in your house. And practice being comfortable in front of a camera.
Element #5 – Legal disclaimer
No, you can’t go to another website, and simply copy theirs. That’s copyright infringement.
Your Google search “privacy policies”. Some services will give you one for a couple of hundred dollars. You can also talk to your lawyer. I am not a lawyer, this is not legal advice.
This is just necessary. And it depends upon your niche, you might also need an earnings disclaimer. You should have your legal disclaimer.
Case Study – Billy Jean
This example is from a very successful marketer, Billy Jean.
Grab attention – You’ll see right off the bat that he grabs attention with the thumbnail of his video. He’s on the beach in a very nice house. And a whiteboard in the background.
The assumption is that he has a great secret for you.
This is a great way to stand out. Because to grab attention does not mean that you have to use crazy headlines or weird colors. And he explains in his video why he used this particular location to film.
So if you have seen something like a Tai Lopez ad, knowledge, he uses a lot of nice cars in his ads because that grabs attention.
Just create something that grabs your visitor’s attention. And it does not necessarily be that you’re on the beach or have a lot of nice cars in the background.
A clear call to action – He has two clear CTAs, at the very top and the bottom.
Credibility – Instead of talking about how great he is, or having a bunch of testimonials. He shows it by using two pictures.
The first one shows he’s speaking in front of a room of a few hundred people. So someone who’s never heard of him before can look at those two pictures. And can conclude that Billy Jean must be legitimate. Because he speaks in front of a lot of people. It is implied that his audience thinks that what he has to say is valuable.
And the second one shows that he has a large team.
This shows that he’s not just some random guy. He has a full team behind him.
This is a great example of how you can quickly build some credibility without a bunch of testimonials. Don’t talk about how great or awesome you. Because nobody likes to read about bragging.
More information – The information is inside the video. He talks about the importance of customer acquisition in every business. And why it is an important skill set.
He also talks about getting the training to learn more about his system to get clients.
A video is more powerful than words or pictures. Because your visitors can see you, or your family, or the stuff that you care about.
Let’s go to another example.
Case Study – Jason Whaling
This is my landing page. And it failed because it did not grab attention.
You see that we have testimonials, bullet points that target the Type A personality who needs more information. We also have a call to action and a legal disclaimer.
And this landing page failed, as in FAILED.
I want to show you this because it doesn’t matter even if you get most things right, but miss one element.
You do need to have all of these elements on your page. Otherwise, your landing page is not going to be successful.
Note: We changed this page up a little bit by adding a video. And our conversion rates skyrocketed.
Next, we will deal with our ideal customer.
Five Answers – Ideal Customer
Here, we will think about how our avatar or ideal visitors would think.
We need to put ourselves on the shoes of our ideal customers. Because we are serving them in the first place. They are the reason that we created a landing page.
When our visitor comes to our page, they would have a lot of questions in their mind. They would look for information that could convince them that they should subscribe to us.
As business owners, we should be quick to answer whatever questions that they have. Or else they would click on someone else’s page.
And the five questions that we should be prepared to answer are below.
Answer #1 – Is this for me? What’s in it for me?
Your landing page should speak about the benefits that your ideal customers can get.
Your message or what you sell should also resonate with your ideal customer. Because if your ideal customer does not see that you can be of help, then why should they continue. Right?
Answer #2– What do I do next?
The CTA should only be one thing that your customer needs to do. Do not put multiple CTA buttons as it will just confuse your reader.
People love to be directed on what to do next. So it is your role to guide them that they should sign up to get a freebie.
To encourage your visitor to sign up, you should give them an offer that matches their expectations.
Your CTA should also draw attention by making it stand out from the rest of your landing page. If your landing page has a blue and white background, then make a red CTA button.
Your CTA should also be creative. Choose words that excite your ideal customer.
Your CTA should also speak about your headline or bullets.
Answer #3 – What does this do for me?
This section talks about how you can handle the hesitation of your customers.
Be prepared to answer their objections. Or give them something to expect. Of course, something that could solve their problems.
Answer # 4 – What does this look like?
Your visitor wants to understand what they are up to. You have to give them a picture of what you can give to them.
Like a picture of the cover page of your ebook. Or something tangible that they can see, a graphic or a video.
Answer #5 – Can I trust this page?
Again, these are proof that you can be trusted. Trust is a very strong word. And people would Google about you to know more about you.
Case Study – theonething.com
Our example is from a website theonething.com.
Below are the details on how theonething.com made this landing page.
- The headline tells how to protect your most valuable asset. But this is not your money. This page is designed for people who already have The One Thing book.
- This is for people who want to protect their time. And be effective with their time.
- It has a clear call to action. And it is to register now.
- What this page lacks is an actual image of the video training or the webinar. I think that page would do a lot better if they had a graphic or a video.
- For credibility, it talks about who the host is. And there are bullet points.
Case Study – Russel Brunson
This one is from Russel Brunson. His landing page has all of the elements. And we can learn from this one.
Now, let’s study this landing page
- The headline talks about how to deal with copywriting your sales letter, sales, slides, emails, and ads.
- The sub-headline immediately removes the objection of the need to hire a copywriter.
- There is a clear call to action, to RSVP now. And it’s free.
- It shows a picture of a box. They will not send a physical box. But this picture tells an image of what the visitors will receive.
- For credibility, the landing page shows the pictures of the founders. And their years of experience with their credentials.
Five Questions – Other Landing Pages
Here, we will analyze other landing pages that are in your niche (ideally). Then you ask yourself five questions as you go through them. So you can make better landing pages when you create your own.
Questions spice up our lives. People who care will ask questions. It is also a good exercise for your brain muscles. And will help stimulate how you think.
Note: It is about you getting inspiration. It is not to copy what others do on their landing page. But you also need to learn about your potential ideal customer. And apply what you learn from others.
So, let’s dive into the last five questions.
Question #1 – What does the headline tell you about the prospect?
The headline speaks a lot about the prospect. There are clues that you can when you read the headline.
For example, it says beginner, intermediate, advance. Or does it have words like students, moms, etc?
You can also reverse engineer how they write the headline to understand who the prospect is.
Question #2 – How strong are the calls to action at each step of the funnel?
You see how strong the calls to action are.
Here you can see if they simply ask for name and email. Or only the email. Do they have freebies or lead magnets? Then, what is that lead magnet?
You can also check if they went straight to sell their products. And if ever, how much is the price. And does it come with free shipping or gifts?
It is very popular in some niches, where they ask the visitors to immediately pay for $795 or $495. Then they’ll send a free book.
When you ask for money it is bigger than when you only ask for an email that comes with a free PDF or video.
Question #3 – What benefits does the copy focus on?
Benefits are written in bullet points. Because it is much easier to process it in our mind.
You want to see what benefits or objections that the copy focused on.
With the Russel Brunson example, the bullets were around how they handle objections.
- They do not talk about any results that could be gained as a result of having better copywriting.
- They were focused on assuring their visitors that they don’t have to worry about copywriting.
Question #4 – Who are the testimonials?
When you look at the testimonials, you have to look at the person whom they chose to show in this section.
Typically, a good landing page will use the testimonials of people who are closest (in terms of status) to their ideal customers.
So, it’s a good insight into what your competitors’ ideal customers might look like.
Question #5 – Is there a disclaimer text?
And of course, see what type of legal disclaimers that they have.
You can check what type of legal things that they include on their landing page.
Tip: You have to consult a legal counsel to make sure that you comply with the policies that your business has to cover.
Case Study – Neil Patel
So let’s go through one final example here from Neil Patel. Then go through these five questions.
What does the headline tell you about the prospect?
- The headline says that this is not for beginners because of the word advanced. These are the people who want free traffic.
- The call to action to register for a free webinar. It’s very clear.
- The benefits focus on whether you need to do a new and fix your conversion problem. These words can give you two valuable pieces of information: (1) The visitors already have content on their website; and (2) These visitors already have traffic or followers. Because you can’t have conversion problems if you have no site visitors.
- The copy tells about no need to do ads. It speaks directly to people who don’t want to pay for advertisements.
- The proof that he uses is his own experience of getting 195,000 by using the system that he will speak during the webinar.
- He did not have a disclaimer text here. Although his other landing pages do have a legal disclaimer text.
I highly recommend that you place a legal disclaimer text on your landing pages. Even if you see nobody else in your niches does it.
The bottom line is you should pay attention to your landing page.
It is not how beautiful or colorful it is. There are a lot of things that you need to consider when you create a landing page.
These 20 steps are a guide on how to create a landing page that could cater to your customers. Ultimately, it is your customers who could judge how effective your landing page is.
You need to optimize your landing page to increase its conversion. And you can do this through A/B split test. It will take time but the benefits are worth it.
As business owners, we have a lot of things on our plate. But our main goal is to generate leads. And as the leads go through our sales funnel, they become our customers.
Keep building the business you love.