Have you ever frantically searched the house for your keys only to discover them in your pocket minutes later!? It is a situation that is closely analogous to a common theme within the digital marketing world. Right now, thousands of companies are metaphorically rifling through drawers, retracing their steps, and checking yesterday's coat pockets in the attempt to find the key to their conversion optimization problems. It is right there front of them, tucked into their collective pockets.
The key to unlocking conversion success lies with improving your landing pages, most of which already exist and already receive widespread utilization. It begins by following five basic principles:
The key to unlocking conversion success lies with improving your landing pages (CLICK TO TWEET)
Emphasize the CTA
The logic is simple, but often times this seemingly obvious step is overlooked. Your call-to-action, whatever that may be, should always appear very prominently on your landing page and should ideally comprise its primary visual component. Forcing somebody to scroll down to locate your form will cost you a percentage of conversions, which multiplied across hundreds or thousands of visitors is tremendously significant.
Any potential barrier to a desired action should be eliminated. "Barriers" take many forms and cannot be easily summarized, but generally speaking, a barrier is anything that slows down or distracts a visitor, as well as anything that adds unnecessary steps between a visitor and the desired goal.
Keep your forms short and only ask for information that is absolutely necessary. Simple lead generation forms should be kept to five fields or less, with one field each for a name, phone number, and email address as well as up to two "wildcard" fields depending on your business. Anything beyond five fields becomes cumbersome to a user and is proven to diminish conversion rates.
Other barriers include pop ups, links leading away from the page itself and text that is overly robust. As fantastic as your writing may be, most people will not have the patience to read it. This is especially true above the fold. Make your point quickly and use bullets instead of full sentences to make your pitch. If you must, try to relocate your lengthier pieces of text below the fold toward the middle or bottom of the page.
This is especially important in the world of paid search. Ideally, every ad group should contain its own landing page that matches up almost identically with its triggering queries. For example, a keyword search for "web design in Portland" would send people to a different landing page than the keyword search for "ecommerce web design" - despite the fact that "web design" is shared between the two. Ideally, headlines on each landing page should cater to that specific search, as well as, small deviations in text to mirror the query.
Depending on the level of sophistication with your paid search accounts this may require the creation of dozens to potentially hundreds of landing pages, most of which would contain borderline duplicate content. To prevent an SEO penalty it is important to block those landing pages from the search engines via the robots.txt file.
The mobile revolution changed everything. If your landing pages are not mobile-friendly then you are hindering your ability to generate conversions in roughly half or more of all visits. The same principles stated above still apply, though there is more forgiveness regarding the CTA and its location on the page (scrolling is okay on mobile!)
Subjective? Yes. But everyone knows it when they see it. Spend time perfecting and experimenting with ad copy that grabs attention, makes your point quickly, and resonates with visitors. Bland rarely wins - so writing with an edgy personality can be more effective than writing with no personality. The key here is experimentation. Run a/b tests to decide what is most effective.
By following these key steps you can improve your conversion rates nearly overnight. Good luck!