The landing page. The culmination of all of your lead generation efforts. You’ve flighted your paid advertisements, sent out your latest email blasts, and worked with countless vendors on third-party promotions. The fate of all of your efforts is now resting on one thing: how well your landing page performs when leads finally land on it.
Landing pages require only one simple action from a lead — filling out a form — and yet more often than not, leads will exit the page without converting first. If you find that your conversion rates are lower than expected, and your lead generation efforts are suffering, it’s possible that you’re making one of the four common landing page mistakes below. Let’s take a look at each one, and see how you can make a few easy fixes to help guarantee success.
Your conversion path is too complicated.
Want your leads to convert? Make it easy for them. If you’re putting too many steps before your actual conversion point, you’re probably seeing a lot of dropout in the middle of the conversion process. Try keeping landing pages and forms short (we recommend 4 form fields or fewer, if possible), and don’t make your leads jump through hoops just to give you their information. Every new page you drive them to and button you force them to click is one more opportunity for them to abandon the entire process.
Your landing pages are too cluttered, or too bare.
There’s nothing more frustrating to a lead than visiting a landing page and not knowing what to do next. Many companies make the mistake of trying to cram too much information on a landing page, and while their intentions are good, conversion rates tend to suffer. Conversely, when a lead lands on a page with too little information, it can be equally confusing. Make sure the next step on your landing page is obvious, and include any essential information that tells leads what they will get by converting.
You’re not thinking about the stages of the sales cycle.
We’ve written about the importance of stage-based marketing, and emphasized the fact that buyers prefer targeted, relevant content based on their stage in the sales cycle. While stage-based marketing is often discussed in the context of lead nurturing, it also applies to landing pages. Visitors to your landing pages will have different needs based on where they are in the sales cycle, and your page content needs to cater to those preferences. Consider including a quick bulleted list describing the benefits of your offer (for top of funnel prospects), client testimonials or case study logos (for middle of funnel prospects), and an obvious “Request a Demo” or “Start Free Trial” button (for bottom of funnel prospects).
You’re telling visitors what to do, not what they’ll get.
Calls to action are tricky, and many marketers often find themselves walking a fine line between being persuasive and being bossy — and one step in the wrong direction can make the difference between a conversion and a bounce. We wrote an article earlier this year about a single simple secret that can help your CTAs convert, and here it is: instead of telling visitors what they should do (i.e. “Download Now”), tell them what they’re going to get (“Get Free White Paper”). Not only does this sound less demanding, it also does a better job indicating your value proposition.
Want more information on landing pages? Check out our free Landing Pages Handbook, which includes several helpful tip sheets, checklists, worksheets, and more.