As we all do increasingly more business online, it becomes necessary to have a good high quality landing page for each service we offer or product we sell. Yet, particularly in Japan, I see so many poor landing pages. These landing pages fail to garner users’ attention and fail to convert visitors into customers. Many businesses don’t realize that they are losing customers every day.
In short, a landing page is the first page visitors see when they “land” on your site.
Visitors can come from a number of different places different places.
The key point is, when a user visits your site for the first time, they probably have some mild idea (or an inkling) of what your service can do, but they may not be sure. As an online marketer, your goals is to empathize with the user’s problem, and provide a solution that they are interested in, then get them to take the next step.
There is a common fallacy that the landing page MUST be the home page of your site. In most cases, that is not true. If your website site sells a single point product, or solves one particular problem, then treating your home page as the landing page is probably OK. But if you have multiple products or services, then it’s best to have 1 landing page per service. Then you can focus on the user’s exact needs.
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What’s at State here? Well, your entire online business. Execute it poorly, and you may have no online business at all.
You have just 3 to 5 seconds to describe a problem that resonates with your audience, describe how your service is the right solution, then convince them to take the next action. Yes, you need to do all that in a matter of seconds. Web users these days (especially the younger set) are very impatient. They will quickly scan your page, and decide whether it’s worth their time.
In that 3 to 5 seconds of time, users will glance at the following:
That’s it. Each of these 4 elements is vitally important in convincing the user to stay on your page and continue on their “journey” on your website. So for the rest of this blog post, I will focus on these four main aspects.
The initials stand for “What’s In It Form Me“. That is the secret voice inside the user’s head when they visit your site for the first time. Your landing page needs to convince them that your service or product will solve THEIR problem, or perhaps make THEIR life better. Not the other way around.
So with that in mind, let’s take a look at the 4 elements mentioned above, and discuss some best practices.
Your landing page needs to have a clear effective title. In a few short words, the title should clearly convey the name of your product, and what it can do. The Title also needs to have “keywords” in it, so that you can make it easy for Google to find you.
Let’s take a look at what Visual Website Optimizer (VWO) has for a title.
The state “A/B Testing Software for Marketers”. That pretty good. If I open up Google and search for “AB Testing Software Marketing”, there is going to be a good match. It is nice to see those keywords in the Title. Google will reward you for that. I also like the “for Marketers” part too. It quickly answers the question of who this product is for.
The only improvement I might make is to but some spin word like “The Best A/B Testing Software for Marketers”, or “Advanced”.
In your subheading text, you need to not only show empathy for the user’s problem, but also present why your service or product is a viable solution to the user’s problem.
Let’s take a look at how Moz.com handles this challenge.
Their headline reads “Products to Power your Online Visibility”. That’s good. But what I really like is their followup headline: “Online marketing is complicated. Moz software makes it easy.” Just brilliant. In 2 short sentences, I, as the visitor, feel that Moz has resonated with my problem (marketing SW is complicated), and offered a solution (Moz products). Wow! Just what I need. I can’t help but want to find out more.
Pictures are much more powerful than words. Choose a great picture that represents your brand is the utmost importance. Yet, for most small businesses, it’s amazing how little time is spent on choosing the right image to describe our services.
Let’s take a look at the powerful ride-sharing service Uber.com has for an image.
Here is what I see in this image.
Well done Uber.
Many websites do so well on the other 3 elements and then blow it on the Call-to-Action button (CTA). The CTA button should be the next step you want to take on their journey through your buying process.
There are a couple of points to make
Let take a look at how Thrive Themes handles their Landing Page. (BTW, we at JC Digital are big fans of Thrive Themes, we recommend them for WordPress themes and tools).
A couple of things to note.
So we talked about the 4 key elements to a good landing page. Next, I want to briefly discuss some elements that NOT needed in a landing page. The elements below will distract users from reaching your goals. Even though they are not needed, I see them on many websites in Japan. In each case, they violate the “What’s-In-It-For-Me” Test.
So there you have it. 4 Elements to focus on when designing and building your landing pages. Along with some elements to avoid so you don’t make a mistake. Having the right landing page alone, won’t solve all your online problems. But it is an excellent step toward getting more customers online.
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Jeff Crawford is a Digital Marketing expert, Engineer and Manager. He has worked for technology companies in Silicon Valley such as Apple, WebTV and Microsoft. He has lived in Tokyo Japan since 2004, working for companies such as Microsoft KK and Adobe Systems Japan. He is the founder of Connect-Local.com, a company that specializes in Local Advertising in the USA. He is also the founder of JC Digital Consulting based in Tokyo Japan. Jeff is also the founder of the Tokyo Digital Marketers Meetup.