One of the first things you learn about online advertising is that a “click-through” isn’t a customer or even a lead. Not yet, anyway.
Converting a click to a customer is the work you have to do between grabbing attention (‘Hey You!’) and actually closing a sale. One essential ingredient is an effective landing page. A good landing page meets the expectations raised in the ad (‘Click Here for More Information’), establishes your credibility as a business, and leads your online visitor to the desired action.
Here are five tips to help you get the job done:
- Limit distractions. Your website homepage has global navigation that makes it easy to get from one page to another. Probably too easy. A good landing page, on the other hand, is designed to focus a reader’s attention on the requested action, such as filling out a form. Close off the exits on your landing page by eliminating every link, button and graphic that might distract from your goal.
- Put the candy where the customer can see it. Your online ad is designed to entice a web browser to want what you’ve got. The landing page is your opportunity to close the deal. Make sure when someone clicks they get what they were looking for. Surprises cause people to hit the “back” button. The worst surprise of all is to make people hunt for what got them to click in the first place.CAUTION: Using your homepage as a landing page requires extra care to ensure that your website matches the message, style and content of your online ad. If your ad and your website are out of sync you’re wasting your advertising dollars.
- Think through your forms. The more information you require the fewer responses you’ll receive. On the other hand, requiring more information will give you better qualified leads.
- Focus the layout. You want your headline and other strong elements high on the page, followed by the explanatory copy or list of benefits. A good visual hierarchy is designed to lead the visitor to take action.
- Write compelling copy. You hire a professional to cut your hair and do your taxes. A bad haircut will grow out in a few weeks, but bad copywriting can turn away potential customers for good. Do yourself a favor and hire a professional copywriter.