A great landing page is a core feature of a fully-featured search campaign. If you are driving traffic to your website, it’s important to create a comprehensive landing page to help strategically sculpt the search engine and user experience.
At the same time, you need to stay true to your branding and core messaging in order to ensure continuity.
Often mentioned in the context of PPC and email, a landing page is an easy way to bring all the different elements of your brand together, but what actually goes into a good one? Should you mention pricing? What about social proof?
Here are seven key features of a great SEO landing page that should help you capitalise on high-quality search traffic.
Well-written web copy
In order to entice users to your page, you need to invest in some high-quality web copywriting. In fact, web copy needs to be central to any company search strategy.
In days gone by, SEO copywriting was little more than keyword stuffing — now it’s all about how copy ties into the site’s UX (user experience) and your brand’s content strategy.
Your landing page should be highly persuasive: make sure the language you use is clear, emotive, and direct.
- Users won’t want to be confronted by walls of text, so segment information and balance words with whitespace. Chunk copy so that the user can process crucial information as quickly as possible. Trello cards are a great way to manage the copy workflow as well as a number of other software tools.
- Opt for using keywords and motivators strategically, rather than resorting to inordinate stuffing or ‘sprinkling’. Make sure that optimisation doesn’t interfere with the narrative
- Spell out any benefits and value propositions. You’ve literally got seconds to entice a busy person who has landed on your page. Don’t waste this precious opportunity
- Awesome headlines and headers are worth spending a lot of time on. Split-testing your headlines is a great way to find out what your audience care about.
Clear strategic actions
You want people to actually take action on your web page, so be clear about what you want people to do, and why. Many websites fail from a lead generation perspective simply because they lack clarity and purpose. It’s important that any landing page decisions are made in function of sales/business development outcomes.
During the planning stage, make sure that you clearly map out a user funnel that matches up with your internal team. If you want a landing page to work for your business, everyone needs to know exactly what to do when a web enquiry comes in. Don’t waste precious search leads due to lack of organisation, and hook your website up with powerful analytics software like Chartio.io to drive conversions.
Be strategic with how you ask users to do things on your page — mix things up, and avoid anything too cliche or clickbait.
Visual design strategy
A balanced visual environment is key for driving conversions: you need to be deliberate about making your landing page appealing. From your CTA (call to action) buttons and webforms, to videos and hero images — make sure that all the visual elements are optimised from a usability perspective. Try out these four visual design trends for size — there is nothing wrong with a bit of design experimentation, as long as you can follow it up with analytics.
Think about where people have just come from: Instagram, Facebook, Google etc — you need a design strategy that upholds consistency. Your landing pages needs to work in the wider context of the web.
Not gifted at design yourself? Using an easy landing page builder like Instapage can help simplify your design decisions, or if you’re focusing on driving ecommerce sales, you can quite easily set up landing page templates when using WooCommerce or Shopify. It’s always a good idea to speak to a design agency when you’re looking for something bespoke, as they can actually strategically modify user behaviour through design.
Social proof and validation
People always want to hear from others like them, so make sure that your landing page strategy includes social proof. A real standout quotation or testimonial can help convince browsers that your page is worth sticking around for, so work hard at customer satisfaction.
Social media recommendations and third-party reviews are even more trustworthy, so consider integrating some into your landing page. There is nothing like hearing it ‘straight from the horse’s mouth’, so don’t be tempted to make these sound or look too polished. The whole point of real social proof is that it mimics word of mouth recommendations and is ‘raw’ and idiosyncratic.
Links to your landing page will help increase its authority, so conduct some concurrent link building campaigns. You can try to get it included in relevant resource roundups, or build editorial links back to it (if the content warrants it, of course). Be conscious of landing page/content relevance, and don’t undo all your hard work by resorting to spammy link building.
Make sure your landing page is part of your site structure to boost its authority and relevance, and sign post users off to other internal pages if necessary. Remember to keep outbound links on your landing page to a minimum so as not to distract the user.
Pricing & comparison charts
A lot of potential customers (especially in the B2B space) already have some idea of what they’re looking for when they come to you. They’ve usually got a budget in mind, and they’re probably sizing you up against the other competition. Build trust by having a transparent landing page.
In order to capture longtail search traffic (people searching for your products and services comparatively), why not include a detailed comparison chart that sizes you up against the competition? Charts and data will help convince users and shoppers that you’re legitimate, especially if you’re new to the space.
Pricing is another feature that people are likely to search for. You might not want a full-on pricing structure on your landing page, but ensure that pricing information is readily available. Price is a big part of the customer decision-making process, so make sure you display your pricing in the best possible way (hint: people can be hard to please.).
If you want to capture local search traffic, you need to create local landing pages that justify their existence on the web. Only changing the name of the city or the town in the page title isn’t the same as creating unique pages, and may harm your website reputation. To make the most of localised search traffic, invest in quality landing pages that truly capture the area’s character. Really delve into the area’s vocabulary and create a local resource that’s going to convert customers; this is a great way to make the most of local and mobile SEO.
The most important measure of your landing page is your audience’s reaction to it. Whatever they think and feel about it, goes. Don’t trust internal critics and naysayers, and resort to data to back up your hypotheses. Always keep an open mind when it comes to optimising your landing page, and make sure that it reflects current market trends.