How to create a landing page that works

Landing pages should be part of every advertiser’s performance marketing strategy. Knowing how to create a landing page that works will automatically result in higher ROI and better visibility. No matter how cool your ads are or how well you’ve optimized them, you won’t succeed without a great landing page.

So – what’s a landing page? To keep it really simple, it’s a dedicated web page that usually has a single focus and is mostly used for lead generation. It’s the first thing potential customers see and can be the launch pad of a successful advertising campaign, or a brick wall that stops them going any further.

When your campaigns get visitors to your landing page, you have a matter of seconds to convince them to stay on your site. You must give them strong and compelling reasons to linger and explore further.

If that doesn’t happen, you can have impressive figures for your website traffic but poor lead conversions. Having lots of website visitors who don’t go on to buy, book, enquire or register represents a colossal amount of wasted opportunities – and wasted money!

How can you boost your ad performance with a great landing page?

Who are you talking to?

As an advertiser or affiliate marketeer, having drilled down insights in to your target market is always step one. It’s always good when your page views are high but when you’re interested in conversions that’ll eventually bring in money then you also need to know how to design a site that appeals to your target audience.

A landing page will grab the attention of visitors if it answers the most basic of all customer questions: “What’s in it for me?” To sell the benefits of your product and service well enough, you need to know who they are and what they’re looking for.

Segmenting your audience – and working up a typical customer profile – is vital when planning and scheduling performance marketing campaigns. Your ad spend will be better focused, driving genuine leads to the landing page.

Pick the best platform and tools

The actual creation of a landing page is much easier than you think if you’re using the right tools. A lot depends on how much of the design, build and update work you’re outsourcing, and how much you’re doing in-house. Also, which platform your website uses eg. WordPress, Squarespace, Weebly, Shopify, Drupal etc.

With most platforms, you can create “drag and drop” pages but some landing page creators will make your life even easier (if your HTML and CSS skills are limited).

Research all the options – such as Unbounce, Clickfunnels, Landigi, Thrive (great for WordPress users) and Instapage – to find the one that best suits your business goals. Maybe you already have a landing page included in your box of marketing tools? Some marketing automation solutions and CRMs have landing page builders included in their packages such as Hubspot, Act-On, Zoho, Salesforce and many others. So, you don’t have to waste your budget on extra tools.

The platform and tools you opt for will offer a series of plugins. These are extra functions to help you interact with landing page visitors. Don’t use too many, as that can slow your site down too much.

Mobile First

A few years ago mobile traffic took the lead ahead of desktop for the first time. Making it necessary for marketers and advertisers to adopt Google’s “mobile first” strategy. Make sure your website is mobile-friendly! Because Google is penalizing sites that are not mobile-optimized and your site won’t be ranking as high as it could in SERP (search engine results pages).

What’s more, if you’re buying a lot of mobile traffic then it’s absolutely crucial that your landing page is fully mobile optimized. That way it offers a great user experience that will lead to a sign up or registration. Therefore, it is a must to invest some time in mobile landing page optimization!

mobile first landing pages

Landing page layout

Whether you’re building a new page or improving an existing one, content and design are going to be the key! This includes creating a landing page that grabs and holds visitors’ attention.

Make sure your page design is clean – avoiding overpacked or “fussy” content. Choose a few hard-hitting images, rather than lots of complex slideshows.

Research has shown that users are more inclined to read content that is combined with bold attention-crabbing imagery.

Consider content placement on your landing page too, such as menu bars and quick links. The more distraction there is, the less likely the user will finish the desired action.

This is all to make sure that your website landing page is quick to load, and easy to navigate. Your ultimate aim is to improve user experience (UX). Site visitors will find what they’re looking for, without working too hard!

This is mainly supported by lead capture forms. These forms generate leads, as you ask people to fill the form out with their contact information and offer them a deal, ebook, or something similar in return. It’s important to carefully think through the form’s design. It should be easily findable, including only essential questions and not too lengthy. Lead capture forms can be often combined with calls to action (CTA). For example, if your visitors like what they see, how can they buy, register or enquire? A well placed “button” can promote your call to action and capture initial interest. It’s smart to place it above the fold or top of the page.

It’s essential to create ad creatives that match your landing page, to make the transition seamless when users click through to the website from the ads.

Landing page SEO techniques

In order to succeed in online marketing your content must be visible. So, the aim is to get your website as high as possible in the search engine results.

Make sure that your landing page contains keywords – both long and short phrases that customers use when searching for a relevant product, service or location.

Whether you’re confident with SEO techniques or not, it’s important to at least access some of the basic tools to boost your page ranking. Look at these ones – such Yoast SEO (great plugin for WordPress sites), SEMrush, Google Search Console, Google Keyword Planner, Moz and Screamingfrog – to get SEO insights. Check our ultimate SEO guide to find out more.

Testing, testing – measurement matters

Even if you do all of the above, there’s no time to rest on your laurels. The internet is a complex and ever-changing entity. If you don’t create a fresh and dynamic landing page, it will be outdated from day one!

Testing and CRO (conversion rate optimization) are the most important elements of a great landing page! It’s vital to test your content for understanding what on your site is working and what’s not. Keep checking call to action buttons and links are working. Don’t forget to test out different offers, colors, images, copy and call to actions to see what works best for your audience.

Having your targeting and testing on point can increase conversion rates by up to 300%.

A/B testing your landing pages is the easiest way to see which one is the most effective. For that, create two different landing pages and use them simultaneously. Analyze the results afterwards and look into details to discover which one of the pages works better and what you should change to further improve the performance.

There are some fantastic tools out there that help you to understand even further how your site visitors are interacting with your landing page. For example, with Hotjar and CrazyEgg you can see the heatmaps, site recordings and analyze users’ behaviour and see where they click and scroll. This helps you to test and optimize accordingly.

Also, keep on tracking your results and checking your page analytics regularly, for visitor numbers and the length of time they are staying. The best tool to use for that is Google Analytics, it provides you with all the necessary data. From these insights, you can make changes that continue to make your landing page effective and productive. Many of our affiliates are using powerful trackers, such as Voluum, PeerClick, RedTrack, Appsflyer and many others that give them full visibility of their ads’ performance.

We hope that you found this article useful and will start editing your landing pages to get even better results with them! Remember, your ads are only as good as your landing page!

Join the conversation


Profile picture of Geoff Kukard

Geoff Kukard on Jul 27, 2020 at 9:59 am

Hi Royan, Thanks for your question. I would say yes. You can most definitely make sales straight off the bat if your landing page is engaging, eye-catching, dynamic and leads clients through the sales funnel with the right CTA's. Landing pages are usually the first point of entry and the bridge between the user and the performance. If you need any additional support in this, please reach out to us at [email protected] and a member of our team would be happy to provide a consultation.

Profile picture of Geoff Kukard

Geoff Kukard on Jul 27, 2020 at 9:55 am

Hi Michael, Thank you for your comment and for adding some solid advice to the conversation. Completely agreed. A quality landing page is a front line in an effective campaign. When executed properly, the sky's the limit!!

Profile picture of Michael Wood

Michael Wood on Aug 28, 2019 at 6:32 am

Most of the time, visitors get their first impression about a website, products/services from the landing page. It affects their buying decision and so you need to persuade them and make more sales. Hence, it's important to create a great landing page, one that really works. This can make a lot of difference to an online business. Yes, it will result to higher ROI and visibility. Thank you for your tips.

Profile picture of Royan

Royan on Aug 13, 2019 at 7:48 am

Can you make sales with a so-called landing or leadpage right off the bat? Is a landing page designed for the purpose of starting a conversation with the prospect or is it to pitch a sale before lunch?

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