The strength of a business’ online presence is often indicative of their ability to maintain established customer relationships, while also engaging new potential customers. Inbound marketers therefore must expend much of their time and effort implementing channels that drive traffic to their websites, relying on landing pages built to convert leads into paying customers.
Despite extensive research and a wealth of data supporting the importance of landing pages in the lead generation cycle, however, they remain a commonly underutilized device. Those companies that do take the time to create and maintain landing pages ultimately find success in increasing conversions.
Landing Page vs. Homepage: What’s the Difference?
Like the front page of a newspaper, a homepage is the main entry point of company’s website. On the homepage, a site visitor will typically find an introduction to a company’s brand, goals, and values. This page will usually contain links to a selection of content available on the website, such as company history, news and updates, description of services, and contact information.
Unlike the homepage, a landing page is a stand-alone web page designed with a specific, singular goal in mind: to initiate a relationship. Visitors are able to reach this web page through a variety of channels, whether it is a banner ad, social media post, or search engine listing. Distinct from a company’s general website, landing pages are built to receive only campaign traffic. By focusing solely on a single objective, marketers are better able to gather analytics and compile informative reports intended to track the success of a particular campaign.
The Purpose of Landing Pages
Though landing pages can serve a variety of purposes, they are generally divided into two broad categories: click-through landing pages and lead generation landing pages.
After clicking on an ad or search engine listing, visitors often find themselves on a company’s shopping cart or registration page lacking sufficient information to make an informed purchase decision among an overload of options and choices. Click-through landing pages combat this initial overload by warming up a visitor, better positioning them to make a purchasing decision. By providing detailed information about a product or service, a visitor will then be comfortable clicking through to another page, likely the shopping cart or registration page, thus increasing the chances of conversion.
The main purpose of a lead generation landing page is to capture a visitor’s personal contact data, such as their name and email address. This page will typically offer the visitor something in exchange for their contact data, for example a discount on a product or service or access to an upcoming webinar. This gesture demonstrates to visitors the value your company will offer in exchange for their personal information. By collecting this data, marketers are able to contact the visitor in the future with the goal of nurturing and converting them into a customer.
Landing Page Organization for Optimal Lead Generation
In order to keep visitors engaged and willing to share contact data on a landing page, proper organization and relevant content is essential. Keep in mind the objective of the landing page, and use only as much text necessary to convey the purpose of the page. Make sure your request, or call-to-action, is clear and to the point, asking the visitor only for contact information that is absolutely necessary. This ensures that the visitor does not feel wary of sharing too much personal information, and also limits the amount of time they must invest in filling out the form. Further, keep the page free of distractions and links back to the company’s main website.
Evaluating and Testing a Landing Page’s Efficiency
By creating separate, discreet landing pages for each campaign a company runs, marketers have in place multiple avenues from which to attract new potential customers.
By nature, landing pages are designed in a way that allow for strong analytics, reporting, and testing. This provides inbound marketers insight into the success of an advertising campaign in directing traffic to a landing page, as well as the effectiveness of the landing page itself. There exists a variety of software and online tools that allow marketers to track a lead from the initial contact with an ad, all the way through their interaction and submission of information on a landing page. The analytics offered by this software allow users to examine the efficiency of all elements of a campaign, including the content, design, and calls-to-action of a landing page, identifying areas for improvement. This valuable insight enables marketers to fine-tune their approach, allowing for more successful future campaigns.
When implemented properly, landing pages have the distinct ability to transform an online campaign. A company intent on generating leads and increasing conversions should incorporate this useful tool as a way to build their customer database and ultimately grow profit.