It doesn’t matter whether a company was founded 2 or 10 years ago, as long as the landing page was done right. I’ll use several landing pages as examples: Unbounce, AppDesignVault and Hotjar beta landing pages.
Here’s the basic recipe for a successful landing page:
Step 1: Attract Attention
The first message that you send through your landing page and the first impression about your product, company and service are formed in the first 8-10 seconds. And the first impression should be that your landing page is something that can help your potential customers.
That’s what will make them pay attention.
It’s the job of your headline, sub-headline and hero image to grab the visitor’s attention in the first few seconds of visiting your landing page.
For example, Unbounce’s landing page manages to give you quite a lot of information and benefits of using their app in as much as 10 seconds. But getting attention is the easy-peasy part.
Step 2: Spike Interest
After you’ve got their attention, you want to spike interest.
The problem is that people don’t read on the internet; they scan. So, they won’t start reading your copy word for word even if you managed to get their attention.
To get a better overview, your website visitors will likely scroll and scan the page.
To spike their interest and make them read your offer fully, you have to make your landing page scan-friendly.
Here’s what people notice while scanning:
- Bolded or Italicized Text
- Bullet Points
- The Bottom Line (Last Sentence, P.S., Last Call-To-Action)
Put your main benefits in these positions.
Step 3: Pique Desire
If you manage to get people’s interest while they are merely glimpsing at your landing page, the next thing you want to do is to make them want to get your product. You have to explain exactly how you could help them.
That’s the job of your product’s benefits and features section. They form the meat of your landing page.
Here are a few rules of thumb for presenting the benefits and features to help you do a brilliant job like Unbounce:
- Use benefits as headings, this way, people are more likely to read the paragraph below.
- Mention the feature that provides the benefit in the paragraph.
- If there is a picture that illustrates the desired result (benefit), include it.
Step 4: Inspire Trust
Most people are wary of even giving their email on an unknown website, not to mention their credit card details.
To convert your website visitor, you have to give that person a reason to trust you.
Trust indicators are social proof (comments, testimonials), previous experience, mentions by influencers and so on. It’s anything that qualifies you or your product as fit to solve the problem the potential customer is having.
The more proof you have of the authenticity of your testimonials, the better.
I’m going to bring another piece of Unbounce’s landing page to your attention. Note how they included a picture of the person who gave them the testimonial. Yes, it could be staged, but, at least, you’re certain that a living and breathing person said these things.
Note: If I were you, I’d avoid adding that strip of logos of big brands on my landing page, unless I have actual proof that I worked with these brands. If I’ve worked with them, I would ask them for a testimonial and publish that.
Step 5: The Call-To-Action
You can read about naming your call-to-action in detail here. In summary:
- Your landing page should have one and only one goal.
- After you’ve grabbed attention, spiked interest, piqued desire and presented trust indicators, you can ask people to take action.
- The name of your call-to-action is very important. A lot of people will back off at the last minute if the call-to-action text suggests that they have to put in a lot of effort (e.g. “Register now” suggests that you have to fill out a long boring form. Not sexy.), or to give up something, etc. The name of the call-to-action has to be benefit-oriented. It has to emphasize what people will get or what they can do after they click on that button.
Step 6: Tackle Objections
A lot of the people who visit your landing page will be skeptical, especially when you’re selling something.
If you were a salesperson doing this live, it would be easier for you. Some people would state their worries and objections, or at least make a face. But since you’re building a landing page, your potential customers are behind screens. You have to guess what their concerns might be.
By tackling objections, I simply mean that you should make a list of FAQs and publish it at the end of the landing page, right before your last call to action.
At first, you’ll have to guess what the FAQs are. With time, when people start contacting you and asking real questions, you will be able to refine this list of questions.
Step 7: Spice It Up
Now that you’ve prepared a nice, tasty landing page, you can afford to spice it up a bit to increase your conversion rate.
Use these “spices” with caution, though. If your goal is only to trick people into giving up their email so that you can spam them, you will get zero sales. If your goal is to sell a crappy product, you will get requests for refunds and rants all over social media.
So, please use these responsibly:
Everyone loves being different and special in some way. We seek ways to feel more successful, more skilled, more experienced in comparison to other people. On a deep level, this is our need for self-actualization.
Now, in terms of sales and marketing, this means that, generally, people like it when they have exclusive access to some content or app.
Startup beta landing pages rely heavily on exclusivity to make more people sign up.
But exclusivity is not just about saying, “Hey, get exclusive access to Some Unknown SaaS.” Nobody actually wants that.
To employ exclusivity, work on your offer first. When your potential users actually want the product, saying that you’re giving exclusive access to a select few will, in fact, boost your conversions.
Another trick you can use to make people act right away is urgency.
Urgency is usually about time limits. For example: This offer is valid in the next 3 hours.
Urgency takes advantage of FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out). If you don’t act right away, you’ll miss the deal. It’s over.
That’s why a lot of Groupon offers are time limited.
Mix these 7 steps together, and you’ll have a landing page customers can’t resist.