Answer: They’re both formatted for one column.
In his audio article, 6 Ways to Increase Conversions on your Web Pages, Nick Usborne, one of my favorite copywriter colleagues, talks about the multitude of testing he’s done on landing pages and column formatting. Long and short, the one-column format converts best every time.
This explains the stubborn effectiveness of everyone’s favorite (or not) online long-form sales letters. Garish? Sometimes. Too long? Perhaps. But they work, in part, because there are no other distractions for the reader. Even with all the insets, widgets and gadgets, each is firmly ensconced within the one column. Further, the one-column format lets readers know that there’s more to look for below the fold of the first screen. The convention of the letter-like, one-column design tells them so.
Like the traditional sales letter, the one-column landing page offers a step-by-step selling sequence for your reader. The headline moves the reader to the subhead, etc. Add columns filled with links, even something a simple as navigational links, and you’ve given the reader a reason to look and click away from your message.
Nick says, and I concur, one-column may be the best way to go. Test it yourself and see if it makes a difference.
About Audio Articles – Like ‘em or Not?
I found Nick’s article and several other audio articles at FreeIQ.com … Not sure that I like the audio-only format. Folks generally read much faster than they can listen. I would have liked some text and PPT or other slide-type visuals. I was a little frustrated having to just listen. I’d be interested in what Copyblogger readers think about the audio-only format. Convince me I need to add some of my own articles here … or not.
Maven’s Landing Page Makeover Clinics Update
I’m making progress! My Heifer International Gift Registry page is almost complete and I’m putting the finishing touches on how we’re going to make it all work. I’m hoping to have our first official landing page makeover candidate selected and critiqued by the end of June, if not before. More details to come soon.