A landing page is a place you send traffic when you really want some action. And no, this has nothing to do with Craig’s List personals.
It can be a sales page, an email opt-in page, a video landing page, or even a content landing page designed to rank well in search engines. As you might have guessed, there are a lot of ways to screw these up.
Here are five of the most common mistakes people make with their landing pages. More importantly, I’ll tell you how to avoid making them yourself.
1. Blowing the headline
Landing pages live or die by the quality of the headline. It’s your two-second chance to overcome the swift and brutal attention filters we’ve developed due to information overload and poorly-matched promises.
Often, a better headline alone will boost the effectiveness of your landing page, and even overcome some of the other mistakes below. Split-testing different headlines is relatively painless, and can bring you much higher conversions compared with multiple other tweaks.
2. Using your regular site design
While your typical sidebar and header approach to a blog post is fine, when it comes down to traffic hitting a landing page with a singular focus on specific action, all of that extraneous stuff causes confusion, distraction, and reduced conversions. Lose the clutter and create the cleanest page possible when you want some action.
3. Asking for more than one thing
The idea that more choices make people happier has been proven to be a psychological fallacy time and again. This “paradox of choice” reveals that when given multiple options, the decision ends up being not to choose at all.
An effective landing page asks for one specific action, and that’s it. And don’t forget to actually clearly ask for that one specific thing, which is an even bigger conversion killer if you don’t.
4. Ignoring basic aesthetics
Why is it when some people decide to ask for some action, they lose their minds on the appearance of the page? Bad fonts, garish colors, cheap highlighting, and silly clip art do not make for better conversions in most cases. What they do is crush your credibility.
While using your standard blog theme is distracting and confusing in the landing page context, there’s no need to become the typographical equivalent of a carnival barker, either. Great landing pages use fonts, colors, and visuals that are tailored specifically to the audience and action you desire, thereby enhancing the experience and boosting conversions.
5. Being lazy
Did you know that web users spend 80% of their time above the fold? Does that mean people won’t scroll down the page? No, it just means you can’t take it for granted that they will (instead of leaving).
Don’t be lazy about grabbing and holding attention. Don’t assume everyone instantly “gets” the benefit of your offer the way you do. Don’t overestimate your credibility. In short, don’t drink your own Kool-Aid. Think about it from their perspective, and you’ll realize you might not be all that (until you unequivocally prove you are with compelling copy).
Now, how do you avoid making these mistakes? With Premise.
Landing Page Software for WordPress:
Premise is a bundle of software and education that lets you quickly and effectively create landing pages with WordPress. The total product breaks down into the three vital aspects of landing pages that work:
First of all, you’ve got to be able to create the important landing page types outside of your normal WordPress theme. You don’t want your typical header and sidebars in the mix, and you need to be able to controls styles, colors, fonts, and graphics specifically to those landing pages.Premise allows you to easily create 6 critical landing page styles in WordPress, add visual flair with included custom graphics, and control fonts, colors, and styles without code. And it works with any WordPress theme you’d like to use it with.
Building pages alone won’t get you the action and conversion rate you’re looking for. It’s the copy that makes people do what you want, and this is the element missing from any website or page-building software. But we’re uniquely qualified to make up for that. Premise makes your words work with copywriting advice delivered directly from your WordPress interface for each type of landing page. Plus you get the Premise Guide to Effective Copy and high-quality copywriting seminars as part of the deal.
No matter how great your copywriting skills, there’s always room for improvement in your conversion rate and search rankings. You just need the proper tools and the right guidance. Premise provides detailed conversion optimization seminars, split-testing directly from inside WordPress, and SEO tools that ensure you’re getting the absolute most out of your landing pages.
About the Author: Brian Clark is founder of Copyblogger and CEO of Copyblogger Media. Get more from Brian on Twitter.