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Creating A Better Landing Page

Apr 19, 2017
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If you are new to the blogging gig, you might not have heard the term, Landing Page. You don’t have to know what something is to have used it. My guess is that at some point in your website browsing you have encountered an offer which caused you to subscribe to an email list. You connected with a blogger and wanted to hear more from them, so you clicked on the special offer and ended up on a special sign up page. That was an encounter with a Landing Page, and the author’s goal was accomplished when you input your email. The goal of this post is to give you some things to consider when creating a better landing page for your blog.

Ryan explained, “The goal of a landing page is to get your visitor to fill out a form where they share some of their information in exchange for some of your awesome content.” Landing pages have a place on any blog as a way to share content or special documents. They also are an information collection system that never turns off for you. Landing pages can be a great thing, but just like any aspect of your blog, they can work against you if not created well. Creating a better landing page begins with the content. You want your offer to be a solid one. This is followed by your landing page layout presenting your offer. The details of a Landing Page is the third aspect to focus on. These areas of focus will help you take your landing page from annoying to attractive and hopefully will help you increase your conversion rate.

Content

When it comes to best practices of landing pages, HubSpot has some really great information. Their training begins with the point that a great landing page begins with a “clear, concise action.” Going back to the goal of a landing page, you want to collect your reader’s information.

Your Landing Page gives your reader a gift of some sort. In exchange, you will collect valuable information on your unknown reader. In the Hubspot sales process, this converts a visitor into a lead. If you aren’t selling a product Landing Pages can still be valuable. You can use this to help your readers sign up for an email list allowing you to send your blog content straight to their inbox. It can also be a place to give something free to them.

Best practices for how to obtain the content will have direct actions to take, clear instructions, and a great explanation of what the transaction includes. Allowing your reader to easily obtain your offer isn’t enough. Your freebie must be excellent.

Your content will be most attractive to your readers when it surrounds the subject of your blog. If you blog about gardening your offer might be a chart of the best months to plant your garden. It could also be a something more in-depth like a free ebook “50 Tips To A Fail Proof Garden”. Another offer might be a link to a webinar or subscriber only video link where you show what your garden looks like, how you plot out the area and how you transfer a plant from pots to the ground.

Each of these offers will be attractive to a gardener, but the labor and possibly costs involved on your side are much different. Since each offer varies in the depth of content offered so will the information you collect. The bigger the offer, the more details you can ask about your reader.

You might be wondering which offer is the best for you to create. If you are having a hard time deciding, you will be happy to hear that the answer is you don’t have to choose. Having multiple Landing Pages allows you to better personalize the buyer’s journey. Whether your ultimate goal is to sell a product or simply to make a more personal connection with your reader, the journey is the same.

Read more about the importance of great content here: Stop Posting Crappy Content: The Art of Creating Content With Purpose.

Layout

You want your Landing Page to be as clean as possible.  HubSpot suggests keeping all, or as much wording as possible, above the fold line. Helping your reader see all the information without having to scroll is a key part of having a great layout. A fold line will vary depending on what platform your reader is viewing the page on, so don’t stress too much about it.

Another key aspect of your Landing Page layout is the placement of the information form. You want to make sure the information you are collecting is easy to fill out.

I love this article offering several examples of Landing Pages. As you will see, there is a significant amount of variety in the pages Hubspot has compiled. The length varies. The amount of content varies as well. You might consider modeling your own Landing Page after the one your eye is drawn most to. The great thing here is that you can go super simple, or add some details - either is fine.

When it comes to a formula, it’s important to remember to make sure your Landing Page has direct actions to take, clear instructions, and a great explanation of what the transaction includes. Those key informational pieces could be the difference between leaving your reader confused and frustrated versus them signing up for more of your content.

Details

In the end, the details are what separate the good Landing Pages from the bad ones. Remove all navigation tools from your Landing Page. This will help it to stand out as well as give it a cleaner look. You will also want to remove other links which might allow your reader to navigate away from the Landing Page.

Make sure you don’t have any misspelled words or inaccurate information. You also want to spend some time making sure you have a user-friendly form to fill out. Ryan has already outlined the key points in creating a great form:

When creating a form, it's important that we use best practices to improve our conversion rate.

A few tips when creating forms

  1. Make sure your ask matches your offer. Don't ask for too much information from your visitor.
  2. Keep it clear. Don't make them work harder than needed.
  3. Redirect them to the offer page. In-line thank you's are less personal and less effective.  

So now you are ready to create your first Landing Page. As you might have gathered this begins with a content offer of some sort. That might be a simple sign up for an email letting your reader know you have posted a new blog post. It doesn’t have to be complicated. If you are feeling overwhelmed with the idea of creating a Landing Page, don’t stress. Great resources are at your fingertips. Check out this video where HubSpot’s free version is explained. It might be the springboard you need to get your first Landing Page launched.

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Beth Walker

By Beth Walker

Beth Walker is a Content Strategist who is passionate about storytelling. She leads our In-House writing team and works closely with clients and Inbound Strategists to ensure all the content SMA creates meets SEO best practices and tells each client's unique story.

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