The case for a landing page is a strong one. The main (and arguably most important) difference between your existing web pages and a dedicated landing page is that a true landing page is engineered to do one thing and one thing only: convert. Whether that's converting a "window shopper" into a customer, a casual reader into a newsletter sign-up, or maybe you want people to pre-order your latest release, a landing page is the tried and true way to achieve higher conversion rates and convert those potential customers into actual customers!

A landing page is optimized to convert by having a number of significant differences that set it apart from your average webpage. A landing page will typically have no top or bottom navigation and one prominent call to action that allows a visitor to take only the action you want them to take. As an example, the homepage of your website will have a lot to look at and will most likely have many options a visitor can choose from, different links to click, and multiple decisions to make. It generally serves an exploratory function. Your homepage is a great place to give your visitors options, however when it is time to close the deal a landing page is your best friend.

Lots of links to click and options to choose from on a typical homepage.

A good landing page, on the other hand, will have a clean, concise appearance, get straight to the point, and have a clear and obvious call-to-action (CTA).

Landing pages get their name because they are the landing place for traffic sent from other sources such as social media, ad campaigns, etc.

“Your landing page should really just focus on one offer. All the elements on that landing page should speak to the offer and you want to remove the distractions and keep your visitor focused on the intent of the page,” says Sr. Marketing Manager of ActiveCampaign, Justine BaMung.

Pared down and straight to the point with an obvious CTA.

Make Headlines

Your headline is super important. Too boring and your visitors could lose interest. On the other hand, if it is captivating and engaging they will be pulled in and will want to read more. So what to write? Two words: Short & Punchy! Make it short, sweet, and to the point with an interesting "draw" to compel them to want to find out more.

Here are a few headline examples to really drill the concept home:

  • Worried you'll never have [desired outcome]?
  • How to turn [problem] into [desired outcome].
  • Feeling [pain point 1] or [pain point 2]?
  • With [offer] you'll never have to worry about [pain point] again!

Show Off The Goods

Okay, so we know the whole point of a landing page is to get visitors to convert, right? Then we had better let them know what they are getting in return! Be sure to show off your product or offer with high-quality images or graphics that make it clear what's being offered. If you have a SaaS product your free trial will show them the nuts and bolts but you'll still want to show screenshots of the app or some graphical representation of your product so it is clear what you're offering. (See some amazing examples below).

Prove Your Point

Social proof is a great way to show prospective customers or clients that you have a proven track record of achieving great results. Take the time to curate testimonials from past clients and customers and showcase them in a fun and relatable way. People love to see how your business has helped someone else. A review from a real person is relatable and helps to raise confidence in the product or service you're offering. It allows them to believe that the same results are possible for them too!

In addition to social proof, data and statistics can also be a compelling motivator. Showing people the hard numbers works well if it fits your offering.

Call To Action

Your call to action should be bold, obvious, and compel your visitors to take action. Whether you are selling a product and want your visitors to click the "Buy Now" button or you are signing folks up for your next webinar and need them to type in some info, the steps they need to take to complete the process, shouldn't be confusing or obscure. Remember earlier when we mentioned the difference between a homepage and a landing page? The whole point is to remove all distractions and drastically reduce the friction by eliminating all options that lead away from the desired action. Think; Simplicity.

Here are a few brilliant landing page examples from our friends over at HubSpot:

1. Evernote

CTA: Sign Up

"Remember Everything." Visitors can immediately understand that message the moment they land on this page. The design on Evernote's website makes it super simple for users to see quick benefits of using the app and how to actually sign up to use it. Plus, the green color of the main and secondary CTA buttons is the same green as the headline and the Evernote logo, all of which jump off the page.

Example call to <span class='ent _action'>action</span> <span class='ent _button'>button</span> by Evernote

2. Netflix

CTA: Join Free for a Month

One big fear users have before committing to sign up for something? That it'll be a pain to cancel their subscription if they end up not liking it. Netflix nips that fear in the bud with the "Cancel anytime" copy right above the "Join Free for a Month" CTA. I'd venture a guess that reassurance alone has boosted signups. Also, you'll notice again that the red color of the primary and secondary CTAs here match Netflix's logo color.

Example call to <span class='ent _action'>action</span> <span class='ent _button'>button</span> by Netflix

3. Square

CTA: Get Started

To achieve effective CTA design, you need to consider more than just the button itself. It's also super important to consider elements like background color, surrounding images, and surrounding text.

Mindful of these additional design components, the folks at Square used a single image to showcase the simplicity of using their product, where the hovering "Get Started" CTA awaits your click. If you look closely, the color of the credit card in the image and the color of the CTA button match, which helps the viewer connect the dots of what to expect if/when they click.

Example call to <span class='ent _action'>action</span> <span class='ent _button'>button</span> by Square

4. Treehouse

CTA: Claim Your Free Trial

A lot of company websites out there offer users the opportunity to start a free trial. But the CTA on Treehouse's website doesn't just say "Start a Free Trial"; it says "Claim Your Free Trial."

The difference in wording may seem subtle, but think about how much more personal "Claim Your Free Trial" is. Plus, the word "claim" suggests it may not be available for long, giving users a sense of urgency to get that free trial while they can.

Example call to <span class='ent _action'>action</span> <span class='ent _button'>button</span> by Treehouse

5. OKCupid

CTA: Continue

OKCupid's CTA doesn't seem that impressive at first glance, but its brilliance is in the small details.

The call-to-action button, which is bright green and stands out well on a dark blue background, says, "Continue." The simplicity of this term gives hope that the signup process is short and casual. To me, this CTA feels more like I'm playing a fun game than filling out a boring form or committing to something that might make me nervous. And it's all due to the copy.

Example call to <span class='ent _action'>action</span> <span class='ent _button'>button</span> by OKCupid

Hopefully, this list has given you some inspiration and you're ready to launch some experiments and see which landing pages convert best! And as always, we are here to help, whether you need a landing page built from scratch or if you just have a question about the next step you should take, contact us and let's build the future together!