18 Strategies for Creating a High-Converting Landing Page

Cygnis Media Editor
18 Strategies for Creating a High-Converting Landing Page

A landing page is the entry point for a website or web application. It can also be a single web page that appears when people click on an online ad or search result.

And it has a single purpose; to convert visitors into customers with prominent call to actions.

Conversions can be various activities such as signing up for a newsletter, free trial of a web product, or filling out a contact form, just to name a few examples.

How important are landing pages for conversions? To illustrate, consider these stats:

  • 48% of marketers create a new landing page for each campaign – Hubspot
  • The keyword ‘Conversion rate optimization’ is more popular than ever before – Google
  • Around 57% of B2B marketers say that landing page performance is measured based on conversion rate – Ascend2

Here are 18 strategies that can help your landing page generate more conversions:

1. Keep your text simple

The best conversion copy is one that is easy to read, helps people understand your message and makes them feel at ease.

For a landing page copy that converts:

  • Keep the tone conversational: Write copy that looks like it’s speaking to a ten year old. This isn’t to say that your audience is stupid, it’s just that the attention span of the average online reader is pretty limited. Consider the copy on Spendee’s landing page. Anyone who has financial troubles will be wondering where their money goes, and the copy on this page addresses this in a conversational tone.
  • Use a simple structure: Shorter and simpler words (friendly, scalable, secure) communicate benefits faster than complex phrases (Paradigm shifting, Revolutionary)
2. Write a compelling headline

The headline is among the most important elements of your landing page.

It is the first thing which catches a user’s attention and if well written, it makes your visitors stay. Write a bad one, and your visitors are most likely to exit.

So, how can you write a headline that makes a great first impression?

  • Make it concrete: When writing the headline of your landing page, make sure the copy is clear and does not leave any ambiguity. It should connect with visitors as soon as they land on the page.
  • Make it specific: A visitor could reach your landing page through an ad campaign. And for that, your ad’s copy would have played its role in getting a click through.

    But imagine if your ad copy and headline are two opposites. For example, your ad copy talks about a free demo, while your landing page doesn’t show it upfront, what impression does that leave? A confused visitor who thinks that the page is not what he or she came for.

    Don’t forget that people skim through the page and titles are more prominent than the body. Thus, your headline needs to be related and on point.

  • Make it promising: Is there a pain which you can eliminate? Or, can you promise a result to visitors? Address it clearly. Empathize with your users and show them the value of what you are offering.

The key here is to talk about what your visitors would be interested in, not about what you have developed. Emphasize on how your offer affects them, and make a great first impression for your users to stay.

3. Structure your content to show value upfront

A headline with a solution tells people they are in the right place. Your copy tells them why converting is in their best interest. It should therefore have benefits. And a good way to make your landing page convert well is to make them skimmable.

A lot of this has to do with how people generally read online – they don’t read in the perfect sense of the word. Their eyes only scan. Stopping on bits of vital information. Moving on if there isn’t any.

Long story short, you only have a few seconds to get their attention.

A good way to do that is to structure your text, not in visually intimidating paragraphs (that they might not read through anyway) but in a form that is easy for them to absorb like bullet points. Here is why:

  • White spaces in between each bullet keeps the text readable
  • Bulleted sentences are easy to process for online audiences

Consider this landing page by UXPin. The bulleted points clearly communicate how beneficial the platform’s prototyping tools would be for product designers.

4. Show what other people say about you

What do you do when someone raves about a product? You buy it, or at least think of doing so; a fact that some online marketers are all too aware of and often use to their advantage with testimonials.

Landing pages with reviews from previous customers are more believable than a sales pitch. They also influence conversions. According to stats, 92% of consumers read online reviews and 40% of them form an opinion after reading one or three.

Recommendations or “social proof”, a term coined by Dr. Robert Cialdini in his book “Influence: the Psychology of Persuasion,” makes new prospects feel at ease about purchase decisions after they see that others are customers too.

To illustrate how this strategy might increase landing page conversions, consider this example from Nestpick.

The website helps customers relocate and find a place to live before they reach their locations. The testimonial section has images of their customers while the copy addresses concerns and doubts potential customers may have about using such a service.

5. Clear and Prominent calls-to-action

The design of your landing page is important in setting a clear path to your CTA.

But focusing on the design of your CTA can have the same benefits. Here is a start:

  • Use positive determiners: In copywriting, using positive determiners like “you” (words that express belonging or possession) in the copy makes readers feel as if you are addressing them directly. Depending on the purpose, words like you and other positive determiners (yours, his, her, my, his, our) in a CTA button presents the action from the point of view of the user, which can prompt them to click.

    To illustrate, consider this landing page from an Instapage case study. The landing page copy addresses visitors as “you” but uses “my” in the CTA button as a gentle nudge towards conversion.

  • Use colors that are consistent with your design: If your logo was blue as is the design on the rest of your landing page, which color should your CTA button be to get clicks? Dropbox uses the same color as their logo to make their buttons stand out.
6. Limit choices

The Paradox of Choice dictates that people are unable to make decisions when asked to choose from too many options.

It is why we take so long in selecting a brand of detergent from the grocery store when have so many other brands to choose from.

So if more choices mean less conversions, for say a certain brand of detergent, why should your landing page have a lot options?

To make decisions easier for your visitors, limit the choices on your landing page to those that:

  • Have desirable outcomes
  • Don’t confuse visitors and make them navigate away from your page

Squarespace’s landing page is a good example of this. It has a minimalistic design and only two CTA buttons, both of which lead visitors to the same page.

7. Consider the platform

A high converting landing page makes the conversion process easy. If visitors like what they see, they must be able to use it effortlessly, no matter what platform they use.

Consider Facebook and Twitter’s signup pages. As a new user, you can easily enter your login information single handedly on your smartphone.

To make the conversion process as easy as possible, optimize your landing page for multiple platforms. For example, consider Wrike’s web application that has a beautifully designed landing page optimized for mobile use.

8. Consider Placement of your CTA buttons

It might be tempting to scatter CTA buttons across your landing page with the assumption that visitors might decide to click as they scroll. But the decision may come back to haunt you because:

  • It makes you seem desperate
  • It makes visitors think you only want to make a buck

More buttons do not necessarily mean more conversions. If you want visitors to convert, they must have a very good reason to click on your call to action.

To encourage conversions, focus on the placement rather than numbers. Think about whether should place your CTA buttons above the fold (the area of a web page that is visible without having to scroll down) or below it.

  • Placing above the fold: If the visitor does not have to think or read too much before making a decision, you should place your CTA above the fold. For example, the CTA “Add to Cart” on this product page from the Amazon website is clearly placed above the fold, right next to the product details.
  • Placing below the fold: If the visitor has to make an informed choice before deciding to click on a CTA, you can place them below the fold. For example, visitors need to be convinced on which pricing package for a software product is in their best interests. Perhaps in a case like this, you would want to show detailed information about each package before showing your CTA.
9. Consider visitor Pain Points

How do you design a product for someone you barely know? You can’t, not unless you know why they would want to use it. What’s in it for them? Can it solve their problem?

Anyone with a nagging problem will look for a solution. A good landing page is one that has a call to action, design and content that depicts you as an expert on the solution your audience is looking for.

Before designing a landing page that can direct these visitors to your solution and encourage conversions, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Does your landing page acknowledge their pain points?
  • Does your landing page clearly offer a solution?
  • Does your landing page provide a user experience that communicates this well?

This landing page from Freckle does a pretty good job of answering these questions. The questions it asks acknowledges pain points and have visitors nodding their heads in agreement. If they like what they see, they can use the appropriately placed ‘Sign in’ button at the top right.

10. Use client logos

People are influenced by authority figures. It’s a natural inclination. It’s why businesses often client logos on their landing pages.

Displaying logos of businesses that you have helped before shows visitors that your product has helped them in some way, shape or form. This establishes a trust connection with your visitors and leads to more conversions.

Crazy Egg does this pretty cleverly in its landing page. They use client logos to show how their 200,000 customers convert better with their heat maps technology.

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11. Remove navigational elements

The purpose of a landing page is to keep your audience on it. So, why would you want navigational elements (like a Home button) that lead them away from it? The move can be counterintuitive. Plus, it reduces chances of conversions.

Consider Hubspot which saw their conversions increase by 28% after they removed their social media share links, header, and footer navigation from five of their landing pages.

Successful landing pages are free from navigational elements. This means there is often no footer or side menu that might take visitors away from your main objective.

The only way visitors must be able to navigate away from your page is by going a step behind in activity history, or by clicking on your CTA buttons. If you absolutely have to include other buttons, make sure that they have some impact on conversions.

For emphasis, consider this landing page from Airbnb. Besides the CTA, it doesn’t contain any additional navigational buttons besides, Become a Host, Help, Sign-in and Log-in – all buttons that encourage conversions.

12. Design with a purpose

When it comes to landing page design, purpose trumps pretty every time. For instance, the main purpose of a landing page design is to set a clear path to your CTA. Everything from visual elements to the images you use must contribute to this purpose.

Consider this landing page from LKR Social Media. Our eyes follow the woman’s eyes and happy expression right to the benefit oriented headline, and the arrow on the CTA button pushes us to a conversion.

13. Limit form fields to reduce friction in conversion funnel

Conversion tools, like web forms are great for nurturing prospects down the marketing funnel. But asking visitors to fill in too many text fields can cause friction or a psychological resistance in the user experience, which can end up increasing your bounce rate instead.

To prevent frustrating users and to increase the likelihood of conversions, limit your form fields to only those you really need. The webinar landing page from Unbounce is a great example. The registration form has four fields, two of which have a list of options visitors can choose from.

14. Use images with a purpose

The adage “A picture is worth a thousand words” applies here. Sometimes, an image in your landing page, that can do your talking for you, and can drive conversions easier than text.

Consider landing pages on online shopping which usually depict smiling happy people with shopping bags. Don’t they make you want to be part of the same experience?

  • Use images that show the benefits: This click through landing page (where a click on the CTA buttons directs visitors to a signup form) from Freshbook shows someone actually using the software.
  • Show product/services in action with a hero shot: A hero shot is basically an image that demonstrates how a product works so customers can picture themselves doing it themselves. This image of the Xero accounting software in action with the credit card reader from Square is a good example.
15. Use social media as conversion events

According to stats Facebook accounts for 62% of social sign-ins in applications and networks from brands and publishers. When you think about it, the numbers makes sense.

Social media sign-ins are easier, faster and more convenient than filling out form fields on your landing page from scratch. It also increases chances of conversions.

To illustrate, consider the landing page of Canva that keeps their prime focus of signing up through social media accounts while email stands secondary.

16. Create urgency

Urgency prompts people to act. The sound of a snooze alarm, for example, reminds you that you might be late for work if you keep sleeping another few minutes.

Add elements that create the same sense of urgency in your landing page.

An example can be a timeline during which visitors have to perform certain actions before special offers expire. Consider the Amazon website which often puts a timer on items as they run out on Black Friday. Booking.com also creates a sense of urgency by stating the number of visitors that are currently booking the hotels on it.

17 – Use live chat

In the past, good advertising meant driving people to a phone number so they could talk to a person who would tell them how certain offers, products or price packages benefit them.

Later, the web took over and the salesperson was replaced by compelling copy and rich media.

But live chat is still a conversion booster even today, because:

  • For your customers, it’s the point of least resistance in the overall user experience
  • It makes the user experience more real
  • It relieves buyer anxiety

Visitors who visit your landing page might be unsure about converting. To increase chances of conversions, introduce a live chat option that visitors can use if they would like to know more about your offer.

Intercom.io is one good example of a customer messaging platform which you can integrate on your landing page. This will help you to educate and engage with visitors through live chat, driving them down the sales funnel for conversion.

18. Follow a Z Pattern

In design, a Z pattern is a web design format where the human eye scans a web page in a Z-like pattern –

  • Left to right
  • Lower left
  • And then to the right again

The Z-pattern basically follows the way our eyes track words or visuals as we scan a page. Creating your landing page with this layout gives you control on how your visitors view it, which increases the chances of conversions.

This landing page from Lifelock follows this pattern. The header is bold which means that a visitor’s eyes will likely scan it first, then focus on the man’s face, then diagonally to the bright red CTA button and then to the image of the smartphone below.

Wrapping Up

It’s hard to keep visitors on your landing page, and even harder to make them stay long enough to convert.

To make your landing pages convert more and bring in desired results, keep these tips in mind. For more inspiration, check out the best practices for creating brilliant UX for your web design.

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