Guide To Creating Landing Pages That Convert – Part 1

I would compare creating great landing pages to fishing. While there are no exact formulas to making the perfect landing page or catching fish, if you can fish in the right lake with the right hook and methods – you’ll catch a lot of fish.  The same goes for creating landing pages that convert. With the proper awareness of your target audience and the use of the right tools and tactics, your landing page can increase conversions and sales.

I will be breaking up this guide into 6 blog posts, with each post containing 2 steps.

The steps are:

  1. Identify Your Target Market/Audience Like Your Life Depended On It
  2. State Your Goals
  3. Build Your Landing Page
  4. Maintain Scent
  5. Establish Trust
  6. Write Compelling & Persuasive Copy
  7. Write Your Actionable CTA
  8. Make capturing customer data simple (Form Optimization)
  9. Carefully Pick Your Images/Videos
  10. Create a Sense of Urgency
  11. Build Your Post Conversion Page
  12. Start Testing

Why You Should Create & Use Landing Pages

Your answer should always be: increase your conversion rates, capture targeted leads while increasing sales.

Landing pages are targeted towards one single objective and are intended to complement the purpose of the advertisement your visitors clicked to reach your page.

Sending Traffic To Your Landing Page Vs. Homepage

Take into consideration what occurs if you happen to send traffic to your homepage.

The majority of homepages are created with a common objective in mind – to display your overall brand and convey your company values.

Because homepages have navigation and are almost always full of links they tend to lead visitors to other areas of your website.

Every distraction you create for your users reduces your overall conversion rate.

If you want to improve your conversion rate, make sure that your customers have only one thing to complete.

Step 2 – Identify Your Target Market/Audience Like Your Life Depended On It

buyer-persona

If you intend to maximize conversion rates, it’s important to determine who exactly your prospective buyers are, what they desire, what is important to them and also what the pain points are that cause resistance for them when it comes to purchasing the product.

Why Recognizing Your Target Audience Plays a Huge Role In Your Business

Creating buyer personas is a critical task for  your business and marketing department. Without buyer personas, you might as well be saying “everyone & everybody” is in my target audience. – You’ll be wasting and losing money in no time.

Questions You’ll Need to Ask When You’re Developing Your Personas

  1. Basic demographic information.
  2. What is their job and level of seniority?
  3. What are their pain points?
  4. What do they value most?
  5. What are their goals?
  6. Where do they get their information?
  7. What experiences are they looking for when they are shopping for your products and services?
  8. What are their main concerns and causes of resistance?

Once you develop an in-depth buyer persona you’ll be able to get more information like:

Who the buyer is  – where they get their information, how old they are, what they do for work, which sites they visit, what magazines or blogs they read, and so on.

What they don’t care about – you can remove these distractions from your landing page to further improve your conversion rates.

How your product or services can impact your buyers’ lives and make it better – do you fulfill the buyer’s expectations, do you satisfy their wants etc.

You might have a hard time when you sit to create these buyer personas, but once you get rolling, you’ll stumble upon even more questions that effectively develop the understanding of your target market.

Caution! Do not make up these answers… it takes time, effort and solid research.

A Few Tips For Your Survey

Talk To Your Customers – To find out what people really think, just ask them.

Conduct Surveys – The best thing you can do is to learn how and why your customers buy. You really want to get in the head of your buyers with the survey questions you come up with.

conduct-surveys

The more questions you have, the fewer responders you’ll get.

Your number one concern here needs to be brevity, or in finding the best approach to ask a question without lessening its intent.

Ask Questions That Tie In With Your End Goal

Each and every question that you choose to ask must give a clear strong purpose as to why it was included. It’s imperative to ask smart, open-ended questions.

Open-ended questions gather unique opinions. They generally begin with how, why, or “What do you feel about …” They require more time to tackle when compared with closed questions.

Avoid Multiple Choice Questions

You want to allow the buyers to have the ability to express themselves without restrictions. Make it easy for prospective customers to write down their genuine suggestions on the survey.

Recommended Readings:

Guaranteed Success: How to Find Your Target Market So Content Sticks

Step 2 – State Your Goals

First and foremost you must define your business objective(s). Goals determine where you intend to go and tell you when you get there. They help increase your overall efficiency as a company.

state-your-business-objective

Second, state your landing page goal. Are you trying to gather leads, sell a product or ask people to download an EBook?

These different goals all require unique content. For instance, if you’re to sell a product, it would be ideal to add a video of the product or high quality images that illustrate the use of the product.

Other goals can be:

  • Increase click-through rates
  • Convert a marketing lead into a qualified sale
  • Improve sales copy
  • Add better product images
  • Improve value-proposition and so on…

There are two different types of landing pages that you can choose from when you have defined your landing page goals; Lead-Gen, and Click-through landing page.

Lead generation landing pages are used so that we can capture data (email addresses, phone numbers, etc.). These typically offer an incentive in exchange for visitor information. The primary purpose of lead gen landing pages is to use the information provided by the visitor to market to at a later date.

Some uses for a lead generating page are:

  • EBooks
  • Webinar registration
  • Software free trial
  • Event registration
  • Contest registration

Click-through landing pages have the objective/goal of warming up a user before they click through to another page (typically an e-commerce funnel). They define a product in detail in order to prepare a visitor that is close to making a purchasing decision.

Far too often, customers are taken directly to a catalogue page or checkout page from an ad, which have been known to produce low conversion rates. The use of a click-through page will allow the scent trail to carry on from the ad that brought the customer onto your page.

Recommended Readings:

Give Your Advertising ROI a Serious Boost by Maintaining Scent

To help you construct your click-through landing page here is an example:

click-through-landing-page-example

*source Unbounce.com

Conclusion

Making the effort to develop buyer personas, and understanding your target audience is extremely valuable to growing your business. In the end, it’s about learning and making it your goal to know your business inside & out.

How To Claim And Optimize A Yelp Business Page

When you think of Yelp, do you first think of foodies posting restaurant reviews? In my previous blog post on LinkedIn optimization, I talked about how LinkedIn is much more than a job seekers website. In this case, Yelp is much more than a website for people to rate their favourite meals.

In fact, according to Yelp’s statistics, only 20% of total reviews are for restaurants. Whether you’re a dentist or candy store owner, Yelp can help increase the web traffic of your site and the foot traffic at your door. With a quick look at the US demographics you can see how Yelp is used by a wide range of age and income groups.

In this blog post, I’m first going to make the case why your business should have a Yelp business page. I’ll share some impressive stats, and then show you how to optimize your yelp listing for maximum traffic.

Why Your Business Should Be On Yelp

When Yelp first started in 2004, it was an email service for exchanging local business recommendations in San Francisco.  It would evolve into a business review website with social networking features, discounts, and mobile applications being used by consumers throughout the United States, Canada, Britain, Australia, New Zealand and parts of of Europe.

Yelp receives 120 million monthly visitors and has over 53 million user reviews. Judging by the curve of the graph below, this doesn’t appear to be slowing down anytime soon…

The future of search is moving towards mobile screens and social networks. Just recently, a global survey reported that smartphones have surpassed tv’s in the amount of user viewing time per day. With this in mind, a well done Yelp page could improve your online marketing by leaps and bounds with very little time/money invested.

Creating A Yelp Business Page

An obvious first step to optimizing your Yelp page is to create one if you haven’t done so already.

To get started, go to the Yelp for Business Owners page and click “claim my business.” You will then be redirected to a page that asks you to find your business.

You will then have one of three cases occur…

  1. No Business Listed: Your business hasn’t been listed on the site, click “Add your business to Yelp” on the bottom of the page.
  2. Already Unlocked: If your business is already unlocked that means someone else has already claimed your business. Yelp has a review process, so it is unlikely that it was unlocked by someone outside your organization.
  3. Unlock Your Business: You can unlock your Yelp business page by clicking the “unlock” button and filling in the required information.

With your Yelp business page now created, the next step is to fill your business profile with useful and SEO friendly information.

Optimizing Your Yelp Business Page

Yelp will essentially guide you through this process once you have created a business page. They even have a friendly alert to remind you, in case you forget.

Do you want to lose out on potential business? Not many people do, so make sure your Yelp Business page has all of these things complete:

  • Business Information: Yelp allows you to write 3000 words about your business’s specialties, history, and owners. You can use this space to tell your business’s story with your most valuable keywords in mind.
  • Business address: Make sure it matches your location on Google Maps and your website.
  • Business phone number
  • Price range for your products/services
  • Business category
  • Photos of your business and staff

Quality Photos On Yelp Make A Huge Difference

According to Yelp, people stay two and a half times longer on a business page when it has photos. That doesn’t mean you need to hire a professional photographer, but having high quality photos should be a priority.

With all of your business page information now complete, the next step is to promote engagement on your site to get more customer reviews.

Social Proofing Works

People trust Yelp because of the millions of customer reviews. There are many ways that you can promote these positive reviews reaching your business page, but be sure to never offer incentives. Yelp has a filter to block fake reviews and they can even penalize your listing for foul play. The best way to garner positive reviews is with the old fashioned way, excellent customer service, and a few of these tips.

  1. Have a Yelp Link on your website: The more exposure your Yelp business page gets the higher chance you will receive customer reviews.
  2. Including a Yelp Link in your email signature: For the same reason explained above.
  3. Reach out to existing customers: Ask your loyal customers if they would mind writing a review.
  4. Promoting deals on Yelp : Deals are a great way to grab attention and satisfy customers.

With the nature of business, sometimes you will receive negative reviews from a customer you weren’t able to satisfy. The best way to deal with these situations is to respond in a positive way.

Responding To Reviews

There are two ways to respond to user reviews on Yelp. The first way is to send a private message. This is much like sending the customer a direct email. The second method, is to post a public message below the consumer’s review for everyone to see.

The key to responding to negative reviews is to keep the BIG picture in mind. Don’t get defensive. Consumers are smart and know that an isolated bad review doesn’t mean much. A good way to respond to negative reviews is to acknowledge that you are concerned about the customers experience and then state your business’ policy on the discrepancy.

A Yelp Optimization Overview

Does your page have quality photos and a keyword rich summary of your business? Optimizing your Yelp business page Is about filing your page with useful information. It can be done in one sitting, but the key for a successful business page is responding to reviews to further engage with customers.

Keep the big picture in mind when responding to reviews, and continuously look for new ways to drive potential customers to your site. If you do all these things, while showcasing the personality behind your brand, you will be positioning your company for delicious online marketing success.