The landing page is a kind of giant advertisement after the preview given by your ad and it is extremely important because getting a click is only the first step: a conversion rate of 4% is indeed an excellent result and it means that more than 96% of the people who clicked on your ad will leave without having bought anything. If this click cost, say, five euros, we immediately understand what is at stake: your conversion rate will determine the success of your business, or its failure.
The landing page may have many different aspects. The easiest case is that of a single service or product. But what about a store with hundreds or even thousands of different products? The landing point could be the category « skirt » of your store, the user will see all the models available and will make his choice. In the case of Google Merchant on the other hand, we always land on the product sheet. Both presentation and content are essential, and many scammers try to sell you magic formulas: the perfect ad, the perfect landing page… none of this exists.
If there are specific actions that need to be performed on your landing page, such as filling out a form, I invite you to test it with your friends and family, and then, in a second step, to look for guinea pigs on the Internet, for example in a Facebook group. Don’t take their opinion too much into account: they will tend to be too friendly, it’s better to stick to objective criteria, for example: timing their actions.
One group Ad, one landing page
The content of your landing page should match that of your ad. Therefore, if your ads are significantly different from each other, you should create as many landing pages as necessary. It should never be your site’s home page, which is too general to meet visitors’ demand for information. As with journalism, content should be ranked in order of importance, starting at the top. Always ask yourself if your landing page answers the question visitors ask themselves when they search: remember that the decision to read your sales pitch is made in less than two seconds. Test as many landing pages as possible, in order to select those with the lowest bounce rate. If your visitors still approach the top of the page in order to go back or close the window, it is technically possible to display a popup offering a promotion. Design is absolutely essential, but you will rarely need the services of a professional. For a single web page, there is no shortage of ready-made templates, often free, that you can modify for your own needs. If you need multiple pages and a shopping cart, you can install WordPress with Woocommerce, both of which are free.
Give your visitors confidence
There are several requirements. First of all, it is absolutely essential that your landing page is secured with an SSL certificate. Otherwise, the browser will display an alert message indicating that the page is not secure: in terms of conversion, this would be a disaster. The SSL certificate is not enough: clearly indicate your contact information and any element that could give your visitors confidence. A phone number, or a live chat feature so they can contact you easily. Also create at least one Facebook page, if possible with likes and followers. It is also recommended to offer Paypal, which offers for physical products serious guarantees protecting the buyer. Many visitors will refuse any transaction if Paypal is not offered. In order to manage all kinds of credit cards, it is recommended to offer an additional service, such as Stripe. For returns, the current standard is a thirty day window and we advise against offering less, even if the shipment is from a friendly country: For example from Thailand there is simply no obligation to be able to return an item as long as it conforms to the order. It is also very effective to propose customer testimonials, and it is even better if they are authentic: they can be Facebook comments for example, or from specialized sites such as Trustreview: this is what we call « social proofs ». If you sell services, you can present case studies and ask your clients to give you their testimonials, possibly in exchange for a link to their site. Finally, you should specify the terms and conditions. Google is particularly ruthless in certain sensitive areas such as finance or health. You also have to add the GDPR and cookies rules if you have European customers, and for the US the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA). In general, Google is much more ethical than Facebook. Don’t hesitate to study your competitors’ pages, especially if they have substantial resources, and don’t hesitate to draw inspiration from them.
There is nothing more unattractive than a form as a landing page and visitors must have a serious motivation to fill it out. It can be, for example, what is called a paywall: the visitor registers in exchange for content, ideally free. People are more and more strict about privacy: how will the data they provide be used? The form should be as short as possible: don’t ask for address and phone number for a newsletter subscription, but don’t ask for age or gender either, at the risk of making your visitors suspicious. Complete your form with an FAQ, prominently displayed on the side or below the form. The FAQ should be written in a very simple style, accessible to all: avoid legal jargon, to be used only if necessary in your terms of service. The form can be hosted on your site, which is what I recommend, or you can use a specialized service such as Typeform.
Reduce the bounce rate
Remember that your visitors make up their mind in less than two seconds. The overwhelming majority of your visitors will leave the landing page without taking the desired action. An effective technique is to use popups: when the mouse approaches the window to go back or close it, a popup appears offering, for example, a coupon. A very popular popup is a wheel, which you click on to get a coupon or a gift. But be careful not to cheat by systematically offering a 20% discount on the wheel. If it’s a little, then leave it to chance. I recently got a 50% discount with such a wheel, but the coupon was only 30%! I immediately closed the window and swore that I would not be asked again. A gift is always effective, but avoid overselling: how many times have you seen an ebook with a so-called value of $199 sold for $9 or even offered? This rather pathetic technique only works with naive people, and we won’t teach you here how to abuse people’s trust. You need qualified leads, who will bring you value in the long run.
The thank you page
For some specialists, this page is absolutely essential: it creates the beginning of a link. A nice page, warm thanks, even a little humor. You can add links to other pages, which is called « upselling ». I am more reserved: for you visitors nothing is more important than speed and simplicity. If therefore you add acknowledgements, I suggest a popup, not too intrusive and therefore without changing the page. Popups are notoriously bad for SEO, we must limit their use, with a surface that should not exceed 15%.