Landing Page Optimisations & Best Practices

Landing Page Optimisations & Best Practices

By following a few landing page best practices, you'll see your bid prices drop, your average time on site grow, and, hopefully, your overall sales increase.

The page customers are directed to after clicking your ad, commonly referred to as a landing page, can have a large impact on your budget and overall profits. Users anticipate a clean design and relevant content when clicking an ad, however, this doesn't mean that you need to invest millions into optimising your landing page. By following a few landing page best practices, you'll see your bid prices drop, users spending more time on your site, and hopefully, increased sales overall. The AdWords system evaluates landing pages on a regular basis and makes updates accordingly. Use this list of landing page best practices to start your optimisations today, and start seeing improvements in no time.

Why is Landing Page Optimisation Important?

If you find that your customers aren’t moving past the first page, then it may be time to re-evaluate your landing page. Whether you're a small business owner or marketing Goliath, the same rules for user experience apply.

Your landing page experience refers to the quality of the experience that a customer has while they are on your website. The easier you make it for a customer to find their way to the shopping basket, the more likely they'll be to complete a purchase. Your landing page experience affects your ad rank position, Quality Score, and overall cost. If your landing page is causing users to consistently leave your website without making a purchase, this may cause your ads to show less often, or even not at all. Here's how your landing page optimisations can affect your overall budget:

  1. Decreased Bounce Rate. The better tailored that your landing page is to a specific audience, the less likely they will be to click away immediately. If you're sending customers to a general page rather than one more relevant to the ad copy, then you're going to end up paying more for clicks and receive fewer conversions.
  2. Improved Ad Position. Google notices when people find your landing page more relevant than others. The longer that people stay on your page or website after clicking your ad, the more likely your ad will show in a higher position and ultimately gain more traffic
  3. Improved Quality Score. Landing page relevance plays a large part in how AdWords calculates your Quality Score. The more relevant that your landing page is to your chosen keywords, the higher your Quality Score will be. The better your Quality Score, the higher position your ads will rank and the less money you'll pay per click.
  4. Increased Links & Authority. The more relevant and interesting content that your landing page provides, the more probable it is that people will share it with others. When people share your page, they're increasing traffic without you paying for clicks.

Take advantage of the data that AdWords provides and start testing optimisations and using the following landing page best practices.

Landing Page Optimisation Best Practices

At Google, we're focused on delivering users the best possible results. Customers want a landing page that is:

  • Relevant. The page that they click should be useful and applicable to what they're looking for. If not, they're more likely to leave your website and move to another website which will provide what they are looking for.

  • Trustworthy. If a landing page is poorly designed or lacks product or service explanations, this signals that the website may not be completely honest or transparent. Customers want to know what they're buying and that it comes from a reputable source.

  • Easy. Users shouldn't have to click through a million links to find what they're looking for. A landing page should be simple and straightforward – this includes on mobile devices, as well.

  • Reliable. Your landing page should be consistent and dependable, no matter the platform. Issues such as a slow page load time can make people impatient, often causing them to click away prematurely.

Let’s take a deeper look into each of these pillars and what may need improving on your landing page.

Send the user to a tailored landing page, rather than a homepage, so they don’t have to click around to find the content they are looking for.

Relevant

  1. Make sure that your landing page is relevant. Send the user to a tailored landing page, rather than a home page, so that they don’t have to click around to find the content that they're looking for. Not only does this decrease the chances of a customer leaving your website before they find what they're looking for, but it also signals to Google that the page is the best choice for users.

  2. Use similar keywords on your landing page. Use similar keywords on your landing page to those in your ad campaign. This helps ensure that the content is relevant and displays a unified experience to the customer.

  3. Use the same call to action. Your call to action is the ultimate goal for what you'd like users to do. For example, "Buy", "Act now" and "Sign up", are all very strong and simple call to actions. Use the same wording on your landing page as you do in your ads.

  4. Ensure that every element on your page supports your ultimate goal. As an example, if your goal is to sell black dresses on your website, then your landing page should not suggest that users also view men's shoes or baby clothes. Stay focused on your goal to keep users engaged and ensure that they don't get distracted.

  5. Use the same value proposition on your landing page. This also ties into the trustworthiness of your website. If you're offering free delivery in your ad, then your landing page should also highlight free delivery.

  6. Make sure that your call to action and value proposition stand out. In terms of design, allow for a little extra white space around your call to action and value proposition in order to make them really pop. This reminds users why they clicked your ad and what they are looking to do.

  7. Show off your unique features. Be clear about what your product is and why customers should purchase it from you over your competitors. Don't cut and paste your copy from another product or category page.

  8. Gear your language toward your audience. It’s important that your landing page copy reflects the product being offered. For example, if you're selling yoga clothes or mats, your copy should reflect a peaceful and mellow tone.

  9. Use ad groups to narrow your focus. You may have a few related offers or products that you'd like to push within the same campaign, but ad groups can be a great way to hone in on a more specific sales agenda.

Trustworthy

  1. Be upfront about what you're offering and any additional fees.Your landing page is the first impression that a customer has of your business. While some argue that displaying additional fees may drive customers away, in the long run, it shows customers that you're honest and upfront. You can do this in a variety of ways, from using images of your products to including any sort of material types or dimensions.

  2. Include your contact information and make it easy to find. It's important that if your customers have a problem, they know how to contact you. This shows that your business is open and willing to communicate.

  3. Make sure that your copy is grammatically correct. Spelling errors and unnatural language are the first signs that a page might be a scam. Ensure that your copy flows naturally and is error free.

  4. If asking for customer information, be clear about why. If you're asking customers to fill in forms with additional information or to submit an email address before entering your page, be extremely clear about why you need this information. Users are naturally hesitant about offering personal information and it will build a better sense of trust if you tell them why it's necessary first. Evaluate the type of personal information that you're asking for and determine whether your product is worth spending the time to fill in sensitive personal information before seeing it.

  5. Prominently display customer reviews or testimonials. Knowing that other users are pleased with their purchase helps to build authority. Knowing that other users are pleased with their purchase helps to build authority. Never alter or delete reviews just because they may not be perfect.

  6. Provide a safety net. Not all customers are ready to purchase as soon as they click your ad. Provide a secondary call to action at the bottom of your page that may offer more information, but doesn’t necessarily require a firm commitment. This builds confidence, while keeping users on your website rather than leaving to find additional information.

  7. Don’t use pop-ups. When users click on your ad, they expect to be taken directly to your landing page. Pop-ups may scare away potential customers by asking for too much information, too quickly.

  8. Verify any facts or claims and don't exaggerate. If your business boasts “free one-day shipping” or the “largest selection of trainers online” make sure that this is true and provide links to any supporting evidence. It’s often tempting to exaggerate, however, this can lead to negative reviews or worse, if your business can't deliver.

  9. Provide a link to your terms and conditions or privacy statement. This helps to quell fears of email abuse or false promises and adds transparency to your business objectives. These links don’t need to be prominent, however, they should be easily accessible in case of questions.

  10. Display any certifications or brand associations prominently. If your company has any specialty certifications, awards or reputable affiliations, make this clear on your landing page. This helps to improve the credibility of your website and makes customers feel more comfortable making a purchase or releasing personal information.

  11. Use a clean and concise design. Make sure that your layout is simple, clear and not distracting. A professional design indicates that your business is legitimate and investing in its own success.

Easy

  1. Make your landing page easy to navigate. The number one rule for landing page best practices is giving customers what they want. Make sure that it’s easy for your customers to navigate their options.

  2. Use lists or bullet points. Lists and bullet points help to make the most pertinent information obvious, which will help lead to more conversions. This is especially true when considering mobile landing pages, as bullet points are more easily digestible.

  3. Get straight to the point. Rather than long, complex introductory paragraphs, get to the point and give your customers the information that they’re looking for immediately.

  4. Use oversized buttons. You’ve made your call to action clear and the user knows what they want. However, have you made it clear how they can accomplish that goal? Oversized buttons stand out on a simple, clean design, and naturally attract the customer's eye.

  5. Make your page and/or content easily shareable. Your landing page should have social media buttons displayed at the top, and all images or videos should also be easily shared.

Reliable

  1. Make your landing page load as quickly as possible. Your page load time can be a large indicator as to whether or not your user experience is poor. If your page takes too long to load, users will often get frustrated and leave the page, indicating to Google that your page isn't the best option. Use PageSpeed Insights to determine whether or not your page is up to par.

  2. Provide a consistent experience. Whether on a tablet, desktop or mobile device, customers expect to find the same experience for each on your landing page. Ensure you're either using a mobile site version of your landing page for mobile ads or that your website has a responsive design, where the page will automatically readjust based on the size of the device.

  3. Avoid too much Flash or JavaScript. Certain features like flashing ads or pop ups are often hard for our crawlers to read and may make the AdWords system think that your page doesn't offer relevant content. These can also slow down page load time.

  4. Keep your landing page consistent with your brand. Users expect a seamless experience, and delivering a landing page that does not fall in line with brand standards indicates an unreliable business.

  5. Optimise any images used. Images can often be the main cause for slow page load time. Ensure any images on your landing page are both relevant and aren’t so large that they affect your load time.

  6. Use natural-sounding copy that is welcoming and encouraging. Your landing page is the equivalent to a face-to-face sales person. Customers should feel welcomed and encouraged to buy your products.

Every page on your website can be used as a landing page. While the ad directing traffic should be the basis of your landing page optimisations, landing pages shouldn't be seen as stand-alone campaign features. Don't be complacent. Minimise your bounce rate, improve your quality score and increase conversions, easily.

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