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Monday, February 21, 2011

5 Easy Ways to Improve Your Landing Pages

Landing Pages are one of those web page types that can become the real workhorse of your online advertising efforts.  Here's just a few easy ways to increase conversion rates of your landing pages so this workhorse becomes the star of the show.

1. Test, Test, Test - The 3 Keys to Landing Page Success

Before we get into the really juicy stuff, I want to remind you to test your landing pages--and test often. 

It's as easy as identifying testing goals.  Then coming up with two identical landing pages and changing just one thing about them—preferably the call-to-action.  This split-cell test (or A/B Test) is a statistically valid way of testing a change in your strategy and knowing (not guessing) how much better (or worse) it works.

2. Add ToolTips to Form Fields

Every fill out a form yourself and wonder, "Why do they need to know that about me?!"  Research has shown (and our gut feeling says they're right) that privacy online is more critical to users than ever before.  Allowing landing page visitors to roll-over a "?" icon to display a small ToolTip explaining why they are being asked that question and how that information is going to be used will drastically increase conversion rates.

If you need a little technical help with ToolTips, consult the JDM Labs Codex.  There's a post in there all about ToolTips.  Feel free to steal.

3. Less is Definitely More

For God's sake, keep any lead forms minimal.  Ask yourself what information is really critical and what is 'nice to know'.  Eliminate any field that is not critical.

As a rule of thumb, JDM recommends keeping your form fields down to 5 questions: First Name, Last Name, Email Address, Phone Number, and one qualification question such as a Title/Role drop-down.

4. Helpful Form Validation

Try to get away from the old JavaScript error window when the user doesn't complete all required fields.  Instead, get creative.  Allow users to complete their phone number or email--not both.  Also, having fields throwing an error highlighted is handy.  Finally, pay close attention to your validation error messages.  "Missing Fields" is not a very helpful error message.  Instead, use something like, "Please enter a valid company email" or "Please enter your 10-digit phone number."

5. Get Above the Fold

Try to put your call to action well-above the fold.  Also, try to keep your form either on the top-right or only partially below the fold.

Stay tuned to JDM's Big Marketing Ideas blog for more Landing Page best practices.  If you have any ideas or questions, feel free to comment them below.

2 comments:

  1. Great tips. You're right that less is more. People don't want to be overwhelmed when filling out a form. Nobody has that much time. If the form is too complicated it's likely that they will just avoid filling it out. As they say, "keep it simple, stupid".

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  2. Thanks for the lists. There are a lot of these lists on different peoples blogs these days, most of they are just way out of date though – I look forward to delving deeper into this list and hopefully contributing to some quality blogs. Landing Pages are one of those web page types that can become the real workhorse of your online advertising efforts.

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