What is a landing page? A landing page at its most basic is any web page that a person can visit or “land” on when navigating the internet. They are stand-alone pages, distinct from your main website, that are developed for the purpose of advertising, and with a goal to generate conversions and leads.
Since landing pages are designed separately from the main site, there are usually no options to navigate, forcing users to focus on the copy or message that is tailored to the conversion goal of the page. Featured images, use of color, calls-to-action, and a lead generation form are all essential parts of a landing page that help to increase conversions.
For the purposes of this post, we will focus on the relationship between landing pages and pay-per-click (PPC) campaigns; however, the following best practices can be applied to all traffic sources.
1. Landing pages improve paid search campaigns
If you have ever advertised on Google AdWords, you’ll be familiar with its grading system known as Quality Score. Your Quality Score is determined by the following factors:
- Your ad click-through rate (CTR)
- The relevance of each keyword to its ad group
- Landing page quality and relevance
- The relevance of your ad text
The quality of your landing page is an important factor that contributes to your Quality Score, and the better your Quality Score, the lower your cost-per-click will be—resulting in you getting more value from the campaign.
Google wants to show ads to its users that are most likely to solve their problems so they can take action. A landing page serves this purpose as it does not have excess navigation links and includes messages on the page that are specifically designed for advertising campaigns. The information, therefore, is very relevant, meaning there is a high likelihood that users will fill out call-to-action forms or call your office.
2. Landing pages increase conversions
Businesses that advertise through search engines are more focused on increasing their sales versus trying to increase brand awareness. As a result, their PPC traffic is psychologically different from their organic traffic and needs to be marketed to differently. A user who visits a landing page will either immediately take action by filling out a form, or will simply just leave the page, so the window of opportunity to convert PPC traffic is small. However, since limited information is presented on a landing page, visitors are not overloaded with extraneous information, and if they are the right audience, they will be more likely to take action.
Landing pages are set up separate from main websites, and with the help of online tools like Leadpages, Unbounce, or Instapage, advertisers can do split tests (also known as A/B tests) of the copy, calls-to-action, and other features to test and improve conversions without affecting the main site.
3. Landing pages generate data and insights
To find out whether Google AdWords is right for you or if you should advertise somewhere else (on Facebook, for example), a landing page can help identify the most efficient channel for generating leads. The insights generated by a landing page can also help to identify the right message or call-to-action that will increase conversions, which can then be used to increase user experience, resulting in a lower cost per lead.
Should you ask for users’ phone numbers on a landing page, or just names and emails? You can do split testing on your landing page to find out if adding a field for a phone number increases conversions.
In conclusion, landing pages are an invaluable part of a PPC campaign and will not only help improve ad performance, but will directly contribute to the bottom line of your business.