Marketing Landing Pages: A Beginner’s Guide

marketing landing page statisticsLanding pages are a crucial component of any digital marketing campaign. Yet, they’re a source of frustration for many marketers. Consider these statistics:

  • Only 22% of businesses are satisfied with their landing page conversion rates (source).
  • Most companies are employing a variety of conversion optimization best practices but are dissatisfied with their proficiency in them (source).
  • More than 20% of businesses have reported that they do not have an effective strategy for landing page testing (source).
  • Getting landing pages built and tested is among the top five challenges faced by B2B marketers (source).

Think about it: Your marketing landing pages serve as the entry point to your sales funnel—and your landing page experience can either turn a visitor into a lead or cost your company valuable business.

Today’s post takes a closer look at landing pages – what they are, what purpose they serve, and how to use them as part of your lead generation efforts. Keep reading!

What are landing pages?

A landing page is a standalone webpage that a visitor “lands” on—often as a result of a marketing campaign. Landing pages are different from the rest of your website because they’re often geared toward a specific product or offer. Your homepage provides a full picture of your company whereas a good landing page only presents information critical to one offer.

The goal of a landing page is to move the customer further along the sales funnel. They often do this by providing the visitor with something of value—a piece of content, a free trial, or a consultation.

When creating marketing landing pages, there’s one main concept to keep in mind—personalization. The more personalized and cohesive the experience is, the more likely a prospect is to complete the offer.

Consider this example: You run an email marketing campaign that advertises a tool for recruiters. It’s one of several products your company offers. When someone clicks through, the link takes them to your company’s homepage. Your homepage talks about solutions for several different job functions and industries. See the problem? The visitor shows interest in a specific product, but you directed them to a general page. Don’t expect them to keep clicking around your site to find what they’re looking for.

How many marketing landing pages should you have?

We’ve all used the phrase: “More isn’t always better.” In the case of landing pages, that mindset doesn’t apply. As we said, landing pages should be specific and targeted. Each page should focus on one product or offer – no more.

Multi-offer marketing landing pages present several problems. First, they become too cluttered and dense with information. Your visitor may miss the part of the page intended for them. Also, they’re confusing. The visitor may wonder: what exactly are you offering? Is it two products or one? How do they relate? Rather than seek answers to these questions, they often leave the page.

Unfortunately, not enough companies build an adequate number of marketing landing pages. Consider these statistics (source):

  • 62% of B2B companies that use landing pages only have six or fewer.
  • Only 48% of marketers build a new landing page for each marketing campaign.
  • 48% of landing pages contain multiple offers.
  • Companies with 40+ landing pages get 12 times more leads than those with 5 or less.

Now, we can’t give you a golden rule for how many marketing landing pages to create. That depends on your company, how many products you offer, and how many different campaigns you run. But remember: each product or campaign deserves its own page.

Different Types of Marketing Landing Pages

There is no one-size-fits-all solution to the perfect landing page. Your marketing strategy should address every stage of the buyer’s journey and, as a result, your landing pages should too. Here are a few common types of marketing landing pages:

Free trial or demo landing page:

The goal here is self-explanatory – you want the visitor to sign up to receive a free trial of a specific product. This landing page targets buyers in the “decision” stage of their journey. They have identified their problem and are searching for a solution.

A free trial landing page should be concise and uncrowded. Every detail on the page should serve the goal of getting the visitor to fill out your web form. Here are a few tips:

  • Minimize copy: Don’t cram every detail about your product into the landing page. Include a few, neat sentences that illustrate why your product is great. Or even better – a customer testimonial, expressing satisfaction with your product. A free trial signup is a no-risk decision, so you don’t need to overload the customer with details.
  • Emphasize lack of risk: “Free” can be misleading. Before asking for a prospect’s information, including a small but significant reminder that they won’t need to give up any payment information. 
  • Remove unnecessary links: You may want to forgo your standard website navigation. It will likely distract the visitor from the task at hand – signing up for the free trial. Instead, your links should enforce that objective. A link to your Privacy Policy, for example, establishes trust and encourages the potential customer to move forward.

Content offer landing page:

Marketing content appeals to prospects at every stage of the buyer’s journey—so your page will vary depending on the specific piece of content you’re promoting. This type of page is often used to ‘gate’ content—or, in other words, to get the visitor’s contact information in exchange for a piece of content.

Gating content is an excellent way to build your marketing email lists and also helps you determine which website visitors are truly interested in your brand and products. Here are a few content types to consider gating:

  • On-demand webinars
  • eBooks
  • Checklists
  • Guides
  • Infographics
  • Data sheets
  • Whitepapers
  • Case studies
  • And more!

Keep in mind, it’s not enough to throw a form in front of your content and expect visitors to fill it out. You have to give them a reason why. Follow these tips to see the best results with gated content:

  • Don’t give away too much of the content directly on the landing page. Obviously it’s important to use your landing page to communicate what your content is about. But, if you say too much the prospect no longer has a reason to fill out the form. Say just enough to leave your prospect curious.
  • Tell the visitor why they need your content. Will they learn an essential skill? Does the content give away some sort of industry secret? Will it solve a complicated problem? Spell it out for them.
  • Eliminate distractions. Include only the most crucial information on this type of landing page. Any irrelevant graphics, content, or links will just distract your visitor.

Click-through landing page:

Up until now, we’ve only talked about marketing landing pages that contain forms. But, landing pages that don’t contain forms also serve an important purpose. This type of landing page is often referred to as a click-through landing page or a jump landing page.

Now, you might be wondering: if a landing page doesn’t contain a form, how will it generate leads? Instapage says it best: “Click-through landing pages are most valuable at the bottom of your funnel for warming up your leads to a particularly high-scrutiny offer…This landing page type allows visitors to read persuasive information about an offer without being distracted by the terrifying “buy” button.”

In the B2B world, many products and services are expensive. The average buyer isn’t just going to fill out a form or make a purchase without careful consideration. The click-through landing page provides context to the buyer without making them feel like they must make a purchase immediately.  Here’s how to execute this type of campaign:

  • Confirm the visitor’s intent. Reiterate the offer explained in the ad or campaign they entered the page through. This will keep their attention and reassure them that they’re in the right place.
  • Provide context to a complicated offer. Explain what they’re about to see when they click through and which parts are important to pay attention to.
  • Keep it simple. Because no conversion happens on this type of landing page, there’s no need for complicated graphics, paragraphs of text, or links to other pages. Include a compelling headline, establish why they need to complete your offer and only one call-to-action. Then link to the page where you expect the prospect to complete your offer.

Final Thoughts About Landing Pages

In marketing, specificity is key. Your company’s homepage has its purpose – it should be an appealing place for people to discover and learn about your company. But anyone coming to your site for a specific reason should land on a specific page.

Make this a rule: Never start a campaign without a dedicated landing page. Sure, it’s more work and may mean your campaign takes longer to get off the ground. But when you see the conversions rise, you’ll realize – it was worth it!

For more information about optimizing your website for conversion, check out these blog posts:

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