Jan 11
2019

How to Build Effective Landing Pages According to Experienced HubSpot Marketers

We’re invested in making the page building experience on HubSpot faster and easier by providing a visual page builder that anyone can conceivably use. Making it easier to build is only half the battle when creating successful landing pages though, so we reached out to our friends at Databox to get some tips on building the most effective landing pages possible. Now that you have a visual page builder for HubSpot CMS that makes implementation so much easier, these tips from experienced HubSpot agencies will help you to complete your page building process with confidence.

In a recent poll of 25 marketers conducted by Databox, 52% of them said they create and design new landing pages on a quarterly basis.

28% say they design new landing pages on a monthly basis, and 8% do so every week.

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The landing page is a key element in the success of just about any digital campaign. Premium content, demo requests, email subscriptions, product sign-ups–these were just some of the offers respondents typically feature on landing pages.

The offers with the most representation from respondents lean toward the top of the funnel (ebooks, checklists, case studies, how-to guides). The middle and bottom of the funnel (consultations, demo requests, trial requests, RFP, etc.) were well represented in responses, as well.

 

But, simply having landing pages is just the start.

Once they’re designed and launched, you then need to A) drive visitors to the landing page, and B) convert a high enough percentage of those visitors in order to hit the goals you’ve set.

As you can imagine, there’s no one right way to do either. Depending on the context, there are any number of tactics that are proven to work in terms of building landing pages that convert at a high rate.

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We asked these same marketers for their advice. Here’s what we learned.

Use Great Content and Copy

“If you focus on selling dreams and hitting pain points, and combine it all with clarity, you will strike the chord called ROI. Remember to sell dreams—not features. Save features for below-the-fold real estate, and focus on what your product will do for the client.”

Emma-Jane Shaw from Uku Inbound says “the one thing that’s an absolute must for us is ensuring the copy of the page is easy to read, is bulleted, and matches the length of the form. It absolutely needs to highlight the value proposition in such a way that speaks directly to our persona.”

Shaw adds, “This process is a highly creative one; don’t underestimate how long this can take.”

“Think of your customer's journey as one conversation,” suggests Brian Pappalardo from Pappalardo Digital.

“If you've identified your customer's pain point through an ad or blog post, use the headline and supporting copy of your landing page to reiterate that pain point and hint at a solution. You're simply continuing the conversation that is already happening in your audience's head.”

“At the end of the day, people choose products and services that they can understand the fastest,” says Ascend Inbound’s John Fuller.

Be Concise

“To build an effective landing page, you want to include all of the essential information, while keeping it to-the-point. Use bullet points, lists, and paragraphs containing no more than two sentences. If you have to scroll in order to get to the bottom of your text, you've probably got too much of it.”

“It's important not to overfill your landing pages with text, according to Angelfish’s Abby Pearson.

Kalie Fry from McMahon Marketing gives this advice: “Treat your landing page like it's a personal letter to a friend—keep the content timely, helpful and above all else, authentic.”

Prioritize Simplicity and Clarity

“As any landing page’s number one goal is conversion, attention on that landing page needs to be drawn right to the action that users should be taking. The less thinking that a potential customer needs to do when they visit your landing page, the better.”

“Humans are, by nature, driven by design,” says ClearPivot’s Chantelle Stevenson.

“Even a seemingly humble addition of one link can drive conversion rates down dramatically, so attention needs to be grabbed with as little noise or distractions as possible. There needs to be a definitive visual hierarchy to the landing page, as the most important aspects may be overlooked if they appear towards the bottom.”

Ryan Nicholson from TSL Marketing agrees:

“Make sure your landing pages are clear on what your offer is and what the value is for the visitor. Many landing pages fail because of weak value propositions. The visitor should understand the offer so that they know who it's for, what it is, why it's valued, and what they'll get out of it personally. “

“If it's a sign up for a meeting or demo, make sure to relay time and place factors. Consider visitor questions like: How is the next step conducted? Will someone be following up with me? How long will this take? Who will need to be involved? Where will the next step take place...in person? virtually? over the phone?”

Remember that these questions can be answered visually as well as with text.

Include a Strong CTA

A landing page’s call to action supports its main goal—conversion. And the CTA plays directly into the most common goal of new landing page layouts: higher click-through rates, as reported by our respondents.

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“Users are clicking your ads because they liked something that they saw when it showed, so make sure that you speak to whatever campaign or ad group that you're making the landing page for,” says Matt Engelson from Sagefrog.

“Providing the CTA as the first thing a user sees when they hit the landing page, complete with a form or navigation option to take the user where they want to go or help them complete the action they're there for, is paramount.”

“Making your CTA accessible and center stage is a key element for any effective landing page.”

Kaity Huff from Kiwi Creative gives a simple piece of advice: “Be redundant.”

“Sounds counterintuitive, right? Especially in long-form landing pages where you are highlighting features and benefits throughout the page, make sure your offer is clear-as-day. Even after someone reads through a couple sentences or bullet points, they can easily forget why they are there.”

“You can be redundant by adding mid-page CTAs that bounce users to the primary contact form, or by having a CTA follow users down the page.”

“Web users see so many pages every day,” says Sara Schleicher from Design Extensions, “so you need to ensure they know exactly what to do next. Don't give them the opportunity to get confused.”

Keep Forms Short

“It is very tempting to retrieve as much information as possible with the first form entry in order to quickly turn a lead into an MQL or SQL,” says BEE Inbound’s Romy Fuchs.

“From experience, however, we know that this only discourages potential customers. Our recommendations are therefore to retrieve a maximum of 4 properties and to build progressive fields that gradually replace already filled out properties.”

Other marketers echoed this sentiment, with only 28% saying that they used more than four fields:

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Oxygen’s Laurent Ross says that this is especially important for Chinese consumers. “If you're building landing pages for the Chinese market, keeping fields limited to only one or two contact details will be crucial for conversion success.”

“Unlike other markets, Chinese leads are extremely impatient and will not spend time adding information to a form.”

Optimize Your Design

Several marketers gave us design tips that have worked for them.

Kelly Groover from SparkReaction, for example, has seen great results with slider previews:

“We provide 3-5 snapshots of what's included in the offer on the landing pages, which gives the viewer a little more insight into what they are downloading. During our A/B tests on this new design, we doubled our client's conversion rate (from 2.39% to 5.2%).”

(Groover also shared an example of how SparkReaction has put these sliders to use.)

Lightbulb Media’s Lewis Kemp emphasizes color. “Before any words are read, a customer will form an instant buying decision based upon the colours they see. Maximise your CRO with a colour palette combination that is both eye-catching, and relevant to the brand identity of the product/service you are selling.”

And Ryne Higgins from Peacock Alley points out the importance of mobile-friendly design:

“Landing pages that work flawlessly on mobile devices are so effective because they appeal to the on-the-go users that are more likely to purchase something right away. Landing pages are all about user experience, and users that can't navigate your site on their phones will leave with a bad taste in their mouths.”

Incorporate Video

Only 12% of marketers we polled use video on their landing pages most of the time. But a solid majority, 68%, use video at least some of the time.

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It makes sense. As Courtney Allbee from Impulse Creative says, video “adds a nice, authentic touch.”

“We all know that people are more and more preferring to watch instead of reading information,” says Thoralf Lindström from Avidly.

“Use this trend to [extend] the length of time people stay on a landing page. As a result your company's promise or USP gets more time to unfold.”

“Last but not least, it's a good idea to feature yourself or your colleagues in the video, in order to show that there are ‘real’ people behind the messages.”

Never Stop Testing

“There's no ‘one fits all’ tip for building effective landing pages, except for testing,” says Martha P. Martínez from Interius.

“It takes some trial and error to find the success key in every kind of landing page. Maybe a specific offer requires some elements that other landing pages don't, so I recommend to refine your landing pages until they generate the expected results.”

Vince Massara from The Content Friends agrees:

“As boring as this sounds, you have to be constantly testing to see what is working for you. The reason is that what works now won't work in the future, the same way that a lot of what worked in the past doesn't work now.”

“Make sure you test one thing at a time and get excited every time a test fails, [because] you're getting valuable data.”

Meet Your Users’ Needs

Much of the advice we received on landing pages comes down to a simple idea: meet your users’ needs.

Of course, that means you have to experiment.

“On one hand, there’s always ways to further optimise a page,” says Kim McNeil from The Lead Agency. “On the other, people and trends change: you need to continually monitor successful landing pages. Understanding your audience is important.”

“[I]n order to create a landing page that converts your leads into customers, it is essential to continuously monitor, test, measure and improve your landing page performance. Without access to detailed metrics, this is almost impossible.”

“That’s why we believe it’s vital to define clear objectives for the landing page and outline the specific metrics you will use to evaluate its success,” says McNeil.

“Any landing page you create should be set up with tracking measurements that give clear, measurable metrics for your business outcomes. With these systems in place, you are armed with the essential data you need in order to continuously optimise your strategy and create a landing page that really has an impact on your business’ bottom line.”

Other marketers outlined specific tactics:

  • Eric Coria recommends including testimonials and reviews. “Users tend to trust word-of-mouth more than what the company has to say,” says Coria.

  • Myrna Arroyo from Pepper Inbound likes adding chatbots to landing pages. “We've found much higher conversations on landing pages when we've added a chat bot that delivers the content to visitors without having to fill out the entire form.”

  • Joshua Groves from McMahon Marketing suggests having a single goal for each landing page. “[Users] should know and understand what is asked of them in under 3 seconds and have a compelling reason to do so.” Monica from Web Efficient also recommends a single goal: “Set one objective and put all your efforts towards achieving it.”

No matter how you go about meeting your users’ needs, it’s an important priority. Start with your users in mind and build from there.

How do you optimize your landing pages? Do you use these techniques or others? Share your best tips in the comments below!

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About Dann Albright

Dann is a freelance writer who helps B2B companies reach their audiences more effectively. With an emphasis on organic traffic and conversion, he takes big ideas and turns them into highly practical content that keeps readers hooked.