PPC management has evolved over the years from just helping the client target the right keywords and write good ads, We now do so much more, it now takes a much more holistic approach to make a client’s PPC work well.
Optimised landing pages for PPC are one element of the marketing mix that tends to polarise clients. Some are are just not prepared to even consider them as they believe that their site is fantastic and could not be improved (The #1 mistake is building what YOU like, sites should be tested to what converts, not what you or your marketing department think looks good) others may have a marketing department that feels that the PPC agency should keep their nose out and just focus on the traffic and leave the site, value propositions and conversion path to them, but the for the ones that are open to creating specific landing pages that convert the rewards are usually visible quite quickly.
A PPC account optimisation coupled with optimised landing page design we recently did for a client took their cost per lead down by a whopping £166 and increased their conversion rate from 0.44% to 3.98%, that’s a combined ppc/landing page increase of 900%. The actual lead cost this month so far is less than 10% of the cost that a lead was in December and we are on target to double their volume this month over last month.
So what elements should be on an optimised landing page to enhance conversion?
As can be seen from above they are common sense things but sadly missing or badly presented in most landing pages we find. All too often landing pages ask either nothing whatsoever with a really vague or poor call to action, if any, or ask too much by giving nowhere near enough information to build rapport, trust or need in the prospective customer before asking for an action from, contact details or worse; money!
A Clear Logo Placement helps, usually top left but anywhere in the header will work, A Prominent Contact Number builds trust as well as makes the visitor feel that they can contact you, some people like to talk others like to type, so give both what they need and add a Prominent Contact Form too, but don’t ask for too much information at this stage, it will put some people off, arguably some would say they wouldn’t convert anyway but a luke warm lead is better than no lead so keep contact forms short and ask only essential information!
A Strong Call to Action should tell people what you’d like them to do and you should phrase it well, test the instruction too as “More information” may work better than “Get In Touch” which in turn may work better than “Book Now” – it’s all about testing so pick one and get started, then test others!
The Value Proposition is where most companies have trouble, they generally just don’t have one, they have mission statements, they have summaries, they have waffle, they usually sell features not benefits so a good value proposition should focus upon why they customer would choose your service, what’s in it for them and why are you more awesome than your main competitor etc.
A Core Benefit Statement helps cement and reinforce the value proposition and hammers home why your product or service is what they are looking for.
Trust Elements are things like testimonials from happy clients, industry accreditations, publications you’ve appeared in, comanies you work with, security seals, review stars etc. these alone can boost conversion rates if added correctly. They prove that your company does what it says and can be trusted to deliver.
Social Sharing also helps boost conversion by telling others that they aren’t alone, not only can they share the page to their facebook or twitter but they’ll see details of others, possibly even friends who have liked the page already, people do what other people do, social compliance is ingrained in most of us so if 5,000 people like a page you’ll take it more seriously than a page with only 5 likes. Just remember though that social sharing isn’t suitable for all products and services, some people may not want to share things such as cosmetic surgery or adult toys although some will, it’s a case of testing to figure out what works best for conversion overall.
Also good photographs and videos help, the only thing worse than no photographs of a product or service is bad photographs or videos so take the time to do great ones, pay someone if you have to, it will be money well spent and it’ll pay back many times over.
The above factors on a page will help conversion but the elements need to be tested placement wise for best conversion so it’s not just a case of throw them on a page and hope for the best, once you’ve established a baseline then A/B testing should commence to squeeze out the best layout and other elements such as wording, images, fonts, colours etc.
Below is an example of a landing page of another client who was sending their PPC traffic there, it’s a pretty standard page, it has logo, contact number, says what they do, has a call to action, has contact details and did convert; albeit very steadily and not enough for the client’s liking.
Below is the new optimised landing page that we designed for them. You’ll see that some elements are present on the page more than once to aid conversion as the visitor will be scrolling down the page, social sharing isn’t on here as they cure what some people may feel are embarrassing problems so this design is a starting point without social sharing.
The previous landing page was doing its job in educating and showing the service offered to clients but it just wasn’t getting a high enough level of enquiries so we designed the new page to tick all the boxes, and boost conversion it did, in two months lead volumes increased by 500% per month, the first 6 days of February did more than all of December! That’s why landing pages that convert matter, when combined with best practice PPC management huge gains are possible.
Or you can stick with what you have and just keep kicking the marketing department or your PPC agency to do some miracles with the keywords but remember that a good landing page will pay for itself in a very short space of time so it’s not a case of if you can afford to optimise your landing pages, it’s more a case of can you afford NOT to optimise them!?
We love talking landing pages so feel free to get in touch to discuss yours on 0800 228 9122 or use the contact form to drop us a line.