Last week, we talked about ways to increase leads and conversion rates. This post stressed the importance of increasing your content output, the granularity of campaigns and number of landing pages in order to improve email and SEM/PPC campaigns.

In this post, I would like to go over the important landing page elements needed to improve the user experience (UX) and the number of conversions.

So, if you looking for ways to increase B2B or B2C leads/sales from your landing pages, while improving the impression your visitors have upon your brand – then consider these tips:

1) Watch your word count

Don’t overwhelm your visitors with huge paragraphs of information. It’s difficult to say how much text is optimal, but for B2B I suggest a sentence or two followed by bullet points. However, you should A/B test, as every industry and audience is different.

After you have generated a submission, you can then go into more detail as an additional resource on the confirmation page or throughout your nurturing process.

2) Clear Call-to-Action (CTA)

What is the prospect going to get or what is going to happen once they click the button? Make sure the color contrasts with surrounding and background colors so that it stands out. You only have a matter of seconds to suggest a next step – so make sure it’s clear and attractive.

3) Length of form

This is dependent on so many factors, e.g. your business, industry, the stage of the marketing funnel, the value of the offer, what information you’re requesting etc. In general, you’ll generate fewer, better quality leads with the longer form and a shorter form will likely generate more leads, but just not as qualified.

4) Include images

This helps to make the page far more engaging, and if you have a picture of the product or white paper – a much more attractive and enticing offer.

5) Relevance

It is imperative that you have multiple landing pages for one campaign. Quality Score from both Bing and Google looks at relevancy factors that ultimately affect your cost. Not only that, but your visitors will leave if the content does not reflect their search term.

Although it is not exactly clear what on-page factors Google or Bing prefers in regards to PPC/SEM landing pages, I always try to include alt tags, H1/H2 tags, and title tags.

From an email marketing perspective, the same applies. Although you will not be judged on quality score, the same basic principles of relevance still apply.

6) Transparency

From a user experience and security point-of-view, visitors want to be reassured that their information is safe. From a Google AdWords and Bing Ads perspective, they will suspend your website from serving ads if you do not include contact information and a privacy policy.

7) Video

We’ve seen great results by implementing landing page videos. A video can boost conversion rates by as much as 80% and we’ve seen it firsthand.

8) Testimonials

Did you know that 70% of people trust reviews or opinions from people they don’t even know? Testimonials definitely help with conversions and if it’s relevant, include them.

9) A reason to stay

If you haven’t got what they’re looking for, visitors will bounce. For B2B, provide prospects with a valuable white paper, report, webinar or video that is highly targeted to their search term or the email marketing campaign.

10) Steps of the process

Be honest and demonstrate the various steps of the landing page(s), if applicable. For example, if they’re purchasing something: Step 1: Shopping Cart, Step 2: Addresses, Step 3: Review & Purchase, Step 4: Receipt.

11) Social Trust/Sharing

Allow people to share your content. This may result in future leads and brand exposure. Social buttons also serve as proof of the quality of your content.

12) Security

This point ties into the transparency point above, but addresses a different aspect.

If you are asking prospects to submit secure data (credit card information, social security etc.) then place your SSL logo close to your submission form.

Also, badges from other organizations such as Better Business Bureau (BBB) and McAfee Security help to reduce visitor anxiety.

13) Limit navigation

Another best practice for landing pages is to keep your prospect focused. By removing product/service navigation from your template – you’ll help focus the attention on your call to action. It also allows you to have better control over what the prospect sees and interacts with – so you can center specific content, images and ideas around your specific email or SEM campaign.

14) Logo

Brand your landing pages with your logo, or co-brand marketing campaigns to increase recognition and industry authority.

15) White Space

Avoid cluttering the landing page with extra information. Stick to what’s vital and compelling to your goal. Especially when it comes to a call to action, you often see landing pages that include far too many elements that stand out.

16) Above the fold

Often times, the visitor is looking to act quickly. They won’t read everything and won’t always scroll to see what else is included. That’s why you must, must, must have your call to action above the fold.

Every one of us has experienced landing pages – so think about your experience. Often, you’ll click an advertisement or land on a page via a link and quickly decide whether or not it’s valuable to you. Guess what? That’s what YOUR prospects are going to do too!

What else have your own tests shown to positively or negatively affect your landing pages? Let us know in the comments section below!