If you are looking to increase the conversion rate of your online landing pages, then the name of the game is testing, testing, testing. This is because testing is to your landing pages what steroids are to major league baseball players (only, landing page testing is legal, so you can still hit a home run while avoiding the grand jury).
Nothing is going to help you move your conversion numbers like a continual stream of solid tests. And to that end, here are a number of ways that you can test your landing pages to boost conversion rates to higher levels:
Build a Testing Plan
Instead of jumping into your testing efforts randomly, develop a methodical testing plan. Include a minimum set of data that will be required before you make any judgments and corresponding marketing decisions. That will help you avert premature decisions based on an insufficient sample size.
Ensure that your ads or promotions driving traffic to the landing page use language that is consistent with what the person will find on the page. Try to make the ad copy, TITLE tag, URL, headline and web page copy as consistent as possible. This will help build an intuitive experience for the person clicking through and landing on the page.
Test Your Headlines
Your headlines are going to impact your conversion rates more than you can imagine. So test various headlines to see what drives the most conversions.
Test Your Images
Not only should you test different images on your landing page, but you should also put some logic behind those differences. For example, test males vs. females. Test the age of people in images. Test a person looking at you vs. looking at the location of the conversion event on the page. Test the inclusion of people vs. objects. Test colors. Test text included in the image itself vs. around it. Your options are really endless, so have fun with this.
Use a Clear Call-to-Action
Many companies are hesitant to reduce their Call-to-Action to something simple and direct. Yet, you can often improve the conversion rate by doing just that. The easier the page is to understand, the more likely that someone will understand what to do and will then do it. It sounds stupidly obvious, but often companies just try to do too much with each page, panicking that they may not have covered every potential type of visitor and every potential contingency. Forget the contingencies and go for the home run. Your conversion rate will likely increase.
And remember to make the Call-to-Action clear, noticeable and (when possible) exciting.
Clarify What’s In It for Me
Remember that the most important thing on the mind of your landing page visitor is, “What the heck is in it for me, pal?” Forget about how wonderful your product or service is. And instead prove how wonderful the benefits will be for your prospective customer.
You can take the same exact landing page and have different results based on the level of urgency in the copy. For example, “Offer Valid for Only 24 Hours” or “Sale Ends Saturday” or “First 50 People Only”. This type of language can have a big impact.
Try removing your site’s main navigation system and other navigation options. This will help keep your visitor more focused on the offer at hand.
Make It Visual
Yes, you need a great headline. Yes, you need well crafted copy. Yes, you need an effective Call-to-Action. But to maximize results, keep it highly visual.
Too many companies opt for including huge blocks of text on the page, thinking that you might miss that 33rd adjective to describe their product, without making the page easy-on-the-eyes and easy-to-scan. The visual presentation of the page should literally guide your prospective customer exactly where they should go.
Make it visual. Make it simple. Make it easy.
Test Copy Length
Yes, make it visual, but don’t forget to test different lengths of copy on the page as well. Sometimes your users will actually prefer long pages that require scrolling, with many details. The only way to know is to test.
Try Different Prices
No, we are not suggesting that you completely revamp your pricing structure based on your landing page tests. However, flip it around and you start to really see the opportunity with pricing and landing pages.
Setup a few limited tests that compare performance at one price vs. another. You may learn that a slight reduction in price leads to dramatic improvements in your conversion rates. On the other hand, don’t forget to test if an increase in your prices improves overall revenue and profits.
Remember to highlight why the visitor should trust you. This can be done through satisfaction guarantees, customer testimonials, customer photos, association logos, award logos, press logos, trust logos, etc.
There are so many software options out there, you really have no excuse not to be testing. For example, here is just a sampling of landing page testing software available to you: Google’s Website Optimizer, SiteSpect, LiveBall, Optimizely, Visual Website Optimizer, Performable, Vertster, Unbounce, etc.