I know it’s stating the obvious, but in order to sell something, we need customers. It’s very rare that people buy from strangers at the first meeting, and therefore we need something to bring them back to our website so that we can tempt them again. This is often done via email marketing.
Again it’s obvious, but in order to send someone an email, you need their email address. This is captured via an opt in form, and there are typically two places you’ll find this,
- A website/blog
- A landing page, also known as a squeeze page
People who enter their details into an opt in form generally fall into one of two camps,
- They want access to the free gift, often referred to as an ethical bribe, that’s on offer.
- They specifically want us to remain in contact with them, notifying them of industry news, business updates, product launches etc.
Those falling into the second category generally aren’t to fussed about what the sign up form looks like. They know what they’re expecting to receive and are prepared to provide their contact details. People falling into the first category need more convincing.
Visitors to websites can do many things when they arrive. This could include reading articles, watching videos and playing games. They don’t need to go anywhere near the opt in form, and therefore a website could be seen as an inefficient vehicle for capturing contact details.
Landing pages on the other hand have very little content and literally just consist of the one page. The visitor has the choice of entering their details or leaving. If you can drive targeted traffic to a landing page, you could get a very good conversion rate (number of people who sign up as a percentage of number of site visitors).
As the landing page is such an important piece of virtual real estate, and as its format can have a significant bearing on its success, it’s worth taking some time to discuss what makes a good landing page.
What Makes a Good Landing Page?
A good landing page has a number of components. The main ones are,
- Heading. This has to capture attention. If it’s not interesting, no-one will read further down the page. They’ll leave. Your headline should talk about needs or fears. By connecting at an emotional level, you’re drawing your prospect in to the rest of your content.
It has to be aligned with both the traffic source that brought people to the site and the free gift. So, for example, if someone arrived at your site after clicking an ad about dog training but your header talked about teaching your parrot to talk, chances are they’d be off in a flash.
Likewise, if your free gift is not consistent with your message, all you’ll end up doing is building an unresponsive list or generating a high unsubscribe rate.
- Free Gift. This is what you’ll initially be remembered by. Not only must it be aligned with your squeeze page, but it must also be a good quality. A high quality product will grab the users attention. They’ll look out for further offers from you, and may even go actively seeking them 🙂
- Bullet Points. Your squeeze page is not suppose to be war and peace, but should quickly communicate the benefits the viewer will receive by signing up. This is often done best with short, concise bullet points. Make sure you emphasize the main benefits as your viewer is likely to be reading with a “what’s in it for me” mindset.
- Video. Many people find video squeeze pages convert better than text pages so you may want to experiment with these.
- Call To Action. It might sound stupid, but you need to tell people what you want them to do. Simply including a form on your page isn’t enough. Tests have shown pages convert better when clear instructions are given – enter your details and click the Download Now button.
- Graphics. If your gift is an ebook or a report, it may be a good idea to include an ecover graphic on the squeeze page. People like to see what they’re getting!
- Urgency. By including a sense of urgency, you’re likely to increase your conversion rate. I’ve lost count of the times I’ve said I’ll go back to something, thinking it would always be available, but have never returned. Urgency can be generated by including statements like “only x copies available” or “offer ends Sunday”.
- Data Captured. Test have shown that the more you ask someone to do, the less likely they are to do it. Consequently opt in forms that only require an email address tend to convert better than those that request more details.
- Formalities. Don’t forget to mention that you’ll protect their privacy and you hate spam. It just provides some peace of mind. Obviously you have to make sure you do it.
The above are some of the key components of a squeeze page. The final thing to mention is that conversion rates tend to be better if the opt in form is above the fold, i.e. the user doesn’t have to scroll down to see it. If they have to scroll down they may miss it.
Your squeeze page is key to building your list. And as we all know, that’s where the money is. Always make sure you test the various components of your squeeze page and track the result. Keep what works and change what doesn’t. Over time you’ll build a high converting squeeze page and grow your list into a substantial asset.