We have all seen those long, never-ending, one-page sales letter websites which begin with large red letters screaming something obvious, go on to promise the earth, and then try to war you down with a about a dozen useless add-ons to the original offer, a discount that is always time-limited, testimonials, video demos and the ‘Still not convinced? Then try this…” approach.
The thing is they do not work. Their proliferation on the web is testimony to the ability of those who sell them (because most of them are re-selling products) to sell them well. The fact that there are so many acts as a persuasive trigger in its own right and new players with little experience blindly copy them thinking they will work.
They don’t. In fact landing pages like that are little more than the digital equivalent of the persistent doorway seller and that was one technique which worked on the premise that it wore you down. In the online world with escape just a click away this never comes into play and all that’s left is the impression of a page that’s trying way too hard to sell its services.
You will expect, right now, to tell you that there is a formula for creating landing pages that work every time. The truth is there is no such formula. Each landing page works for a very specific reason and the reason is because it manages, in an instant, to answer a need in the person who has visited it.
In the Web 2.0 age online surfers take just 0.25 seconds to ascertain the value of a web page. That’s long before content and navigation do their work. This means that in order for your landing page to work it has to be able to project, instantly, the right image which reflects the online visitor’s need or needs.
If, for instance, I am looking for information on the US Elections I am unlikely to spend more than a microsecond on a site that deals in cartoons. The opposite is also true. So, in order for your landing page to work you need to package everything together, take the design, the illustrations, the text, the stylistics, the colours and the on-page illustrations and package them in one seamless creation that is designed to slickly give you conversions.
You will need to employ neurolinguistic programming language (NLP) which will compel those who read it to take action. Your choice of colours and on-page graphics (if any) will need to be carefully worked out and the stylistics you will use to guide the reader’s eyes along the text must reinforce the whole effect.
This means that each landing page is, out of necessity, different in character and approach. Some might require more graphics, others more text and others still a combination of both in different proportions which means that those who design your landing page must have a clear grasp of what you are trying to achieve, a structured, knowledgeable approach to creating landing pages with a clear rationale behind each element chosen there.
In large projects with a high dollar-value conversion per customer it might be worth to run a Taguchi test analysis. On sites where the per-visitor-conversion is not of a sufficiently high value to justify the cost there has to be a clear rationale for everything that’s employed upon them and how that will aid conversion.