Online marketing matters should always be viewed as a kind of numbers game. The equation for generating more leads is really quite simple — you only have a few options:
Option 1: Bring more people to view the page
Option 2: Get a higher percentage of people who view the page to fill out your form
Option 3: Attract more visitor + convert a higher number of those visitors = the fastest way to generate more leads.
This post will help you with the second part of that formula: converting more visitors into leads.
#1 WRITE AN IRRESISTIBLE HEADLINE.
A good headline will quickly and concisely grab visitors’ attention.
The right headline will grab attention and interest the reader enough for him to continue reading.
A great headline grabs attention, create interest and primes the viewer for the info that comes after the headline.
According to Copyblogger, about 80% of your visitors read your headline while only 20% of the remaining visitors read your remaining copy .
So what’s the best way to engage people quickly?
Here’s a simple to follow formula to get you started in the right direction:
Numbers + Adjective + Target Keyword + Rationale + Promise = Great Headline
This formula was developed by Lenka Istanova of Koozai Marketing. She came to this conclusion after a detailed analysis of the common elements of headlines that get clicks. If you want to see her research — you can check it out here.
Here’s a few examples:
- 10 Healthy Cooking Tips You Can Use Today To Start Losing Belly Fat
- 8 Killer Concepts From Online Marketing Psychology That Improve Website Performance
2 Famous Examples That Use a Variation:
- Hot Pizza in 30 Minutes or Less Or Your Next One is Free (Domino’s Famous Slogan)
- Save 15% on Car insurance in as Little As 15 Minutes (Geico)
DON’T BE BORING
Above all else, don’t write a boring headline. Even if you’re a b2b company in an industry that takes itself a bit too serious, do yourself a favor and write a headline that you’d actually give a crap about. You won’t please everyone, but an exciting headline is the difference between 2% of people reading your article and 20%.
Too often companies create headlines that end with a question. The good thing about questions is that they evoke an almost automatic response in our brain, but the bad part is… the answer can always be no. Try to avoid questions in your headlines. But if you do end up using a headline with a question, make sure it leads the reader to say “Hell Yes!!!” instead of just “…sure.”
I’ll be honest — writing a great headline is one of the hardest parts of developing a solid landing page. It’s also one of the most important. So take your time, write out a dozen or so options and begin to refine and improve from that point. You should always be measuring your landing page’s effectiveness. Testing different headlines is a great way to generate a bump in your conversions so don’t throw away that list of headlines.
Bonus Tip: Keep it Short
Kissmetrics has discovered that visitors tend to only absorb the first three words and the last three words of a headline. So, if you’re shooting for a perfect headline — keep it around 6 words and make sure the beginning and the end of the headline are your strongest points.
Another reason to keep your headline short is that Google truncates results that are longer than 75 characters. If you keep it under 75 characters and follow the advice above — you’ll end up with a pretty sweet headline.
#2 CREATE A CLEAR EXPLANATION OF THE BENEFITS THE VISITOR WILL RECEIVE IF THEY TAKE ACTION
The next important element of creating a landing page that converts is your benefits breakdown.
Notice I used the word “benefits” not “features.” People don’t care about features nearly as much they care about how your product or service is going to improve their life or business.
Here’s an example of a landing page from a quick home sale company.
Notice how the page doesn’t talk about what goes on behind the scenes or the process that the company goes through to get the job done.
Instead it focuses only on what their ideal customer cares about most:
Here’s a breakdown of the example:
Benefit Statement #1: Sell Your Home In Days
Reasoning: Ideal customers for a fast home sale company are… well… looking to sell their house quickly.
Benefit Statement #2: Sell for 90-100% of our Home’s Value
Reasoning: This is an example of overcoming expected objections. After reading benefit 1, a visitor is probably thinking “That’s great that you can sell the house so quickly, but is it only because you are selling it for 50% of what it is worth?”
Overcoming common objections in the form of a benefit statement is a great way to gain a customer’s trust and psychologically makes you an expert in the visitors mind. (It’s like you knew what they were thinking before they said it)
Benefit Statement # 3: No Sale No Fee
Reasoning: If you haven’t noticed by now, these benefits are leading the potential lead through a typical consideration process.
Here’s a very simple consideration process breakdown:
Benefit 1 answers their big question: Can you sell my home quickly?
Benefit 2 overcomes their biggest doubt: Am I actually going to make any money on this or am I going to lose my shirt?
Benefit 3 provides additional assurance, makes it a “no brainer” and answers their final question: But, what if it doesn’t work for me?
This is where companies will typically talk about their 100% money back guarantee or return policy. What’s great about this landing page is that it states that you don’t have to pay a penny until your home sells.
This brings the visitor to the point of asking: “Ok, what do I do next to move forward with the process?”
#3 CREATING A CALL-TO-ACTION THAT CONVERTS
A call-to-action also known as a CTA is typically a button or a link on your landing page that entices your website visitor to take the next step in the conversion process. For most landing pages, the action that you want the visitor to take is to fill out a form so that you can capture their information.
Here are some fairly standard CTAs that I’m sure you’ve seen countless times before:
- Sign Up
- Join Newsletter
- Learn More
- Buy Now
If I had to take a stab in the dark, I’d say that these four specific CTAs make up around 80% of all the calls to action on the web. The problem is that your audience and ideal prospect is much more educated than ever before. People have clicked on these types of CTAs in the past which makes it easy for them to gloss over. These are safe CTA options, but for most companies they aren’t going to produce the best results.
In order to write a much more effective call to action, focus on capturing your visitor’s attention, provide clear instructions for what action they should perform, set realistic expectations for what they’re getting and limit the inherent risk for your visitor.
This may sound difficult, but the process for creating a great CTA is fairly simple.
Top 6 Guidelines For Creating An Effective CTA:
- Use A Design & Color Scheme That Grabs Attention (If It’s a button… Make sure it looks like something a user should click)
- Be Concise — Try and Keep it Under 5 Words
- Use an Action Verb Like “Download” or “Start” or “Register”
- Explain Exactly What A User Will Get After Completing The Call To Action
- Make Sure Visitors Notice It Quickly
- Leverage Instant Gratification or Scarcity
If you follow the 6 steps above you’ll create a CTA that is better than the majority. But you aren’t reading this post to create a landing page that is just good enough, so let’s dig deeper and find out how to create top performing CTAs.
Top Performer Tactic #1: It’s All About The Benefits Baby
If you remember one thing from this post, nothing will have a bigger impact on your marketing efforts than this: First time visitors don’t care about you, your company or how your product works.
At an early stage, visitors are asking one simple questions: “Will this product or service help solve my biggest problem?” If your landing page and call to action aren’t structured around solving this problem, then you’re going to have a bad time and you’re going to miss out on a lot of low hanging revenue.
ZocDoc does a great job answering this all-important question.
Their benefit statement is clear. It makes an assumption of “if you use ZocDoc” you will “find a doctor you love” and “get the care you need”… “it’s free” — that is basically everything that matters to someone who is looking for a doctor. (insurance aside)
The button copy “Find a Doctor” also clearly demonstrates what they are going to get if they use ZocDoc. To make it even better, I’d try testing something like “Find Your New Doctor Today” or “Find A Doctor You Trust”
Top Performer Tactic #2: Give Them Something They Can Use Today
At our very nature, people love instant gratification. After a long day at work, would you rather have a delicious meal that’s ready to eat OR go to the store, find ingredients, drive back home, cook the meal and then eat?
If you are like most people and all things are equal, you’d choose the ready to go meal.
If you can create a call-to-action that will help solve your visitors problem quickly and easily — your conversion rates are going to skyrocket.
Here’s an example from one the pages we designed for a client who specializes in buying quick sale homes.
When a person is looking to sell their home quickly, it usually means they need money fast or have an especially problematic home.
The call to action on this page first of all answers their big question: “Can you help me sell my house quickly?”
The copy at the top of the CTA (in case you can’t read it) says: “Sell Your House Fast! Get Your Free No Obligation Offer!”
So, the visitor’s first big question is answered and their eye will now naturally drift to the big green button that reads “Get My Cash Offer Today”
For someone who is looking to solve a problem fast, this is exactly what they want to hear.
Top Performer Tactic #3: Don’t Try and Get First Time Visitors To Buy — Give Them Something Free Instead
Just like people love instant gratification, they also love getting free stuff.
If that free stuff helps them solve their problem, then their going to want it even more.
A great way to do this is by offering a free ebook, analysis tool, checklist, video series or some other valuable content. This third Top Performer Tactic combines elements of tactic #1 and #2 as well. By offering them something that helps them solve their problem, you are being benefit oriented. By letting them download or access the content immediately, they are getting instant gratification.
This combination creates a powerful psychological response in visitors that naturally makes them want to take action.
Here’s the splash page for another client of ours who provides fantastic interviews with some of the biggest names in business.
If you are looking to learn how to grow your company, why wouldn’t you want 9 free interviews?
By offering something free, you also get the opportunity to not only capture lead information, but you also get to prove your expertise and industry authority. When they read your content (assuming it’s high quality stuff) they will begin to trust that you know what you’re talking about.
This is a huge win for your company and helps move leads from interested visitor towards paying customer much more quickly.
Bonus: For Software as a Service Companies: Create A Free Trial
If you are creating a landing page for a paid software platform, what you’re about to read may piss off some of the developers. The first CTA you need to test is offering a free trial period. I know, I know… your developers are busy and they don’t have time to set it up. But before you dismiss it as being too difficult, take a look at the results it will produce.
According to Neil Patel, who is one of the most trusted and recognized thought leaders in web marketing, if your CTA encourages a first- time visitor to purchase, they are going to leave your website 84% of the time. Compare that to a free trial offer, which can increase your conversions by 328%.
There’s a reason that industry leading software as a service (SaaS) companies like Salesforce, Amazon, Google and Apple offer free trials — it just works. Shopify, an online ecommerce platform, grew its revenue by 10x and acquired 175,000 users in large part to offering a 14 day trial.