Many businesses now use pay-per-click (PPC) advertising as part of an online marketing strategy to generate traffic and inbound leads. PPC is a great way to enhance your business’s visibility, especially if you’re not on the first page for organic search results.
You can invest in PPC ads in a variety of different places, including content sites where your potential clients may be, search engines (your ad will show when searchers use specific keywords), or social media networks.
When potential clients or customers click on your PPC ad, whichever page they are driven to is called a “landing page”.
In my experience as an online marketing professional, I have seen too many small and mid-sized businesses driving PPC traffic to their homepages rather than a designated landing page.
If you are paying for a PPC ad, you want to get the best ROI possible. And that means converting as many of the people as possible who click on your ads into actual leads. You want to minimize how many clicks you pay for that don’t turn into business.
To do this, you need to optimize the landing page – whether it is a specific page you’ve created for that PPC campaign or a subpage on your website that relates to the ad’s subject.
Here is a checklist of the top five things your PPC landing page should have in order to convert traffic into leads:
If potential clients click on a PPC ad, that means they are interested in what that ad is about. If they land on a page that has little or nothing to do with the subject of the PPC ad, they will quickly hit the back button.
This is where using your homepage as your landing page is a bad idea. Your homepage is typically an overview of your company and services or products – not about a specific service or product. However, a PPC ad is usually about a specific service or product. When the visitor lands on the homepage, there is a disconnect; likely leading them to abandon your page.
In particular, make sure the landing page’s images and headline directly follow from whatever copy you used in the PPC ad. It should be something that makes it absolutely clear that the visitor has found what they were looking for when they clicked on your ad.
2. Have You Included Trust-building Elements and/or Social Proof?
People are more likely to trust your brand and your offerings if you provide elements of social proof on your landing page.
This includes trust-building elements such as:
- List of Current Clients (provided you have permission to do so)
- Privacy or Security Certificates (especially if customers will conduct a transaction on the website or landing page)
This reinforces with your visitors that you’re a reputable company.
3. Are You Keeping the Design Simple?
Don’t clutter up your landing page with too many different design elements, colours, moving parts, etc.
Keep the design clean. Ensure your landing page is appealing to the eye and easy to navigate. Clutter is the enemy. You must deliberately guide your visitors’ attention to where it needs to go.
Make sure your call-to-action stands out among the other elements – usually a button in a contrasting colour will do the trick.
4. Does the Landing Page Have Bullet Points and Easy-to-Read Copy?
Your potential customers will take seconds to decide if they want to stay on your landing page or not. Sometimes milliseconds!
They need to get as much relevant information about what you’re offering as quickly as possible; buy a product, download a free whitepaper, attend a webinar, etc.
The best way to do this is with clear, concise content that addresses their needs. Use short paragraphs, bullet points, lists, headings and sub-headings, along with high quality images to keep their attention and allow them to easily consume your content.
Your content must also be extremely relevant. For example, don’t talk about the features of your product; talk about the benefits they will get. Be customer-centric!
5. Is Your Call-to-Action (CTA) Clear and Compelling?
Not providing a strong call-to-action and contact form is a big mistake. If you want your landing page to be effective, this is a must-do. Otherwise, prospects don’t have a simple next step to take and can’t “put their hands up” to identify themselves as interested prospects.
CTA: The CTA should stand out from the rest of the landing page and draw attention. You should also experiment with the language used to find what is most effective.
For example, “Submit” is less effective than “Request a Whitepaper”. And when you conduct some tests, you may find that “Request a Whitepaper” is less effective than “Get My FREE Whitepaper Now!” Wording can make a major difference in conversion rate, so keep analyzing and testing until you get it right.
The most effective CTAs, depending on your audience, typically give a clear indication of what the person will get when they have filled out the form. Use action-driven language to emphasize your offer.
Forms: Forms are most effective when they have fewer fields, so only ask the prospect to fill out essential information. If you don’t need their phone number or their company, don’t ask for it. One company managed to increase their form conversions by 120% just by taking their form fields down from 11 to 4.
You should also make sure your form is easy to understand and use. The more confusing or frustrating the form, the more conversions will be abandoned mid-way through.
Build Converting Landing Pages
Make sure you do these five things on every PPC landing page you create; you should see a boost in your traffic-to-conversions ratio right away.
And remember, the key to a high converting landing page is analyzing and testing! Make small changes and see how they impact conversion. You’ll make incremental improvements based on your specific audience’s preferences, ultimately creating an extremely effective lead generation machine.
>> Core Online Marketing is an outsourced digital marketing agency with expertise in online advertising, lead generation, landing page conversion, SEO, content marketing, and much more! Contact us or sign up for our free online marketing seminar.
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