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Creating Landing Pages That Convert (Part:3)

September 20, 2018

Testing and Optimizing Landing Pages

Why test and optimize your landing pages?

If you thought that the work was over once you’ve created your landing page, you’d be sorely mistaken. The truth is, the work has only just begun. That’s because landing pages are very rarely as effective as possible right off the bat. To increase the conversion rate, a program of testing and optimization needs to be in place.

What to test?

That’s an easy one. The short answer is “everything.” If you want to increase the conversion rate of your landing page as much as possible, you’re going to want to test everything you can on the page. You should start by testing the following:

  • • Headline
  • • Imagery
  • • Body copy
  • • CTA
  • • CTA color (if it’s a button)
  • • Background color of the page
  • • Font size and type

There really isn’t an end date for testing. As long as you have elements to test, you should continue to do so in order to maximize the page’s conversion rate. Even when you think you’ve tested everything, go back and redo tests. Things rarely stay the same, and you may find that your users have changed or the devices they use to access your landing page are different.

How to test and optimize your landing page

When it comes to the method of testing and optimizing your landing page, there are two main approaches: A/B testing and multivariate testing. Luckily, SharpSpring’s platform lets you do both.

A/B testing is also known as split testing. It involves comparing two versions of the same web page where one single element has been changed to see which performs better. For example, you might test a new headline for your landing page. By carrying out an A/B test you would show variant A (the original landing page) to half your audience and variant B (an identical landing page but with a different headline) to the other half. Whichever has a higher conversion rate is the winner. A/B testing can be very effective at increasing conversion rates. Did you know that during his 2012 presidential bid, Barack Obama’s campaign raised an additional $60 million from a landing page thanks to A/B testing?

Multivariate testing involves testing multiple combinations of variables to see which performs the best. For example, you might test a new headline, a new image and a new CTA all at the same time. As a result, users aren’t shown one of two options; they might be shown one of eight or one of twelve options instead depending on the number of variables you are testing. Since you can test several variables at once, multivariate testing is much quicker than A/B testing.

Which is better?

The answer to this question will depend largely on your website and your timeframe. A/B testing provides excellent, definitive results because only one element is tested at a time. You don’t need a lot of traffic to pull it off, but you do need a lot of time to test every single element using A/B tests.

Multivariate testing can be just as effective and is definitely quicker. However, you will need a substantial amount of traffic to be able to test effectively using the multivariate method. If in doubt, always start by using A/B testing.

Do I need to optimize for SEO?

In a world dominated by Google, every website owner is concerned about their SEO, and rightly so. However, for the most part, it isn’t necessary to optimize your landing pages for SEO. Why? Because a lot of the time you won’t want Google to index your pages. For example, if you have a landing page based around a limited time offer, you don’t If you want to optimize your landing page for SEO, you should focus on writing exceptional, keyword-targeted content. want users accessing the page once the offer has expired. You also don’t want users to access a thank you page or an upsell page without going through your marketing funnel. It won’t make sense to them.

That being said, there are certain times where you may want to have SEO traffic directed to your landing page. As with other web pages, it will be important to optimize your title and meta-description. But the most important thing will be your content. If you want to optimize your landing page for SEO, you should focus on writing exceptional, keyword-targeted content.

Driving traffic for tests

Once you’ve decided what you’re going to test and how you’re going to test it, you’ll need to start driving traffic to your landing pages. How you do this will depend on the size of your site and your budget. Below are several ways that business of any size can drive traffic to their landing pages.

Via your website

If your website is already receiving a significant amount of traffic, you can use links throughout your website to direct users to your landing pages. This can be done through CTAs in your website’s sidebar, on product pages or at the bottom of blog pages. This won’t work so well for smaller websites where traffic levels aren’t high.

PPC advertising

This is the most common method of directing traffic to a landing page. Google Adwords is a sensible option, but don’t rule out paid advertisements from social sources such as Facebook or Twitter.

Email marketing

If you already have an email marketing campaign, make sure you are sending readers to your landing pages. These users will usually be familiar with your brand, so bear in mind that conversion rates will probably be higher from these visitors.

Social media

On top of the PPC ads that social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter provide, you can also share links to your landing pages on your social media channels organically and encourage social sharing to drive even more visitors.

Key takeaways:

  • • Landing pages are rarely as effective as possible without optimization.
  • • Use A/B testing or multivariate testing to optimize landing pages.
  • • Test every element on your landing page.
  • • Drive traffic to your landing pages via your own
  • • website, PPC ads, emails, and social media.

Now, go launch your landing page

If you’ve gotten this far, you know everything you need to know to allow you to start creating and optimizing landing pages for your website. SharpSpring makes it easy to get started. With pre-built templates and a drag and drop interface, you won’t even need a designer. Get out there, post a page and start getting leads today.

Also read: Digital Marketing Foundation - Every Student Should Know

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