By now, you've heard of landing pages and know how essential they are to a complete Inbound marketing campaign.
But are you a little confused about what should go on your landing page, and wondering how to put all the pieces together on Joomla?
Read on to learn how!
Start With the Goal
The first thing to consider before building your landing page is the intent of that page. It may be to convert visitors into leads via a free eBook. It may be to close sales via a promotional discount. It might just be to get people to sign up to your email list.
Whatever the goal, map out all the people who might potentially convert here (see this article on personas to explore this concept further). Think about ways you can most effectively communicate your offering to these specific individuals, and consider what elements will be instrumental in convincing them (language, social proof, etc.) This will help you build a general concept for your page.
Then, map out all the actions they might take after converting (an eBook download might be followed by an email subscription, a purchase might be followed by a social media interaction, etc.) Chances are you don't want someone to convert and disappear, you want them to stick around and get friendly with your business.
Consider all the desirable steps that person might take after they convert on this page. You'll need these for #7.
Grab Attention, Then Direct It
You never get a second chance at a first impression, in life and in landing pages. The headline of an effective landing page is often the trickiest element, because it holds such considerable weight in whether or not the reader continues on the page.
Based on your persona-focused strategy from point one, you need to craft a unique headline that speaks to your personas pain points and goals. Don't focus on the conversion (a marketing eBook, a discounted purchase), focus on the big picture outcome (increased revenue for the downloader, or a solved problem for the product user).
If you're building your landing page as an article in Joomla, simply write the headline as the title of the page. If possible, turn off excess menu items and modules that will distract from the key offer at hand. Once you've harnessed the reader's attention, you're ready to direct it to your explainer text and page layout.
Landing pages are different from normal website pages. They're meant to drive an action. When we want people to do something, it's best to keep our communication style simple and focused on how the act will benefit them.
A few important things to keep in mind when laying out your page:
- Don't exceed 150 words on your landing page. Getting too wordy will distract the reader from the actual action and will bring your conversions down.
- Use bullets to drive attention to key elements (benefits of the product, themes of the eBook, etc.)
- Structure the page for the user's decision process and normal reading habits. Headline goes at the top, explainer text goes on the left, and the form goes on the right.
It's generally easiest to accomplish all of this by creating a two column article.
Keep It Visual
Text and structure are important, but visual aspects play an equally important role. Whatever your headline says, you need to include an image to communicate it visually.
There are a lot of ways to approach this, from an image of the actual offer to an image that captures the "feeling" or vibe you want to communicate to the reader.
For example, for a marketing eBook, you might simply include the eBook's cover. Or, you could show photos of marketing teams and workplace elements that the eBook references.
Whatever it is, make sure the image makes sense for your headline, offer, and persona.
Put Your Form to Work
Speaking of forms, the form is the actual gateway between visitor and conversion. Your form's length, complexity, and user-friendliness will be the final deciding factor when someone is considering converting. So make it count!
The more questions you ask on a form, the fewer conversions you'll get. However, the less questions you ask, the less you'll be able to qualify and score leads. So it's a balancing act here.
Ask for only the information you need, and consider making some elements optional. This helps the user feel in control, and doesn't bog them down in the process of trying to convert.
There are tons of Joomla components for building and customizing forms. Check them out in the Extensions Directory.
Be a Social Butterfly
Are you an introvert? Tough cookies, because landing pages are no place to be unsociable. In fact, your harnessing of social proof and social sharing will be a key component in the success of your offer.
Social proof is one of the quintessential strategies of psychological influence, and it's power should not be overlooked on landing pages. You can incorporate social proof with elements such as a download counter ("1,200 people have revolutionized their marketing with the help of this free eBook!") or a testimonial (a quote and photo from a happy converter).
As far as enabling social sharing, this technique basically allows you to get free marketing from the most valuable medium: word of mouth. You might include social sharing buttons on your landing page, but in some cases it's more strategically sound to include them on your thank you page. This depends on the nature of the offer and whether someone might be willing to promote it before actually experiencing/seeing it.
There are tons of extensions available for social integration. You can review them all in the JED.
Mind Your Manners
As children, one of the first bits of etiquette we learn is the importance of saying "Thank You". If we know to say "thank you" to anyone who does us a favor, why wouldn't we say it to someone who has just opted to become a lead?
The fault in many landing pages is they treat the form conversion as a dry business transaction, rather than a friendly interaction. The user converts, that's the end of the story.
On the other hand, the landing pages that drive incremental conversions and build a positive relationship are the ones that direct users to a personalized, actionable Thank You page. Thank you pages play an important role in continuing to build the connection with your new lead, and also in directing them to take an additional action.
Remember all the way back at the beginning of this post, when we discussed outlining the potential steps someone might take after converting? This is the place to guide them through those steps!
If you want people to spread the word about your offer, incorporate social sharing on your Thank You page. If you want people to convert on another offer, insert a call-to-action on your Thank You page. Whatever you want them to do, you have to ask!
Above all else, remember that the intent of your Thank You page is to be gracious toward this new lead/customer, and to make them feel appreciated. Be genuine and deliver what you promised on the landing page.
Whew, we covered a lot here. Before you ride off into the sunset, let's recap what you need to build a landing page on Joomla:
- A concrete goal, and a map of your persona's potential wants and actions after a conversion
- An attention grabbing headline
- A strategically structured page
- Visual elements
- A form component
- Social tie-ins
- A Thank You page
Here's an example of one of our landing pages that incorporates many of these key elements (and yes, it directs to a Thank You page!):