6 Effective Landing Page Design Principles That Work (With Examples)

Whether it be online or offline, initial impressions matter. In the online world, a landing page is often the first impression a potential customer has of a business.

As such, how interesting a landing page is can be the difference between a lifelong customer and a lost customer.

What’s a Landing Page?

So, what is a landing page? A landing page is a page on your website that is created specifically for a marketing campaign.

It is the page where the users land after clicking on an advertisement or a link in a campaign. A landing page has goals such as collecting the user’s contact information, making a sale, and so on.

What differentiates a high-conversion landing page from one with a high bounce rate? What can you do to design a landing page that gets you inbound traffic? In this article, we’ll discuss both.

Understand Your Customer’s Pain Points

A business that solves its customers’ problems is a successful one. A landing page is your opportunity to communicate how your product or service will solve your customers’ problems.

If you can explain how they’ll benefit from your product or service, they’ll make a purchase. So how do you do that?

1. Show, Don’t Tell

Muzzle’s landing page is one of the best examples of showing, not telling.

Have you ever had an embarrassing or distracting notification popup on your computer while someone else was watching? If so, then Muzzle’s landing page likely triggered some repressed memories.

But not to worry - Muzzle has a solution! With their app, you’ll never have to worry about pesky notifications interrupting your meetings again.

Muzzle’s use of a single sentence (“a simple Mac app to silence embarrassing notifications while screen sharing”) and simple animation effectively highlights the problem their target audience has experiences and provides them with a solution.

When designing your landing page, remember that people don’t enjoy reading walls of text. Capture the user’s attention immediately by presenting your product or service as the solution to their problems.

Keep it simple. An effective landing page design presents the information in a minimal and non-intrusive way.

2. Be Relevant

If a landing page isn’t relevant to your customer, they’ll leave your page without taking any action. Understand your audience persona better to be able to design an effective landing page.

The best way to do this is to understand the needs of your audience. The next step is to design specific landing pages for each audience segment.

For example, let’s say you’re the company Sendinblue and your audience is coming from the Google keyword search “MailChimp comparison”. What can we tell about them?

1) They are looking for a service similar to MailChimp
2) They’re likely familiar with MailChimp already
3) They’re interested in learning more about other services similar to MailChimp and comparing them with MailChimp

The landing page design should be specifically tailored to such people, and that’s exactly what Sendinblue did.

Knowing this, Sendinblue highlighted a problem of overpaying with MailChimp and provided their solution by directly comparing how they’re a better deal.

Know the specific segment of your target audience and design the landing page to specifically solve their unique problems.

3. Highlight the Value

Design your landing page with the value your brand brings as the highest priority. After that has been established, focus on information that supplements this value.

Airbnb’s landing page is an excellent example of this. Through their ad targeted towards hosts, they immediately show you how much money hosts can make with Airbnb.

Those who are considering hosting their property with Airbnb are most likely doing so to make extra money. As such, for most people coming across this landing page, the amount of money Airbnb can generate for their property is the most important information they’re searching for.

It’s only after this is made apparent that Airbnb provides supplementary information, i.e. a safe and simple onboarding process. Logically this is the best approach since the viewer’s main inquiry was answered immediately.

Chances are high that they will scroll through the rest of the page which, if designed correctly, will enhance their view of the brand and likely of making an action.

While designing a landing page, ask yourself what is the highest value proposition of your business. Now focus on creating a design around that.

4. Use Eye-catching Imagery

Great imagery is captivating. It’s intriguing, engaging, and essential to sparking the desire to learn more.

Squarespace’s landing page is a prime example of using effective imagery. Immediately, the landing page viewer will be drawn into the imagery, likely with a sparked interest of seeing more of what Squarespace does.

Squarespace’s business revolves around convincing users that they too can create beautifully designed websites through their platform, and what better way to do this than by showing off elegant websites that are simple to create?

Due to imagery, the landing page viewers can easily imagine themselves creating beautiful websites too by using Squarespace’s platform, which complements the “Show, don’t tell” aspect in step 1 of this article.

Effective Imagery Will:

a) Help explain abstract ideas or concepts
b) Allow the user to imagine themselves using your product or service
c) Showcase the value your product or service provides.

Sometimes that can be done through real images, and sometimes it’s more effectively done through illustrations.

5. Provide Social Proof

Your landing page is designed by you, and as such, you may be slightly biased about your business. That’s why social proof is so valuable, as it helps back all your claims.

You don’t need the CFO of GE to back your business for your testimonials to have value. What matters most is that businesses and people from your testimonials are similar to the audience that will see your landing page.

To reference step 2 of this article “Be relevant”, if you have the luxury of having many happy clients, make sure that the testimonials you showcase are relevant for the viewers of the landing page - both in regards to who the testimonials are from as well as what the testimonials are saying.

6. Optimize for the Funnel

According to Salesforce, it takes 6 to 8 touches to generate a viable lead, and your landing page may be the first touch. If you understand this, you’ll know that most people won’t immediately purchase your product or service upon visiting your landing page for the first time.

So what do you do, and does that mean all hope is lost? Far from it - it just means that you’ll need to realize that the landing page is one step of many. To get a sale, you’ll need to plan and account for multiple other touches.

This process can be referred to as the sales funnel, or the buying process that customers will take when purchasing from a business.

Generally, the customer begins the funnel by becoming aware of your business, then shows interest, then evaluates your business among other solutions, and then finally makes the purchase.

If the landing page is the potential customer’s first interaction with your business, chances are they’re not going to make a purchase right away.

That’s why it’s important to optimize towards bringing that potential customer into your funnel, which you can do by collecting their email address.

By collecting their email address you’ll be able to bring them back into your funnel, or if they’re already in your funnel, track their progress in your funnel.

This is so important that you may have noticed all of the landing page designs I’ve highlighted have sections optimized for the collection of email addresses.

Here’s a great example from Uber: When designing your landing page, make sure it’s crafted to make it easy for viewers to provide their email and other potential information.

You can do that by:

6a. Provide Captivating CTA Buttons

CTA (call-to-action) buttons encourage website visitors to perform a certain action - most commonly to sign up, request information, or make a purchase.

It’s essential that you place your CTAs in a location that is easily accessible and highly visible, such as somewhere the user can find without having to scroll.

One easy way to do this is through a floating CTA button to ensure it is always accessible regardless of where the visitor is on the page.

6b. Provide Free Resources or Extra Value

What’s a great way to get something from someone? Give them something. The principle of reciprocity works perfectly for enticing a customer to provide their email address - simply give them something of value in exchange.
Consider what your target audience finds enticing then provide it to them for free in exchange for their email.

6c. Convert Even Those That Exit

Some visitors will bounce, and that’s okay. However, if you’re creative, you can come up with ways to decrease your bounce rate by directly targeting those who would otherwise bounce through an exit popup.
Let your creativity run wild with this. For example, you could offer them something of value in this popup such as a discount of free resources. Give them something of value in exchange for their email. Know your audience and design something that they will react positively towards.

Conclusion

When designing a landing page, it’s important to understand your target audience’s perspective. They have specific pain points, and it’s your job to convince them that your product or service will alleviate those pain points.

By following the above tips, you’ll not only create a landing page that converts users into your sales funnel but will design one that sells.

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