Year in Review: A Look Back on the Biggest Updates of 2013

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By Kat Von Rohr, Writer for LeadPages

Here’s something you may not know…

This time last year, LeadPages didn’t exist. (At least, not as it does today.)

A year ago, LeadPages was still just an idea.The company went by another name. Our co-founders were still preparing to officially launch the LeadPages you know today in January 2013.

But a lot can happen in a year. In just the last 365 days, we have gone from being largely unnoticed to being the unstoppable force in our industry.

For starters, we have released over 50 new page templates for you. That includes dozens of free template downloads here on the blog. We have also created several firsts in our industry, including our sort by conversion tool and LeadBoxes.

We have also added more than 12,000 customers to LeadPages, and more than tripled the size of our staff. We even raised $5 million in venture capital, so we can keep growing and innovating new tools for you.

Knowing That, What Will You Do With the Next Year?

Again we did all this in just 2013. So imagine what you could accomplish in your own business by this time next year — especially if you have the right tools.

To help with that, today I’m giving you an insider’s look at the tools that we released here for you at LeadPages within the last year.

That includes every major update, free template download, and other innovation we released in 2013 — that you can start using in your business right now.

Think of this “year in review” as a quick cheat sheet for you to use as you’re laying out your marketing plans for 2014 and beyond.

January: WordPress Integration + 4 New Templates

We hit the ground running last January with four new page templates for you. Our CEO, Clay Collins also took a moment to show you how to use our WordPress plugin.

1. New template: Giveaway 2-Step Squeeze Page 

Our CEO, Clay Collins dubbed this Giveaway 2-Step Squeeze Page “his favorite page of 2013 so far” a year ago.
Our CEO, Clay Collins dubbed this Giveaway 2-Step Squeeze Page “his favorite page of 2013 so far” a year ago.

2. New template: Basic Centered Squeeze Page. 

Basic Centered Squeeze Page Resized
To this day, this basic centered squeeze page is one of the most popular templates inside LeadPages.

3. Update: Complete WordPress Integration 

Wordpress Right Size
In this video, Clay walked you through how to use our WordPress plugin with any of our LeadPages templates.

4. New template: The Order Form Opt-in Page

This order form opt-in page allows you to disguise your squeeze page as an order form.
This order form opt-in page allows you to disguise your squeeze page as an order form.

5. New template: Launching Soon Page

Fortune 500 companies, Google and Facebook all use Launching Soon pages like this to get their audiences excited about coming product -- and you can too.
Fortune 500 companies, Google and Facebook all use Launching Soon pages like this to get their audiences excited about coming products — and you can too.

February: Speeding Up Your Conversions + 2 New Templates

In February, we followed up with two new templates and a quick tutorial on how to use a faster server to literally speed up your conversions.

1. New template: Special Offer with Countdown: Bonus Sandwich 

This Bonus Sandwich page is “sandwiched” between your sales page and your checkout page, and it offers a bonus that’s only offered for a limited time.
This Bonus Sandwich page is “sandwiched” between your sales page and your checkout page, and it gives you one more chance to offer your buyers a bonus to close the sale.

 2. Tutorial: Speed up Your Conversions

According to Kissmetrics, 40% of your potential customers will abandon your site if it takes more than three seconds to load. In this video, our CEO Clay Collins will show you how to increase your server speed to increase your conversions.
According to Kissmetrics, 40% of visitors will abandon your site if it takes more than three seconds to load. In this video, Clay Collins will show you how to avoid this from now on.

3. New Template: Giveaway (2-Step) Squeeze Page, #2

This Giveaway (2-Step) Squeeze Page, #2 -- aka the “Welcome Gate 2.0 page” -- has been known to boost response by as much as 8x.
This Giveaway (2-Step) Squeeze Page, #2 — aka the “Welcome Gate 2.0 page” — has been known to boost response many times over.

March: Facebook + 3 New Templates

In March, we started featuring templates from LeadPages users, like this webinar page from James Schramko.

1. New Template: Webinar Page from James Schramko

In the months since this was released, this webinar page from James Schramko has become one of our most popular pages.
In the months since this was released, this webinar page from James Schramko has become our highest-converting webinar page.

2. New Template: Thanks for signing up page.

This thank you page allows you to make sales while you’re building your list.
This thank you page allows you to make sales while you build your email list.

3. Tutorial: 3 Reasons to Post Your Pages on Facebook

 In this video, our CEO, Clay Collins is giving you a quick tutorial on how to post your pages on Facebook.
In this video, Clay is giving you a quick tutorial on how to post your pages on Facebook.

4. New Template: Basic Squeeze Page

Since this Basic Squeeze Page was released, it’s become one of our most popular.
Since this Basic Squeeze Page was released, it’s become another popular page.

April: New Templates, Bookmarklets, and First Name Fields

In April, we really started ramping up. We released more templates from our customers and from our own Conversion Lab. In fact, we released more templates than I have room to give you here.

We also added several new features, including Bookmarket and First Name Fields that you can see below.

1. New Template: Video Fake-Out Squeeze Page (Co-created with Charles Kirkland) 

This Video Fake-Out Page originally grabbed Charles Kirkland a 72% conversion rate.
Charles Kirkland originally got a 72% conversion rate on this Video Fake-Out Page.

2. New Template: YouTube Landing Page (Co-Created with James Wedmore)

If you have a YouTube channel, this YouTube Landing Page from James Wedmore is the page to check it out.
If you have a YouTube channel, this YouTube Landing Page from James Wedmore is the page to check out.

3. New Feature: You Can Now Use First Name Fields

As of April of this year, you can now add first name fields to your pages.
As of April of this year, you can now add first name fields to your pages.

4. New Feature: Edit Your Pages with a Single Click with Bookmarklet

This is Clay’s favorite “pet feature.” It’s called “Bookmarklet” and it allows you to bookmark your pages so you can edit them with a single click.
This is Clay’s favorite pet feature. It’s called “Bookmarklet” and it allows you to bookmark your pages so you can edit them with a single click.

May: New Templates for Your Podcasts, Blog Posts and Webinars

In May, we started releasing templates for podcasters, bloggers, and more entrepreneurs who hosts webinars. We also released one of our favorite features, known as “pre-populating your name fields.”

1. New Template: Podcast Page

This podcast page helps you get higher rankings in iTunes, while you build your email list.
This podcast page helps you get higher rankings in iTunes, while you build your email list.

2. New Template: Webinar Replay Page

This webinar replay page (with the countdown clock) creates urgency for your subscribers to watch your webinar -- and it drives seals.

This webinar replay page (with the countdown clock) creates urgency for your subscribers to watch your webinar, and drives more sales.

3. New Template: SEO Blog Category Page

Blog SEO page for May resized
This SEO blog category page is designed to get Google’s attention — so you can rank higher in search engines.

June: 404 Error Pages, Launch Pages and Analytics

In June, we released one of our top features — our “404 feature” that lets you optimize any 404 page and turn it into a sales opportunity.

We also introduced you to a new launch page, our built-in analytics and several other brand new templates.

1. New Feature: 404 Error Pages Become Sales Opportunities

404 feature resized
With this new 404 feature, you can turn any page on your site into a sales opportunity.

2. New Template: The Mobile-Responsive Launch Page

This easy-to-use launch page lets you set up an entire launch in minutes.
This easy-to-use launch page lets you set up an entire launch in minutes.

3. New Feature: Built-in Analytics

Analytics Resized
LeadPages has always worked with analytics tools like MixPanel, Visual Website Optimizer, Kissmetrics, Google Content Experiments, etc. But this update allows you to track analytics within LeadPages itself.

4. New Template: Adwords/PPC Ready Squeeze Page

PPC Adwords Resized
Google loves this Adwords/PPC Ready Squeeze Page (from Juan Martitegui). It’s designed to get noticed by the ad networks — and still get you the highest conversions possible.

July: Custom Templates, Lead Magnets and Our “Sort by Conversion Tool”

In July, we released a ton of new features for you. That includes two of our biggest, most important developments…

1) Our “lead magnet delivery system,” that allows you to send your prospects free content from LeadPages directly, and

2) Our “sort by conversion tool” that shows you the best-performing templates inside LeadPages in seconds.

1. Feature Update: Submit Custom Templates – If That’s Your Thing

With this new feature, we made it possible for certain customers to contribute custom landing page templates to the LeadPages community.
With this new feature, we made it possible for certain customers to contribute custom landing page templates to the LeadPages community.

2. Feature Update: Deliver Your Content or “Lead Magnets” Directly from LeadPages

With this new digital asset delivery system, you can now easily deliver any free content or “lead magnets” directly from LeadPages.
With this new digital asset delivery system, you can now easily deliver any free content or “lead magnets” directly from LeadPages.

 3. A First In Our Industry: Our Sort By Conversion Tool 

This is probably the biggest, most important development since the launch of LeadPages. Our “sort by conversion tool” lets any customer instantly see our highest converting pages with a single click.
A First in Our Industry: Our “sort by conversion tool” lets any customer instantly see our highest converting pages with a single click.

August: A New Sales Page, Split-Testing and a “Sexification” Update

In August, we released one of our biggest upgrades — or “sexification update  — to date. This new update just made it even easier to navigate around the LeadPages site.

We also released a new long form sales letter, an easy-to-use split-testing tool, and a new 404 page that lets you turn missing pages or broken links on your site into quick squeeze pages (so you can continue to build your list).

1. New Template: Long Form Sales Letter

This epic long form sales letter has everything you want in a high-converting sales letter. That includes plenty of space for a headline, video, testimonials, a guarantee, “buy now” buttons, and more.
This epic long form sales letter has everything you want in a high-converting sales letter. That includes plenty of space for a headline, video, testimonials, a guarantee, “buy now” buttons, and more.

2. New Feature: Built-in Split Testing  

In August, we released the easiest, most user-friendly split testing tool that we have ever seen in our industry. (Now available to all pro members inside LeadPages.)
In August, we released the easiest, most user-friendly split testing tool that we have ever seen in our industry. (Now available to all pro members inside LeadPages.)

3. New Template: The 404 Error Page

404 Page resized
People LOVE this 404 error page. It lets you quickly and easily turn any missing or broken pages on your site into an instant conversion tool.

September: $5 Million in Venture Capital & a New eBook Page for Authors

In September, we announced that our “hush-hush fling” with Foundry Group and Arthur Ventures was officially legal. We also secured $5 million in venture capital financing to make LeadPages even more awesome going forward.

We also released a new mini-site template for authors…

1. New Template: eBook Landing Page (from Pat Flynn)

Personally, this is my favorite template inside LeadPages. This eBook Landing Page (from Pat Flynn) from gives you an entire mini-site to market your new book or publication.
Personally, this is my favorite template inside LeadPages. This eBook Landing Page (from Pat Flynn) gives you an entire mini-site to market your new book or publication.

October: Multiple Form Fields and Multi-Purpose Pages

In October, we finally released a major update that our customers had been asking for — multiple form fields. We also introduced you to an extremely versatile G+ page and two new gorgeous webinar pages.

1. New Feature: Multiple Form Fields

With this new feature update, you can now add multiple form fields to select pages inside LeadPages -- so you can collect your subscribers’ phone numbers, addresses, favorite colors or any other data you need. :)
With this new feature update, you can now add multiple form fields to select pages inside LeadPages — so you can collect your subscribers’ phone numbers, addresses, favorite colors or any other data you need. :)

2. New Templates: Two New Webinar Registration Pages to Crush All Others

This Web 3.0 Webinar Registration Page (with countdown timer) is just one of the two gorgeous webinar pages we released in October. Our goal? To try to “dethrone” James Schramko’s webinar registration page that we released in March.
This Web 3.0 Webinar Registration Page (with countdown timer) is just one of the two gorgeous webinar pages we released in October. Our goal? To try to “dethrone” James Schramko’s webinar registration page that we released in March.

3. New Template: Our Most Versatile Google+ Hangout Page Yet

G+ page resized
This “4-in-one” page is perfect for G+ hangouts. But you can also use this page as a video sale page, webinar page and opt-in page.

November: Major Facelift + New Video Background Page

Last month, we released an entirely new design for inside LeadPages. This new user-friendly design makes it easier than ever to sort through all the templates inside LeadPages.

We also introduced you to four new templates including the extremely popular video background…

1. New Template: Video Background 

This Video Background page has already tripled response for our customers since we released it in November.

December: A First in Our Industry: LeadBoxes

In December, we released the biggest innovation since we launched LeadPages earlier this year — LeadBoxes.

This “feature of the year” allows you to easily grow your email list from any html site — without a landing page. Simply drop in the code for a LeadBox and you can start building your list from anywhere.

1. Feature of the Year: LeadBoxes

A LeadBox in action: This lead capture box only appears when your subscribers click on a sidebar or link to join your list.

Looking Ahead: What’s Coming in 2014

Not bad for the first year in business, right? 🙂

Just imagine what’s coming next year. For our part, our entire development team is working on some amazing innovations for 2014. That includes a major release that’s happening within the next couple weeks. Be on the lookout for that.

In the meantime, what was your favorite page or feature from the last year? Are there any features you’d like to see us add in 2014? If so, drop them into the comments below.

  • It’s been a very productive year! Only started using this tool recently and I love it. I and probably a lot of members are hoping in 2014 that you provide us more flexibility with the templates so we can add or hide ANY elements on all your templates. A free form or built in wysiwyg editor would be the greatest addition so we can do everything here on leadspages.net.

    Give us those two things and it’s going to be even a better 2014! Keep up the good work!

    • Hi Eddy!

      Thanks for the kind words. We’re absolutely working on improving our builder and adding more flexibility, and we’re going to have some very exciting things to announce very very soon. But (on purpose) we’ll never be a 100% drag and drop editor. Let me explain why: ever since the internet began, folks have wanted a simple program where they can drag and drop and create any web page that they can imagine. The problem with this is that no wysiwyg web page builder is going to be better than coding the page with HTML/CSS by hand. There are a number of landing page builders in our space that offer drag and drop solutions, but they’re difficult and complicated to use, and most people give up on them, never implement their pages, and never make progress with them. These wysiwyg solutions have three problems: first, they work by having humans create a design, and then running a computer program that translates the design into HTML/CSS/JS. So the pages generated from these wysiwyg solutions are often clunky and slow because they are created by computers (not people). Second, pages created by drag and drop solutions are not mobile responsive. If a page is created from scratch by a drag and drop wysiwyg tool, you have to design multiple versions of the page page by hand for each screen that the page is going to be displayed on. Third, if a WYSIWYG tool is used, then every page created by a builder is 100% different and it becomes impossible to say anything at a platform level about how well the landing page template does or does not convert. If our tool were a drag and drop builder then this feature really wouldn’t be possible: http://blog.leadpages.net/best-landing-pages-how-to-find-them/ ; with LeadPages, you are modifying existing templates rather than creating pages from scratch. This leads to better conversions, extreme ease of use, faster more mobile responsive pages, and the ability to tell you which landing pages convert best across our entire platform. And while there are many positives to our approach, there are some limitations and we’re trying our best to eliminate those.

      Warm regards,
      Clay

      • Clay, I appreciate the detailed explanation. What you’re saying makes sense. I suspected that might be the reason why a true drag and drop option isn’t available. It probably doesn’t produce the cleanest code and it would make it difficult for you to track the best converting landing pages. So I hear your argument in that respect.

        That being said, I’m happy you realize there are some limitations and you’re looking to address them in a way that doesn’t compromise speed, responsiveness, etc. I think at the very least if we do have the option of adding and hiding all available elements on all the templates rather than a few, that would open up a world of possibilities.

        Either way I know 2014 is going to be a great year for your company and I look forward to see what you guys have planned!

        Keep up the good work and continued success to you!

  • Ash

    Hey Clay. Congratulations on all your achievements.

    But here’s another first: After buying your product I’ve emailed your about 6 times asking you if you will be supporting Campaign Monitor (that’s my email client) but I am still waiting for a response.

    Could you please respond?

    • Hi Ash! Thanks for writing. Unfortunately, I haven’t received your emails so I’m not sure you have the right email address. Either way, it’s not really practical for me to provide 1-on-1 technical support from my personal email address. That’s why we have an amazing customer support team. If you have a customer support questions just file a ticket at http://support.LeadPages.net ; if you’ve already filed a ticket there and haven’t heard back then the response is likely in your spam folder (unless you’ve emailed 6 times in the last few minutes, in which case they might not have gotten to it yet :-).

      Anyway, the best way to get customer support is to go through our customers support.

      Warm regards,
      Clay

      • Ash

        Hi Clay! Thanks for your response. Much appreciated.

        I completely understand that it’s not practical for you to provide 1-on-1 support … That certainly wasn’t what I was expecting.

        As a matter of fact I did log a ticket back in September which led me to this page back on the 6th of September.

        Here’s the link: https://support.leadpages.net/entries/21713924-PLEASE-add-Campaign-Monitor-as-one-of-your-Email-Integrations

        In the forums, I requested that campaign monitor be included in the forums (along with about 6 other people).

        After not having received a response for a while I tried emailing with very limited success.

        And no, I didn’t email 6 times in few minutes. I happen to be reasonably familiar with the world wide web and realise that responses take more than a few minutes to come back. So I tend to wait at least for about a week or more between emails. 🙂

        I appreciate you providing me with the ticket filing URL. As I said I’ve already filed a ticket back in September and am keen to get a response.

        I look forward your a response.

        Congratulations again on your excellent achievements in 2013. I wish you all the best for the future and look forward to being part of your future successes as a loyal customer.

        🙂

        • Hi Ash, I think something is technically wrong. We’re hyper vigilant about support. Our support ticket system is showing that all tickets have been responded to within 24 hours, so if you’re not receiving a response it’s either because (1) our responses are ending up in your spam folder, or (2) you’re not filing your support ticket from the same email address that you used to purchase LeadPages, or (3) you were not a paying LeadPages customer at the time that you filed your support ticket. If you would respond to this support ticket with the first and last name associated with your LeadPages account I can have someone from our support team look into this further. Right now all I know is that your first name is “Ash” so there’s no way to check on you or your account.

          Thanks for everything.

          Warm regards,
          Clay

          • Ash

            Hi Clay. Thanks for getting back to me again so promptly. Much appreciated.

            I appreciate that they may be technical issues and I am keen to try and help resolve this as soon as possible.

            I have just logged another ticket (Using the link that you provided in your initial message) which took me through to the same comments section in which I had placed a comment back in September.

            Here’s a link to the comment section where my link appears (my most recent comment is at the bottom of the page) https://support.leadpages.net/entries/21713924-PLEASE-add-Campaign-Monitor-as-one-of-your-Email-Integrations

            I logged the ticket about 5 minutes ago and haven’t received an email in my junk or my normal email so you’re right – it appears there is a technical issue in the emails coming out.

            I’d be happy to take this conversation offline if that helps and communicate directly with one of your team to get the issue resolved.

            🙂

            Also I reset my password earlier today and that email came through fine … So perhaps I’m using the wrong link to log my issue?

          • Ah, I see the issue. It looks like you didn’t file a support ticket. Instead, you posted in our general users forum. In order to file a support ticket, go here: https://support.leadpages.net/home and then click on the link that says “Click here to file a support ticket.” This link can be found under the section that says “Need to file a support ticket.” We certainly read all posts to the feature request forums, but you aren’t guaranteed a response in the forums. You are only guaranteed a response if you post a formal support ticket. If you post to our twitter account, our FB page, blog comments, G+ page, and our support forums or other forums on the internet there is a good chance you’ll get a response (like you’re getting a response here). But in order to be guaranteed a response from one of our support technicians you must file a support ticket. Not a forum post. The support ticket submission screen looks like this: http://screencast.com/t/erpRq7OW … and you can get here by clicking this button: http://screencast.com/t/cqnbh4UZ

            Thanks, Ash!

            –Clay

          • Ash

            Hi Clay. Thanks very much for pointing me in the right direction.

            I have lodged a support ticket as you suggested. I look forward to the response 🙂

  • Leadpages and Leadboxes are friggin’ awesome!

    I would love to see Leadboxes have space for a small image so we could have a picture of the ebook they’re signing up for. Just like the popup box on the ‘eBook Landing Page (from Pat Flynn)’.

    • Kat Von Rohr

      Thanks Jim! Actually, adding images to LeadBoxes is one of the updates coming in 2014. Be on the lookout for more developments like this soon!

  • Josh

    Having the ability to manually scale images inside of LeadPages would be cool too. Sometimes it seems like an image would fit better in certain templates if it was larger or smaller, but LeadPages auto sizes images when you add them to the template.

    • Kat Von Rohr

      Good feedback. Thanks Josh!

  • Randy Hazlett

    You guys rock!

  • Kevin

    It was awesome and exhaustive to read this and realize all the work that it took accomplishing this. Great review, Kat!

    • Jeff Wenberg

      Kevin, isn’t Kat an amazing writer?! Constantly in awe over here. Happy New Years!

  • LeadPages only around for a year? Amazing. Fast movers. Keep crushing it in 2014!

    • Kat Von Rohr

      Thanks Joe!!! Happy New Year! 🙂

  • Glennsage

    Love LeadPages. I would love to see a page devoted to suggestions that we have for you and then we can vote on different suggestions, refine other people’s suggestions, etc. So here’s my suggestion for LeadBoxes. I want to use LeadBoxes on the checkout page of my site (www.SurvivalStill.com) but the LeadBox forces me to redirect them to a thank you page. I don’t want to interupt their flow in my check out or another page that they are looking at. I just want it to pop-up, take their info and them drop them back where they started from. This is true not just of my checkout, but if they are reading a blog, i want them to keep reading the blog. Thanks.

    • Kat Von Rohr

      That’s awesome to hear! 🙂 Thanks for the suggestion. Just FYI: As a customer, you can suggest any templates or other features that you’d like to see inside LeadPages by clicking on “feature requests” on our support page: https://support.leadpages.net/home.

      Good news: I just checked in with our support team to see if you can use a LeadBox to redirect back to your original page. YES! You should be able to. You simply have to use the original URL as the thank you page URL for your LeadBox. Our customer support team would be happy to walk you through how to do this. You can reach out to them directly through the support link above. Hope that helps!