What are Landing Pages Used For?

The Ultimate Guide to Landing Pages - Chapter 2

Landing pages are everywhere on the internet. You’ve probably already visited at least one today without having the thought:

“Hey, this must be a landing page! I’m on one right now!”

But remember, landing pages aren’t just the page you land on when you arrive on a website. Just because you enter a website through the home page (or “land” there) doesn’t make a website’s homepage a landing page. In fact, that goes for any other page you might visit, for any given website. Just because you land on the page, doesn’t make it a landing page.

It may sound confusing, but it’s actually quite simple. Landing pages have a very specific purpose. And that purpose is conversions. In simplest terms: A landing page entices visitors to take an action.

The way most landing pages accomplish this is by reducing the amount of actions visitors can take on the page, down to the most important one. This helps arriving visitors know exactly what they should do, and prevents them from becoming distracted, not accomplishing that desired behavior, and exiting the page.

Also, in the last chapter, we answered the question, “What is a landing page?” For a full learning course on what landing pages are, click here. Now, in this chapter, we’ll be looking at good landing page examples and a wide variety of use cases, to help you discern how landing pages can work for you.

Ready for a reminder of what a landing page is?

Watch as our Educational Content Creator, Ryan Kopperud breaks down the ins and outs of what a landing page really is. In just two minutes, he’ll talk about what they are and what they can do for you and your business.

 

Getting Landing Page Conversions

While there are nearly endless use cases for landing pages, there are three main types of landing pages—used for three separate kinds of conversions. You’ve probably encountered at least one (if not all) of these landing pages types in your internet history, and you might even already be using one or more of these for your business right now. Let’s briefly go over the three types of landing pages:

1. Lead Collection Landing Pages

The first type of conversion that many people use landing pages for is lead collection, or essentially, a way to obtain someone’s email address or other contact details. Some people simply ask for this information, while others promise some kind of value in return, like a consultation, a piece of content, a free online course, a compilation of podcast episodes, and the list goes on and on.

2. Sales Pages for Products or Services

The second type of conversion that people build landing pages for is sales. Sounds simple enough, right? When you remove the distractions of common web pages that we talked about earlier (like various menu options, ads, promoted posts, or simply the close button), you give visitors only one simple choice: buying your product or service.

That’s why so many digital marketers and business owners find landing pages to be an invaluable tool for making sales.

3. Event Registration Landing Pages

The third conversion type that landing pages are often used for is registering web visitors for live or online events. With a small amount of information, it’s fairly simple to encourage people to take an action on a landing page. That’s why these pages are a perfect instrument for converting visitors into registrants. This is also a common form of lead collection, but event registration pages are tailored specifically to invite these leads to an online or in person event, so they can sell them a product during the actual event.


Using Landing Pages to Distribute Information

A secondary, but also very important reason that digital marketers and business owners use landing pages, is simply providing information. At Leadpages, our builder features simple drag and drop tools, easy text editors, and fast deployment to custom domains or hosted links, so you can create informative, high-converting, and attractive landing pages in a matter of minutes.

That’s why marketers who simply want to drive prospects or customers to informational content find landing pages to be the fastest and most effective method to distribute this information. (This information content can be a manifesto-style blog post, a page that hosts images from a past event, a single location for all the testimonials about your business, a thank you page after a purchase, etc.)

You can think of these types of landing pages almost as mini-sites, used as a fast and centralized web pages for a singular purpose.

Ecommerce powerhouse Four51 succeeds with Leadpages

“Leadpages has helped us increase our efficiency in creating lead gen experiences for all of the different campaigns we have going on… Because of this, we’ve been able to increase our leads per month by close to 100%.”

- Kayla Bryant, Marketing Director at Four51

 

Using Landing Pages for Content Marketing

We’ve previously discussed that many digital marketers and online businesses are using landing pages to collect leads. Simply asking people for their email address, however, isn’t always the most effective way to do that. Enter content marketing—one of the primary lead generation tactics.

What is content marketing?

Content marketing is the simple process of creating a piece of content, and trading it for a prospect’s email address, via a digital exchange. It’s not only a way of starting a relationship with potential customers, but it builds trust with your visitors from the start.

Our friends at the Content Marketing Institute have a great working definition of content marketing, which they describe as:

“...a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly-defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.”

Leadpages Manager of Marketing Education, Bob The Teacher explored this concept in a different way in our Email List Building Course. In this course, Bob shares the “loaf of bread" analogy he learned from marketing automation expert Chris L. Davis to describe your lead generation process. You can look at the product or service you’re trying to sell your customers as a loaf of bread and your valuable content as a “slice of that bread.” If you want to sell your potential customers on buying that loaf of bread (or your product), you should be giving away a “slice of that bread” as your valuable piece of free content in exchange for your prospect’s email address. It’s a taste of what you do, that sets the tone and whets the appetites of your leads.

This is where content marketing comes in. You’re trying to get more leads or prospects into your funnel.

Your customer base is trying to find knowledge, information, services, and products that can help them succeed.

By giving your prospects valuable free information (or even a “slice of your overall product”), you’re participating in that exchange. That is known as content marketing. To do it well, it’s essential to create quality content. It’s also essential to create landing pages to give yourself the best opportunity to collect leads in exchange for that quality content.

GE Digital drives massive content marketing ROI with Leadpages.

“Any time a new content asset is produced, we’d like to automatically create a Leadpage and a couple of variations to test, then run campaigns to those pages indefinitely… Our conversion rates have been very high, and it’s time to get them even higher by testing different Leadpages out.”

CLICK HERE TO SEE THEIR SUCCESS STORY

This accomplishes more than simply generating leads. Businesses that provide valuable content in exchange for a lead’s email address establish trust in their products and services, and provide lasting benefits to their visitors and customers.

How do you start content marketing?

Content marketing can seem daunting especially to new business owners. But in reality, all you need to do is create a valuable piece of content, like a short ebook, a video, a checklist, a buying guide, etc. and create a landing page to give it away to start collecting email addresses.

Remember, just because the piece of content you create is valuable doesn’t mean it has to take a ton of time and resources to create. It also doesn’t need to cost you a penny to create either. Here, we’ve put together five fast steps to helping you successfully knock out your first content piece.

1. Brainstorm your topic.

Ask yourself: "What does my audience want?" Think about what people who want your product or service would be interested in. If you already have an audience, you can go ahead and try asking them directly (in a survey, email, social media etc.)! Ask your customers: What types of value can they get from you in the future? What’s something you can easily talk or write about that demonstrates you’re an authority in your field?

2. Decide on your content format.

Ask yourself: "What am I willing to create that my audience would most want from me." For example, you might not have time to write a 10 page ebook, but then again, your audience might not have time to read one either. And that’s okay! There’s always other ways to create content. For example, could your content be filmed quickly as a video—even just with your cell phone? What about creating a one-page buying guide or checklist from a popular template you download online? Whatever you decide, be sure it’s something you know will be valuable to your prospects, something that’s easy to create, and something consistent with what they may want to buy from you in the future.

3. Outline your content piece.

Before diving in, it’s great to create a rough outline or mind map before you get started. You don’t have to fully adhere to it later, but just having some mile markers in place before you start your journey can make a world of difference later on. Sometimes the best way to think about an outline, is listing what the primary takeaways you’d want someone reading it to receive. From there, you can further flesh out those takeaways with supporting thoughts and evidence.

4. Write your content piece.

Dive in! You’re the expert in your field, so trust your instincts, and write what you think will be of value without giving away too much of your product or service. Remember, the average person reads about 250 words per minute. You’ll want to be conscious of that as you write to your final length. If it’s narration for a video, most people only read aloud 150-200 words per minute, so keep that in mind as well.

5. Design and save your final piece of content.

There are numerous templates available online to help you create your first piece of content marketing, if you’re making a guide, an ebook, or a checklist of some kind. If you need some design help, there’s great services like Upwork, Fiverr and others that will help take your writing over the finish line with a professional look, for very little money too.

Once you’ve completed the above steps, and you’ve got your proud first content piece in hand, you’re ready to start content marketing with landing pages! It’ll be time to create your first landing page, and trade email addresses for that awesome and valuable piece of content you produced.

Ready to create an incredibly effective landing page?

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Using Landing Pages for Event Promotion

Another popular use of landing pages that we mentioned above is for promoting events. At Leadpages, we swear by promoting our events with landing pages. In fact, we do it all the time.

Creating a quick and easy landing page only takes about 10 minutes inside Leadpages. That means you can pick a topic for your event, select a date, collect any other relevant information, and deploy a landing page that tells people about that event, registers them, and/or sells tickets in no time at all.

We’ve used landing pages for both our webinars and live events consistently in the past, and we’ve used them to fill up our webinars, every week for years. Whether you’re hosting events online or in-person, landing pages pages are perfect for your marketing, because of their high conversion rates and ease of deployment.

Webinar Landing Pages for Event Promotion

Webinars are fantastic tools for conversion. When potential customers attend your webinars, you can create a personal dynamic with those prospects and allow for tons of valuable information to be packed into a short period of time. Also, since they can be live and limited in the number of allowed attendees, webinars promote a level of scarcity that make them a highly valued piece of content.

We’ve been promoting our two weekly webinars using landing pages since Leadpages became a company, and we’ve found huge success in it.

See the webinar landing page Leadpages uses every single week.

At Leadpages, we drive thousands of prospects to this webinar page, and use it to generate tons of attendees to our webinars while converting hundreds of new clients every month.

REGISTER FOR OUR WEEKLY LIVE WEBINAR

Using Landing Pages for Follow Ups & Replays

If you’ve completed a webinar, a landing page is a perfect place to send people to a replay. Sure, you could send people to a YouTube link or a Wistia page, but both of those locations are much further out of control than a landing page is—you can’t collect more information from a YouTube page, you can’t easily sell anything on a Wistia landing page, and you can’t easily control the look, feel, and information around those videos. Equally important? The metrics you lose by not having a webinar replay on a landing page you own. You won’t know how many people arrive, how many people return, how long they stay, or where they go next.

Dropping a webinar replay onto a landing ensures you can control the experience of your customer and learn more about their behavior. With the right metrics and calls-to-action in place, you’re much more likely to convert webinar viewers into customers and more successfully grow your business.

Promoting Live Events with Landing Pages

At Leadpages, not only have we found great success with promoting our online events with landing pages, but we’ve found success by promoting our live in-person events using landing pages. With the ability to add tons of multimedia elements (like videos, gifs, and photos), sales copy, event details, as well as registration information and ticket purchasing,

Landing pages can be the one-stop shop for any live event promotion, too.

Registrations

With a landing page, it’s easy to accept registrations. Simply embed registration forms directly or the page or collect email addresses with a Leadbox, to increase the number of registrations you have for one of your live events. With a focused space like a landing page, you can promote your event, generate new leads, obtain the contact information you need to market to your registrants, and get the highest number of attendees possible.

Inside Leadpages, you can collect both webinar registrations and leads for your email service provider (ESP) at the same time. So for example, you can use GoToWebinar or WebinarJam to collect webinar registrations and then send that same lead to your ESP like Drip, Infusionsoft, MailChimp, Hubspot or others to collect leads at the same time. This can all be done with a single opt-in on your webinar page.

Ticket Sales

It sounds simplistic, but all you need to do is add a buy button! We at Leadpages (and many of our clients) have found success by reducing the amount of actions a visitor can take to just selling a ticket to their live event on a landing page. With the Leadpages Drag and Drop builder, you can embed an EventBrite ticket widget right on your landing page.

This keeps visitors in one location, allowing you to market your event and drive ticket sales, all on one single page. For an example of how we’ve done this in the past, check out our yearly conversion event, Converted 2016, and register to join us while you’re there!

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Webinar marketing has been an unbelievably effective tactic for us here at Leadpages, and you can make this tactic work just the same for you. In our free video course, we teach you the exact strategy Leadpages used for massive growth.

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Using Landing Pages for Affiliate Marketing

What is affiliate marketing?

Affiliate marketing is, in its simplest form, an online business method where marketers sell another company’s product or service, and receive a commission from any sales they drive. As you may already know, affiliate marketing is a perfect use case for landing pages, because they’re easy to set up and drive traffic to.

This means anyone can quickly create a focused landing page that promotes an affiliate partner’s service or a specific product (or number of related products) and drive affiliate sales and receive commissions. To illustrate what we mean by this, here’s a fast crash course in how to easily get started using landing pages for your affiliate marketing efforts and income.

Three Fast Methods for Successful Affiliate Marketing with Landing Pages

1. Create a Getting Started Landing Page

One popular affiliate marketing strategy is to create a page that helps visitors and new prospects get started in your market. It’s often referred to as a resources page. You can use resource pages to recommend affiliate products and services to your audience (using your unique affiliate links for each product). Many digital marketers make use of this technique. In fact, we have an affiliate program at Leadpages that allows our customers to collect a commission every time they recommend Leadpages, and make a sale.

Here’s one example from digital marketing rockstar and friend to Leadpages, Pat Flynn:

By driving traffic to a resource page where the only exit links send visitors to affiliate resources, you’ll drive commissions each each time someone buys one of the products you recommend. At the same time, they get professional insights and directed towards things that can help them be successful. This is one of those rare but delightful occasions where everyone wins!

For example, if I were a photographer, I might create a landing page that I link to off of my website. And on that page, I might write a description of the tools that I use to be a professional photographer, with a photograph and an affiliate link to buy it. This page could talk about the photo-editing software I use, my go-to camera, a few lenses, and an online service I use to sell and mail prints of my photographs. As an affiliate marketer, I would use affiliate links to drive traffic to all these outside web page, so I could collect commissions for each recommended sale.

You may very well not be a photographer, but you can see how driving affiliate commissions might work for you here.

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2. Create a Resource Guide Landing Page

As an affiliate marketer, you can also earn some fast commissions by combining the best practices of content marketing with a resource page like the one we just described.

You can do that by creating a resource guide landing page. A resource guide is a short piece of content that recommends, describes, and shows the most important resources you use, while using affiliate links to recommend these resources. Once you complete this piece of content, you can market this guide using a landing page.

When visitors opt-in to receive the content piece (that is, the resource guide) on your landing page, you’ll receive a commission every time someone clicks through and purchases one of those resources in the resource guide (which is usually a PDF).

Once again, visitors get a solid piece of content that has recommendations to help them succeed, and marketers get affiliate commissions and the email address of the visitor. Another win-win situation!

3. Create a Long Form Squeeze Landing Page

Cold-selling a product or service to anyone can take some convincing. Skepticism and reservations may prevent someone from being ready to pull the trigger right away. That’s why many affiliate marketers resort to a long form squeeze page, and drive traffic to it for their affiliate commissions.

The basics of this method are simple. You pick a product to sell and create something like an entire website housed on a single landing page. These pages are often SEO friendly, use multimedia elements, and have lots of content and options for visitors to purchase the intended product.

Imagine a landing page that has images, testimonials, samples, social proof, and engaging sales copy, all related to a single product—and the only links on that page are affiliate links to complete the purchase. As an affiliate marketer, you would then collect a commission every time you drive a sale from that long-form squeeze page.

This method can be a bit more intensive than the previous two, but it’s a proven method affiliate marketers have used to grow their businesses.


Using Landing Pages for Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising

PPC advertising is a common technique for driving traffic to any destination on the internet. But if you’re going to buy ads to drive traffic, why not make that destination a landing page? Whether your web traffic is paid or organic, keeping people on a page can be difficult. Once your visitors arrive, they’re more than likely ready to head to the next destination online quickly.

That’s why your best return on investment will come from a well-constructed landing page with minimal (if any) navigation, a clear call-to-action, and an enticing benefit. With these essential elements in place, your landing page is much more likely to convert brief and passing web visitors into leads that you can email and keep in contact with time and time again.

If you’re paying to drive people to an online location, make sure that location is a high-converting landing page. Using landing pages for pay-per-click advertising is so effective, because clear goals in both ads and on the landing page proper, will drive consistent intention and action from the people you attract.

How to Use Landing Pages for Pay-Per-Click Advertising

To get your wheels spinning we’ve put together a few fast steps to help you get started using PPC advertising with landing pages.

1. Select Your Advertising Platform

These days, you can buy pay-per-click ads almost anywhere. More content platforms and social media outlets are monetizing their information with advertising options every day. That’s because people are paying for them, and more importantly, they work.

If you’ve been thinking about driving traffic using PPC ads, ask yourself: “Which online locations do my specific potential customers spend time on?”

Here’s just a few examples of popular ad platforms that you might want to explore for your business as you begin using landing pages for PPC advertising.

  • Facebook Ads - If you’re targeting specific and focused demographics, interests, and communities, Facebook ads are your best bet.
  • Google Adwords Ads - When you want to drive traffic by matching keyword searches and direct interests of what people are entering into Google search engine queries.
  • Twitter Ads - Similar to Facebook, Twitter ads can target specific demographics, interests, and communities.
  • Reddit Ads - While there are fewer demographic targeting options, Reddit has many hyper-specific communities of people who are focused on a singular topic. Reddit ads are an emerging platform worth testing.
  • YouTube Ads - When you’ve already got (or want to start) creating video content for your marketing efforts, and generally when your offering is visually stimulating to begin with, YouTube ads can be highly effective.

See what’s working in Facebook advertising with our free course.

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2. Determine Your Offer

Before you can successfully advertise, you’ll have to decide what your offer is going to be. Are you going to specifically advertise your product or service, trying to convince people to buy right away? Are you going to give away a free piece of content, in order to obtain people’s email addresses, and get them familiar with your brand? Have you considered advertising a contest related to your product or service and requesting submissions?

Offers can vary greatly depending on what you want to accomplish with your ads, as well as the needs of your business. Whatever you decide, try to create an offer that’s genuinely irresistible for your specific audience, so you can maximize the ROI of your ads.

3. Build Your Landing Page

Once you know which ad service you’d like to use and what you’re offering, you’ll want to build your landing page. We’ll talk more about the exact steps you should take when building a landing page in a later module. But for now, there’s a few best practices to consider related to the page you want to build, especially as it relates to your ad and your offer:

Offers can vary greatly depending on what you want to accomplish with your ads, as well as the needs of your business. Whatever you decide, try to create an offer that’s genuinely irresistible for your specific audience, so you can maximize the ROI of your ads.

  • Make it Consistent - Most ad services will look for consistency, from your ad to your offer on your landing page. Using consistent language and visuals across all three elements will generally increase the chances of your ad being approved by platforms, and will also create a better experience for your visitors.
  • Make it Quality - Offers that feel spammy, fake, or poor in quality are often negatively received by both visitors and ad services. Be sure your ad, your offer, and your landing page are for a high quality product (service, ebook, webinar, etc.), and that your page execution reflects that level of quality as well.
  • Make it Relevant - When using PPC advertising you’ll get the highest ROI the more relevant you can make your content. Since your visitors are likely coming to your ad and your landing page without knowing you, it’s important to tailor-fit these elements to what they are looking for. The more specific your content is, the more likely they are to convert to a lead. The more relevant you can make your page copy, the better.

Walk through exactly how to build a landing page for PPC traffic.

This video tour shows our Head Product Educator, Jeff Wenberg, as he takes you through a Leadpages landing page template designed specifically for pay-per-click ads. He’ll explain exactly how to design your own landing page to use with your advertisements.

4. Create Your Ad

Creating an effective PPC ad can feel intimidating but a few clear best practices in mind can make all the difference. The most important parts of creating an effective online ad are:

  • Good Copy - As with any advertising, you have only a short amount of time and space to compel visitors to act. You must write clear, powerful copy that encourages your reader to take action and click with every word. Take your time with this step. Research compelling ads, study ads that have converted you, and write as many versions as necessary until you’re happy with the outcome.
  • Engaging Visuals - Not all ads will use pictures (like text-only Google ads) but many other ad services (like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.) definitely will. For those services, it’s essential to find a balance between images that support your ad and make it engaging to look at, without detracting from the purpose. Images of people can be powerful in ads. They can quite literally put a human face on your products or offers. Ideally, if you’re using images of people, those people should be looking (or pointing) in the direction of your call-to-action. This subtle visual CTA can often lead to even higher conversions.
  • Concise Formatting - All ad platforms have character limits, so you’ll have to stop typing eventually no matter what. That being said, creating the most concise and legible format for your ad is always a best practice. It’s important to remember that from the words and images you choose to the offer and your product or service, you know your business inside and out. On the other hand, your new visitors and potential ad-clickers are seeing you and your business for the first time. Tailor your ad to them, and make it as short and easy to digest as possible.

5. Test Your Ads and Landing Pages

It should go without saying that you need to be testing your ads. Most, if not all, popular digital advertising platforms will provide you with comprehensive metrics around the ads you’re buying, including how effective they are, what your conversion rate looks like, and more.

Don’t be afraid to experiment and try new ads, new formats, different images, and even different ad platforms.

If you’re paying to grow your business with pay-per-click advertising, optimizing both your ads (and your landing pages) is crucial. Through testing, you can determine the highest-converting ads and landing pages, and increase your ROI even faster.

One of the most essential elements to getting a conversion is first having traffic. A landing page with no traffic is a deserted island. But driving traffic to a high-converting landing page with pay-per-click advertising will ensure the greatest return on investment from those advertising dollars.

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Using Landing Pages for Video Marketing

Hosting your videos on YouTube works if you’re just looking for a place to play and embed them. But if you want potential customers to join your email list or take another action after watching your video, then driving traffic to a YouTube link leaves something to be desired.

With a variety of related videos to distract your customers on the page, no control of the page itself, no ability to include email capture options or deeper information, it’s difficult to use YouTube pages for marketing. And really, the same goes for many, if not most, video hosting services.

Get started with video marketing (free guide).

We’ve got an amazing infographic and an easy acronym to bring any fan of video up to speed. It’s called the SLACK method, and it stands for:

  • Scripting
  • Lighting
  • Audio
  • Camera
  • Knowledge

We’ll fill you in on the basics of all five elements, and help you make better videos for your business right away.

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE FREE INFOGRAPHIC

So if you’re using videos in your marketing, or you want to start—how do you send prospects to a page that you can control? You use a landing page! With embed options, lead capture forms, customizable fonts and images, etc., you can put your video on a landing page and control the entire landscape around it. You’ll get better analytics, and also be able to better convert your video viewers into leads and customers.


In Conclusion

The truth is, landing pages can be used for nearly anything you want to use them for. But at the end of the day, they’re inherently designed to generate more leads for you, drive more sales for you, and grow your business.

Next up, we’ll talk you through every step of building your landing page, from selecting the right template for your needs, to writing the best landing page copy, to creating the most effective landing design.

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