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5: Landing Page Mistakes

Posted on 5.31.2007

Effective landing pages are critical - when a user visits your landing page, they are in a buying state of mind. But, typically, a user spends just eight seconds deciding whether the page they just clicked to is worth an extended visit. After that, they spend another 10-20 seconds deciding if they should stay longer and look around. Below are three common mistakes of landing pages and how to correct them.

  1. Too much information. It may sound counter-productive, but overwhelming visitors of a landing page will result in a loss. Avoid long descriptions of your company, your mission or yourself. Most read only 15 words before deciding to stay or leave. The visitor clicked on your page to find something specific. Whatever that is, write succinct copy that reminds them why they are there and why they should stay.
  2. Excessive navigation. Of course you're proud of your site and you want a visitor to see every page. But that's not why they are there. They came because of a specific offer or promotion. It's unlikely a visitor will start navigating your entire site. Plus, by providing navigation options, you're giving the visitor a chance to walk away from a potential sale. A simple "about" or "home" button should suffice.
  3. Failure to deliver. Why is someone on your landing page? They found an offer somewhere and now they want to see it. If your ad copy is selling blue hats, make sure the link takes them to the blue hat page - not the hats home page. If you offered free shipping, you must mention that offer on the landing page. Too many times, the copy on the page does not reflect the ad copy from the link, and the offer or product isn't immediately apparent. Deliver on your promise and build trust with your visitors.
  4. Asking for too much. Do you really need a user's telephone number? Can you do without it - at least for now? Asking for too much information up front will scare prospects away. Determine the minimal amount of information you need. Start the conversation. If your prospect likes what they see, they will develop a deeper relationship with your company - then you can ask for more details.
  5. Being too slick. You may have a strong creative streak, but your landing page is not the place to show the world. Stylized text and distracting backgrounds can make pages difficult to read and send the visitor packing. Be conservative on your landing page. Basic font, left-justified paragraphs and fixed page width all make your page easy to read. Show off your creative skills on your home page or somewhere else more applicable. If you provide a positive first experience, your users will be back and see all that you have to offer.
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