What is a Landing Page (and why you need one for your business)
If you have been wondering what a landing page is, and what to do with one, you have come to the right place!
Do you often find that all this online-business jazz can get really confusing? There are all these questions whirling in your head.
Should you build a website yourself? How many social media accounts should you try to keep up with? Do you need a website at all? How to choose a domain name that makes sense? How do you start building an email list (what is an email list)? What the heck is a Landing page and why should you bother to get one?
I get it, because I have been there, knee deep, my friend. So let’s back up a bit before we get into the details, and answer the question of what IS a landing page.
Landing pages help you to get more focused
Since you are reading this post, my guess is that you are a new entrepreneur, or you have a great business idea that you cannot wait to turn into something more.
In which case, congratulations! This step is highly exciting! It’s exciting to have an idea bubbling up, and it’s exciting to start birthing it into the physical world.
What is not always exciting is the confusion that follows, and what I personally had in the beginning – a major shiny object syndrome. In other words, I was not really focusing on one thing and seeing it through, but I wanted to do everything, which meant I didn’t do any of it truly well.
I tried to keep up on several social media accounts while not really having a strategy in any of them. I wrote blogs and tried to keep up with our website, and dabbled in creating newsletters to my (few) email subscribers.
It was frustrating, and eventually it wore me out. I didn’t really get to spend time ON my business; I was too busy doing everything around it.
When was I suppose to have the time to actually DO the things that I loved, instead of trying to market and be out there.
By the time I started Passion Kick-Starter I was already savvy enough in this start-up phase that it felt easier.
But I wanted to take it one step further – having a plan, a strategy and not trying to do all the things at once (in fact I couldn’t, since I had a small baby and a full time job, which in hindsight forced me to go slow).
But what does all this have to do with Landing pages, and the question if you need one? Well, Landing pages are a great way to niche up, to focus on one thing, and get results faster.
So what is a landing page?
Landing pages are actually quite a simple way of boosting your product or service, and bringing awareness out there about your business.
Since I was not familiar with Landing pages before, it took a while to get comfortable with the idea, and to find an email service provider that I liked (more on that later).
What you want with your business is to create a relationship with your customers, or with your audience. And you want to be able to communicate directly with your audience.
You can of course reach your audience through social media, but on social media you will never own your followers the same way you will own them if you have their direct email address.
I for one kept struggling with the algorithms of Facebook or Instagram, and these algorithms keep changing as well, which does not make life easier for passionate entrepreneurs like yourself. And this is why it’s easier to reach your audience directly.
This means you have to get potential customers to provide you with their email address, and you have to store this email address somewhere. How can a Landing page help?
Landing page is a single page, either on your own website, or hosted on your email service providers website, which is geared for one thing, and one thing only – getting people to leave their email address, or rather, turning web browsers into prospects.
It’s all about getting someone from the street into your shop so to speak.
This is why Landing pages are very simple in design. They eliminate all of the other distractions you may have on your own website, like other pages, text and menu links.
Landing page is purely out there for one reason, and that is to get your audience interested in what you have to offer, get them to opt in, so that you can start cultivating a relationship with them.
Who is your landing page for?
Before you rush off to create a Landing page, it’s good to spend some time thinking about who it is aimed for. Who is your ideal customer, and what are the issues he/she is having that can be solved by your product or service?
The more you know, the easier it is to really target your offer to this specific person. If you have more products or services, great, but don’t try to cram them all in one Landing page.
The general rule of thumb here is that one page is for one ‘persona’, or one offer, as it really needs to speak to your target audience. If you have two offers on the same page, your audience gets distracted, they don’t feel that you really understand their issues, and they are far less likely to opt in.
As I mentioned before, a landing page should be very simple. It’s one page that showcases something you want to give your audience for free in return for their email address. This could be a chapter of your e-book, a handy check-list you have made, or a sample of your product.
Something that would solve a problem for your audience, and something that is valuable for them. The more value you provide (yes, for free), the more likely people are going to be sticking round.
What is good content for a landing page?
A good Landing page should include the following elements:
Even better if you can integrate the word FREE on it, as always attracts attention. This can be about your product, it can be a phrase that your target audience is often using, or it can be showcasing the problem and the solution where your product is the answer for.
Short body text
Short is key here, as this is not the place to start writing a novel. You should write shortly about what you offer your visitors, and what the benefits are for them when they download the material. You can list this in bullet points or numbers to stay brief.
Landing page usually includes one brand appropriate image. It can be an image of yourself as a provider of the service, or an image of something relating to your product.
Also known as CTA, which essentially means a form to collect information, followed by a big-ass-button saying SIGN ME UP! Your landing page should be simple, and this includes your form too (the place where people enter information).
It’s better to ask for the vital information only, like the email address. If you’d like to have their name on record as well (for those customized emails later on), add a second field for the first name.
Anything else is almost too much, and may prevent people from signing up.
Another thing to consider is to make sure that your most important information is “above the fold.” This means that it’s visible on the screen before users have to scroll down to see more.
This should include at least the main text about the offer, and the subscription fields. Having the entire page above the fold works too, remember, the simpler the better.
After reading your irresistible offer, and opting in, the visitors should be taken to a thank-you page. This can be a simple page thanking the visitor for opting in, and showing a little bit more personal information.
After confirming their email, the visitors can download your amazing product. After doing this, they are on your email list, and you should cultivate the relationship further in your emails or “newsletters.”
Where can I make a landing page?
Okay, so now you are totally in the know about what is a Landing page, and you want to start making one for your awesome stuff. Great!
You can make a Landing page on your own website, if you have one, but if you don’t, not to worry. You can also very easily make it within your email service provider. I would even say that it’s easier to make with your email service provider:
- You don’t need a website for starting to collect those emails.
- You can easily design a landing page using the different templates offered by the email service providers.
- Simple to integrate and set up.
- You can quickly make as many Landing pages as you wish.
If you already have a website, and you’d rather use that, this is fine as well.
You can make a separate, new page, name it after your offer or after your key word, and alter the design on the page to fit the landing page needs discussed earlier (hiding the main menu and any other links, and generally making a simple design).
Great, but what is an email service provider?
In case you are not familiar with Email service providers, not to worry, you will quickly learn it and become besties with it.
Email service provider is a tool you can use to collect emails (as you will not want to have these on a excel sheet), to send mass emails to everyone on your list, to create automated email sequences (e.g. when someone opts in for your freebie, and they will be added to a welcoming email sequence you can design, and automatically get as many emails as you wish, at an interval you decide).
Basically email service providers keep your emails safe and sound.
And, because the primary purpose of your Landing page is to transform traffic into leads, meaning visitors into fans, it’s easy if this takes place within your email service provider’s account, however, via a form on your own website this will work as well.
Which Email service providers to choose?
Since this is an important part of the whole Landing page story, let’s spend a few moments on the Email Service providers, shall we?
There are many email service providers to choose from, but here are the three I have used:
Mailchimp has four different options, and one of them is free. So you could start with a free account, which includes only the basic features, but includes Landing pages. I found this was a good way to get started if you don’t want to spend money on it now, but it quickly got much too limited. But I do love the way Mailchimp positions themselves and the funky communication that they have.
GetResponse starts from €15 / month subscription, which is a relatively low price when getting started (this is for a list size less than 1000 emails). They have a great selection of products as well, and I used GetResponse for few years quite happily.
ConvertKit starts with €29 / month for a list size of less than 1000 emails. This is my current tool and favourite so far. It’s most user friendly, intuitive and well designed, and made for online entrepreneurs like you are me.
When it comes to email service providers, you just have to look around, maybe try some options (some, like Convertkit allow you to try 14 days for free), and find a tool that feels most intuitive for you. And if you change your mind later on, not to worry, you can easily download the data and transfer into a new service provider.
When and where to use a landing page?
So when should you use a Landing page, versus using your home page?
A Landing page is really a page on a mission – converting visitors into fans. Because it is so laser focused on one thing, it can be a much better way to promote a single product or a service than your general website.
Because a Landing page focuses on one single offer, all other distractions are taken away and the visitor is more likely to leave you their email address and opt in.
A Landing page essentially only targets the one problem the viewer has, and your free product offers the solution. At that point the visitor is not (yet) interested in your general story, offerings or background, they just want that one fix.
Later on if they like what you offer, they will come knocking on your door again and browse through your website.
You can use a landing page on social media, like on your Facebook / Instagram / Pinterest cover text (use tools like bitly to shorten the link). You can use a landing page on social media when posting about your offer (paid or non-paid).
You can also have a link to your offer in each blog post you write, so that visitors who are just reading that post are prompted to grab this fantastic offer that you have. And, of course you should have a link to it on your website as well.
If you have multiple services, products of freebies you have created, you can make a Landing page for each of them. Remember, a Landing page should only have one offer, so the sky is the limit on Landing pages and your creativity.
To recap, what is not a Landing page?
It’s time to start drawing our conclusions, so let’s look at what is not a landing page? A landing page is not any page where you have a form for people to fill in and subscribe.
A Landing page is not a regular old website page from your website, no matter how many forms it has for opting in.
Landing page is a targeted page on a mission to increase your email list subscribers. And essentially that is what we want, a rich list of engaged subscribers (or followers, fans, whatever you’d like to call them), which we can take care or, cultivate and eventually turn into enthusiastic buyers.
They are your peeps, the ones who you are serving, and the ones who most benefit from your products or services.
If you got this far, I hope that you are now a bit more comfortable with what Landing pages are, how to use them, how they could benefit your business and what should be on a Landing page to make it super-duper focused one-page-mission machine.
If you need more help, you know where to find me!
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Hi there, I’m Kaisa!
I’m your coach, friend and webdesigner when you want to get serious about your Passion project and make it into a business with a beautiful online presence.
I’ll help you with tech, design and courage. Contact me and we’ll create some magic for your Passion Business!
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