Any good digital marketing plan takes advantage of both SEO and PPC best practices. SEO does a great job of drawing in potential leads who aren’t quite ready to buy yet, and PPC is awesome at converting those leads a little farther down in the sales funnel to customers. Today, we’re going to focus on the PPC aspect of your digital marketing campaign. You’re spending money on it, so you kind of need it to be effective, right?
You’ve done the research, and you know what keywords you want to bid on, but you’re still not getting the conversion rates you want. Well the best way to boost the number of people who actually convert from your paid ads is to optimize your PPC landing page:
A lot of companies just starting out direct their paid ad visitors to their home page, or some other generic page on their website. Sure, this gets people to your website, but if your ad promised some really great offer, and they end up on your homepage, they’re likely to bounce right off. So, what can you do to create a PPC landing page that addresses the offer your site viewers initially clicked on, and how can you ensure they stay on the page and convert?
While there are tons of ways to optimize your PPC landing page through A/B testing, we’re going to start with what we see to be the 7 most important elements of the perfect PPC landing page. Once we get through those, keep reading, because we’ll also show you a few examples of what works, and what doesn’t. Let’s get started with those 7 essential elements:
1) A headline
First and foremost, your PPC landing page should have a headline, and we hope to goodness that it’s related to whatever you were advertising in your PPC ad. If you advertised “custom home renovations” and your landing page takes customers to your “About Us” page, you’re going to have problems. While I’m sure your customers really do want to know about your company’s story, their reason for clicking on that ad was to find out more about custom home renovations. So make sure your landing page is actually a page about custom home renovations, and is titled as such.
Another good point to mention is that sub-headings, are a great way to give that potential customer more of the information they were looking for. Say for example, you make your headline “EXCLUSIVE OFFER.” Well then it’s in your best interest to include a sub-heading that explains that exclusive offer, like “download our comprehensive guide to custom home renovations.” And just so we’re clear, the offer should be related to the verbiage on the ad.
Whatever you’re offering, you should include a description on your landing page. This doesn’t need to be very long or text heavy, but it does need to let the potential client know exactly what they’re going to get when they submit their information for this offer. The clearer the incentive, the more likely they are to convert.
3) A Form to Capture Information
There is absolutely no way for your landing pages to be effective if they don’t have a contact information form. That form is how you measure your conversion rate, and thus the effectiveness of your PPC campaign. If you don’t have a form, you won’t know how many of the people coming to your site from that PPC ad actually want your service, and you won’t have their contact information either, to help push the sale.
Make sure every single one of your PPC landing pages has a form that captures just the information you need. It’s also good to note that the form shouldn’t be too long. Just ask for email and name, and maybe one or two other things. The longer your form, the less likely people are to complete it. The point of the form in the first place, is a quick and easy way people can get in touch with your company. When the form becomes a hassle, people aren’t going to want to fill it out.
4) A Call to Action Button
This might seem like another no brainer, but you really do need an exciting call to action button if you want people to submit their contact information. PPC landing page CTA buttons can be a little longer, since you want to make it clear what your clients will be getting when the click the button. Something along the lines of “Download the [name of content offer] Now!” will entice people to click the button, and make it very clear what they’ll be getting when they do complete the form. For more on effective CTAs, check out our blog post about it.
5) Supporting Images
Alright, so it’s pretty well known that most PPC landing pages have two seconds to catch the attention of visitors. Any longer than that, and those visitors are likely to bounce and go somewhere else. So it’s important to make sure you’re keeping the attention of those visitors, and one of the best ways to do that is by incorporating images. If you’re offering fence installation, then you should include an image of a beautiful fence you’ve installed lately.
Note: You don’t want to overwhelm the page with pictures, as that will slow down the load time, and distract people from your actual Call To Action. Keep it to just one or two attractive supporting images.
6) Include testimonials
Potential customers are more likely to believe your previous customers than they are to believe you. So make sure you’ve got some of those glowing reviews front and center on your PPC landing page. Testimonials have proven themselves time and again as effective ways to boost conversion rates. It’s like a word-of-mouth referral that exists all the time right on that page, encouraging visitors to convert, and proving that your product really is as great as you say it is.
7) Remove navigation
The last thing you want your PPC landing page visitor to do is leave the page. So just take out all navigation. While this might sound unethical, they’re not really trapped, and this just focuses the attention on the offer you’ve placed in front of them. When their only real option is to fill out the form and click your CTA button, site visitors are more likely to do it. By removing the navigation menu, you’re reducing their chance of bouncing off the page, and increasing your conversion rate.
PPC Landing Page Examples
It’s all well and good to say what a good PPC landing page looks like, but I understand that just telling you what to do doesn’t help you visualize it. So let’s look at two examples of PPC landing pages, one good, and one-not-so good.
Since I can’t live without coffee, I searched “buy the best coffee ever.” Three paid ads showed up at the top of the search results.
When I clicked on this ad:
As you can probably tell, this is their homepage. While the design and layout of the page is really attractive, it doesn’t function as a good PPC landing page. From the ad, I was expecting to be directed somewhere I could order great Puerto Rican roasted coffee, and get it shipped from my door. While that’s still probably possible, I’m going to have to navigate through the slider, and through the website to figure out where I actually buy the coffee.
Though this site does have a really attractive homepage, they would be better served by a functional landing page that takes their site viewer straight from their ad to a page where they can order the coffee they want. It’s good to remember that visitors who come from paid ads are most often ready to buy. They don’t want to shop around anymore, so giving them the opportunity to browse is actually going to deter them, rather than bring them deeper into your site. A good PPC landing page should give the customer exactly what they were looking for–in this case ready-to-order roasted coffee beans.
Clearly, this is not an effective PPC landing page. So let’s look at the other ad:
I’ll start by saying that this is what we consider to be a successful, optimized PPC landing page. It has a headline that directly relates to the ad, which was “Ninja Coffee Bar® System,” and it has a picture that clearly and professionally shows the product they’re advertising. You’ll also notice that the company has chosen to include a video. This is actually a really great way to keep visitors from bouncing off your landing page, since it offers an engaging multi-media perspective that shows them exactly why they should be buying your product.
Like we mentioned before, this landing page is effective because there is no available navigation, except the two “Buy Now” buttons. This keeps your viewer focused on the content offer that they wanted in the first place, and increases the likelihood of a conversion. The Ninja page also gives customers plenty of information on the product, including details and specs, and then offers two different options to buy. Customers can buy the coffee maker outright, or they can pay in installments. From there, the landing page will take them directly to the order page, where they can finish the transaction, and be on with their day in no time at all.
You might also notice that this PPC landing page doesn’t have a contact information form, and for this specific situation, that’s okay. Here, the company isn’t actually looking to get customer’s contact information. They’ve bid on a search term that indicates their customer is ready to buy, so they’re offering them the option to buy right now. In this case, a contact form isn’t necessary, and since the call to action buttons direct customers right to a checkout page, that does the job instead.
This is a great example of an attractive, targeted landing page, that does exactly what it advertised in the search results. It’s clear, informational, engaging, and easy to navigate.
We hope this blog helps you optimize your PPC landing page for a better conversion rate! If you have any more questions on PPC landing pages, or if you’d like help with your digital marketing strategy, don’t hesitate to ask! We’d love to answer any questions you may have about boosting your PPC campaigns, or improving your SEO best practices.