With over 39,600,000 Google search results for the search term “landing page tests”, it’s easy to see how you could get overwhelmed when it comes to improving your conversion rates.
And while there’s definitely no shortage of ideas, there’s unfortunately a surplus of regurgitated information that everyone claims to be an expert about.
But for you to truly take advantage of a conversion optimization testing plan, you need to be able to prioritize the tests that will bring in the biggest results.
And by results, I don’t necessarily mean higher conversion rates, but more importantly, more money for you.
Let me explain.
With the common tunnel-visioned focus on widening your funnel so that you can pack in more conversions with the same marketing budget (increasing conversion rate), we tend to forget that we can be way more effective by changing our focus.
Don’t have your pants funnel explode with crappy food conversions – (GIF source)
So because of that, the goal of this post is to show you how much smarter your landing page tests can become, to not only improve your conversion rates, but to also help you by:
- Improving the quality of your conversions
- Shortening the “chase time” and getting in contact with your conversions faster
- Improving your life by not wasting your time with crappy conversions
- Increasing your visitors’ perceived value of your brand
You ready? 🙂
1. Research Matters, And It’s a Huge Frikin’ Deal
Don’t get me wrong.
I’m as excited as you are when it comes to improving the performance of my landing page tests.
“Why research crap when I can change the button color and shoot this chicken at the same time?”
We want action, even in the form of chicken bows – (GIF source)
It was all about action and more importantly, taking action.
That was me in the past.
A true Yosemite Sam that just walked through the landing page saloon doors and started firing these random tests up in the air.
And while you should still take action, wouldn’t it be better to know which actions have the best chances of bringing in the best results?
So here’s what you must do:
Conversion copywriting research.
Every day that passes by with poor conversions is essentially wasted money.
But as most of us mere mortals know, great copywriting isn’t a skill that’s mastered overnight.
And if I compare my handwriting skills to my copywriting skills, then I know I’m completely screwed:
Thanks for saving my arse, Times New Roman – (Image Source)
So to give you some tools that help you nail the un-visual aspect of your landing page testing, let’s steal this headline hack from the insanely awesome Joanna Wiebe:
“Your headline is the most important copy of your entire landing page. If you skimp on your research here, then only the extremely motivated visitors will continue to read on.”
She ran a headline test for her client that brought in an additional 26% of conversions (and one these conversions are potentially worth $20,000, each).
Here’s how she let the current landing page visitors do the work for her:
Ever played Mad Libs with your visitors? – (Image Source)
Even if you aren’t a CRM provider, you can essentially plug and play this Qualaroo popup no matter what your business is.
There are untapped gold mines out there where you can learn about what gets your visitors excited. Here are just a few:
- Amazon Product Reviews – Even if you don’t sell a physical product, there has definitely been a book written about your subject expertise. Read those product reviews to understand people’s excitement.
- Forums & Review Sites – What’s important to people on your subject matter? The common threads could reveal themselves here.
- Email Correspondence – What are the most frequently asked questions that appear in emails, either with prospects or current customers?
- Sales Calls – What are the common objections your sales people hear on their calls? According to Michael Aagaard, these objections can be eradicated with the correct copy on your landing page.
All this research data can be used to fuel your copy driven landing page tests, to not only improve conversion rates, but to help improve the speed at which your sales happen too.
2. What You Do After The Conversion Is Just As Important As What You Did Before The Conversion
What if you never changed your landing page for this next test?
I’m not talking about an A/A test, but rather, a post conversion test.
If you’re trying to generate leads, then you know how hard it can be to get people on the phone after they’ve converted, or at least, to reply to an email.
Or maybe, you’re just really slow at reaching out?
No matter what the reason is, you and I both know how icy cold your hot leads can turn if you can’t get a hold of them.
Just look at this graph from an MIT study – (Image Source)
In a webinar I did with Unbounce, I showed how one of our client’s biggest call sources came from the post conversion thank you page.
Not only did this improve their overall sales performance by 19% when it was implemented, but we gave the visitors who converted on the form, a strong reason to call in afterwards.
There was both a sense of urgency in the form of a countdown timer GIF, and also a separate call tracking number for us to track our efforts.
So next time you’re trying to improve the speed at which you reach out to your conversions, make your visitors do the work for you and have them call you.
3. What No One Told You About Your Landing Page Design
There’s a good chance that your landing page is your visitors’ first impression of your business and more importantly, your brand.
So the only question is, how much is that first impression worth to you?
If you ask Peep Laja, it’s worth quite a lot.
“I’ve seen time and again how a “plain design overhaul” resulted in significant conversion boosts.
People form their opinion about your site in milliseconds….Make sure that second makes a great first impression.”
And since perception really is everything, you should care a great deal when it comes to design and your landing page tests. In fact, you should make an investment in design.
Here’s what Joshua Porter, former Director of UX at HubSpot, says:
“Look at Slack and the communications apps. Look at Instagram and picture sharing apps. Look at WhatsApp and texting apps. Look at Sketch and the UI design apps. Look at Evernote and note-taking apps. Look at Dropbox and backup apps.
All of these categories are littered with failed startups who created clunky, poorly designed user experiences while working on what turned out to be good ideas.”
So don’t think it only applies to technology. It applies to a law firm, a pet grooming van, and a consulting business. The importance of design applies to your success too. Big time.
Not only will better design and a better user experience help improve your conversion rates, but it will immediately shift the mindset in most 94% of your visitors to have the best possible first impression.
Here are some examples of beautiful, conversion focused landing pages:
If this landing page can make people want to buy a potato because of its design, then you don’t have an excuse.
But as important as the bigger design elements are, so are the small, almost unnoticeable conversion difference that landing page fonts can have.
If you’ve ever questioned your landing page fonts readability, consider this case study:
Click Laboratory started off with the original font on the left and tested a different, bigger font on the right.
133% improvement in conversion rates.
But why stop there?
In the world of copywriting, if everyone believed wholeheartedly that you’re the “#1 Solution for X”, would you even need a landing page?
No, you’d just sent all your traffic to your website, smack up that “#1 Solution for X” headline and watch the money pour in.
But since everyone is #1 these days, designers are beginning to find that even some fonts are more believable than others.
In fact, so believable that the fonts can persuade people to agree and take action more often when compared to others fonts.
If that’s not some next level ish, I don’t know what is.
4. Your Social Proof Is Weak and You’re Better Off Without It
How many times are you absolutely certain that your landing page conversion was the first and last stop a visitor took before converting?
Many times (and especially when it comes to making bigger purchase decisions), a landing page won’t be the final persuasion piece needed for the visitor to convert.
Did they check out your actual website, your social media profiles, your employees’ LinkedIn profiles, your blog?
Any part of the conversion process is put under intense scrutiny, and your visitors can be like this small dog at the dog park.
if anything smells like dog poo, they’ll find it – (Image Source)
So when you’ve done what the good conversion Gods have told you and put testimonials, press mentions, and company logos on your landing page, have you ever considered that they could be killing your performance?
It’s called negative social proof, and it’s damn hard to get right with your entire brand, let alone your landing page.
In a recent test we ran for one of our clients using Unbounce, we found that quickly removing their testimonials increased conversion rates by 13% and has since reached the 95% confidence level.
These days, many businesses seem to be forgetting that “social proof” is a two-word phrase.
What a lot of people take for granted is that social proof can sometimes be more likely to work against you, than work for you.
It’s the exact same thing you do when it comes to forming impressions around a business.
When you visit their blog and you see 11 shares on their latest post that’s two months old, you kinda feel a little sad all of a sudden.
It’s the same thing that happens when you use press logos on your landing page that don’t open up in new tabs when clicked.
How often have you tried clicking on these, but always get disappointed? – (Image Source)
Want to see what I’m talking about in action?
What’s ironic is that this landing page is selling celebrity social proof, but sucks at their own social proof (among other things).
So ask yourself this question: Is social proof really all that important anyways?
As a marketer, your list of ideas should never run out, and insight from past tests should fuel ideas for new ones.
These four hacks should not only help increase your conversion rates, but greatly help you make more money from the conversions you’re already getting.
What other types of landing page tests have you found that people often forget, or even better, don’t know about yet?
About the Author: Johnathan Dane is the founder of KlientBoost, a no-nonsense, creative kick-ass AdWords and landing page agency that hustles for results and ROI. If you thought this article was good, you should see what he’s writing on their company blog.