This is the third blog post in my Google AdWords series. My first blog post focused on planning your campaign, and the second on choosing keywords. This post will discuss best practices for landing page selection.
Your ad copy may be good enough to inspire a lead to click on it, but what happens then? Your landing page is the most important component of your ad campaign for converting a lead to a customer.
First of all, you might be wondering “what is a landing page?” A landing page refers to the page on your website that your ad will link to, that a lead will land on after clicking your ad. Your landing page copy (messaging) should match your ad copy and it should be closely linked to the keywords that brought the lead to your page.
If someone searches “luxury Caribbean vacations”, sees an ad for a luxury all-inclusive resort, and then arrives at a landing page for a 2-star hostel, they’re going to leave the site. Relevancy is important for the user, as well as for Google itself, which may not show your ad if it’s given a low quality score. Quality score is simply Google’s measurement of relevancy and depends on a number of factors.
Our first blog post in the series discussed two approaches for keyword and landing page selection: you can choose keywords based on your landing page, or choose your landing page based on your keywords. Once you’ve selected an existing landing page, you may need to tweak it to reflect these best practices (or if you’re creating a new page, you’ll need to consider the following):
Landing Page Best Practices
Landing Page Copy
- Keep it simple with clear and concise messaging; ensure your messaging is focused on one thing. You may find it necessary to use a different landing page specific to each ad group.
- Use formatting such as headings to grab the customer’s attention and to make the page easy to read. The primary heading should match the ad content: this is important in both keeping the lead on your page, and in ensuring a better quality score from Google.
- Position the most important messaging “above the fold” – this refers to the area on your page the user sees without having to scroll down.
Lead Generation Form
- Include a form that collects contact details so you can gather information for your lead/customer database.
- Keep the lead generation form short and simple.
- If you’re a B2B company, you should consider offering something free such as a whitepaper for those that fill out the form.
- A call-to-action refers to asking your page visitors to do something specific, such as fill out a form, make a reservation, or purchase a product. Be specific about the action you’d like the page visitor to complete.
- Position your primary CTA above the fold.
- Establish urgency with words and phrases such as “now” or “today” or “before it’s too late!”
- Use directional cues such as arrows to emphasize what you’d like the visitor to do. You could point to the CTA or to the lead generation form.
Make Your Landing Page Visually Appealing
- Make sure your page isn’t too text-heavy.
- Use headings and formatting to break sections up.
- Include photos or videos. They can better explain your product or service, add interest, and they’re often shown to increase conversions!
Don’t Let the Visitor Get Distracted
- Keep the page ‘naked’ – remove the top navigation and minimize links going away from your page. This will help to increase the number of conversions on your page.
- Formatting, calls-to-action, lead generation forms, and other methods mentioned above will keep the potential customer focused on the purpose of the page.
Armed with the knowledge of our blog post series so far, you’re ready to set up your campaign! In our next blog post, we’ll go step-by-step through the the process of setting up your first AdWords Search campaign. If you wish to receive automatic e-mail updates from our blog, sign up for our mailing list by filling in the form on the top right of this page! Just be sure to check the box for Blog Updates.
Stay tuned for more tips on Google AdWords for Beginners!