It’s a rather scary reality to digest, but the landing pages of your website have the power to make or break your business. Several years of research have proved outright that when it comes to winning over your readers, you basically have no more than a few seconds after they first arrive at any given landing page. They won’t stick around for more than 30 seconds and won’t even bother reading until the end of the page if you don’t hook them straight away – a skill even the world’s top outsourcing SEO specialists don’t always get right.
The key is to side with the best SEO professionals in the world to get the readers to your site in the first place, and then use both a decade of lessons learned and common sense to keep them there long enough to convert them.
The blueprint for doing so is still rather elusive, but there are at least a few golden rules to follow – including these three:
The first and arguably the most important rule of all is to remember that if you overwhelm your readers with way too much content, they won’t stick around. A huge chunk of text in the middle, a dozen pictures, a few animations, another block of text to the side and so on – all you will do is make it pretty clear that they won’t find what they are looking for without a long and annoying search. Your golden nuggets of wisdom might be in the first sentence, but blast your readers with too much content and they won’t even bother to read this far. Follow a ‘less is more’ approach and keep it subtle and simple – you can get into more detail later, once you’ve hooked them.
Bear in mind that you need the right amount of text to feed the search engines. Too little texts could render your landing page less effective as far as search engine optimization is concerned. As a rule of thumb, use at least 500 words.
Don’t Oversell It
Another great way of turning off your readers in a heartbeat is to come across desperate for their business. For example, a banner stating “Buy now for just $49.99” can be effective, but if this is the first thing they see in bright neon letters dominating most of the page, chances are they won’t be impressed. And the same goes for repeating these kinds of calls to action too many times throughout your landing pages – by all means give them a button to hit if they want to buy something right away, but don’t go groveling and overselling it from the first moment. Showing respect for your clients and readers and providing them with useful and up-to-date information is the only way to keep them in the long run.
Do Be Concise
And finally, remember that they have come to your website for a reason, with a problem or with a need to be fulfilled. They could be looking for products, knowledge or services and the faster you can get across your ability to help out, the more likely you’ll secure their interest. Say for example you’re looking to sell toner for a laser printer – the last thing you want to do on your landing page is start with something like “My first experience of a PC printer was back in 1973, when my father…” and so on and so forth… you’ll have lost their interest already. By contrast, something like “If you’re sick to the back teeth of being overcharged for printer ink, you’ve come to the right place” makes a much better opening statement that sets the scene, explains what you’re offering and explains how you’ll be able to fulfill the needs of your reader.
Follow these three rules and you’ll see your online audience grow and your business efforts rewarded. It’s not an easy or a quick process but the rules are pretty simple and those who follow them will be successful.
John Baron loves helping small and medium businesses increase their sales and leads through search engine marketing. He’s competent in all types of search marketing but his specialties are search engine optimization and online reputation management. John is working for iSolutions Media Company as an SEO strategist.1
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