How Landing Pages Work

While simple in theory, landing pages are often confusing to site owners and can bring up many questions.  What qualifies as a landing page? How can you optimize a landing page for conversion? How do landing pages affect Google Analytics? Let’s get started with the basics.  

What is a Landing Page?

In digital marketing, a landing page, also known as a “lead capture page”, is a standalone web page created with a single goal, known as a call to action.  This call to action may be donating to a charity, signing up for an event, subscribing to a newsletter,  filling out a request form, etc.  A landing page should have no other distractions to increase the chance of a conversion.  These pages are often part of a marketing campaign.  

How Does a Landing Page Work?

We all are used to getting emails from local places we frequent, from restaurants to shops to concert venues.  They often include links to upcoming events or sales.  The hope is that we’ll click on that link which will take us directly to their site, bypassing the many marketing distractions the internet holds, causing us to immediately purchase or book what they are promoting.  

If someone has clicked a campaign/marketing link, their interest is sparked and there’s a high chance of conversion.  The next step is to ensure this action is clear and easy.  

How to Optimize a Landing Page

When creating a landing page, your main focus should be what you want the user to do on that page.  Your answer should be clear the moment a user lands on the page.  For example, if you are raising money for a charity, your page needs to be optimized for your target group and should include all essential information.  

Your landing page should contain the following essential elements:

  • A clear headline that conveys the message.
  • A Call-To-Action (CTA) or simple form the user can complete right away.
  • Important details (cost, time, place, etc)
  • An appealing image or short video relating to your CTA
  • A quote from a happy customer
  • Payment options (when applicable)

*Don’t forget to test the page.  

Landing Pages in Google Analytics

Landing pages in Google Analytics are different than landing pages of a marketing campaign.  Landing pages in google analytics are a comprehensive list of pages on your site that get the most traffic.  While a popular landing page may make it onto your google analytics list, it may not.  

Landing Pages and SEO

We all want our landing page to rank, but we must keep in mind that while our landing page may specifically be designed for visitors from an email campaign, it may not be the best fit for searchers in Google.  The question to ask is, is this the page your user will want to find when they are searching for something?  Or, would they prefer a more detailed article on the topic?  At the end of the day, it may be best to optimize your landing page for one goal only. 

Landing Page vs. Product Page

There is often overlap between a landing page and a product page.  Both pages should have a clear headline, a call to action, and a visually appealing photo or video.  That said, a campaign often has a more temporary feel, where a product page shows more detail and will be slightly less focussed than a landing page.  

Local Landing Page

You can also have local landing pages on your website.  These location specific landing pages will serve a different purpose than we’ve discussed above.  Creating these local landing pages will appeal to a specific local audience you are targeting in your campaign.  

In digital marketing, a landing page is designed to prompt a specific action of the user.  Often, this is part of a campaign and includes a call to action.  This is a very focused page with a clear intent.  When creating your landing page, focus on the goal of the page first and foremost.