Tuesday, February 3rd, 2009

Landing Page Tutorial Part 2

In Part 1 of this tutorial we went over a few things on market research and understanding your demographics, that not only applies to landing pages but to your entire marketing efforts. A very important step. Glad to see there were some questions asked and many comments made. You can find the Questions & Answers from Part 1 at the end of todays post. Let us jump right in to today’s topics.

Styles of Landing Pages

1. Review Style – Shows and reviews mutliple products in the same niche.

2. Comparison Style – Similar to review style except you go more into detail on the pros and cons of each product and do a cross product comparison.

3. Single Offer Style – Focused on promoting a single offer or product.

4. Multi-Offer Style – Pitching mutliple offers such as a main offer and a complimentary offer, in an attempt to increase EPCs.

5. Testimonial Style – Usually involves a personal testimony (most of the time its a fictional story) but be careful with fake testimonials, the BBB can come and bite you on the butt.

6. Email Opt-in Style – The main purpose is to develop a list of emails that are related to a certain niche or theme for later email distributions that you will send offers to.

Key Elements of Landing Pages

There are a few very important elements to consider when designing a landing page.

1. Color Scheme – Be sure to use coloring that best fits your demographics of people. For example, if you are targeting elderly people, ages 50+ don’t use a lot of colors that blend really easy together. Instead choose more bold colors with better contrast. We all know that with age comes the deterioration of eyesight.  Make your landing page easy to read and easy on the eyes for your demographics.

2. Above the Fold – For those of you who may not know what ‘above the fold’ means, it refers to the portion of your landing page that shows when a visitor first visits your landing page, without scrolling down. Be sure to consider the various screen resolutions that will be used, 800 x 600 will show differently than 1280 x 800, etc. Design with that in mind. Review the two screenshots below. These are the portions of the landing pages that show up on my 14″ Dell laptop with a 1280 x 800 resolution.

Acai Berry Detox – Convert2Media

acaidetoxAcaiPure – Convert2Media

acaipure

Want to know the 2 big factors as to why these two offers are the absolute best Acai offers to run and the reason they out perform all other similar offers? Reason 1: They both list easy to read benefits with a strong call-to-action arrow pointing (this is important) to the free trial sign-up box. Reason 2: They don’t list how much shipping and handling charges are on the front page, so more people sign up and don’t completely realize they have to pay a couple bucks for shipping until page #2 or #3. That’s a little tricker method to achieve leads but those two reasons are huge factors as to why those offers are HOT! Check out the MONSTER payouts on Convert2Media.

3. Qualifying / Attention Grabbing Statement – If you noticed, both of the offers above are using the statement, “Flush pounds from your system with the power of Acai!” That is a pretty solid attention grabber. You want to qualify the visitor and at the same time keep their attention. Here is why, the purpose of qualifying the visitor is to ensure that they indeed are taken to a page that relates to what your Ad copy suggested. That way they find what they are looking for and don’t just click the back button immediately or close out. Why you want to keep their attention is pretty obvious, you want them to read the rest of your ‘sales pitch’. And yes, your landing page is a sales pitch of sorts in whatever fashion you are using it in. You want to encourage them to continue reading and take action with a belief of trust and confidence with your offer.

4. Call-to-Action – Don’t overlook this, one thing I learned when working for Dell computers, always ask for the ‘sale’ (lead or sale in this case). Provide quality and accurate information and then don’t be afraid to ask for the sale, ask them to sign up, ask them to try it out, tell them how much they will benefit from it. The point is you basically want to TELL THEM WHAT TO DO! Customers/visitors are usually influenced by the recommendations you make based upon the ‘trust’ factor you’ve built with them and what YOUR opinion is. So if you have a review style page listing 3 different offers and you title offer #1 as “Voted #1″ or “Top Ratings”, etc. Chances are, more people will choose that offer just because you recommended it. And have a call to action more than just once. You might have a main call to action like the Acai offers above use the arrows and point to the sign up box. You want to hyperlink text within your pre-sell content, ALL of your images should link to the offer and then you still want 2-3 main call-to-action places (depending upon the type of offer).

5. Professional or Realistic Design – Without a doubt you want a professional or realistic design. It can’t look like my grandmother built the landing page. And believe me, my grandmother probably has more landing page design abilities than alot of you. Some of these landing pages floating around are just horrible. Doesn’t have to be professional as in Gucci catalog website. But make it believable. Simple. Clean. No clutter. Only the information you want the visitor to know about. Good LP Design and Bad LP Design . Notice the difference? See the simpleness of both but the difference of functionality and the less confusion the Good LP has over the Bad LP? There is a clear decision to be made and you are pointed to what needs to be done in the Good LP, were as the Bad LP, its just their main website and tons of other links that you can click on. So without a doubt they get less leads for their business.

6. Content and Pre-Selling – I kinda hit some tips when it comes to pre-selling but copywriting and LP content is a whole tutorial on its own. It boils down to this: list the most important benefits or advantages, have accurate information, show facts, studies, reports, statistics, true testimonials, videos, pictures and call to actions. Thats a brief overview of what you need. I can’t write the content for you word for word. Once you find a LP design that works, you want to continually test your LP copy, starting with the attention grabbing statement. Just look at each of the items above and consider them when doing your copywriting.

I can’t hold your hand and guide you through step-by-step when designing your landing pages. Basically it comes down to you either, learning how to use Photoshop CS and Dreamweaver (or Fireworks, Frontpage, Expressions Web, etc) so you can design your own landing pages to gain experience or secondly, you search for a LP designer until you find a good one. The best place I know of to learn how and to get familiar with Photoshop and the rest is at Lynda.com. Its not free but its by far the fastest route to learning those programs. Also, there are a ton of photoshop tutorials online that are completely free. That show you step by step what to do and how to create specific things, just Google them. Don’t complain about having to challenge yourself. Affiliate marketing is nothing compared to going to school to be a doctor or lawyer, and it even has equal to or better compensation opportunities. To hire an LP designer, just look on places like Elance, GetAFreelancer, ODesk, 99Designs, etc. Its costly though. Best to get an understanding of how to use those programs yourself and as you grow, start outsourcing or hire a full time designer.

Questions & Answers

Allen

a) So say you were trying to target this demographic and offer in Facebook… how would you focus in on race such as African-American? The female part would be easy but I’m very curious to know if it’s possible to do so for race.

b) In the landing page series, can you tackle the issue of fake blog-style landers… if/where do you think affiliates should draw the lines in terms of deceptive testimonial/results, comments, etc.

A. As I’m not too experienced on facebook marketing, I asked my friend Neil from NeilsWeb.com this question. He said there isn’t a way to specifically target groups by race but you can target groups of people according to their interests. For example, if you are using keyword targeting on facebook, targeting keywords that you know the african american population would have a strong interest in would be a way to capture a portion of that type of traffic. Using words like “Lil Wayne”, etc.

B. To tackle the the fake blog style landing pages is something more of a personal moral conviction. To say I’ve never done it would be lying. However, I do not support or promote that method of landing pages publicly and there can be severe consequences to those who in the past/present/future use those style of landing pages. I think each affiliate should try their best to provide truthful, adequate testimonials, comments and statistics.

TipJar

I haven’t got a clue on how to create one. I’m decent at graphic design so I tried creating one in Photoshop, slicing it, and then coding it in Dreamweaver. But I realized I had no clue what I was doing (especially when trying to add text with divs and css). I could outsource this task, but I don’t have the money, and would like to be able to create my campaign from the ground up (demographic-keywords-landing page). Once I know what I am doing I can always outsource it later.

Not to mention the fact that I’m not sure how to do DKI (dynamic keyword insertion), split testing, or PHP. Do you have any recommendations as to where I could learn how to design these myself?

Refer to my suggestions about Lynda.com, that is going to be one of the best ways to learn how to better design landing pages. You just need to better understand how DIVs, CSS and the other coding aspects work. Join a few design/graphic forums and you will learn alot. Also, don’t forget to Google the questions you have and you will be amazed to find how many different tutorial there are out there. Then over a little bit of time you have gained all of the skills necessary.

As far as DKI, split testing and PHP. Those are things that you will learn more about in the future, once you completely understand the basics. In the near future I will cover DKI and Split Testing.

I is Celebrities

Hey Andrew, love your case study series. A quick question, do you test the offer first before building a landing page, or do you already know for sure that it’s a good offer without first testing it? Thanks

Most of the time the offers that I chose to run, I start with landing pages. I rarely do direct linking because its not a solid business model. I don’t build out the website until I see that it converts well enough to make profitable. But I almost always use a landing page.

Thomas

That’s a great article. Even though Facebook has great targeting options I always had a really low CTR. I guess you almost have to have multiple offers/ads going on the network to make it really worthwhile.

I had a question though. When creating landing pages/sites for offers how much time do you initially spend on any one offer? With more content I know you have a better QS but if it takes you 2-3 days it’s hard to test multiple offers at the same time. Any ideas? Thanks Tom

With facebook, if you are running one offer, you want to test a bunch of ads and really narrow groups of demographics. Find the best version of your ad and focus exclusively on the best demographic with the best ad. For a better reference, again refer to this video interview of my friend Neil, Video Interview.

Not sure if I totally understand your question, however, to answer it to the best of my interpretation. It typically takes me 1 day to prep an offer for lauching and I launch it on day 2. That is for a test. If you are new, I would focus on testing one offer at a time. And if you want a shortcut start with Yahoo as their quality score requirements are much much easier than Google.

Joe Schleswig-Holstein

Very good post, I ll come back to your blog. Thank you also, i just discovered quantcast, whichis a very good tool!
I wish you showed a concrete example how you reach your audience, after having done such a research on that target audience.

I do not understand what your question is about the audience? If you can explain in more detail I will try to answer it.

That will be all for tonight. I will continue this series later this week.


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28 Responses

February 3, 2009

Hey, it’s Greazy here.
Sorry, Kris, I am not trying to spam your comments. I posted a quick review of CashTactics on my blog, would apreciate if you / or therest of your readers could leave your own very brief review as a comment on that review.
I try to refferr people here as often as I can, even though I dont participate here, I do lurk and read.
Best Wishes to all.


February 4, 2009
Ben

Hi – long time reader but first time commenter. This set of LP posts has been fantastic – thanks for taking the time to write such an in-depth set of notes.


February 4, 2009
Plunge

Your title tag is wrong, says “Part 1″ instead of “Part 2″. :)


February 4, 2009
Joao

Wouldn’t those landing pages then take them to the offer in the AcaiBerry’s vendor site?
I’m not understanding why you are asking them for the phone, the address and all the rest if you’re going to direct them to the offers real page. Or are you not sending them to the “vendor’s” page? What I’m asking is if you’re substituting their landing page with yours instead of your LP working like a bridge page?


February 4, 2009

Great post. :) Helpful for sure. Thanks.


February 4, 2009

I wouldn’t personally go to an elance site if i wanted to hire someone to design an LP. Just go to wickedfire and look in the buy and sell forum and you will find a lot of good designers doing LPs for like $50-$75.


February 5, 2009
jonesy

absolutely useless post. you write a landing page tutorial and give two offer pages as the examples. great, now i know how to design an offer page but have no idea how to design a landing page. fail again.


February 5, 2009

Actually Jonesy you have failed miserably. Unfortunately you don’t see the benefits of this post. He has pointed out the key elements to those offer pages. The reason he pointed those out is so that you can take those key elements into your actual landing page. We can’t hold your hand all the way through. You have to think for yourself if you want to be successful. If you can’t think for yourself you won’t be successful online. Good luck bud.


February 5, 2009

I never knew there’s so much that goes into landing pages. Its a lot of work but once you get it down you can get a lot of conversions. Those 2 examples of Acai berry landing pages look great and they have a really nice design.


February 5, 2009

Very well laid out post there with all the details. I stumbled upon your site through the review on thenetfool.


In fact, in landing pages, it is important that the people get it quick. So, the design involving a lot of content and ads may not load well enough and may distract the users. You know, most users do not stick around more than 4 seconds. So, it is a lot of loss to have a content rich page.


February 5, 2009

that was really something great – will help me in building my next landing pages designs .. .


February 8, 2009

Really good article! Thanks a lot, now I`m going to try something from here!


February 10, 2009

Those are some good tips. I especially like the examples that you give, those make it much easier to understand.


February 12, 2009

Good stuff Andrew… keep it coming!


February 16, 2009

Great post. I am in the process of creating my first landig page. It is or a product I created myself and I want to launched it but have no page.
Thanks for the helpful tips. I will be sure to refer back to this page in the creation process.


February 19, 2009

Incredible post! Thank you for sharing so much with us, I’ll be sure to forward!

Best,
Dan Stack


February 20, 2009

Also, when it comes to design and call of action, contrast is your friend. In the first Acai example and the good LP example, the call to action is a different color than the rest of the design. It draws the readers attention. (Those web design classes are started to pay off).

Awesome article. My only problem is I currently use blogs for all my landing pages, and I am not quite sure how to maximize their effectiveness.


March 3, 2009

I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don’t know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.

Alanna


Nice little guide for those trying to design their own LPs without having to dish out some money. Also like to see the different styles as well as a reminder. I love the multi-offer style personally the best.


June 11, 2009

Your write up with a fine example of it…..that make me a regular reader of your blog.


July 12, 2009

It’s funny you mentioned about fake testimonials, because I have encountered a few who posted a picture of the person stating the testimony well in fact I knew the person in the picture and he denies the testimony on the landing page I saw.

Video’s are also great addition to landing pages.


September 29, 2009

Which one of the above Acai Pages do you think would convert better? The one with the Order Button above the Fold?


September 29, 2009

That’s a great question. Honestly enough of the order form is above the fold that if you when by that criteria alone both would really do just fine. However, the “Acai Pure” has a picture of a very well known celebrity. So in my opinion “Acai Pure” would probably convert better. But since these two offers are so much alike… Your best bet would be to split test them together.


October 30, 2009
Jay

Great article… So many landing pages are poorly designed. A landing page needs to be done right the first time to be effective or you lose cash.


September 1, 2010

Your write up with a fine example of it….
Thanks..