Don’t believe anyone who tells you copy isn’t important. That person (obviously) knows nothing about the art of conversion because great writing is everything. Your content carries your landing page by explaining, persuading and most importantly, gaining the visitor’s trust enough to finally click the CTA button. Sadly, many landing pages fail because they’re missing solid copy. Good looks (i.e design) will only get you so far.
Since you only have 5 seconds to convince a landing page visitor to stay, let’s not waste any more time: Below, we outline the most important details to include in your copy:
1. A clear value proposition
A person may have discovered your landing page, but that doesn’t mean you’ve sold them on your product just yet. We read faster but less thoroughly when we go online, which is why a solid value proposition (the promise of value to be delivered) is crucial in order to catch a reader’s attention.
Think of it like a newspaper article: A publication will always list the most important information first, and then proceed to provide the finer details further down the page. You should use the same format when writing landing page copy, outlining your value proposition at the top of the page. Your value proposition needs to a) clearly state the product you want to sell and b) explain how a person will benefit from the product. A value proposition usually includes:
1. Headline 1
2. Headline 2 (Sub-headline)
3. Supporting points/list of benefits
4. Image that reinforces your message
5. CTA button
Take this landing page we created for a client offering Botox solutions:
Looking at it, you’ll notice that:
- Headline 1 wastes no time explaining how the product (Botox) will benefit you.
- Headline 2 reinforces the first headline with a benefit-oriented statement (long lasting results).
- The supporting points go into further detail about the benefits and features of Botox.
- There is a relevant image that ties in with the targeted demographic (middle-aged women).
- The CTA button is prominent and welcoming.
The value proposition is clear throughout the page: Achieve wrinkle free skin with one simple injectable. Customers are made clear of this fact consistently throughout the page, leaving no doubt or confusion in their minds as to what they’re being sold on. When writing copy, always remember to maintain the same value proposition throughout the landing page.
2. Evidence that your product is trustworthy & reliable
Develop a strong sense of trust with a visitor by including logos, testimonials and any additional certification to back up your product’s effectiveness. By providing validation, you will experience a higher conversion rate. How so?
People follow the masses. Studies prove that a person is more likely to be persuaded to do something if more than one person is already doing said activity. This applies to landing pages and social proof as well. Research done by Forrester and Jupiter Research shows that 77% of customers read reviews before buying a product online. This makes featuring testimonials on your landing page an absolute must for maximum conversion rate success.
For the landing page above, we included three different forms of validation to ensure trust and reliability:
- Official company logo
- National award stamp
- Two testimonials with names and pictures
While not featured in this landing page, adding logos of well- known customers and partners is also a great way to increase trust and conversion rates.
3. An effective CTA button
A lot of writers think that by the time they get to the CTA button, the sales pitch is done and that conversion is guaranteed. Not so fast guys.
It’s easy to consider the CTA button an afterthought but a CTA button is crucial in getting a visitor to become an actual paying customer. What happens if all the copy leading up to the final product push has a customer convinced, but the CTA button turns out to be…
Unclear (What the heck is a “sticky?”)
…Or not even there?
I’ll tell you what happens: You lose the sale. Without concise copy on the CTA button, all the time and effort that was spent on creating a beautiful landing page goes completely to waste.
Here are some helpful tips:
- Use action-filled text. In order to entice the visitor to actually click the button, the copy needs to feature an action. CTA buttons that have words like “next” and “submit” are boring and won’t do anything to convince someone they’re making the right choice. Phrases like “get my free consultation” are an instant improvement.
- Keep button text between 2-5 words. Too lengthy of a CTA button and it becomes a text block not button.
- Personalize. Change the possessive determiner from “You” to “My” and see what happens. This makes it more personal and feel like the customer is making the choice to click on their own.
- Avoid giving orders. People don’t like to be told what to do- which is why you should avoid words like order, click, or sign up. Focus on words that emphasize what a customer is going to get instead. In fact, that word could actually be your secret weapon to making a sale.
- Be specific. Explain exactly what a user is going to get by clicking the button. The more value you can express in your CTA copy, the more conversions you’ll get.
4. Concise wording
We discussed having a clear proposition statement earlier but it’s important to mention some specifics when it comes to headline copy. Above all, avoid puns, gimmicks or jokes in your headlines. Too often, writers forgo an informative headline in favour of a clever attention-grabber that explains nothing about the product. A visitor should be able to tell what your landing page is about by your top two lines. So take the test: read over your landing page’s headline 1 and 2 and see if you can answer the what and why by the copy you’ve written.
5. A short & sweet entry form
Users are quick to bounce when the time comes to actually give their personal info to you, which is why you need to be careful not to spook the potential customer before the final push. When creating an entry form:
- Don’t overwhelm with too many fields. Be aware of how much info you’re asking a user to provide to you in return for how much you’re giving them. Too much work on their end and they might bail before they get to the CTA button.
- Ensure privacy. It helps to include a privacy or security line near the CTA button (eg. “this form is 100% secure”) to reassure users that your business is trustworthy and professional.
- Include optional form fields. This is a great way to put users at ease because it gives them the freedom to choose whether they give you their information or not. Their name and email might be required but by making their address and phone number an optional choice, you might just end up getting a fully submitted form anyway!
6. An amazing hero shot
This may be a designer’s job but I believe copy and design go hand-in-hand which is why I’m including it here. It’s the little things that can make or break a successful landing page, and there’s nothing worse than seeing great writing alongside cheesy stock photos. You may think everyone will believe that awkward, clinical group photo took place in your office but trust me, we all know better.
A stock photo may be perfectly lit and have a high picture resolution but really… that’s the extent of its perks. Studies have proven that stock photos cause a landing page’s bounce rate to increase by 30%, which is why it pays off to use personalized photos on your landing page. Featuring an authentic product or service photo will help:
- Identify with the customer. With the exception of fashion campaigns, using glam or stock photo models on a landing page are rarely effective. Most users have a hard time identifying with the perfectly done up figures shilling the product so if they don’t believe in the model, why would they believe in the product?
- Gain credibility. Using a picture of your own is a great way to prove to users that you’re a legitimate business willing to put in the effort (as opposed to taking the stock photo cop out.)
When writing copy for a landing page, always remember that clarity is key. If you focus on creating clear and informative copy at every stage of your project, you’ll have a much higher chance at creating a landing page that resonates with users.