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Landing Page Optimization For Dummies®

Book Description

Turn landing pages into profits with the right tools

Successful landing pages don't happen by accident, they follow a carefully crafted formula. If you want to convert visitors to your site into sales, it's crucial to understand how to design, monitor, and maintain your landing page. This straightforward, plain-English guide shows you how to cover all the bases-from the visual layout, to using language effectively, to linking strategies, and more. The book is packed with practical tips and techniques, it also identifies common mistakes and pitfalls you should avoid. The book features a valuable $50 coupon off the price of a site diagnosis and webinars on the author's website.

  • Discover the power of language and how to use it as a call to action

  • Start predicting customer browsing behavior

  • Diagnose current problems with your landing page

  • Create a unified marketing message between the search engine result and landing page

  • Examine common optimization approaches

  • Master specific tools for tracking results and follow strict maintenance procedures

If you want to make your landing page more appealing, this book provides clear, hands-on explanations and information that you can put to use immediately.

Table of Contents

  1. Copyright
  2. About The Authors
  3. Authors' Acknowledgments
  4. Publisher's Acknowledgments
  5. Introduction
    1. About This Book
    2. Conventions Used in This Book
    3. What You Don't Have to Read
    4. Foolish Assumptions
    5. How This Book Is Organized
      1. Part I: Landing Page Basics
      2. Part II: Building Landing Pages
      3. Part III: Getting to Know Your Customers
      4. Part IV: Increasing Your Sales
      5. Part V: Driving More Visitors to Your Site
      6. Part VI: The Part of Tens
    6. Icons Used in This Book
    7. Where to Go from Here
  6. I. Landing Page Basics
    1. 1. Introducing Landing Page Optimization
      1. 1.1. Introducing the Landing Page
        1. 1.1.1. Understanding what a landing page is not
        2. 1.1.2. The function of landing pages
      2. 1.2. Choosing Your Landing Page Focus
      3. 1.3. Identifying and Knowing Your Audience
        1. 1.3.1. Web analytics
        2. 1.3.2. Identifying customer expectations
        3. 1.3.3. Identifying product benefits
    2. 2. Understanding Online Marketing Basics
      1. 2.1. Understanding Online Marketing Terms and Definitions
      2. 2.2. Tracking Down Online Marketing Myths
        1. 2.2.1. Myth #1: Build a great Web site or landing page, and visitors will come
        2. 2.2.2. Myth #2: More visitors to your site translate into more sales
        3. 2.2.3. Myth #3: The more content on a site, the better
        4. 2.2.4. Myth #4: Offering a broad range of products/services on a landing page translates to more sales
        5. 2.2.5. Myth #5: The right product/service will make me rich
      3. 2.3. Understanding the Customer Life Cycle
        1. 2.3.1. Acquisition
        2. 2.3.2. Conversion
        3. 2.3.3. Retention
          1. 2.3.3.1. E-mail retention
          2. 2.3.3.2. Newsletters
      4. 2.4. Managing Your Expectations
    3. 3. Preparing for Your Landing Page
      1. 3.1. Developing Your Landing Page Plan
        1. 3.1.1. Writing your business summary
        2. 3.1.2. Market analysis
        3. 3.1.3. Marketing and landing page performance goals
        4. 3.1.4. Financial resources
        5. 3.1.5. Your detailed financial plan
      2. 3.2. Researching Your Competition
  7. II. Building Landing Pages
    1. 4. Identifying Key Landing Page Elements
      1. 4.1. Working in the Fold
        1. 4.1.1. Three fold secrets
        2. 4.1.2. Must-have fold information
        3. 4.1.3. Defining your resolution needs
        4. 4.1.4. Testing your fold viewing area
        5. 4.1.5. Checking out your competition
        6. 4.1.6. Troubleshooting your fold
      2. 4.2. Working with headings
        1. 4.2.1. Placing your heading
        2. 4.2.2. The secret to creating perfect headings
        3. 4.2.3. Determining heading effectiveness
        4. 4.2.4. Troubleshooting your heading
      3. 4.3. Understanding Body Text Essentials
        1. 4.3.1. General body text guidelines
        2. 4.3.2. Avoiding text pitfalls
      4. 4.4. Creating a Call to Action
        1. 4.4.1. Keeping it simple
        2. 4.4.2. Troubleshooting your call to action
      5. 4.5. Using Images in the Fold
        1. 4.5.1. Using animated images and videos
        2. 4.5.2. Placing your image in the fold
        3. 4.5.3. Image mistakes to avoid
      6. 4.6. Creating Trust
        1. 4.6.1. Establishing trust
        2. 4.6.2. Common trust errors to avoid
      7. 4.7. Using Eye Path (Heat Maps) in Your Design
        1. 4.7.1. Identifying a heat map
        2. 4.7.2. Heat maps as a marketing analysis tool
        3. 4.7.3. Comparing current heat maps
        4. 4.7.4. Doing your own heat map testing
    2. 5. The "Best Practices" of Landing Page Aesthetics
      1. 5.1. Enticing (or Repelling) Visitors with Color
        1. 5.1.1. The nutshell overview of color wheels
        2. 5.1.2. The vocabulary of color
        3. 5.1.3. Selecting your color scheme
          1. 5.1.3.1. Who's your target market?
          2. 5.1.3.2. How long is the design expected to last?
          3. 5.1.3.3. What message do you want your design to convey?
          4. 5.1.3.4. What's the competition doing?
        4. 5.1.4. Getting help online
        5. 5.1.5. Being practical with color choices
      2. 5.2. Attracting Visitors with Buttons
        1. 5.2.1. Speaking with your buttons
        2. 5.2.2. Pushing all the right buttons
      3. 5.3. Choosing the Right Fonts
        1. 5.3.1. Selecting reader-friendly fonts
        2. 5.3.2. Managing font sizes and spacing
      4. 5.4. Using Images to Focus Attention
        1. 5.4.1. Sending the right message
        2. 5.4.2. Directing with images
        3. 5.4.3. Selecting images for your Web site
        4. 5.4.4. Working with photographers
        5. 5.4.5. Doing your own photography
        6. 5.4.6. Using stock photography
    3. 6. Writing for Landing Pages
      1. 6.1. Introducing Landing Page Writing
        1. 6.1.1. Writing for the Web readers
        2. 6.1.2. Structuring your online communication
          1. 6.1.2.1. Grammar
          2. 6.1.2.2. Paragraph development
        3. 6.1.3. Highlighting landing page hot spots
      2. 6.2. Writing Controlled Content
        1. 6.2.1. Stage 1: Planning
        2. 6.2.2. Stage 2: Drafting to capture reader attention
        3. 6.2.3. Stage 3: Revising
        4. 6.2.4. Stage 4: Editing
        5. 6.2.5. Stage 5: Proofreading
        6. 6.2.6. Stage 6: User testing
      3. 6.3. Developing Persuasive Content
        1. 6.3.1. The ethical appeal
        2. 6.3.2. The rational appeal
        3. 6.3.3. The emotional appeal
      4. 6.4. Writing the Three Key Landing Page Components
        1. 6.4.1. Writing enticing headings
        2. 6.4.2. Writing calls to action
        3. 6.4.3. Writing a value statement
      5. 6.5. Five Awesome Landing Page Writing Tips
    4. 7. Building Customer Trust
      1. 7.1. Developing Trust with Visitors
        1. 7.1.1. Dealing with (cynical) realities
        2. 7.1.2. The scourge of malware
      2. 7.2. The Elements of Trust
        1. 7.2.1. Using the correct language
        2. 7.2.2. Incorporating trust words and phrases
        3. 7.2.3. Protecting customer information
          1. 7.2.3.1. Sample Client Privacy Agreement
          2. 7.2.3.2. Securing personal information
        4. 7.2.4. Using trust icons and logos
        5. 7.2.5. Using testimonials and customer comments
          1. 7.2.5.1. Using customer comments
          2. 7.2.5.2. Using negative comments to your advantage
          3. 7.2.5.3. Editing comments
        6. 7.2.6. Adding content pages to build trust
        7. 7.2.7. Using Terms of Sale and Terms of Use as trust tools
          1. 7.2.7.1. Terms of Sale Agreement
          2. 7.2.7.2. Sample Terms of Sale Agreement
          3. 7.2.7.3. Offering return policies & guarantees
          4. 7.2.7.4. Terms of Use Policy
          5. 7.2.7.5. Sample Terms of Use Policy
      3. 7.3. Placing Trust Elements in Your Landing Page
      4. 7.4. Five Trust Building Tips
      5. 7.5. Trust Element Checklist
  8. III. Getting to Know Your Customers
    1. 8. Getting to Know Your Audience
      1. 8.1. Creating a Customer Profile
        1. 8.1.1. Getting the information
        2. 8.1.2. Pre-profiling your ideal customer
        3. 8.1.3. Defining your customer demographic
      2. 8.2. Market Segmentation
        1. 8.2.1. Personas: Putting a name to the group
        2. 8.2.2. Applying market segmentation and personas
      3. 8.3. Establishing Your Customer's Surfing Habits
      4. 8.4. Understanding the Customer Decision-Making Process
        1. 8.4.1. Stage 1: Need recognition and problem awareness
        2. 8.4.2. Stage 2: Product/service information search
        3. 8.4.3. Stage 3: Evaluation of alternatives
        4. 8.4.4. Stage 4: Purchase
        5. 8.4.5. Stage 5: Post-purchase evaluation
        6. 8.4.6. Taking advantage of the sales cycle
      5. 8.5. Knowing Your Audience Checklist
    2. 9. Meeting Your Visitors' Expectations
      1. 9.1. Dealing With the Impatient Visitor
        1. 9.1.1. A little more on bounce rates
        2. 9.1.2. Tracking your bounce rate
        3. 9.1.3. Bounce rate reduction: The top 10 list
      2. 9.2. Keeping Customers Happy: Final Thought
      3. 9.3. Creating Multiple Landing Pages
        1. 9.3.1. The need for multiple landing pages
          1. 9.3.1.1. Keywords and phrases
          2. 9.3.1.2. Visitor demographics
          3. 9.3.1.3. Education and occupation
          4. 9.3.1.4. National and international
          5. 9.3.1.5. Language
          6. 9.3.1.6. Testing new markets and products
          7. 9.3.1.7. Deals and promotions
          8. 9.3.1.8. Ad types
        2. 9.3.2. Creating effective multiple landing pages
      4. 9.4. Advantages of Creating Multiple Landing Pages
        1. 9.4.1. Building techniques for multiple landing pages
          1. 9.4.1.1. Automated landing pages
          2. 9.4.1.2. Creating manual landing pages
        2. 9.4.2. Strategies for matching multiple landing pages to your advertising
    3. 10. Improving Customer Communications
      1. 10.1. Communicating with Your Visitors
        1. 10.1.1. One-way communication
          1. 10.1.1.1. Customer reviews
          2. 10.1.1.2. Getting reviews ahead of time
        2. 10.1.2. Limited two-way communication
          1. 10.1.2.1. Surveys
          2. 10.1.2.2. Using feedback forms
          3. 10.1.2.3. Placing form elements in your landing page
          4. 10.1.2.4. Pop-ins and pop-ups
        3. 10.1.3. Full two-way communication
          1. 10.1.3.1. Phone support
          2. 10.1.3.2. E-mail communication
          3. 10.1.3.3. Writing professional e-mails
          4. 10.1.3.4. Tips when returning e-mails
      2. 10.2. Using Forums
  9. IV. Increasing Your Sales
    1. 11. Understanding E-Commerce and Closing Online Sales
      1. 11.1. Understanding E-Commerce Basics
        1. 11.1.1. Reviewing e-commerce components
          1. 11.1.1.1. Landing page
          2. 11.1.1.2. Shopping cart
          3. 11.1.1.3. Merchant account
          4. 11.1.1.4. Payment gateway
        2. 11.1.2. Fitting it all together
      2. 11.2. E-Commerce Mistakes: Ten Ways to Lose a Sale
      3. 11.3. Strategies for Closing Online Sales
        1. 11.3.1. Create urgency
        2. 11.3.2. Show confidence
        3. 11.3.3. Remove obstacles to sales
    2. 12. Fine-Tuning Your Landing Page
      1. 12.1. Locating Five Problem Areas with Your Landing Page
        1. 12.1.1. Checkout procedures
        2. 12.1.2. Page presentation
        3. 12.1.3. Page information
        4. 12.1.4. Landing page technology
        5. 12.1.5. Site navigation
      2. 12.2. Getting the Information to Fine-Tune Your Landing Page
        1. 12.2.1. Usability testing
        2. 12.2.2. Focus groups
          1. 12.2.2.1. Preparing for focus groups
          2. 12.2.2.2. Surveys, forums, and blogs
        3. 12.2.3. Tracking software
        4. 12.2.4. Google Analytics
      3. 12.3. Making and Evaluating Changes to Your Landing Page
        1. 12.3.1. Using split-testing
        2. 12.3.2. Split-testing with Google Analytics
  10. V. Driving More Visitors to Your Site
    1. 13. Using Keywords Effectively
      1. 13.1. Reviewing Keyword Basics
        1. 13.1.1. Benefiting from long-tail keywords
        2. 13.1.2. Understanding the connection between keywords and search engines
        3. 13.1.3. Searching basics
      2. 13.2. Getting on the Right Keyword Track
      3. 13.3. Picking the Right Keywords for Your Landing Page
        1. 13.3.1. Step 1: Identifying a general short-tail keyword (and then expanding it)
        2. 13.3.2. Step 2: Identifying associated keywords
        3. 13.3.3. Step 3: Researching your related keywords
        4. 13.3.4. Step 4: Putting it all together
        5. 13.3.5. Step 5: Choosing your best keywords
      4. 13.4. Placing Keywords in Your Landing Page
      5. 13.5. Placing Keywords in Your Advertising
      6. 13.6. Reviewing Online Keyword Tools
    2. 14. Understanding Search Engine Marketing
      1. 14.1. Understanding Search Engine Marketing
        1. 14.1.1. Crawling, indexing, and sitemaps
        2. 14.1.2. Deciding on your search engine focus
        3. 14.1.3. Submitting an XML sitemap
          1. 14.1.3.1. Third-party sitemap creators
          2. 14.1.3.2. Submitting XML sitemaps with Webmaster tools
      2. 14.2. Ranking and Search Engine Optimization
        1. 14.2.1. Creating search friendly landing pages
        2. 14.2.2. Using <TITLE> tags
        3. 14.2.3. Using <DESCRIPTION> tags
        4. 14.2.4. Content, content, and a little more content
          1. 14.2.4.1. Keywords
          2. 14.2.4.2. Headings and sub-headings
        5. 14.2.5. Monitoring your HTML file size
          1. 14.2.5.1. Optimizing images
          2. 14.2.5.2. Link text
      3. 14.3. SEO Checklist
    3. 15. Driving Traffic with Ads, Articles, and Other Tricks
      1. 15.1. Driving Traffic and Its Considerations
        1. 15.1.1. Driving traffic comes at a cost
        2. 15.1.2. Driving traffic precautions
      2. 15.2. Driving Traffic When You Have Writers Twitter
        1. 15.2.1. Finding gold in Q&A sites and forums
        2. 15.2.2. Submitting articles
        3. 15.2.3. Doing the blogging thing
        4. 15.2.4. Tweeting and Twittering
        5. 15.2.5. Social networking
      3. 15.3. Driving Traffic Traditionally
        1. 15.3.1. Using banner ads
        2. 15.3.2. Running classified ads
        3. 15.3.3. E-mail marketing
        4. 15.3.4. PPC advertising and contextual ads
      4. 15.4. Driving Traffic in Ways You May Not Have Thought Of
        1. 15.4.1. Videos and rich media is everywhere
        2. 15.4.2. Cross-linking
        3. 15.4.3. Affiliate networks
        4. 15.4.4. Picking up where others left off
    4. 16. Paying for Your Clicks
      1. 16.1. Introduction to the Inner Workings of PPC
        1. 16.1.1. Changing forever how marketing is done
        2. 16.1.2. Putting together the pieces
        3. 16.1.3. Spotting PPC ads online
      2. 16.2. Wrapping Your Mind around PPC Marketing Campaigns
        1. 16.2.1. Stepping through the process
          1. 16.2.1.1. PPC campaign provider
          2. 16.2.1.2. Strategy development
          3. 16.2.1.3. Management
          4. 16.2.1.4. Tracking and reporting
      3. 16.3. Being Realistic about PPC Marketing
        1. 16.3.1. Seeing whether PPC really is an option for you
        2. 16.3.2. Examining the pros and cons to PPC
        3. 16.3.3. Watching your costs — a cautionary tale
      4. 16.4. Using PPC for Testing Purposes
        1. 16.4.1. PPC testing strategies
        2. 16.4.2. The five biggest mistakes with PPC testing
      5. 16.5. Where Can You Find Out More about PPC?
    5. 17. Running a Google PPC Campaign
      1. 17.1. Starting with Google AdWords
        1. 17.1.1. Laying the groundwork
        2. 17.1.2. Choosing between the Starter or Standard Edition
        3. 17.1.3. The Standard Edition account structure
        4. 17.1.4. Working within the AdWords interface
        5. 17.1.5. Getting off the ground with campaigns
        6. 17.1.6. Entering your first ad
        7. 17.1.7. Adding keywords
        8. 17.1.8. Taking care of billing
        9. 17.1.9. Managing your campaign with AdGroups
        10. 17.1.10. Using Google Analytics
      2. 17.2. Using Google's Free Advertiser Tools
        1. 17.2.1. Website Optimizer, a split-testing tool
        2. 17.2.2. Using the AdWords Keyword tool
        3. 17.2.3. Using the Ad Preview tool (and checking on your competition)
  11. VI. The Part of Tens
    1. 18. Ten-Point Landing Page Inspection
      1. 18.1. Are You Effectively Using Audio Greetings and Background Music?
      2. 18.2. The More Testimonials, the Better, Right?
      3. 18.3. Have You Verified that Your Trust Elements Are in Place?
      4. 18.4. Are Your Headings Crafted Carefully?
      5. 18.5. Have You Removed or Explained Any Jargon?
      6. 18.6. Do You Have Any Urgent Language on Your Page?
      7. 18.7. Is the Price Right?
      8. 18.8. Have You Conducted a Focus Group?
      9. 18.9. Does Your Landing Page Look Like a Home Page?
      10. 18.10. Is Critical Information Above the Fold?
    2. 19. Ten Surefire Ways to Increase Conversion Rates
      1. 19.1. Keywords, Keywords, and Keywords
      2. 19.2. Be Up Front
      3. 19.3. Use the Fold Wisely
      4. 19.4. Develop Persuasive Content for Body Text
      5. 19.5. Focus Your Efforts on the Customer
      6. 19.6. User-Friendly Layout
      7. 19.7. Spend Time on Your Headings
      8. 19.8. Entice and Focus
      9. 19.9. Be Visible
      10. 19.10. Focus on Gaining Visitor Trust