Any sort of website online should have the single, primary goal of converting users to paying customers at the forefront. Because otherwise - what's the point of having a website if it does nothing for you?
Let's go over 10 tips on how to create an effective landing page.
1. A Primary, Bold Headline
Users do not have a long attention span - most people stay on a website for about three seconds before they decide whether they want to explore further into your website, or whether they're leaving all together. A big part of the users decision here is, "what's this website about?". With a clear headline, that immediately solves that problem for them.
2. A Secondary, Clear Headline
One clear headline may be too general to cover all the specifics of the page. Once the user knows exactly what the page is about, a second clear headline dives into deeper into the further specifics of that page. This also helps for SEO (search engine optimization) for the page, wherein you can place keywords in. This helps both users and search engines with ranking high in Google.
3. SEO-Friendly Paragraph Text
One part of indexing well in search engines is having relevant, unique content specific to your niche. The paragraph text on the landing page is your primary place to insert this type of content. Whether it's paragraph text, bullets - as long as the content is valuable, educational and highly informative, you're off to a great start in terms of ranking well in Google and being helpful to the people coming to your website.
4. Social Proof
Instilling trust in your brand is a very important thing to do, especially when someone visits your website for the first time. Having an area for testimonials can be an extremely powerful way to instill trust. Another great way to accomplish the same psychological effect, is that off listing off client logos of companies you've worked with previously.
5 & 6. Using a Strong Call to Action
This is the bread and butter of your landing page. Everything leads up to getting the user to convert - which is exactly what using a strong call to action does. A bold, contrasted button, along with strong text on the button itself triggers the user to make an action - whether it be to call, fill out a form or email, the main point here is to get the user to contact you.
7. Use A Minimal Set of Navigation Links
Having too many links on any landing page is not only confusing to the user, it actually may penalize you in Googles eyes. Googles robots need to crawl your website, and how your website is laid out determines how easy it is for your website to be crawled. The easier it is for Googles robots to crawl your site, the easier for Google to rank you.
8. Using Videos and Images to Your Advantage
Humans are wired to find visuals appealing. Use this to your advantage on your landing page. Make sure that the images and videos used create social proof, and use enticing imagery / videos to keep the users engaged and interested in the service or product you're offering.
9. Keep the most immediate and important information "Above The Fold"
"Above The Fold" is completely different on say, a desktop computer - than that of a mobile device. All content shifts and responds to each different screen size, therefore the "Fold" is altered greatly on all devices. Having said that, it's imperative to make sure that on whatever screen a potential customer sees your website on, that on that immediate area is the most vital information that you're presenting to the user. This will trigger them to either scroll as their interest is peaked, or leave because the content is simply not engaging.
10. Always Be Testing!
Your first landing page may not be converting well, even if you use all of these principles. Each industry is different, and for each niche - different approaches will work, and others.. not so much. It's important to A/B test with at the very least, two different types of landing pages. You'll then be in a much better place to see what elements work where, and which don't.