Focus on Landing Pages
Landing pages are a key component of any PPC campaign strategy. Designing a good landing page for an advert is obviously important if you want the best results.
In a sense, of course, all pages are ‘landing pages’ which are optimised:
- either for visitors in general, primarily organic search related, or for paid advert visitors.
- Indeed it is important to optimise pages for SEO purposes.
- Also once people arrive on the site, we want the best conversion rate and activity from those visitors across all the products and services. The smoothest and most satisfying user experience.
- So marketers often design seperate landing pages for paid adverts with specific measured goals, to the ones optimised for the search engine.
All this results in various trade-offs.
- dedicated PPC landing pages tend to optimise around a conversion related to the search term. That may mean a loss of navigation and other site features you normally want on a page. It isn’t integrated into the organic search goals of the main site.
Dedicated landing pages for PPC ads are designed around two criteria, usually.
The traditional main criteria is to simply get a desirable action out of a visitor from a paid ad.
- removing distractions and simplifying out all the relevant information,
- call to actions and for example,
- cart processes in such a way to minimise bounce rate
- and win a specific conversion from that visitor.
This is because that is what the company has hired the marketing company to do.
But this can also have compromises attached to it
- it isn’t a very ‘holistic approach’
- other kinds of activity may be restricted and the dedicated PPC landing page is not working effectively with the SEO efforts of the site.
The second criteria for designing a dedicated PPC landing page is to improve keyword quality score.
Raising keyword quality score is very important. It can boost your campaign performance not just because higher quality scores on keywords means they are cheaper to bid on. Also because poor quality score can severely restrict the number of impressions Google will allow for that keyword. These keywords may be vital to your campaign performance and often convert well.
It isn’t simply about matching keywords to the landing page. As Adwords users know, it is about matching the ad text to both the landing page and the keyword.
This theming raises quality score and should also reduce confusion in the visitor.
Also, Images should match those on the site.
- on the display network
- also on other social media and email campaigns.
- Continuity is a valuable component and any good marketing house will automatically design continuity into all these elements.
Some things to think about:
- Headlines. There is a headline on your advert – is it or the content relevant on your landing page? Are you describing an offer – if so, is it mentioned on the landing page?
- Ad text – is the content similar and prominantly displayed also on your landing page?
- Page length – your landing page can be long, but not if the relevant info mentioned in your ad is burried below the main visible area.
- Distractions (navigation) – if there are any on your landing page, then they should be relevant to another action that you can measure as a valid conversion. In other words, they assist overal number of conversions per paid visitor. For example, related searches that users have navigated to when purchasing, similar products and product images, useful product category menu options, and efficient internal search engine field, sign up pages to newsletters etc.
- Distractions (content) – irrelevant call’s to action, ineffective sales waffle, more information – now ‘more information’, product reviews etc, are all useful to the sales funnel, but in many cases can be minimised unobtrusively and displayed within the page when the user wants to see it.
- Prominant action buttons and page areas. This is the usual aspect of landing page design putting simple and straightforward action buttons and information using page design elements, right position, size, colour, and to balance with other information. This is to optimise conversion funnel.
In theory you could just optimise:
- your main websites pages to combine your optimal SEO,
- PPC quality score and Conversion rate objectives.
- This does however require careful design,
- definitely needs a lot of design input from your PPC team.
A good example of this is a large eCommerce site.
In these cases you typically want to match search terms to keywords.
It match individual product pages:
- which are so numerous that in general, no dedicated PPC landing pages would be created.
- Nor would this necessarily be beneficial. A lot of people visiting may have entered vague search queries.
- You want the best possible site navigation and search features to redirect them. If they have landed on the wrong product, and dedicated landing pages often are not well designed to redirect people if this is the case. Improving this aspect of your site can benefit PPC and Organic traffic from a conversion perspective.
But even here, dedicated landing pages only for certain keywords can be skillfully integrated into a web site.
We can do this because some search queries have a high certainty of being relevant to a particular page. If that page on your website is already very good, then we might want to land visitors there rather than make a new one.
Obviously, the normal pages on your website should still be optimised for conversions. Tips used to design dedicated landing pages can generally be applied to these pages.
Here there should be little advantage in dedicated landing pages. Your web page should already have those core elements.
You may have a category of keyword that is pretty broad and ambiguous in terms of the intent of matching search queries.
You still want this traffic, but you don’t know exactly where to land them.
It can be desirable to develop a ‘dis-ambiguation’ landing page
- that relates to your key words but presents the most likely options in a way that still makes conversion easy.
- This might be like a catagory page that doesn’t exist on the main site. We can put on this page the alternative possibilities. We see this approach quite often – the ‘related searches’ results that many websites generate in portions of the page. Google itself does this at the front end with it’s ‘did you mean’ link to alternative suggestions, when it is confused.
A lot of dedicated landing pages, probably the bulk, exist purely because:
- firstly, the client website has not been well designed for displaying a product. Or getting a result even from an SEO point of view,
- secondly, lacking relevant search keywords impacts on your keyword quality score due to lack of the correct text.
It’s possible to hybridise PPC elements and SEO into your pages. Integrating the best design elements need not be too compromising.
- conventional wisdom has it that a landing page for PPC advert should avoid distracting information,
- not want to be too long, and even restrict (sometimes greatly) navigation options away from the desired goals,
- clever design can turn the presence of particular navigation
- alternative options in certain pages into more conversions.
- Dedicated landing pages hosted somewhere else may also not be easily integrated into the main websites navigation.
- They also can be stylistically very different which sometimes will go against branding design guidelines set out by that company.
But one thing is becoming very important. Your website should not only be built around SEO goals. It needs to be designed around PPC goals as well. May still need additional landing pages built for PPC traffic.
If you need any help with increasing your digital activities or more tips on landing pagesor on how to make more opportunities for your business, then please get in contact with us here at Network Intellect.Telephone: +44 (0) 844 543 0980