Landing Page Testing and Optimization: Where to Start

Ready to test and optimize landing pages? Leave no stone unturned! But before you really get into it, remember that a landing page is NOT a website. This is particularly important in terms of design and organization. I always recommend my clients to start with the basics. But what should you look for to determine if design or structural changes are needed? Here’s the list of questions to start with:

1. Does the page have a fold? And if so, is the fold really necessary?

It is recommended for all landing pages to have no fold, but if a fold is unavoidable, make sure that it does not take away from the call to action by keeping all the important components above the fold.

If you are still not sure what to look at, consider the following elements:

· Calls to action: it is okay to have multiple CTAs on one page, as long as the primary call-to-action is in top position as a button above the fold. The headline is also a great place for the primary CTA.

· Forms: if a page has a form, it is important to make sure that all fields and the submit/CTA button are above the fold.

2. Are there any obstacles to scanning the page? Is the page cluttered? In other words, are there any barriers to completing the call to action?
The rule of thumb is for a Pentium I 586 user connecting via a dial-up to be able to quickly see the landing page and complete the action being called for.
Here are some things to look for:

· Video or flash: using flash or video as a page design element not only creates a distraction, but builds a barrier a user has to overcome to act on the call to action.

3. Are you gathering unnecessary data?

Evaluate Form Fields: Evaluate each form field to determine if the information requested is really necessary. Is there anything you can do to make the form easier? Maybe auto-fill the state when a ZIP code has been provided? If the answer is positive, go for it!

4. How hard is it to leave the page?

· Navigation: Unlike website navigation, landing page navigation should intend to make it hard for the user to leave. Keeping website navigation on the landing page offers more exit options – and may hurt the conversion rate. Also, removing the standard website navigation allows you better control over what the visitor sees and interacts with on the page.

5. Is there enough whitespace on the page?

· Think Times Square. Your landing page should be the opposite of it for both the content and the color – evaluate every element for its contribution to user conversion rate. Think simpler, not prettier. Studies show that whitespace helps the user experience and allows key messages to stand out.

6. Are the buttons big?
Studies show that small, blend buttons go unnoticed and reduce the effectiveness of a landing page. Make sure the buttons on your page are big, use full color, and are located above the page fold.

7. Are there testimonials on the page? Is there a link to Privacy Policy?
Having testimonials and a Privacy Policy is important because both increase trust and help the user feel secure about providing their information. Maybe you business has recognitions and awards? A landing page is a greta place for those.

8. Does it take too long for the page to load?
This may be hard to answer just from your judgement.
Use this tool to check your page load time:

Landing Page Load Time Checker

9. How do you feel about the photography used on the page?
Some studies show that real-life photography is favored over stock photography because a lot of users find it more appealing.

10. Is the page design coherent?
Even though this may seem somewhat redundant, but really comes down to testing different designs to see which works best.

Now, back to the drawing board. Good luck!

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