Many people spend a great deal of time on the homepage of their website, because they believe this will be the first page visitors see. While this is often the case, web marketers and SEO specialists will sometimes drive people to a different page more custom tailored to a specific niche or product. These pages are called Landing Pages, and can not only boost your rankings but also increase conversions.
Landing pages are more specialized, so when someone lands on them it is more likely they got there because they are interested in your product or service. Typically a visitor to a landing page is a more qualified lead.
Let’s use the example that your website sells shoes. There are many types of shoes, and it is not likely someone would simply type “shoes” into Google. It is difficult, and in fact probably impossible, to optimize your homepage for all the possible search terms relating to shoes. Your best bet for your homepage would be to optimize for something more general having to do with shoes, such as “good deals on shoes,” or “shoes for the entire family,” and even “women’s shoes” since women tend to shop for shoes more. But what about the more specific searches? What about people searching for “men’s Nike running shoes” or “purple ballet flats”? This is where landing pages come in.
Who Visits Landing Pages?
Today’s web users are typically search more specific terms, called “long tail search terms.” The people who are typing these specific searches into a search engine are more likely to convert. The woman who searches “purple ballet flats” is likely farther along in the purchasing decision process than the woman simply searching “women’s shoes.” A landing page on the shoe website, tailored to each kind of shoe, can catch this user. Your homepage may not be optimized for ballet flats, but another page on your site is and will show up in the search results for “ballet flats.” When the link is clicked, the user bypasses your homepage and “lands” directly on the ballet flats page.
Landing pages are also used in PPC campaigns. Because PPC ads let you pick exactly what search terms you want to show up for, landing pages work very well in conjunction with PPC. The woman who searched “purple ballet flats” will see your PPC ad created specifically for the “ballet flats” search term, click the link, and again will land on the page created specifically for ballet flats.
Optimizing Landing Pages
Landing pages tend to be shorter and focused on one specific topic or geography. For example, here at Web Solutions our Orlando SEO team will create landing pages for some of our local clients for each suburb of Orlando, such as Winter Park, Maitland, and Longwood. The primary purpose of a landing page is to get the visitor to convert, so the call to action and any other important information should be easy to find and above the fold. There should also be minimal links on the landing page, and in fact the call to action link can be your only link. Search Engine Journal states that 49% of all landing pages contain only one link. When the visitor is presented with too many links, the main message of the landing page may become diluted.
Landing pages are a very useful tactic for driving traffic, boosting SEO, and converting your visitors. It is more effective to optimize several different pages for different products or niches than it is to try and drive all the traffic to your homepage.