Landing Pages

Why does your business need lot more landing pages than you think

And how to easily achieve that goal

We are an analytics platform, so anyone who thinks of Benne Analytics doesn’t immediately think of Landing Pages, Email Marketing etc. But the core reason for analytics to exist is to give businesses enough meaningful data to drive growth-centric strategies and decisions. And a crucial component to driving growth the right way is to have targeted landing pages. So, today, lets talk about why your business needs a lot of landing pages, and look at some ways in which you can achieve that for as low cost as possible. Maybe, even for free.

Conventional wisdom: One ad = One landing page

Facebook has an ad library where you can get a sense of the ads that any brand is running. If you check for active ads that a few of the brands you know are running, you would be surprised to see how many different ads are linked to the exact same page. It is easier to link a new ad to an existing page than to create a new page for each new ad, or ad set, or even each campaign. But that’s exactly what needs to be done.

Oh. And also, while you are checking out the Ad Library, I am sure you would have expected different ads linking to the same page on the brand’s website. But you will be shocked at how often that page is the brand’s homepage itself.

We all want our ads to perform, and bring about the best results possible. More traffic, more leads, more conversions, more revenue. No matter the goal, we are always looking for more.

As such, we dedicate a lot of time into selecting the right audience, having the right ad copy, creating great visual elements, even putting up exciting offers. And we should be doing all of that. What we often fail to realise is that all of these optimisations we are doing tackle just one part of the problem - how to get more users to click on your ads. So yeah, these changes will increase the percentage of users who find your ads compelling enough to want to know more about your product/service/offer. But what actually decides how many of those users will actually convert is the page they land on once they have clicked on that ad.

Landing pages play THE most crucial role in determining the conversion rates for your ads, so when you are using the same landing page for all your ads, you are knowingly killing the conversion rates.

Consider a simple scenario. Think of yourself as a brand that helps customers buy their first homes. You have a database of affordable houses, and that is the hook that you’re hoping to leverage. Now, if I am in Location X, which landing page do you think would attract me more?

(For the sake of simplicity, I would be just describing one section on the landing page - the section just below the hero section)

Landing Page A: Lists out some affordable options in Location Y (the location the brand has the most inventory in)

Landing Page B: Lists out some affordable options in multiple locations. There is 1 from each of the prominent locations the brand has a presence in, and is targeting via different ads.

Landing Page C: Lists out all 5 affordable options in Location X

I would be most attracted to Landing Page C, and if you were in my shoes, you would be too. Why? Because it is most relevant to me, and if I am looking to buy a home, I would have some idea on the property prices in my location so the brand has a better chance of attracting me with their affordable listings. On the other hand, I may know nothing about the property prices in the other locations, and even if one of those prices attracts me, I would not be nearly as interested in the affordability of a place in a location I am not going to be living in, would I?

This is why you need different landing pages. To align it as closely as possible with your audience selection and the ad they are going to see.

For each classifying trait that your ad has, ideally you should have a landing page. That trait can be the location, the demographic breakup, the interest/motivation of your selected target audience etc.

Reality: One message = One landing page

As we have discussed earlier as well, the power of landing page is not limited to your paid ads. In reality, it has less to do with the ad and more to do with the message you are trying to push through to your audience. So, since it is about the audience, it makes sense that irrespective of the medium they are getting exposed to the messaging through, they should be landing on a targeted, well crafted, conversion optimised landing page.

Whether it is email marketing, your social media platforms or even segments of your content, if there is a message being pushed through to your audience, it should be directing the users to a landing page that’s as closely aligned to the message as possible.

Easier said than done

I am not the first marketer to have grabbed the microphone to spread the word on the power and the extent of the power the mighty landing pages possess. Neither will I be the last. So why do we still find businesses use existing pages that are less aligned with their messaging as their landing page?

#A. Creating new pages is a lot of work From deciding on the copy of the page and the sections it should have to having your team come up with the right visual elements, creating new pages seems like a lot of work. More so if you are an early stage business, a bootstrapped startup, or a non-tech, non-design founder.

So we go ahead and use one of our existing pages as proxy - even our homepage. The rationale is, these pages have been built keeping conversion in mind. But your existing pages are often made to appeal to a wider audience, and as such the messaging is broad. Using those pages as your landing pages seriously waters down your conversion rates.

#B. One of the existing pages is already aligned to this particular campaign. Well, somewhat This is the second most common reason why people reuse existing pages as landing page. They set up an ad, and as they are finishing it up, they go through their list of pages to decide what page can they possibly use for this particular ad. And that is the absolutely wrong way of going about it.

Say I don’t have clean forks and I am about to sit down for dinner. So, I will go ahead and see what I can possibly use instead of a fork. Do I have a spoon? Do I have something that can act as a spoon for this one meal? Do I have a roll of aluminium foil I can make a spoon out of and just get done with my dinner? Just because I was able to come up with an alternative doesn’t mean having a makeshift spoon made out of foil is the same thing as having a clean fork. I should have just manned up and cleaned a fork, even though it would have been some additional work for me.

That’s the same thing as reusing existing pages.

When you reuse a page, you are trying to justify why Page X could work for this particular ad. That doesn’t make it the right landing page though.

#C. I can’t have thousands of landing pages. That just doesn’t sound right! The most common reason why we don’t see as many landing pages as we should. As we start targeting our audience segments better, we add up to the list of different ways in which we are reaching out to different groups. It just doesn’t sound possible, realistic or even right to have a different landing page for each of those ways. And yet, that is exactly what helps drive conversions.

Is there an easy way to create multiple landing pages without creating multiple landing pages?

While I would strongly recommend actually putting in the work into creating well thought out landing pages for different scenarios, messages and customer segments, if you find yourself unable to do that, let me present to you an easy and simple hack.

UTM parameters.

They’ve got your back. We are obviously working with the assumption that you have a well thought out and well documented approach to UTM parameters, and that you are using different UTM parameters for the different ads you run, so lets use that to change the landing pages as much as possible.

Let’s circle back to our real estate example. Only this time, let’s take some location examples: Barcelona, Madrid, Seville, Valencia, Rota. All cities in Spain.

So, as we discussed before, this is what we want:

  • Maybe a different hero image for each location.
  • Different headline for each location - “Get your dream home in Barcelona”
  • Different sub-headline - “24,000+ affordable options to choose from, starting €70,000”
  • Different links to the CTA button
  • 5 options from the location

How do we do it? The first thing for us to realise is that all these 5 landing pages can be exactly the same. It is just these elements that are supposed to be different for different locations. So, theoretically, we can use one landing page as the base of all landing pages and just change the elements as required.

Step 1: Have a basic page template This is the barebone HTML page that will be your landing page. This will also serve as the fallback option in case any of the rules we set up in later steps don’t fire up, so make sure you keep the base/default/fallback elements as broad and generic as possible.

Step 2: Extract the UTM parameter from the url Javascript is your friend here. With a couple of lines of code in javascript the basic landing page can extract the UTM parameters from the url even before it is loaded. For example, you need to extract the keyword ‘barcelona’ for the right landing page content to be displayed to the user.

Step 3: Render different content based on the keyword extracted Once again, simple couple of lines of code. Based on the keyword extracted in step 2, each of the elements we wanted to keep unique can be displayed differently.

Now, even though you had just one page, as far as your audience is concerned, they were just exposed to 5. Quick, simple and easy. :)

Hope you have fun with this.

When it comes to landing pages, no matter what your reservations are on creating new ones, always remember that you are spending a lot of time, money and energy into running ad campaigns, creating content, sending emails etc. The time it takes to set up the right and contextually targeted landing page is time well spent, especially considering the immense impact a right landing page can have on the overall conversion.

How are you using your landing pages? Let me know.

That’s it for today, see you tomorrow.

Cheers

Abhishek

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