Having poorly optimized landing pages is one of the biggest mistakes made by B2B marketers and it’s one of the quickest ways for your company to burn money.
Landing-page optimization takes time and it might take you several iterations to lift your conversion rates. However, when building a new page from scratch, it’s always a good idea to utilize practices that give the first version of your landing page a solid foundation.
In this post, we highlight elements and analyze best practices you can use to build winning B2B landing pages with high conversion rates.
1. Clear and Concise Headline
This is the first thing visitors will see when they view your landing page, so you need to be able to immediately capture their attention and communicate your value proposition in the clearest way possible.
The headline needs to match the search term that was clicked. This is not only critical to improve your landing-page conversion rate, but also the landing-page quality score. Someone searching for “learning management software (LMS)” should see a landing page for LMS, not a landing page for payroll software. I suggest reviewing the post published by Google on understanding the landing-page experience.
2. Supporting Headline (aka Subheader)
Consider including a subheader below your main headline, which provides more information about the benefits and value of your offer.
3. Benefits/Value in the Landing-Page Body
Below the header and subheader, you should continue reinforcing the benefits of your offering. A good practice is to include a list of bullet points that break up large text blocks and summarize the key benefits of your offer. Be sure to clearly explain exactly what the person will get out of the offer. Will it help them learn a new skill? Or perhaps increase their knowledge about a topic they’re interested in?
4. Image or Video
This will make your offer a lot more tangible. It will visually convey to visitors what they will receive after filling out and submitting the form, and make your landing page more visually appealing. For example, if you’re offering a guide, showcase a high-quality preview of the guide’s cover on your landing page to help people make the connection in their head of, “I will receive this nicely designed guide!”
Just like any element on your landing page, you should test the image to see if changing its position or swapping out the image for another variation might have a positive impact on your conversion rates. As an example, in this study, ExactTarget was able to increase its conversion rate by 40.18% by replacing the image on their landing page with a more relevant one.
5. Lead-Capture Form
Reduce the friction by making sure the form is easy to understand and complete. A good way to think about forms is as a value exchange, so the information (or number of fields) you’re asking your visitors to provide should be less than or equal to the value of the offer they will receive in return.
Keep in mind your buyer’s journey, and that buyers want to see highly targeted and relevant content based on where they are in their journey (check out the three stages of the buyer’s journey here). For example, visitors might be willing to provide only their name and email for an awareness-stage ebook, but would be willing to submit more information for an expert research report containing new and unique data that only you possess.
- Strong Call-to-Action Button(s): You need to have a very clear call to action (CTA) on the page. Make sure that the color of the CTA stands out from the rest of the page and doesn’t blend in. In most cases, there will be a CTA on your form, and depending on the length of your landing page you might want to include additional CTAs further down the page that allow you to quickly scroll back up to the form. We cover this more detail below in the “Above or Below the Fold” section.
- Tell Visitors What They Will Get, Not What to Do: Instead of telling visitors what they should do (e.g. “DOWNLOAD”), tell them what they will get (e.g. “GET A FREE EBOOK”).
- Above or Below the Fold? Most conversion experts will tell you that it’s best to put the lead-capture form and CTA above the fold; however, this really depends on your offer, content, and audience. Neil Patel published a post on Why “The Fold” is A Myth, which is worth reading, where he mentions that the “issue isn’t whether the call to action is visible when your prospect first arrives. The issue is whether your call to action is visible at the point where your prospect has become convinced to take action.” With that said, you should move your CTAs to the most logical place on your landing page, and often times you won’t know the most logical place until you run some tests.
If you’re just starting out, or have such a low volume of conversion that it will take months before you achieve the statistical significance necessary to determine a winner, then placing the form above the fold is a safe bet. On very long landing pages with a lot of content, I generally advise to place one CTA above the fold, and additional CTAs below the fold (the number will vary), depending on the length of the landing page. I’ve also seen landing pages utilize sticky CTAs that are always visible as you scroll down and can be clicked at any time to quickly access the form.
- How Many Form Fields Are Ideal? Always be sure to include only necessary fields, and remove the rest. The exact number of fields you should need depends on the offer and requires some testing. There is no right answer here that applies to every single offer and company. At the very least, you need to collect the email in order to convert the visitor into a prospect.
A lot of junior performance marketers, particularly those who are new to B2B, tend to have have an obsession with lifting conversions. While lifting conversion rates is important, it isn’t necessarily the best practice if it’s at the expense of lead quality. For example, if you have a complex product and sales process which requires getting people on the phone, but by adding a phone number as a required form field you decrease your conversion rate by a high percentage, then you need to weigh the ROI of this additional field. Does having this field justify the potential decrease in conversions?
6. Social Proof
According to a survey conducted in 2017, 85% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. It’s no different in the B2B world, where decision-makers want to feel assured that they’re making the right choice by going with your company and that you’re a credible expert trusted by other businesses. There are many ways to display social proof on your landing page, including:
- Client testimonials. A short quote from happy existing customers which communicate the benefits they received by working with your company.
- Client logos. People want to see that you have big or relevant clients, so display the client logos you’re most proud of which are also most relevant to your audience.
- Reviews with star ratings. Validated reviews you’ve received on third-party review sites. They’re like testimonials but more subjective.
- Badges. A list of organizations you’re a member of, various partner programs you’re part of, as well as industry recognitions you’ve received.
- Media logos. The top news publications which you’ve been featured in.
- Data or numbers which showcase traction and credibility. For example, “trusted by over 150 companies.”
- Influencer endorsements. A thumbs-up from a well-known name in your industry can go a long way in helping you boost credibility
7. Navigation – Hide Top and Bottom Nav Links!
This is one of the biggest mistakes I see marketers make over and over. A landing page is not your regular website page. It is designed to convince visitors to perform a specific action, so their attention should be directed towards your conversion goal.
There was an interesting study done by Hubspot in which it ran an A/B test on a series of landing pages by removing the top navigation, footer navigation, and social media links. The lift for top-of-the-funnel (TOFU) landing pages was 0-2%, while the lift for middle-of-the-funnel (MOFU) landing pages was 16-28%. For the TOFU landing page, a 2% increase may not seem like a lot, but it can make a significant impact when you take into account a certain scale.
As Hubspot states, “Let’s say a HubSpot TOFU landing page gets 50K views, which is usual for us. If we increase the conversion rate of the landing page 2%, we’ll get 1K more leads—just by removing links.”
8. Optimize the Landing Page for Mobile Experience
- In leading B2B organizations “mobile is already driving, or influencing, an average of more than 40% of their revenue.”
- “80% of B2B buyers are using mobile at work.”
- “More than 60% report that mobile played a significant role in a recent purchase.”
- “70% of B2B buyers increased mobile usage significantly over the past two to three years.”
- “More than 90% of buyers reporting a superior mobile experience say they are likely to buy again from the same vendor, compared with only about 50% of those reporting a poor experience.”
A lot of B2B companies I speak with are still under the false impression that most of their clients find them mostly when they’re on their work computers. In turn, they don’t bother to optimize their landing pages for mobile, or exclude mobile from their search targeting. By doing so, they are leaving a lot of potential leads and revenue on the table.
To highlight the importance of optimizing your landing pages for the mobile experience, I’ve provided a graph below from the BCG report which showcases how mobile leaders drive superior results over mobile laggards.
9. Improve Landing-Page Speed
According to data aggregated by Google via Google Analytics in 2016, “53% of visits are abandoned if a mobile site takes longer than three seconds to load.”
In addition, starting in July 2018, Google has officially begun using page speed in mobile search rankings. This doesn’t mean that a slow page won’t be able to rank high, and Google has stated that “the intent of the search query is still a very strong signal, so a slow page may still rank highly if it has great, relevant content.”
Regardless, you should still strive to make sure that your landing page loads as quickly as possible to improve user experience. You can use Google PageSpeed Insights to measure how well your page performs on both desktop and mobile, review, and implement various performance optimizations. You can also look into turning your landing page into an Accelerated Mobile Page (AMP).
11. Phone Number
Including a phone number on your landing is generally a good practice if you have a product or service where a large percentage of people might prefer to speak to you via phone. This is particularly true for enterprise products, or services where folks doing the research are often strapped for time and may prefer to speak with a live salesperson right away to get the answers they’re looking for. If you do implement a phone number on your landing pages, be sure to integrate your paid-search platform (most likely Adwords) with a call-attribution solution such as CallRail, otherwise you won’t be able to attribute the lead to the channel that was responsible for generating it.
We went ahead and compiled a list of several well-optimized B2B landing pages you can check out for inspiration: