How to Test Landing Pages

By OctaneGo, May 17, 2012 | Tips & Resources

Search marketers know only too well that while creating a landing page is easy, making one that works successfully, is not. There is no secret recipe to create the ultimate landing page and as such, the best option is to keep testing the pages, making changes you think will work, and then testing again. But what should one test for at a basic level?

There are certain fundamentals when it comes to testing landing pages. Here’s a list:

  • Headline: The headline easily holds 50% weight in conversion. A poor headline equals a lost opportunity. The thumb rule is that the headline should be well written (should be eye-catching) and tested for different font faces, sizes, colors and styles.
  • Body copy: Next in the line is body copy, which is even more challenging because it has to sustain the reader’s interest for a longer period. Check if the copy follows the right tone (e.g. emotional for B2C, authoritative for B2B, etc.) and whether the font and line-height look appealing. Also note that longer copy has no inherent advantage over shorter copy; it just needs to be relevant.
  • Call-to-action: When it comes to the most crucial moment of conversion, your page needs to perform. A weak call-to-action and a bland button can put you at a disadvantage, so make sure you test many variations of these.
  • Contact form: Very long forms are definitely out of fashion and you’ll need to be creative with the labels and default text. For example, choosing to write “Tell us what you like to do!” instead of the impersonal label “Hobbies” can make a huge psychological difference by way of conversions.
  • Visual elements: A common trick to guide the eye of the reader is to utilize visual elements like background images, dingbats, artistic effects, etc. Play around with these and test again and again to reach the right combination.

For more extensive testing, you can make use of tools like Google Website Optimizer, but don’t forget, testing of landing pages is as much art as it is science.

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