I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard it.
A client is not interested in pay per click ads as a potential advertising channel. They’ll say:
But I’ve tried it before — the return was awful.
Of course, most of the time, the ad account did a poor job with:
- Match types
- Keyword grouping
- Negative keywords
- Poor quality score and ad placement
Along with a host of other problems.
Those issues are for a blog for another day — today I want to focus on website conversions and landing pages.
Because, right after account setup mistakes, the most common mistake I see is sending paid traffic to awful landing pages.
Truly awful, terrible, no-good bad day landing pages.
Sending paid traffic to those poorly setup landing pages is the surest way to waste tons of money with your ad account and get lackluster results.
Landing Page Connection
By far the easiest area to optimize is the landing page. Make sure that you’re sending traffic to has a fantastic match with the ad copy you’ve written. If you are running ads targeting the keyword
red balloons and show a landing page for
general party supplies, you’ll be hard pressed to get a great quality score if your competition is running their ads to a great landing page for red balloons. A strong landing page connection — matching intent and ad copy to the landing page is the first step towards better converting pay per click ads.
Ironclad Headlines & Copy
Your words and headline copy on your landing page does all your talking.
Your whole business and value proposition will be summed up by a user in about ten seconds while browsing your landing page copy.
It better be good.
If you are using the same old marketing copy that everyone else does by promising a “free info pack” or something similar — you are doing yourself a disservice. Bring out some power words and action words for things like button copy, headlines and subheadings. Users don’t really remember or engage with another “Submit” button. But they’ll remember a button that says “Confirm My Meeting With An Adwords Expert” or something similar. Make your copy explode with a personality, your brand and company style. After the design, the first element that users will interact with is your copy. Spend every effort to make it clear, complete and long enough that they’d give up an email or cash for.
Too Little Information
Another major mistake that I see businesses make with their landing pages is not providing enough information to create a strong connection with their offer.
Often, in the hopes of increasing conversions, we find landing pages with 100 words and a long contact form requesting all types of personal information. Taking the extreme too far with long contact forms and not enough information can actually hurt conversions. You will want to find a nice balance between the structure of your page, the offering, information requested and design of the page. By withholding too much, you end up hurting conversions, not helping them.
While I have been talking a lot about dedicated landing pages used in pay-per-click lead generation campaigns, I also work with a lot of paid traffic to category pages or vacation rental websites with categories of rentals or products.
In the case of ecommerce or other larger purchases (not specifically lead generation), you may also have soft leads and micro conversions. You’ll want to make sure that we’re tracking these as well. A micro conversion is usually an email signup, Facebook like, contact form request or similar action. In your paid media account, you’ll want to account for these different actions depending on the type of keyword you’re bidding on and the likelihood that your visitor will convert later on.
Funnelling traffic into the right places is critical when utlizing paid traffic. Sometimes, it just takes a small nudge on your landing page to get the visitor into the best place to convert. This could be large, easy to click buttons and call to actions.
Making the user know exactly what they need to do is fantastic for conversions and a great landing page experience. It’s not enough to just make it clear once – it’s critical to have multiple chances to reach your landing page goal.