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Search Engine Marketing - Create Better Landing Pages

Aug 27, 2008
Landing pages have the ability to grab and hold us like fly no-fly paper or repel us like jumping on the trampling. The question is what impact does your landing page have on the people who visit your website. As I talk to people who are just getting into SEO (search engine optimization), all they focus on our rankings in traffic. We have to remember that "rankings" in "traffic" or not the end but a means to the end. That end is visitors to your site that take advantage of the solutions that you offer. We can have a lot of traffic to our website but if no one is sticking around long enough to see if our solutions can solve their problems then that traffic does not mean anything.

A lot of thought must go into your landing pages, both from a search engine perspective and from a customer perspective.

Search Engine perspective:

This is covered in Search Engines 101 Paid Vs Natural Search so I am not going to go into detail here.

Customer Focused Landing Pages:

Your landing page has to do one thing, answer the questions that the searcher had in mind when he typed in his keywords. The searcher type in his search terms because he has a problem, needs a solution or is in some kind of "pain". You have about two seconds to convince him that you understand what he is going through and what he needs. The last thing a searcher wants to see is that you can jump higher, run faster and do it better than the competition. He just doesn't care (yet). Besides, most of the websites that he already visited probably stated that they do that. The challenge is to show the searcher that you have the answers to his needs. How do we do that?

1. Think of as many questions as you can that might be on the mind of a visitor to that specific landing page.

2. Choose one of the questions to be the title of that specific landing page. Use the other questions as sub points or topics in the outline of the page.

3. The content underneath each heading will be a description of the problem. It is very important that when you describe the problem you do it from your client's perspective.

4. After describing two or three scenarios that your client may fall into closeout with the paragraph that describes your qualifications for dealing with the above scenarios. This is where you put in how me years of experience, the combined experience of your team or your experience in the marketplace.

5. The last thing is to have a call to action. The idea is that if your client falls into one of the scenarios described it would be natural for them to do the call for action to get help with their problem.

For example, if someone is doing a search on long-term care insurance they may only have a general idea of what you're looking for. When they come to a landing page that has a question like "what happens to your nest egg if you suffer an illness or an injury that requires long-term care?" Then in the description of the problem they read that one year of long-term care can cost between $90,000 and $130,000 and as a result of this high costs it will either force you into bankruptcy or dependency on your children or family to take care of you. (Not a pretty picture.) After you add your qualifications, whatever they are, you put in your call to action. It could be something like "for a free quote and help in understanding what your options are fill out form below and one of our experts will contact you within the next 48 hours".

So the question remains, are your landing pages flypaper or trampolines? Customer focused landing pages are worth the time and energy to produce. If you are not sure give us a call and we will do a free evaluation of your site. This will help determine whether or not changes or in order.
About the Author
Before you start an SEO Marketing campaign, go to Terry Stanfield's site for information on Search Engine Marketing Services and more on ppc management.
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