Businesses around the world spend millions on developing, optimizing and promoting their company's home pages. To ensure that money invested in your virtual store front is spent wisely and will generate increased conversion rates and subsequent profits, it is crucial to develop a sound conversion architecture.
The four main elements to consider when developing your conversion architecture include:
- Landing Pages
- Social Marketing
- Lead Nurturing
Structuring and/ or managing these elements in the correct manner will provide an effective conversion architecture designed to turn marketing strategies into success without costs spiraling out of control.
Unlike dedicated landing pages, which receive targeted traffic from specific channels and offer specific messages with a clear call to action, home pages have to attract traffic from a diverse, large audience. This audience then needs to be engaged and educated sufficiently to be encouraged to explore the remainder of the website. To avoid high bounce rates and make your homepage an effective part of your conversion architecture, it should contain the following vital elements.
- Navigation - Clear and simple navigation links should be visible at the top of the homepage to provide visitors with an easy to follow path and reduce bounce rates.
- Headline - Visitors should be able to discern what the site offers within three seconds of arriving. This requires a simple, clear and fluff-free headline.
- Sub-headline - This should offer an original, brief and to the point description of what your company offers/ does and provide value.
- Benefits - Potential customers need to know why your company's services/ products are relevant to them and what advantages/ benefits they provide.
- Features - Provide consumers with a list of your key features to create greater understanding of your services/ products.
- Supporting Images - The majority of visitors responds well to visual input, such as images or videos of your products/ services and clear, simple graphics.
- Content - Offering excellent content in the shape of a good white paper, guide or e-book will assist in generating additional leads and is vital within your conversion architecture.
- Resources - Offering the 96 per cent of visitors who are not yet ready to make a purchase a link to a resource center with more relevant information has also been proven to increase leads.
- Calls to Action - In order to drive conversions, your homepage should include a maximum of two or three calls to action - mapping to varying buying-cycle stages - above the fold. Additional calls to action should be placed near the bottom of the page.
- Customer Testimonials - Including some of your best customer comments/ reviews to your homepage is an excellent indicator of trust. Add names and/ or photos to make them more realistic.
- Awards - Awards and recognitions also form key elements of creating a good initial impression, and should definitely be displayed prominently on your homepage.
In short, your homepage should clearly answer who, what, why and where; include clear, attractive calls to action, meaningful images, graphics and proof of your value, and be easy to navigate.
Dedicated landing pages are accessed by visitors following targeted links and typically have higher conversion rates than home pages, making them an essential part of your conversion architecture. Designed to get visitors excited enough about your offer to hand over information, landing pages should be free from excessive navigation and other distractions. What they do have to include is:
- Headline explaining what's in it for the visitor
- Clear offer/ product descriptions
- Explanation of the offer's value
- Minimum of one supporting image with caption text
- Clear call to action