Optimization: Are You Making This Landing Page Mistake?
When it comes to landing – or pre-sell – pages, many new, and even experienced, affiliate marketers make this one big landing page mistake.
Everyone knows a proper pre-sell page can make or break a campaign. Landing pages convince your customers to take action. Your average affiliate marketer will split-test headlines, images, and the sales copy to improve his or her pages. All that activity isn’t useful, however, if you can’t judge which one’s the real winner.
I was talking to a friend of mine who has been in the industry for years. He was asking me for tips on how to improve his landing page click-through rate (LP CTR). I told him that the metric doesn’t really matter. I’ve seen countless forum posts talking about LP CTR when evaluating a landing page, and yet affiliates rarely get it right.
Let me explain what the LP CTR is.
People see your ad and land on your pre-sell page (landing page). A percentage of them will click through to the offer page from your landing page.
Here is how you can calculate the number.
Take the number of clicks your traffic source shows. Let’s say it was 500. Now take the number of clicks your affiliate network shows for the offer. Let’s say you had 200 clicks. Divide network clicks by traffic sources clicks. It’s 200/500 in this case. This means 40% of the people click through on your page.
Here’s the error that most affiliate marketers make: they judge how effective a landing page is by the LP CTR, when it’s just part of the equation. I’ve heard people say, “My landing page sucks! It only has an LP CTR of 20%.”
It doesn’t matter how many people see the offer page. What matters is how many people convert. A landing page CTR of 70% is not good if it results in low conversion rates.
An extreme example of this is those “guru” sales letters that try to sell “make money online” courses. I remember seeing them years ago and thinking to myself, “Who has time to read all this? Wouldn’t they make more money if they kept it shorter so more people could click to the offer page?”
Well, the sales letters are long for a reason. They make more money because of the increase in conversion rates.
The Proper Way to Measure the Effectiveness of a Landing Page
What is the proper way to judge a landing page? It’s simple: split-test the landing page to see which version brings more revenue. The total revenue will account for the LP CTR and the conversion rate.
Here is an example.
Landing Page A might have a better LP CTR because it’s simple. It has a picture of the product and a “click here” button. People may click through it because it’s an easy path, but your pre-sell page gave them no compelling reasons to convert.
Landing page B has a lower landing page click-through rate but higher conversions. It could have a lot text on it, pictures and testimonials. All these could cause the LP CTR to lower, but you’ve made the users who do click through more interested in buying.
Instead of balancing LP CTR vs Conversion Rate, just look at the total revenue each page produces. It’s really that simple.
- Split-testing headlines? See which landing page makes more money.
- Split-testing images? See which landing page make more money.
I still look at the LP CTR more as a tripwire that something’s wrong. A niche I’m in typically has an LP CTR of 35%. I tested out a new page and noticed the LP CTR was only 5%. I knew something was up with my landing page if only 5% of people were seeing the offer.
I used SauceLabs to test the page in different browsers. Long story short, the button was OFF the page in Internet Explorer, and the audience couldn’t click through.
Improving Your Landing Page Conversion Rate
Now you know that getting users to convert is more important than getting them to simply click through. The next question you might be pondering is: how do you increase your landing page conversion rates? Here are 5 simple things I do on each landing page that you can too:
- Pre-qualify your visitors. The 3-questions dating landing page is a popular example. When people have to put in a little work, it makes them want the reward more.
- Call them out. An example of this is “You are the Lucky Winner Today from Atlanta, GA”, where Atlanta is a script that looks up their location.
- Use social proof – as seen on TV, as seen on…, etc.
- Use testimonials – “I lost 10 pounds with this!” with before/after pictures of Bob.
- Add urgency. If an offer’s going to disappear, e.g, a warning that offer expires in 1 minute, people will want it more.
Don’t Make This Landing Page Mistake!
Your landing page click-through rate is important, but it shouldn’t be the metric by which you judge your landing pages. A much better way to measure the effectiveness of your landing pages is simply split-test them to see what the total revenue is for each.
The revenue takes into account the LP CTR and the conversion rate.
p.s. Voluum (affiliate tracking program) is coming out of beta at the end of the month, check out my guide on how to setup your first campaign.