Landing Page Optimization: The FASTEST Way to Get More Subscribers

landing page optimizationGuest posting is a great way to get people to your site.

But what happens then? Getting people to your site isn’t the same as getting more subscribers.

You – hopefully – direct them to a page where you ask them to join your email list.

How many of them join it? 15% of them? 20%? 25%?

If your conversion is 20%, you lose 80% of your potential subscribers who were just one small step away from your list.

Still a lot of people will tell you that a 20% opt in conversion is “good” or even “excellent”.

Well, I wouldn’t say so. I’d say 50% is “good” and above 70% is “excellent”.

Here are three examples of opt-in landing pages that have a conversion rate around 20%.

In this video you’ll see how they (and you) could increase that conversion…

Opt In Pages for Blogs (and Others)

Many blogs and other sites don’t use dedicated opt in pages to get people in their email lists.

I have no idea why… maybe they don’t actually want subscribers…

Opt-in landing pages are by far the most effective way to turn visitors to subscribers.

On the other hand, if your conversion is only 20%, it might not feel like they could work too well.

If your conversion is around 20%, then doubling that conversion will be much easier than doubling your traffic.

The three most common reasons for low conversion are:

  1. Headlines that don’t talk directly to the reader.
  2. Copy (text of the page) that doesn’t prove the value of the subscription.
  3. Lacking credibility.

All the opt in pages in this video share these problems to some extent, and you’ll get examples of how landing page design and optimization could solve them.

Check out the free online conversion optimization video course.

And check out what the examples look like:

(Take a few minutes to check out these pages and opt-in – we wouldn’t be showcasing them if they weren’t amazing sites!)

Key Ideas

1. The Headline

Focus on how the readers see their problems/dreams.

Be specific enough to convince the reader that there is value to come.

2. Credibility

As the visitors aren’t usually very familiar with whom you are, you need to convince them of your expertise.

Use testimonials if you can, or write a long enough page to prove your expertise with it.

3. Clear and Simple Design

A good landing page is clear and simple to understand.

Fancy graphics are secondary, but make sure your design looks professional.

4. Make The Value Obvious

No one will ever say, “It was too easy to understand what I’m going to get if I subscribe.”

But a major part of your visitors will leave without taking action if they’re not sure what they’ll get.

Do You Have an Opt In Page?

Do you use opt in pages?

Do you have good landing page optimization?

Do you get good results with them?

Leave a link to your page in the comments below, if you want ideas on how to increase your conversion.

Peter Sandeen helps businesses convert more of their visitors to subscribers and more subscribers to customers. If you want better results than what you're currently getting, take a look at his online conversion video course. You'll also get the bonuses: "101 Headline Formulas" and the Landing Page Checklist...

Comments

  1. says

    Peter Sandeen advised an EPIC transformation of my landing page, and the next time I sent traffic their from a JV launch, it converted 90%.

    I’ll be back to write more later, but I wanted this testimonial front and center. Peter knows his stuff.

  2. says

    While it isn’t possible to do landing pages with Blogger (to my knowledge), I took the chance to move my e-mail subscribe form to a more predominant place on the blog–right above the blog posts. I also have it after each post.

    It’ll be easier to handle once I have a paid service for e-mail subscription, but I simply don’t have the money for it.

  3. says

    Peter is by far one of the best conversion specialists in the Market… Much of my recent subscription rate success is a direct result of the work I’ve done with Peter…

    Great stuff Peter! Thank you!

    Ryan H.

  4. says

    Hmm, this has given me some ideas to chew over with my own landing page, and I’ll be editing over the next couple of days. Question – I’ve used a quiz as my opt in for several months, with a conversion rate of around 50% if you ignore the disastrous experiment where I turned on double opt in. In your experience, do aspects such as credibility have the same power when the visitor isn’t immediately asked for their email?

    I’d love to be featured in an upcoming critique – my landing page is at rethinkproductivity.com and will soon be updated with some ideas from what I learned today. :)

    • says

      Oooh, I just had another thought – for a landing page where the goal is to get people to register for a free, half hour consult, that would have a higher bar for credibility and professional appearance. It’s a continuum – the less you ask for, the less you have to prove?

      • says

        Yes.

        Maybe an exaggerated example will make it clearer:

        If you sell a $500,000 training program, you need a lot of trust.

        If you sell a $4,95 eBook, you don’t need that much trust. :D

        But to get people’s email address, you need quite a lot of trust. Not as much as for an expensive training program, but more than what most people seem to expect ;)

    • says

      Hey Kristen,

      Quizzes can work really well, but that’s not always the case. It depends a lot on the traffic you drive to the page…

      Basically quizzes don’t add much to your credibility, but they can add to the likelihood of people subscribing because they force people to start interacting. When they’ve already answered some questions, they’re more likely to continue interacting (and if you then ask for a sign up, they just might do that).

      At the moment the critiqued landing pages are selected from a “private” list. But I’m happy to give some ideas here in the comments ;)

      First off, your page is much better than most I come across. It’s clean, and clear, and I especially like that you’ve made it easy for people to identify themselves at the end. Here’s what I’d do:

      1. The headline is okay, but it’s not talking to all of your prospects. I, for one, have a long to-do list, but I don’t have filing cabinets on the way to world domination. So, when you talk about filing cabinets, I don’t relate to it. Something even more easily relatable could work better.

      2. In the first paragraphs you mention some books. Not everybody has read them. Unless you’re targeting productivity enthusiasts, I’d stay clear of such specifics. The moments you start talking about something the reader don’t understand, you lose most of their interest and trust.

      3. I’d make the language simpler. Not to say you’re readers or dumb, it’s just a fact that most people don’t use words like “adhere”, “constitute”, and “Enneagram Number”. When you use language that doesn’t match the language of your reader, they tune off.

      4. You could make the promised value more clear from the start. Now you need to read to the very last sentence to know what value the page can provide.

      What do you think?

      Regards,
      Peter Sandeen

      • says

        Mostly agree, and I’ve made edits. Check it out! http://rethinkproductivity.com/

        My main quibble is the language point – while I agree theoretically, the last iteration of this idea had me inhabiting the role of the guru and following every piece of marketing advice I could find. It didn’t work in a pretty spectacular way; I suffered a concussion in January and had to change all of the systems I’d set up for myself because my brain didn’t work the same way anymore. My audience and clients got a front row seat as I struggled to keep up the facade and eventually failed. With Rethink, I want to be myself, 100%. I use words like adhere and constitute in regular conversation, and my best clients are the ones who are intelligent enough to speak on my level and collaborate in the process of identifying their goals and building productivity systems to support them. I worry that I would lose those people by simplifying the language.

        Thoughts?

        Thank you so much for your feedback!

        Kirsten

        • says

          Hey Kirsten,

          Simply put: “Use your customers’ language.” If they’re perfectly comfortable with more sophisticated language, you have no reason not to use it. Just know that you’ll scare other people away ;)

          On the other hand, there’s a good chance many people who would be interested in working with you, don’t feel comfortable with that kind of language. And many of them might be a good fit from your perspective as well…

          And most people who use words that many need to look up in a dictionary, don’t mind “normal” written language at all. Simple language is easier to read (for anyone).

          So, my thought is that there’s two sides to your question ;)

          But if you don’t feel comfortable simplifying your text, don’t do it. At least if you’re getting enough clients to keep business fun, you don’t need to censor your language…

          Sorry, for such a complicated answer. Did it help at all?

          -Peter

        • says

          Alden,

          I don’t know what the post was about (the one that directs people to that page), so I can’t be sure on what they already know about the offer you’re making.

          It’s really good that you have it singled out for one specific audience, it usually makes the conversion higher.

          1. I’d make it clearer what the email course is about. Sure, you basically tell that in the text, but you could make it clearer and build more value for the course.

          2. I’d put the testimonials next to the opt in box. They give credibility to you. And if possible you could add pictures of the people who gave the testimonials.

          3. I’d change the picture of the opt in form. I can see how it relates to what the course is about, but the connection is weak when you don’t mention it in the copy.

          4. I’d move the bullet points from the end to be before the opt in box. They’re the kind of things you want to tell about the course before you ask for an opt in.

          What do you think?

          Regards,
          Peter Sandeen

          • says

            Hey Peter! Thanks so much for this!

            The guest post is here: http://tinybuddha.com/blog/5-steps-to-let-go-of-anger-for-a-happier-life/

            Tiny Buddha is about personal development, what I write about too. I don’t really get to talk about the course except a link in my bio.

            1. How do I make it clearer? How do I build clearer value? From what I learnt I just thought I’d write down and sell the benefits for people to gain from.

            2. Nice! Does left or right matter?

            3. What do you mean that the connection is weak as it was not mentioned in the copy?

            4. Okay I’ll try that!

            Thanks so much. I’m definitely going to apply these asap!

            • says

              Hey Alden,

              1. Is it about caring less about what others think about you? That’s what it seems like? But I’m not sure…

              2. I usually (NOTE: only “usually”, not “always”) put the testimonials on the left side of the opt in box.

              3. You don’t talk about surfing or freedom or anything else that would somewhat clearly connect to a picture of a surfboard.

              Makes sense? Just ask if I’m still too cryptic ;)

              -Peter

            • says

              I’m not sure why I can’t reply you directly, so I’m replying to myself :P

              1. Yeah it’s exactly that. Caring less about what others think of you and living your life.

              I’m trying to sell benefits. Should I talk about my course per se?

              3. Ahh okay awesome!

            • says

              The nested comments are limited to five levels. You can’t reply to this comment either because this is already the fifth level ;)

              About the benefits… Do this exercise and I’m sure you have an idea of what I mean: List 30 benefits of caring less about what others think about you (or to be more accurate: think about the benefits the course gives). Then pick the 10 most important ones, and talk about those in your page. Obviously you don’t have to use exactly 10 benefits…

              Did that make more sense?

              -Peter

            • says

              Hey Peter,

              Latest changes I made on the squeeze page. I used this page as I’ve a guest post going live on them soon.

              I shifted the bullet points above the opt-in box.

              I can’t change the opt-in box yet as well, I can’t design at all.

              Also, I had trouble putting the testimonial beside the opt-in box. WordPress was a pain! But it’s a real testimonial with Jason’s picture, so that’s a big step ahead!

              I’m definitely going to work on it to make the page even nicer.

              What do you think?

              And thanks for the benefits exercise!

            • says

              Hey Alden,

              Your page looks better, but I’d still make some adjustments…

              1. Think about the beginning of the text. You don’t ever make the reader feel like you’re accusing them of anything. And you should usually avoid saying things like, “of course, that’s really difficult for you”.

              2. “Regular updates” doesn’t sound valuable unless you explain the value of it. “Email support” sounds better, but that too would benefit from more value-building.

              3. You could consider putting Jason’s testimonial before the opt in box. Or I’d put it next to the form… (If you don’t know how to do that, ask and I’ll help you out ;) )

              Thoughts?

              -Peter

            • says

              …and the opt in form’s background: Go to AWeber and pick a solid color for your form or change the picture.

              OR If you’re using the HTML code of the opt in form on your page:

              Look at the code of your page. On line 188 you have “#af-form-943920533 .af-body{padding-bott…” Later on that line is a link to an image. Just upload your own image and change that link to point at your image.

            • says

              Thanks Peter!

              1. Why not? I figured these questions would provoke the reader into thinking.

              So should I just talk about my course and what it’s about? Or how they can benefit from it?

              3. Yeah I was trying to do that, but it kept messing up! I tried to position them on my WordPress dashboard under the “Visual” interface but it doesn’t seem to work.

              Am currently working on the opt-in box design too with my designer.

            • says

              Accusing and pointing a finger creates negativity and often “paralysis”. You can tell the reader they’re the cause of their problems, you just need to be careful with it.

              You could at least say it like this, “You feel this, but now you don’t have to anymore.” or “You’re the cause of this, but it’s not your fault.” or “This is in your power, and I’m here to help.” (Note: these were just examples of the idea you should convey.)

              The aligning shouldn’t be too difficult. Use the HTML editor and add this line before the opt in form and this line after the form .

              And do the same with the testimonial but change “right” to “left”. (You may need to add a width parameter into the testimonial line… Then the line would be something like: .

              Does that work?

  5. says

    Hi, Peter, you mean squeeze page by landing page? I just added my picture which I’d been meaning to do. You have lots of good ideas and I’d love an evaluation.

    Question about your samples – two of them go below the fold. Do you find that works well?

    I see you don’t use double optin. I’m thinking of losing this again, too. You’ve tested both ways?

    • says

      Hi Miriam,

      “Squeeze page” is a type of landing page. It’s becoming more and more common to call them (squeeze pages) opt in pages; because people opt in to receive emails from you (even if you don’t use a “double opt in” system).

      Going below the fold is sometimes a lot better than sticking an opt in form above the fold. It’s about the trust and about people’s expectations.

      1. If you can create the necessary trust for them to sign up with less than half a page, then you can have the opt in box above the fold. But quite often people don’t know how to do that. So, if you know what you’re doing and you’re driving the right people to the page, you can have the opt in page above the fold. Otherwise use that space to create more trust and desire for what you’re offering and let the opt in form go below the fold.

      2. When you see what someone is trying to “sell” to you (an email subscription in this case), you put your “sales-walls” up. People hate to be sold, so if they can see that you’re trying to get them to do something specific, they try to resist it.

      Does that make sense?

      I use double opt in, as does Danny and many, many, many others. I haven’t tested single opt in lists, but as my “abandonment” rate is minimal, I rather make sure my list is made up of real people ;)

      I can give you some ideas if you let me know what page to look at. Did you mean your home page?

      Regards,
      Peter Sandeen

      • says

        Comments on the home page are welcome, too! I wanted that above the fold. Now wondering if I should have my picture there instead of the favicon?

        I made the first landing page for a giveaway offer in June, then another blogger told me to also put it on the navigation bar where it now is at the end, called Free Happiness Guide. I made some changes based on your advice yesterday including adding my picture. The previous version had a picture of the free book.

        • says

          Hi Miriam,

          I’ll talk about the landing page here because you can use the ideas easier.

          Many of the basics are good there. Clear design, call to action…

          Here’s what I’d do:

          1. I’d change the headline. The structure is really good, but the idea is slightly “off”. You say, “What do happy people know…” I don’t think people believe they’ll be happier if they know the same things as happy people. Just a small change could make a difference. Something like, “Learn what makes happy people stay happy.” Or something along those lines.

          2. When you mention seven strategies and it’s followed by (what looks like) four bullet-points, it feels somehow weird. I’d either add three more bullets (and made them intriguing) or changed it to look more like paragraphs.

          3. Your picture looks good, but it doesn’t quite work in the context. You don’t have your name anywhere, nor do you mention yourself anywhere on the page. The picture looks like it’s a “generic” picture of a happy person, when there’s no context. If you don’t make yourself a credible source of information (about happiness), the picture does little good. The picture of a book might even work better…

          4. The links at the end seem somewhat unnecessary. They’re unlikely to affect the conversion too much, but I’d take them away anyway just to be sure.

          Let me know what you think :)

          Regards,
          Peter

          • says

            Terrific suggestions, Peter! I’m going to try all of your suggestions tomorrow. For Day 1, the picture of me vs book are comparable in conversion (50%) so I’ll keep A/B testing that. I really appreciate your advice as well as you posting here to help all of Danny’s students.

            • says

              Hi Miriam,

              If you want to keep your photo (and I encourage you to test it), add your name under it. And consider a one or two sentence “bio” of you to go with it. The picture will make more sense and you get another chance to “sell” the subscription there…

              Does that make sense?

              -Peter

            • says

              Okay, then that should be the focus of the page. Now there’s nothing that would seem more important than the other things. That’s really common with blogs…

              I suggest you build a completely new (home) page, which is a lot simpler design-wise than the one you currently have. Take away the sidebar, social media icons, comments…

              Then start the page with a simple “promise” headline. They work really well on landing pages. Basically tell the visitor what bigger goal your blog helps them achieve. Your current headline, “Where inspiration…” is also quite good, I’m just worried it might not be clear enough.

              Then explain in more detail what the blog is about. And tell the reader why they’ll enjoy it. It might be dead obvious to you, but the visitor might not get it, and even if they do, it’s still more powerful to tell it to them straight.

              And then ask them to sign up. ;)

              Let me know if that makes any sense of if you have any questions, okay?

              -Peter

  6. Candas says

    Hi there,

    What a great offering. I’d love the opportunity as I’m just launching my page and want to start off right. How soon will the critique be happening (so I can make sure my page is ready).

  7. Dan Norris says

    Hey Peter, good stuff, they are small differences but I can see how they would improve things. I have a lot of work to do on my site and I’m currently undergoing a re-designs so I’m going to consider some of this stuff in the re-design. My goal is to get free app users but subscribers at this point but I can see these points will be useful for that as well.

  8. Turndog Millionaire says

    Some great tips, I feel my landing pages need improvement in the future. They do okay, but okay is not good. I don’t even want to settle for good…I want great :)

    As for help, I would love feedback if you have any to offer.

    Some new things to consider for sure

    Matthew (Turndog Millionaire)

    • says

      Hi Matthew,

      Okay, here goes ;)

      1. The overall design looks slightly dated: “traditional print” font and very simplistic design together make it seem odd that you’re talking about the 21st century so much.

      2. The video was entertaining as it apparently was made a bit tongue-in-cheek. I don’t know if a more “salesy” approach would work better, but at least you should turn off recommendations from the end of the video; they drive people to youtube, but you want them to stay on the page.

      3. Danny’s testimonial at the top of the page is a good idea, credible testimonials should have a prime position. I’d keep it there or move it under the header and give it more space, so it wouldn’t look so tight.

      4. You’re asking people to sign up, but there are six sharing buttons next to both opt in forms. They’re distracting and in all likelihood drop your opt in conversion.

      Let me know what you think?

      Regards,
      Peter Sandeen

  9. says

    Hey Peter & Danny,

    It would be great if you could take a look at our landing page: fashionspace.com

    Ours could be a tricky one: we’ve got a very visual, Pinterest-style UI.

    We get a lot of traffic, but our bounce rate could do with some improvement.

    Help a buddy out?

    Thanks!

    Augustus

    • says

      Hey Augustus,

      I think there are two main problems that cause the high bounce rate:

      1. The overall look isn’t focused; there’s a lot going on everywhere on the page, so it’s difficult to understand where you should focus on the page. Consider changing the background picture and make the main boxes calmer and your bounce rate will go down.

      2. More importantly: I wouldn’t ask people to sign up on the home page in this case. I’d only ask people to click through to learn more. You don’t give nearly enough information about your service on the page to justify asking for a sign up.

      I think you’ll get much better results if you do those things :)

      What do you think?

      Regards,
      Peter Sandeen

  10. says

    Peter, thanks for this tutorial or words of advice.

    Hope you remember me? the guy about the US landing page….. thanks for the video.

    Like you said, it is so surprising to see that lot of blog owner do not have a dedicated opt-in page for subscribers. I am also affected (I don’t have any subs page though).

    I’m working my optin page now. the free giveaway is ready just need to edit and start driving people to the page.

    Sheyi

  11. says

    Hi

    Thanks for the opportunity. I love optin pages, and I have used them to great effect.
    I’m venturing into Forex Trading, and while i personally don’t have a track record to speak of, I do have technical skills and partners who are expert in the trading.

    I’ll keep updated here with our Landing page creation, by going through your material.
    Blessings
    Haroun

    • says

      Hi Gil,

      If your main goal is to get more sign ups from that page, then the page should be about signing up. Now there’s only a link to a sign up page.

      You could be more specific about what people can get by subscribing. What will they benefit from doing it? You could consider removing many of the elements on the page and focus more on the value of the subscription.

      One more thought: When you have two different things side-by-side (sign up and read more about the book), they compete for attention. You could test what happens if you rearrange them to be on top of each other.

      What do you think?

      Regards,
      Peter

      • says

        I think your points are valid. But what you said made me realize, I’m not sure what I want the page to be – and I think I need to figure that out first! So thanks for helping me realize I don’t know what I want :)

        • says

          Hi Gil,

          I suggest you make the page about relationship building. In other words: Make the visitor relate to you, trust you, get to know you, know what you’re about, understand a little of what you believe in…

          That can then lead to them signing up for your newsletter. Or something completely different. But what I understood about your business makes me think that you should focus on the relationship before anything else.

          What do you think? Does that sound weird? Or did I miss something?

          -Peter

          • says

            I read what you wrote to my Business Coach this afternoon and she agrees with you 100% – mostly the second reply. So I think we should hire you! I just need the rest of this month to get through what I’m already working on, then I think we should tackle my Home page /Opt in – whatever needs work.

            I’m putting this on my calendar for the 2nd week in Sept – if you want to do the same to remind me, that works for me. I don’t even know how I found this page – but thank you. Talk to you soon.

            Gil

    • says

      Hi Lori,

      First of all there are lots of good things about your page. And a 75% conversion is really good (I assume the traffic comes from guest posts etc.?).

      Here’s what I’d do:

      1. The “breadcrumbs” under the header is useless on a landing page. It just catches your attention but doesn’t add anything to the page.

      2. The headlines (main headline and the one in the opt in form) are formatted weirdly. I think the “line-height” is too low or something as the lines overlap. They’re a bit difficult to read as they are…

      3. I suggest you test what would happen if the opt in box came after the copy of the page. Or at least test what if it was smaller.

      4. You’re asking people to tweet the page. It may affect your conversion; at least usually it does lower it.

      5. You could try to make the bullet-points a bit more intriguing. For example: instead of saying, “De-Stress with Music and Dancing” you could say something like (assuming it’s true), “Get Rid of Stress by Just Listening to Music in a Certain Way”

      Did that make sense? Please ask if there’s anything more…

      Regards,
      Peter Sandeen

            • says

              The page looks much better :)

              The headlines are still crammed together (the lines overlap), but that’s a small thing.

              And, another small thing, the first two lines of copy (“6-Part E-Course… Click on Submit”) might work better after the bullet-points as at that point you’ve created the trust and desire for your course. Before the bullet-points the call to action is a bit premature.

              Or what do you think?

              -Peter

  12. says

    Hey Peter!

    Great tips – this is very helpful! I have a page (linked from my name above) that I’d love you to look at. I tend to be wordy so I am always concerned I’ve said TOO much. I have not marketed this page, but I plan on doing a more public launch soon. I did send it out to newsletter subscribers and got about a 62% conversion on the people that did visit, but the test sample was small and from people who already know me.

    • says

      Hey Bethany,

      First off, I’m somewhat inadequate to critique your page. As someone (I think it was Doug D’Anna) said, “I can’t really critique copy if I don’t understand the prospect.”

      But as far as I can imagine your target audience, you’re spot on!

      What I can think of are only small adjustments.

      1. Starting online marketing from scratch (with no understanding of any of the tools) may seem extremely daunting. Reassuring the reader of their possibilities might pay off. You could say, “The course 7 steps you need to take…” or something like that to change their idea of the process. Now they might think it’s a huge task that can’t be done, but a specific number of steps (and a promise to hold their hands at each point) could help dissolve that fear.

      2. Before the opt in form there’s a text, “Get started on your new website today!” It may be the best thing to say there as that might be the culmination of the process to your prospects. On the other hand something that ties even more closely to the text could work better. Since you focus on the idea of getting more local customers, the call to action could say something about getting more local customers.

      3. The “bio” at the end is fine, but I would reconsider having links there. They distract from the call to action, but depending on the use of your page, they may be well justifiable… Just think about it ;)

      Did that make any sense? Let me know what you think :)

      Regards,
      Peter Sandeen

  13. says

    Hey Peter,

    Review is really wonderful. I like the way you reworded the landing page copy. I’d like to put my hat in the landing page critique pool with this page http://bit.ly/10cleveridioms

    I’ll be using this page as my link to guest post by lines as well as for social media sharing.

    Would love to get your thoughts on this.

    Thanks a lot in advance!

    • says

      Hey Allan,

      The page is good, really good. My suggestions are quite minor:

      1. Consider replacing the first opt in box with bullet-points that illustrate the value of the book. AND move the opt in form under the picture of the book and the new bullet-points. That will make visitors really understand the value the book provides. Now that there’s nothing but the book’s cover and the opt in form, you’re assuming all your visitors already understand the value of the idioms.

      2. You could add one more opt in form after the main copy of the page (before the second testimonial). When the copy ends, readers are (hopefully) ready to download the book. So, you should offer them the chance to do so.

      3. The first headline of the page is now “Money in Mandarin”. I realize that’s the name of your site, but it looks like it’s the title of the page. You could just add a clear line under it (not an underlining but a line that breaks it into its own section) to indicate it’s separate from the page. Or you could just remove it. Having your logo on a landing page isn’t nearly always necessary…

      What do you think? Did that make sense to you?

      Regards,
      Peter

        • says

          Hi Allan,

          The page looks good :)

          If you want to take it a bit further you could make the first opt in form a bit “flatter”; now it’s quite tall and breaks the page two pieces. Someone who isn’t convinced of the value of the ebook might not read on what comes after the opt in form as it looks like it’s the last thing on the page.

          Or you could move the first testimonial to be side by side with the first opt in form. (I’d prefer this option.)

          Makes sense?

          -Peter

  14. Ruan | HighTechNovation says

    Hi Peter,

    This is really interesting and I have never seen anyone using opt-in landing pages for normal email lists on their websites. Yes, to special offers or access to something special, but not ordinary email lists.

    Now I can’t help but wondering how one would implement this for an ordinary email opt-in. I mean using something like OptimizePress and integrating your Aweber list into it is fairly simple and straight forward, but for one, do you install OptimizePress on a sub-domain then as it can’t run with another theme on the same domain? And do you just place a link to “Subscribe to my updates” or something similar on your website that directs to this page?

    Looking forward to hear your response!

    • says

      Hi Ruan,

      Using opt in landing pages for “nothing special” is quite common. Sure, most offer some sort of an incentive like an ebook, but many don’t do even that.

      I don’t use OptimizePress as I prefer building landing pages with coding or with Premise. One of its benefits is that you don’t need to use a sub-domain. Check out this page: http://affectselling.com/landing-pages-faq/ it might answer some of your questions…

      And you’d probably drive traffic to the page with guest posts etc. Sure, you can also drive people there with links from your own site, and many say something like, “Subscribe to updates” but often other calls-to-action work better. That, as well as many other landing page related things, is about talking about the benefits you can offer the reader.

      Did I make sense to you? Please, tell me if you have any questions :)

      Regards,
      Peter Sandeen

      • Ruan | HighTechNovation says

        Thanks for your quick reply Peter.

        What you said made perfect sense to me. Thank you for this helpful information. I think the challenging part for me now is designing the landing page. I don’t want to use OptimizePress either as I want everything on the same domain. Premise is quite an investment which I can’t commit to right now which only leaves me with designing the page myself with code.

        I am fairly skilled in HTML and CSS but the actual copy is what will be my biggest challenge. I wouldn’t know what content to add where…So I guess I need to go and find some good converting templates which I can customize with my own content.

        • says

          Hi Ruan,

          Premise isn’t a big investment if you’re really serious with online marketing (since it’s much more than just the landing page stuff that you get). But I understand that you prefer coding if it’s not a problem.

          Be wary about swiping landing pages. First of all, you have to sure that the page your using as a template really works extremely well. Secondly, you need to know that it will work in your situation, and that’s not just about the niche you’re in…

          Let me know if you have questions :)

          -Peter

          • Ruan | HighTechNovation says

            Hi Peter,

            I certainly didn’t mean Premise is expensive as I really think it provides excellent value. I simply meant that I don’t have that kind of cash flow available right now.

            Anyways, as soon as I am ready I will most definitely make that investment, no question about it. In the meantime, do you perhaps have an email opt-in page lying around that you would be willing to share with me? Just so I can get a general idea of a goo-converting opt-in page.

            • says

              Okay, got it :)

              Keep in mind that this example is just one example. It works for me with the traffic I drive to it. There’s a good change it won’t work for you.

              http://affectselling.com/101-headline-formulas/

              (While you’re there, download the headline eBook; it might help you find a good headline for your landing page ;) )

              NOTE: Again, I want to stress how templates aren’t usually the best way to go. You can grab ideas from other pages, but I suggest you build your own page with your offer and visitors in mind.

              Did I make any sense?

              -Peter

  15. Ruan | HighTechNovation says

    Thanks Peter, I really appreciate your help. I will go check it out right away. I’ll also just get a general idea of what converts well and then add my own brand and content with my readers in mind to it.

    I think as you’ve mentioned in your post on landing pages that thorough split testing will give me a good idea of what works for me and what not.

    Thanks again,
    -Ruan

    • says

      I hope you’ll find it useful.

      Split testing is a great tool, but there’s one big problem with it: if you test something that doesn’t increase your conversion, your conversion doesn’t increase :D

      If you want some ideas, you can come back here when you have something ready and I can give some ideas on what to test ;)

      -Peter

  16. Andrew J Klimek says

    Hello Peter, Danny, Peter,

    Thanks for the great video and the offer to be critiqued next month!

    I’m submitting for your consideration a project which I’m working on for a MAC repair & troubleshooting company. The home page is a bit more complex than a typical landing page, because it functions as a support ticket system.

    See what you think! http://forcequit.co/

      • Andrew J Klimek says

        Sounds great, thank you Peter!

        By the way, I know it needs work and am working on it, so it may morph between then and now ;D

          • Andrew J Klimek says

            Hi Peter,

            There will probably be a slight reword by the end of the work day today and we should be set for a while.

            Thanks!

            • says

              Hey Andrew,

              Sorry, but I could’t think of a good way to fit your page into the critique…

              But I’ll give you some ideas here :)

              First of all, your home page is one of the best I’ve seen. It’s simple, clear, and makes a strong offer.

              What I’d consider is changing the ticket system.

              Here’s what came to my mind. You’d ask for three things: Email address, Product, and Question. The idea would be to get in personal contact (via email) about their problem AND to build your relationship with emails they’d enjoy; the system would add them to your email marketing system and send them a series of emails based on which product(s) they indicated to own. The emails could give them some tips on how to use their products, or something else that they’d find interesting.

              You’d most likely get more customers if you interacted with them via email, and the autoresponder-series would build an even stronger relationship that could turn to customers later.

              Also asking only for an email address and the question, has a couple of advantages.

              1. You ask for less info, which almost always increases the conversion.
              2. The visitor would instantly know how the system works (you’ll reply via email). Now it’s not obvious what a “ticket system” will actually do and how it works.

              If you want to build an “FAQ” kind of a thing with the tickets, you could quite easily add the questions you get with the new system to the ticket base and get all the SEO and other benefits…

              What do you think?

              Regards,
              Peter Sandeen

          • Andrew Klimek says

            Hi Peter,

            Just wanted to circle back and thank you for the thoughts. I actually did a total redesign based on customer feedback! But a sincere thank you.

            Andrew

  17. says

    Great pointers! Thanks so much! I’m a novice, coming up on one year blogging, and am hungry to improve. I would love your critique of my landing page (awakemysoulblog.com). One thing different about mine from the ones you critiqued in the video – I’m not selling anything. However I do want to get my blog into the hands of those who will be encouraged, inspired, or moved to action in their own life. Subscriptions are the metric I look at. Thanks!

    • says

      Hey Laura,

      Your goal is actually very close to the ones in the video; your first goal is getting more subscribers.

      I can give you ideas about the page, but the link you left is for your home page. Was that on purpose, or do you have a separate landing page for getting subscribers? (I’ll comment either way ;)

      Regards,
      Peter

    • says

      Hey Laura,

      I’ll comment the “Welcome” page here as your home page doesn’t look like a landing page and home pages will get their own critique next month ;)

      As you haven’t built that Welcome page to be an opt in page, I won’t “critique” it, rather I can share my ideas about how you could mold it to get people to subscribe.

      Please note, your “niche” might be the one where the basic rule of copywriting doesn’t apply, but you could consider making the text more about the reader. Now you’re talking about yourself and about your goals. Usually it works better to tell the reader (immediately at the beginning of the text) what they will “get” by reading on and why they should care. But as I said, this might be the niche where that might not apply, as your target audience is interested in the topic not because of what they get, but more because of what it means for them.

      Either way you could frame your call to action (subscription) as a way to get all the ideas you have to share in an easy way.

      Please, let me know what you think ;)

      PS. You’ll get a notification of this comment via email. If you reply to that email, I won’t get it unless Danny forwards it to me separately.

  18. says

    You asked why so many blogs don’t use conversion pages. I think it greatly depends on a topic you are blogging about. How would you creat an opt in page for a food blog or for a blog about jams?:-)
    I’d love to have an opt I page but I really don’t know how to phrase it appropriately. Those example work great for business blogs ( productivity, copywriting, anything that primarily solves problems) but lifestyle blogs?!

    I am designing my new page and would be great full for your advise as long as it is still in making (opt-in for a newsletter or similar)

    • says

      Hi Anastasia,

      There’s no real difference actually. A blog about food either helps people solve a problem or helps them get to their dreams. Or at least it should ;)

      Your opt in page should get the idea across that you can help the visitors with something they want. If their problem is that their raspberry jam isn’t red enough or that they don’t know how to cook great blueberry pie, you should tell them you’ll help them with that.

      I recommend you make a list of benefits your blog offers. List at least 30 specific reasons why your readers benefit from reading your blog. Once you have the list, you can pick the most valuable/common benefits and build a page that tells the reader about those benefits. Another thing you could consider is building some sort of a free resource that you offer for subscribers.

      Does that make sense?

      Regards,
      Peter

  19. says

    I just tried to imagine something like “want to be always successful when cooking up jams? Scared that your goodness in a jar won’t set? Subscribe to my newsletter to always be the first who gets the scoop of most successful canning techniques and mind lowing recipes”:-)))))

      • Anastasia says

        Thank you Peter
        I like the idea with benefits of my blog and a free resource to download
        With regards to the example above… Virtually none of the food blogs have an opt-in page and I think (I am afraid) that if I creat one it will stand out in a negative way… The overall tone of all food blogs is nice and fluffy, comforting and very femenin
        Actually barely any of them even offer downloads (even though a metric conversion chart would be a great example suitable for free download)
        I know it’s good to be different but may be there is a reason why this niche is like that? What do you think?

        • says

          I think the only reason why most food blogs don’t use landing pages nor offer downloads (that require an email address) is that their purpose is not to make money OR they don’t understand how an email list would help them OR they don’t know what to offer OR they don’t know how to use landing pages…

          I doubt the reason is that they’d scare readers away; you still offer your blog posts free, only the special content requires an email. (Or if you ask them to sign up for the updates, it’s just a way for them to get all your content and not miss out on something.) And even if you scare a few people away, you gain a lot more in return as you can engage your subscribers via email and get them engaged in what you write in your blog. At least I’ll always rather take 100 new subscribers than 10 000 new visitors (who don’t subscribe).

          In any case I encourage you to test what happens if you set up an opt in page for the subscription (without an incentive) or an opt in page (with an incentive). Do you think you’ll do that?

            • says

              If you’re afraid of standing out, here are two things you can consider:

              1. Create a special offer that requires an opt in. Most food blogs don’t have special offers, so there’s no reason why you’d stand out in a bad way; instead you’d be the one who’s offering something more than just “basic food stuff”.

              2. Instead of only offering the opt in on the landing page, add a link straight to your blog page there. This will take away the feeling that you’re requiring people to opt in.

              Do you think one of those might help?

  20. Anastasia says

    Hi Peter!
    I’ve been thinking about it a lot today :-) when will I be using opt in page? Usually when guest blogging or conmentingbon other blogs, or and may be as a link from twitter profile. So if I treat is as sort of About Page would it work? Like
    “it’s in a jam! Join me for (list of categories of the blog). Please subscribe to free updates to revive the goodness streight to your email box!
    My readers come from all over the world and I have created a conversion chart for imperial and metric measures. You can download a free, beautifuly illustrated copy here….
    I cook all recipes in my kitchen and use my family and friends as test volontieres . A lot of people tried my cooking and they gone on to lead normal lives after that.

    • says

      The beauty of predictive spelling! Sorry for all the typos, I re-wrote it again

      ————-
      It’s all in a jam! Join me for recipes and stories about jams, cookies and other food that is perfect to share with friends. Please subscribe to free updates to receive the sweet goodness streight to your email box! (subscribe field)

      My readers come from all over the world and I have created a conversion chart for imperial and metric measures. You can download a free, beautifuly illustrated copy here….(download with email address or better Thank with a twitt?)

      My cooking is not perfect but it comes from my heart!

      (I like these two sentences, but it might be too much? – I cook all recipes in my kitchen and use my family and friends as tasting volontieres. A lot of people tried my cooking and they gone on to lead normal lives after that.)

      • says

        Predictive spelling has almost screwed me badly in a couple of instances. Can’t remember the exact examples, but some misspelling turned into something less than appropriate… ;)

        About your text: I think you could try to focus even more on what the subscriber will benefit. I love the idea of the second sentence about sharing with friends; it creates a great image that feels like a good reason for subscribing. Maybe you could circle around that idea a bit more and talk about what the friends will think about the food the reader (of your blog) has made for them (with your blog’s help).

        Am I making any sense to you? :D

    • says

      Those are the two most common uses for the kind of landing page we’re talking about now. Though with guest posting, you sometimes want to create even more targeted landing pages…

      You could check out my similar page. The niche is obviously as different as it gets, but the main point of the page is “selling” the free subscription. The bonuses are only that: bonuses. http://affectselling.com/subscribe/

      Does that help at all?

  21. Anastasia says

    Peter, brilliant idea, you are bring do helpful. And I am also getting a good lesson in guest blogging after-care. Now, on the reviving end, I anderstand it so much better.
    I will try one last time, so not to overstay my welcome on a guest post:-)

    It’s all in a jam! Join me for recipes and stories about jams, cookies and other food that is perfect to share with friends.
    The recipes I share with my readers require just enough ingredients for a couple of friends or a small family to enjoy on a lazy day. I always look for easy to make and yet unusual recipes that will make your cooking stand out without hours of hard work. A lot of jams and cookies I share on my blog will make perfect little presents – personal, thoughtful with a nice story of how you made them attached to it.
    Please subscribe to free updates to receive the sweet goodness streight to your email box! (subscribe field)

    My readers come from all over the world and I have created a conversion chart for imperial and metric measures. You can download a free, beautifuly illustrated copy here….(download with email address or better Thank with a twitt?)

    My cooking is not perfect but it comes from my heart!

  22. says

    Hi Peter,

    I’m really new at this. Since watching the video and reading your material, I built my first “landing page” or opt-in page.

    I don’t have any ebook or course or anything to offer my readers, except good content.

    Would you be willing/able to give me a critique on the opt-in page?

    Looking forward to your thoughts,
    Angela

  23. says

    Hi Peter, only today I discovered this post (and your blog)…

    Thank you for this post, it’s truly helpful.
    Conversion optimization is one of the most important topic for an internet marketer, but few people talk about it (at least in an exhaustive way)

    I’m wondering: are you still offering the landing page evaluation?

        • says

          Hey Mauro,

          Sorry it took a couple of days for me to get around to this…

          There are lots of good things on your page: The first paragraph has a good, straightforward approach. You have lots of “white space”, which makes the page easy to read and focused. And you’ve dug the most important benefits out of the offers and turned them into bullet-points.

          But there were a couple of things that popped out immediately:

          1. The first two headlines are on the edge on making sense, or not making sense. “Reach Your Full-Time Online Income” doesn’t really mean anything. And “Get the best information to turn your blog in a successful business” sounds awkward (even without the grammar mistake “turn … in a”).

          The idea behind the headlines is okay, it’s just that you could polish the headlines to make them clearer.

          2. The tweet button feels out of place and is a bit distracting.

          3. I’d clean up the language (grammatically). And I wouldn’t use the f-word when the page doesn’t feel like it’s aimed for an audience that would relate to crude language (don’t get me wrong; it works for a certain audience, I just doubt it’s the best choice on your page).

          4. You could tell a bit more about the email-course’s contents. It’s now quite vague and people generally like to know a bit more about what they’ll subscribe.

          5. Try to get a few testimonials for the offers. It’s great that you show that you’ve been featured in bigger blogs, but showing testimonials of the offers themselves would mean even more.

          What do you think?

          Cheers,
          Peter Sandeen

  24. says

    It’s ok, Peter: I know that you are really busy ;)

    These are great advices!
    I’ll work on all of them as soon as possible.
    Thank you very much for this depth explanation!

    I’ll make you know about the results.

      • says

        Hi Peter, I applied most of your suggestions (the only missing is the list of testimonials, but I’m working on it).

        I have to say that now it converts MUCH MORE.

        What do you think about it now?

        PS: I’m planning to implement videos in a near future…and I’d like to hire you to improve my ultimate landing page. I’ll send you an email when I’ll be ready ;)

        PPS: what do you think is a good conversion rate for a landing page that gets traffic from many kinds of sources (not only from guest posts)?

        • says

          Hey Mauro,

          I’m glad to hear you already saw an increase :)

          And I think it’s much better.

          Thanks, I’d be glad to help. I’m sure we’ll find a good way to do that.

          Good conversion? 100% ;)

          Honestly, it depends 80% on the offer and the traffic sources, so I can’t really say.

          But anything below 50% is a bit disappointing to me (but it does happen occasionally).

          Regards,
          Peter

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