A well-optimized landing page is like a perfectly smooth runway, guiding your leads straight to the offer.
From the moment they first land on the page (pun intended), and until they enter your funnel, it’s all a carefully crafted experience designed to maximize conversions.
…At least in theory.
In practice, most landing pages make it needlessly hard for visitors to convert.
They’re full of barriers and distractions that drive leads away — sometimes immediately, and sometimes right before that sweet, sweet conversion actually happens!
So today, I’m going to share with you 9 most common and most devastating landing page mistakes that could be tanking your lead gen or sales. I will also explain how to start fixing them, so your conversion rates can improve!
You will learn:
- How to present long lead capture forms to potential customers — in a way that doesn’t make them run for the hills.
- The one invisible landing page mistake that could cost you almost half your leads… and what to do about it.
- Why visitors aren’t taking action on your offers, even when they are free and super valuable. (I’ll also give you 3 tips to fix this.)
- “Copywriting kryptonite” mistakes that suck all the persuasive force out of your landing page text — and one way to solve them for good.
And many more.
Let’s get started! The first mistake I see all the time is…
Mistake #1. Too many form fields to fill out
You want only high-quality leads to end up in your sales pipeline — who doesn’t? So you make sure that your lead capture form asks for all the info you need to quality and score a lead accurately. Again, that’s just good business.
The problem is, leads don’t enjoy having a hecking long form to fill out! So you run the risk of perfectly good prospects bouncing off your landing page, never to return.
How to fix it:
Break down your long lead form into multiple steps. This sounds like it shouldn’t work… but it does. Surprisingly, staring down the entire form all at once is more discouraging to potential customers than completing the same form in stages.
Now, I don’t know the full science behind that psychological quirk, but I am going to use it to my advantage — and you should, too!
Mistake #2. “Short copy is better”
We’ve all heard this one.
“Nobody has the attention span to read long-form copy anymore.”
In our distractible digital age, this kind of statement feels so true… and yet, it isn’t.
Short copy works well for straightforward offers that need zero explanation to your customers. E.g. if your landing page promotes a one-pager PDF freebie, then sure, you can get away with shorter copy.
But if your offer is in any way sophisticated, innovative, or requires substantial commitment — like a SaaS free trial, for instance — then longer copy can actually boost your conversion rates. The reason for that is simple: confused leads always say no. But if your long-form landing page can eliminate their confusion and give clarity, they will be more likely to say yes!
How to fix it:
Create a short-form and a long-form version of your landing page and split test them. This experiment will definitively prove which version is more aligned with your offer and business!
For your inspiration: here’s a great case study that compared a short landing page vs. a long one.
Mistake #3. Vague, unfocused headlines and subheadlines
Poorly crafted headlines and subheads can tank conversions even on an otherwise brilliant landing page. Why? Because most people will only read the headline and scan the page…
…unless you immediately catch their attention and draw them in deeper.
Your headlines and subheads have one job — getting leads to read the body copy. So you have to make them count. Otherwise all that traffic you’re sending to yourng page will bounce away from it like these cats recoil from cucumbers.
How to fix it:
Read The Draw Shop’s guide to creating high-converting headlines and swipe some formulas for yourself! They work for subheadlines, too, so you can kill two birds with one stone.
You can also google headline formulas — there are hundreds of them. Create 4-5 variations for each headline or subhead you want to improve, then pick a winner and refine.
Mistake #4. Slow… loading… speed
A 3-second difference in your landing page’s loading speed can cost you 38% of your leads.
Wait, no, that was a typo — it’s not a fun fact, it’s a spine-chilling fact!
Loading speed affects conversions as much as, if not more than, copy, layout, and other visible elements of your landing page. Getting it down to 5 seconds or less is one of the best, virtually instant improvements you can make to your top-of-funnel performance.
How to fix it:
For starters, you want to test your loading speed to determine how fast or slow it is. It’s not always reliable, though — so I recommend trying a few different testing tools and finding a median benchmark.
After that, you can try different solutions: adding a progress bar that shows to your leads when the page will load; optimizing and compressing your visuals; making a lighter mobile version; and switching off unnecessary scripts or plugins.
Mistake #5. Too vague (or too pushy) call to action
So many landing pages are plagued by generic CTAs. Customers don’t want to “Submit,” “Subscribe,” or “Sign Up” — the only thing those vague calls to action can inspire is a snooze!
Also sometimes businesses use specific but extremely intimidating CTAs that ask for too much, too fast. “Buy Now” may seem like a perfectly reasonable thing to put on a Buy button (hey, it’s in the name)… but to potential customers, it can feel as if it’s going from 0 to 100.
How to fix it:
Here are three ways to reframe your calls to action that work for almost any type of offer…
- Focus on the next smallest step. E.g. instead of a generic “Submit,” try “Take the Quiz” or “Give Us Your Feedback.”
- Emphasize the value and the promise of the offer. E.g. “Buy Now” can become “Get Instant Access” or something like “Start Growing Your Business Now.”
- Write your CTAs from your lead’s point of view. Don’t tell them to “Subscribe” — do “Send Me My Free Checklist” or “Yes, Add Me To Your Private List.”
Mistake #6. Multiple clashing calls to action
A landing page has one job — to qualify leads and convert them into prospects.
If you’re trying to convert them with more than one offer, free or paid, then your page has multiple jobs now… and it’s going to fail at all of them.
Now, sometimes, it’s acceptable to have multiple different CTAs on one page. E.g. if you have more than one target audience, then your landing page should help you differentiate between them, and funnel them away to other, more specialized pages.
But 99 times out of 100, you want one call to action and one offer per page.
How to fix it:
Well, that’s the easy part — simply remove all non-essential CTAs and offers from your landing pages! You can have multiple instances of one call to action, but that’s it.
Where should you start? Disable your newsletter popup on all dedicated landing pages.
That’s right, I know you have it enabled sitewide… and all it’s doing on your landing pages is confusing and distracting leads. You don’t need it, at least not there!
Mistake #7. Copy that doesn’t center the customer
If your landing page exists to promote your offer, then it stands to reason that that’s what your copy should focus on, right? Nope! Or at least not entirely.
The #1 question your landing page copy should answer is, “What’s in it for me?” And by “me” I mean, of course, your target customer. You want to make it clear why they should care about your offer, and how it will help them solve their problems.
How to fix it:
Don’t simply talk about what your offer is and its features — contextualize it in a way that’s relevant to your customers.
Connect it to a problem that keeps them up at night, a result they desperately want to achieve, or both. And when you do discuss features, make sure that benefits and outcomes are also part of that messaging.
E.g. don’t just say, “This free ebook will show you 50 sleep hacks” — say:
“These 50 sleep hacks will help you get more energy, alleviate muscle soreness after waking up, and even have more vivid dreams.”
Mistake #8. No dedicated mobile version (in 2021, really?)
More than 50% of global website traffic comes from mobile devices. Even if the ratio is different for your brand specifically, chances are good that at least 20-30% of your leads browse your website on mobile.
And when they do, what do they find?
A fast-loading, mobile-dedicated landing page with a layout optimized for their experience…
…or a bulky “responsive” monstrosity that messes with the design, takes forever to react to inputs, and glitches out just as often as it works?
Guess which option is going to get your more conversions!
How to fix it:
I’m sad to report that there’s no clever solution to this one other than designing a dedicated mobile version of your landing page.
The good news is, most good landing page builders (we use ClickFunnels) make the process pretty quick and painless — you just have to bite the bullet and do it. Think of all the extra conversions you’re going to get, this will keep you motivated!
Mistake #9. Irrelevant visuals that don’t reinforce the offer
Adding images and videos to your landing page can go a long way to boost conversions. But way too often, I come across landing page visuals that exist only to check a box.
As in, they don’t actually do anything to clarify the offer or communicate value to leads. They’re just there because that’s what you’re supposed to do — put pretty visuals on your landing page and see conversions go up. That’s how it works, right?
How to fix it:
Any time you’re adding images or videos to your landing page, think about how they might help you persuade your leads to convert.
E.g. making a mock cover for your downloadable freebie is relevant, but it doesn’t help clarify your offer very much. Instead, why not add a few infographics or screenshots from the freebie itself?
By that same logic, a pretty stock photo / looping video background for your page probably won’t do much, because it’s irrelevant and not prominent enough…
…but an explainer video showcasing the awesomeness of your offer will!
Let us help you create one.
Supercharge your landing page with a high-converting video
Video is the single most effective marketing asset you could add to your landing page to boost its performance. If you want to attract more high-quality leads into your sales funnel, my team and I would love to help.
We know a thing or two about high-converting landing page videos — for example, one of our clients added $250,000 in revenue after just 45 days of deploying his asset!
Over the years, we’ve created hundreds of effective explainer videos for companies in dozens of industries. Education, biotech, manufacturing, finance, coaching, real estate, petroleum, pest control – you name it, we’ve done it!
And we can do the same for you.
Take advantage of our genius marketers, silver-tongued copywriters, and absurdly talented artists and videographers to create a stunning landing page video that will grow your business.
We used to do only whiteboard animation – not anymore! Now you can work with us to create awesome marketing videos in a variety of styles:
- Live action
- Motion graphics and cartoon animations
- Virtual Reality Animation
- Digital stop motion animation
- 2D character animation
Interested? Then click here to get a risk-free quote and tell us about your dream explainer video — and one of our marketing experts will get back to you post-haste!