The Perfect Landing Page Structure for SEO (and Conversions!)
The perfect landing page structure for SEO is a mystery for many marketers. I'll be the first to admit I found it tricky when I first began to optimize a landing page for SEO. To perfect landing page SEO it takes the right balance of design, copy, and imagery to get a visitor to convert.
Remember, a landing page is publicly available content that can be indexed and found by search engines. Landing pages often do a lot of heavy lifting for conversions so it pays to optimize their structure for SEO. This way if your landing page is well ranked it will attract traffic and conversions all by itself - 24/7, 365 days a year.
So, what landing page structure works best for SEO? Let's start with what elements are included.
Landing Page Structural Elements
Must-have landing page elements include:
- Reinforcement statement
- Closing argument
- Hero shot - An image or a video that visualizes the product or service in action.
- Benefits of an offer
- Social proof - Testimonials, social shares, reviews, awards won, etc.
- Call to action (CTA)
In order to place highly in rankings and gain traffic, these elements should be crafted in a compelling manner and reflect current SEO best practices.
Starting from the top, let’s break down each element....
Landing Page Headline
Your headline is the first element that flashes at your prospect as soon as he lands on your landing page. This makes it the most powerful part of the whole page. It’s critical to craft it well by making it compelling and SEO friendly.
What are the best practices for SEO headline copywriting?
First of all, your headline should include a strategic keyword intended for that page placed close to the beginning. It’s also necessary that your headline is less than 60 characters long, as the longer versions won’t display fully in the search results.
Your landing page headline should be descriptive but concise. It should catch the essence of what the page is about and attract users to want to find out more.
Note: Your strategic keyword (and its variations) should appear systematically throughout the whole page. (Wrap it in the landing page URL too.)
You should also remember about power words and phrases which ought to find their way into your headlines. Power words touch the appropriate feelings and trigger the intended actions. Coschedule mentioned a few examples of power words and phrases in their highly recommended piece of writing: How To Write Headlines That Drive Traffic, Shares, And Search Results.
Subheadline, Reinforcement Statement and Closing Argument
A subheadline gives more detail on the usually short and vague headline that grabbed a reader’s attention in the first place. Subheadlines become especially important in the case of playful or controversial headlines as they can clarify and expand on the main idea. A subheadline also provides another opportunity to use keywords.
The reinforcement statement is another page title that appears halfway down your page. As most people just scan your landing page, bigger font will stand out and grab their attention. Statements that sum up and emphasize your landing page’s primary message and keywords are very welcome here.
The closing argument gives yet another occasion to restate the message you are trying to get across in the reinforcement statement. The closing argument is your last chance to convince and convert. This makes it important for you to backup your main selling point.
The length of your landing page will help determine whether it’s necessary for you to include a reinforcement statement and a closing argument. If your landing page is short enough so that your headline is visible at all times, there is no need to incorporate them; however, they are very beneficial when your landing page gets lengthy.
Hero shot and Header Image
Your hero shot (also known as a header image), whether it is an ebook or online course, should present your best offer and the context of use, if possible. Take a look at the example from Positionly.
Look at the colors and the placement of the elements on this landing page. To see the full version of it (because it is a lengthy one), take a look at this page: The SEO Essentials For Ecommerce.
Speaking of the SEO rules regarding a hero shot, remember that it should meet the standard image optimization requirements. Adjust the filename of an image and incorporate a necessary keyword that aligns with the on-page optimization of the whole page. Pay attention to the alt tag of the image and make sure it expresses what the image is.
The offer, plus the social proof
The benefits go right below or next to a hero page. It’s best to organize them in bullet form to make them stand out and easy to read. The benefits that effectively describe why your product or service is of great advantage for your clients are the most impactful. Moreover, find a balance between benefit based statements and feature based statements, as it’s always better to focus on authentic needs that are the most important for your buyers.
Of course, this part of your landing page also provides another great opportunity to add your strategic keywords. Each benefit should include at least one keyword that is important to you and your business. Use screenshots where applicable to add a visual feature to a benefit.
Social proof has the power of persuasion so use it on your landing pages! Testimonials validate the benefits mentioned above with real stories, increasing credibility and believability. Whether you’ve included a small Tweet or dedicated your whole page to a testimony, positive social proof can do no wrong.
As for copywriting and SEO, you can’t interfere with the exact wording your brand ambassadors decided to go for, so just let the original tone of your buyer personas flow. As long as the testimonials are semantically related to your business (and they should be), they will strengthen the overall optimization of your site and increase its word count. And as you know, content length is a ranking factor that works in your favor.
Call to action = take it or leave it
This part can be a deal maker or a deal breaker. It’s the focus point of any landing page. This is why a CTA needs to be at the center of attention and visible at first glance. Its button copy needs to push the prospects to make up their minds, whether to take it or leave it. The copy of your CTA should be clear, straightforward and explain what will happen once users click on it.
Take all these useful tips and put them to good use; however, remember that no theory is sure to provide you with the best results. Marketing is all about constant testing and tweaking to isolate the effect of a given change and find what works best for your business.
About the author:
Kasia is a content marketer with two years of experience in the SEO universe. Creating content for the awesome Positionly. Content writing is her passion. When she's not working, then she's traveling, hanging out, cooking, jogging or playing with her dog.