Landing page is not a new concept by any means. In fact, in one way or another, they’ve been a part of the landscape of the web going back to the early days of the search engines. And web directories (amazing that’s it’s been about 15 years ago already, isn’t it?). Because there are a lot of misconceptions and general confusion out there. About what landing pages are and how they work. We’re going to share a little bit of background here.
What A Landing Page Is NOT
We need to clear the air before going any further when it comes to explaining what a landing page is not. A landing page is not the same thing as a “Doorway Page. Doorway pages were all the thing for a while in the world of Black Hat Search Engine Optimization. They used hidden keywords and tricky tactics to inaccurately attract visitors to certain sites through the search engine results. Enough about that though…
Just remember, even though they have similar names, Landing Pages are good and Doorway Pages are bad. This is necessary to clear up first, because so many folks get these two really different concepts mixed up.
So, What Exactly Is A Landing Page Then?
Simple: A landing page is just a specially optimized web page that’s designed to be the first place a visitor “lands” upon visiting the site via a search engine. Or an online (or offline) ad. The intention is to target visitors based on how they’re finding the site and present content to them that best suits their needs. In other words, just because every site has a home page. This doesn’t mean the visitor has to start their visit there; instead, they can find the site through an appropriately-targeted page somewhere within the site.
Taking it a step further, landing pages are typically optimized or designed to funnel the visitor. Through the site in a way that’s helpful to both the visitor and the website owner. For example in one instance, after giving an overview “big picture” perspective to a potential customer. A landing page might be designed to have the visitor share their contact information before directing them further on to the next page within the site. This can work in numerous additional ways. But one common thread that tends to be universal among that they include some type of call to action.
What’s The Big Deal, Anyway?
Of course, the reason landing pages tend to be so popular (and effective). Is that they allow a website owner to send visitors to a specific message depending on how they’re getting there. In other words, visitors that click on one advertisement to the site are presented with a slightly different page than those coming from another web ad.
What does this mean for the website owner? Easy: superb tractability and the opportunity to measure and tweak both ads and landing page content in order to maximize conversion.