Summary of my experiences and learnings at CXL institute's Growth Marketing Minidegree
Note: This review is only for 1 course. For all the others please head over to the index here
Track 4: Course #1: Landing Page Optimisation by Michael Aagard
Who is teaching you?
Michael has been practicing CRO full time since 2008 and has worked with companies all over the world ranging from charities to E-commerce and SaaS.
He currently works as a freelancer, but has worked with and for several agencies and was Senior Conversion Optimizer for Unbounce in Vancouver from 2015 to 2017. He has held keynotes in 12 different countries and loves getting on stage to share what he has learned in his CRO career.
Much to my surprise, I learnt and chuckled in equal amounts during the course. It was super fun but at the same time, Michael was dropping insights that would have taken me years to gather by myself. Brilliantly done.
A brief overview!- Click on any of them
3. Intro to brain chemicals – Dopamine and Cortisol: no link for this :(
1. Understanding the landing page experience
The flow for users
Flow for ecommerce landing page users
Landing page is NOT just any other page
Page users “land on” / entrance page
First page users see after clicking an ad source
Page that works independently of the site/app
Focused on a clear conversion goal
Shortens journey from click to conversion
Follow up on “promises” made in ad source
Speaks to user motivation & addresses barriers
Answers important questions & creates clarity
Creates a clear path to the conversion goal
Show and not tell - No sync between the ad and the landing page.
Too many call to actions.
Live chat isn’t live chat.
Mailto link doesn’t work.
Research process looks something like thins
More on this down below :-
Elements of a landing page
Types of research that you do: more on this below
2. Slow and Fast Thinking
Daniel Kahneman groundbreaking research shows that people use 2 modes of thinking. Marketing communications must adhere to these 2 modes. If their system 2 is activated, then don't force users to switch to system 1.
4. Wireframing and Information Hierarchy
Two questions to answer:
1. How much content do you need?
2. What content do you need?
A skeleton of your landing page. Do it using balsamiq, whiteboards, on a piece of paper or on keynote/ppt.
1. Align copy and design. ⚔️
2. Prioritise content
Don't design first and then put in the copy.
Having a lot of info on your LP is fine as long as it is relevant and served in a concise way.
Too much info = Bad because information overload
Too less info = equally Bad because it creates irritation
Design by screenfuls not by entire page: screenful is what people can look at on their screen at a given time
1. Don't overwhelm user. (system 2)
2. Do a 5 second test. Can they tell what the page offers and what the goal of the page is? (goal=cta)
Helps you find the right balance between too much information and too little information
Answer these 3 questions:
Who are you communicating with?
What do you want them to do?
Where is the traffic coming from?
Who are you communicating with?: Target Audience
Measure their awareness level:
Problem aware - Aware they have a problem but don’t know that there is a solution
Solution aware - Aware that there is a solution, but they aren’t familiar with yours
Product aware - Aware of your product/offer, but don’t know if it is right for them
Most aware - Aware of your product/offer/brand and they know they want it
Generally, your first screenful should be problem aware and eventually move on to that.
What do you want them to do?: Goal
General Rule: More effort+risk needed to complete the goal = More amount of relevant copy.
Offering a free product? --> Less copy
Offering a $5000 product --> More copy
Where is the traffic coming from?: Source
Newsletter or banner ad?
Does your audience has:
Knowledge of your brand
Previously shown interest & said yes to more information
Background knowledge about your offer
Address their barriers
Reinforce their motivations
Answer their questions
Repeat this process for your conversion goal, offer and brand. End with a summary
5. Quantitative LPO research using Google Analytics
Checklist for reporting
Second Page/Exit Page
Don't forget to click on the results (dimensions) to go deeper.
Check out site content>LP>Entrances and Acquisition > Google Ads > Campaigns for some more info.
Optimse steps closest to the funnel and where the drop off is the max.
6. Qualitative LPO research
Heuristic Analysis Checklist:
Talk to your users: Expand 10 questions
Questions to ask during customer support interviews: Expand
Questions for sales team Interviews: Expand
Try voice calls rather than video calls: People can generally be more honest when they aren't looking you in the eye.
Goal - To conduct a full funnel walkthrough using heuristic analysis, talking to boundary spanners and your users.
Tools: Hotjar.com, Mouseflow.com for session recordings, click and movement test
Feedback surveys: should be super short and not divert their attention. (tool-qualtroo) Read more
Tests: Usabilityhub.com, 5-second test, preference test
7. Landing page copywriting
Ad copy should match the landing page. 2 ways to do this - ad copy is made to match the LP. OR. LP is made to match the ad copy.
Design and Copy should go hand in hand. A lot of times copy is put on the back burner.
Understand how aware your user is and tailor messages accordingly. Are they product aware or solution aware.
5 ELEMENTS in detail
How to write great headlines: headlime.com
What should your benefits/features contain: Important to know that both features and benefits are equally powerful.
Credibility: By stating facts (#active users/total downloads), social proof, relevant FAQ. Expectation Managers: help users know what to expect. This is super important. EM answers the "Who, what, where, when, how much?"
Call to action:
8. Landing Page Design
Same elements as above + Images/Videos = 6 elements for each screenful
Headline - for each screenful.
Images/Videos: Images must be product relevant and not some stock image. They should reinforce the value proposition or the motivation. Videos must be short and added with subtitles.
Benefits/Features: should be clear. Information hierarchy + logical flow
Expectations Manager: Made sure this comes at the end of the page.
CTA - primary CTA and maybe have a ghost button for a secondary CTA
You know where to look.
5 elements of visual hierarchy:
Size: takes precedence in the visual: Primary elements > Secondary elements > Tertiary Elements
Space: Less space - Overwhelmed user. Space=whitespace. You can have a lot of information but make it look less crowded by using space
Font: Drop shadows can make it harder to read. Make sure that the copy can be readable. Bold to jump up in the visual hierarchy. Use fonts that have no feet ie sans serif (Arial better than Times). What font size should I use?
Colour: Colour contrast; Colour hierarchy for your brand includes a colour palette with primary, secondary, complementary, accent and font colours.
Direction: Arrows should be pointing towards a logical non-ambiguous direction. People (in the pics) should look at the CTA preferably and not away from it.
You know where to look.
Should make sense on its own - LP within a LP.
Has the same elements - Headline, Expectations Manager
Address Barrier: When asking for sensitive information like email address or phone number, explain to the user why you need it and what will you do with it. Eg: Phone number - Our consultant will call you on this number shortly. Email - We will send an email to confirm our meeting.
Call to action: "Call me within 24 hours"
Expectation Manager: We'll call you within 24 hours, we guarantee 100% privacy etc. Don't use stop words like "spam"
Don't make them click too far away to enter information. Drop down arrows should be closer to where their cursor already is.
Align the form fields and outline the fill in field with blue colour.
9. Putting it together 🔗
Hotjar implemented on page
Google Analytics 5 second test of original
Interviews w/ sales and CS
Interview with audience
Implement feedback polls
Do the who, what, where exercise
Funnel and LP experience
Start building wireframe
Write rough copy outline
Start building visual hierarchy
Work on rough design elements
Go into depth with the copy
Go deeper into the design
Put it all together
Show it to customer success and/or Sales
Get approval from stakeholders
Test on various devices
Test in various browsers
Test page speed
A/b test or compare periods
Keep analyzing your LP
Answer new questions that occur
Come up with new ideas