After the Catch – What Happens Next?

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Since we’ve had beautiful starry nights and meteor showers lately, we’ve been looking skyward and have been thinking of how great it would be to catch one of those falling stars. We can look at the charts, find the best place to watch, and we feel fortunate to even see one – much less catch it!

Equally hard to catch are website visitors. While it’s easy to see that one should carry a net to catch stars, how does one attract the attention of online visitors? And even more – what do you do with them once you’ve caught them?

Advertising

One of the most popular methods to capture website visitors is to pay for advertising online with services like Facebook and LinkedIn ads or Google’s paid search service, AdWords. These popular and effective marketing methods include highly customizable options and universal accessibility. They can an already interested audience right to your website, but…then what?

Surely the goal is more than to have people visit your website! If you’re going to embark on an online marketing campaign – either through AdWords or via social media – a market-specific landing page can help you once you’ve caught your audience.

Landing Page

The first thing to consider is your goal – what do you want these new visitors to do once they’ve come to you? Usually you want some kind of call to action and to give the visitor exactly the information they searched for. This is where a customized landing page can help you deliver what you promised in your ad and increase the success of your campaign.

A great landing page should be perfectly aligned to the content of your ad. You want to make it as easy as possible to find information about what’s been advertised. You may only have a few seconds to do this so it’s critical that your message is well written and presented to be immediately relevant for your audience.

How to Improve

Here are ten ways to help improve your visitor’s experience once they’ve found you! (And help improve their conversion rates in the process.)

  1. Think about where you’re advertising and who will find you. Your LinkedIn, Facebook, and AdWords campaigns will have different audiences and will need different treatment.
  2. Don’t just lead people to your home page. Create a custom landing page for every ad and include keywords in the URL of your page.
  3. The headline should match your ad title so people can immediately see they’ve come to the right place. Be specific when you create your page. Make one for every ad you’re running.
  4. Tailor the landing page with useful, unique content designed to meet your visitor’s expectations. Demonstrate expertise and trustworthiness by including the keywords you used in your ad in your content and write in a friendly, open tone.
  5. Include a clear call to action based on your goal, whatever it is. Learn more! Sign up! Buy now! Donate! Support! – your call to action should visually stand out and help your visitor engage with you immediately.
  6. Choose excellent supporting images which reinforce your page content and size them properly so the page will load quickly.
  7. Don’t include pop-up ads or anything that will interrupt the visitor’s experience.
  8. Be sure your site is optimised for mobile devices, since more than 30% of your visitors are likely using a cell phone to view your website. (Even if your page and site pass the Google Mobile Friendliness test, it’s still helpful to look at your website on different phones to be sure it looks the way you want it to.)
  9. Lay your site out so the most critical information is immediately in view without scrolling. This is also referred to as “above the fold” and it’s where you should strongly consider placing your call to action.
  10. Always keep your goal in mind and adapt as necessary. Don’t be afraid to try a new tactic as you work to catch your audience.

You can, and should, give your campaign some time without changing things in order to get some good data. Then you can make changes to your ad or landing page content and see how those changes affect your audience.

So do as crooner Perry Como suggests to “Catch a falling star an’ put it in your pocket…and never let it fade away!” and with a little planning, your internet marketing campaign could make your visitors as magical as those shooting stars (and easier to catch!)

Oh, and just so you know when to try catching the real shooting stars, here’s an EarthSky schedule for you!

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