Take a moment to imagine that you are a commercial airline pilot about to land at JFK airport. You circle the airport and make your approach … but you don’t see a landing strip. You wonder … “Where should I go?” “What’s the shortest route to my gate?” You feel confused and a little panicked that you might be going the wrong way. Instead of landing, you gain altitude and search for a place to think through your next step.
In reality, this scenario rarely happens to pilots, but it does happen to insurance website visitors every day. When they stumble upon your insurance website, it’s like arriving at the destination airport. But, if you don’t direct them to a landing page, it’s like trying to land without a landing strip. They often leave quickly because they’re not sure where to go. Even if they do find what they’re searching for, you lose the lead if you don’t have a landing page to capture it.
What is a landing page?
First, let’s define the term “landing page.” A landing page is NOT any web page on which a visitor lands. and it is NOT your home page. A landing page is an insurance website page that allows you to capture a visitor’s information through a form.
You might be wondering … Why are landing pages important?
They are important because they are the primary way that your website will generate leads. In fact, according to Hubspot, businesses with 31 to 40 landing pages receive SEVEN TIMES MORE LEADS than those with 1 to 5 landing pages. Businesses with more than 40 landing pages receive TWELVE TIMES more leads than those with 1 to 5 landing pages.
How many landing pages does your website have?
If you want to count how many landing pages are on your website, look for any page that includes a form. Most websites have one page that can technically be called a landing page – and it’s usually the contact form. Boring! While the contact page has a form, it does not have all of the other elements that make effective landing pages generate leads.
Effective landing pages have these five features:
- A provoking, tangible offer that can’t be found elsewhere (AKA – something different than a complimentary quote). In insurance that usually means a white paper, a free report, an analysis, or a checklist. The offer should be something that the visitor can immediately download and put to use. It should not be an advertisement about why you’re great.
- Short, directive copy. The headline, introduction, bullets and call to action should ALL sell the offer. This is not the time to tell the reader why your company is great and why they should bundle their policies. The landing page’s job has ONE focus to sell the offer and convert the lead.
- Familiar, smart design. If you’ve used offline advertising or direct mail, make the landing page design match the look and feel of the offline piece. The visitor should say “Yes, this looks familiar - I’ve come to right place.” Also, include an image of the item you’re offering. If it’s a free report, include a thumbnail image of the cover. This makes the offer more real. Keep the design simple and clean – black copy against a white background is best with an eye-catching headline and image and a few action-oriented arrows to guide the user through the page.
- Limited navigation. Many experts recommend that you remove the navigation menu on your landing pages to eliminate anything that will distract from the conversion.
- Short, easy-to-complete form, with above-the-fold positioning. Remember, shorter forms get better conversions. Ask for minimal information and make it simple. If it takes more than three seconds to complete, you’ll lose them. The user should not have to scroll to see the form. My favorite location is the upper right side – in same place Amazon places it shopping cart.
If landing pages are so great, why don’t more websites use them?
There are two reasons that most websites don’t use many landing pages.
- The website is built in a system that only the web designer can edit and it does not facilitate the easy creation of landing pages.
- The company does not have quality content to use for compelling offers. In other words, they don’t have five interesting free reports to promote. If they did have those free reports, they would also be breaking all records on their insurance email marketing results.