Conversion Rates

Landing Page Audit Case Study: McEwan Fraser Legal

By Ben Cohen October 03, 2013 Posted In: Conversion Rates Comments: 30

I recently co-hosted a webinar for WordStream clients detailing landing page optimization best practices. Prior to the webinar, we gave our clients the opportunity to submit landing page examples for the chance to be audited during the webinar. The lucky winner was McEwan Fraser Legal, a Scottish firm that specializes in the residential property market, dealing with owner occupiers and property investors. 

Grade your landing pages today!

The Landing Page Audit

Here is the landing page submitted for our audit:

audit my landing page

The Good

There are a few items from this landing page that I think are great.

It has a form

I love the fact that they have a form available directly on the page without creating extra steps for visitors. We live in such a busy world that many people will not fill out a form if they feel it requires any sort of time commitment or involves any sort of risk.

If you are optimizing for conversions, you should make it as easy as possible and avoid creating any barriers to converting. Having a form on the page makes it clear to a searcher exactly what they need to commit to and involves no extra steps.

It shows visitors what to do

Another great tip that this page has leveraged is that it uses an arrow and call to action to direct a reader’s attention to the form.

Arrows are a great visual cue to increase conversion rates, but it is important that the arrow doesn’t come across as “spammy.” This is a simple way to draw attention to an action you want your visitors to complete. It creates a flow and makes the form more inviting.

Contains interactive content

Just above the form you will notice this page has some interactive content available. This is additional content that is optional for a user. A best practice with effective landing pages is to keep it simple and clear. A video is a great way to add additional information without overloading visitors with content.

If you do choose to add videos to your landing page, make sure you have other content available. Images and videos are not crawlable by Google’s bots so you will need to have written content available to users, otherwise you risk Google disapproving your ads or even an account suspension.

Other ways to convert

Finally, having phone numbers and social media buttons available is a big plus for me. Again it makes it clear to visitors that they are available for a conversation. Having visitors call your company gives you or whoever answers your phone calls the opportunity to immediately capture lead information or close a sale.

I’ve highlighted the points above in the image below:

landing page audit

The Bad

I titled this section “the bad” but I think that’s a little too harsh. I don’t think this landing page is in terrible shape to begin with but it definitely has room for improvement. A couple points that should be focused on are as follows:

It is too busy

My biggest complaint with the page is that it feels busy.

When advertising through PPC we have the luxury of knowing how visitors got to our page and what they were searching for prior to visiting. Use that to your advantage by giving the searcher exactly what they are looking for.

Take the product they were looking for and present them with a list of relevant benefits and attributes. Chances are you are not the only company that offers what they want. By presenting a list of attributes and benefits you can illustrate how you stand out and why they should go with you instead of the countless other options available.

It is too long

To read all the content on this page requires visitors to scroll. Again, remember that visitors are very busy so try to keep the most important information – if not all the information – above the fold.

My Vision for This Landing Page

After breaking down what I liked about the page and what could be improved, I used a photo editing tool to mock up what I think the page should look like. I tried to simplify the page without losing important information and keeping the areas I liked. Here is what I came up with:

Landing Page Optimization Audit

Left to Right

The first difference you will notice about the page is that I shifted the form and the interactive content over to the right hand side of the page. I did this because the page is written in English. Anyone who primarily speaks English or any other Latin derived language has been taught that you read from left to right. This means their eyes are immediately drawn to the left side of the page.

With that in mind I moved their positioning statement and benefits to the left and their form and video to the right hand side. This change will promote their visitors to read the content before being presented with a form to fill out.

Less clutter

You will also notice that I reduced the amount of content and images to give the page a clean feel that does not require any scrolling.

After the Landing Page Audit: Additional Testing

Any seasoned landing page pro out there knows that a page can look pretty but still convert like garbage. I can sit here and make suggestions on how you can improve your landing pages, but it comes down to testing to determine if those changes actually improve the metric you are looking to improve: conversions. I would recommend testing this page against a similar page with slightly adjusted content because you will never know what works best until you try.

Areas this business can continue to test include:

  • Different calls to action
  • Replacing their video with other videos or images
  • Different versions of the form – try making it shorter or even longer!
  • Changing headlines, positioning statements
  • Bullet variations

When it comes down to it there is always room for improvement for any digital marketing. If you have the resources to test your pages, I would highly recommend giving it a shot. It’s one of the easiest ways to squeeze more conversions out of the traffic you’re already getting.

Want to See Your Landing Page Audited?

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Comments

Thursday October 03, 2013

Caetano Notari | Indiga (not verified) Said:

Ben, you published an interesting case. I agree with your analysis, but I am concerned with the navigation bar in a landing page. In our experience, removing the landing page navigation increases concentration and improves form submission. To me it seems as a homepage for the site. One of our customers has requested a new landing page, and instead of creating a whole new site, we used a solution to create a page in a subdomain. Results were much better than sending the AdWords traffic to the homepage. I have quite a few landing pages to capture traffic from AdWords, and even from facebook ads. Conversion rate is above 20%, but I cannot disclose the full number.

Thursday October 03, 2013

Ben Cohen (not verified) Said:

Hi Caetano,

Thanks for reading and sharing your experiences! 

You bring up a great point.  Navigation bars lead visitors elsewhere on your site which can hinder conversions. Overall there really is no magic bullet to improve performance. Variables that work for one company or even one landing page may not work for another. I think that split testing this variable would be a great test to run.

We also recently released a new tool that allows our clients to create landing pages quickly and easily. Our tool also runs off of subdomains and does not include navigation bars. It would be interesting to see how our landing page tool stands up to the  new landing page built off of the recommendations from my post. 

Does anyone else have any experiences running tests with nav bars vs no nav bars?

 

 

Friday October 04, 2013

Larry Kim Said:

did the new landing page beat the old one? i feel like i'm missing the ending of the story here.

Friday October 04, 2013

Ben Cohen Said:

Hey Larry,

The new site has not gone live yet. Results are TBD.

Saturday October 05, 2013

Hamza Afridi (not verified) Said:

The only things I would have done differently are as following:

  • Remove the 'Find Out More' button above the arrow so that there is only one main call to action.
  • Resize the 2012 awards image and include that somewhere. It conveys professionalism and shows the company strives to be the best. This provides some level of comfort to visitors.
  • Do something about those social media icons. When you remove them your eye is naturally drawn to the 'Request Valuation Now' but as it stands all those colours in the top corner are distracting. You could make them smaller, space them out a little and move them to a less prominent position, the footer for example. (I have a thing against prominent social media icons on websites.)

That being said, I think you've done a great job and I am very interested in the upcoming results. A separate blog post for that would be great as the email will come straight to my inbox.

Hamza

Friday October 18, 2013

Ben Cohen Said:

Hey Hamza,

You bring up some great ideas. I left the 2012 awards image out to avoid even more imagery on the page and chose to go with the interactive video instead. It would be intresting to use Content Experiements to split test vs the version above.

Thanks for reading! 

Saturday October 05, 2013

Randall Magwood (not verified) Said:

The Wordstream version of this landing page is awesome. Is this a landing page example that Google Adwords would accept?

Friday October 18, 2013

Ben Cohen Said:

Thanks for reading Randall. This is an example of a live landing page one of our clients is using with their AdWords account.

Wednesday October 09, 2013

Lynn Chang (not verified) Said:

You have explained it very well. Yes i agree that whatever your keywords it should have high quality landing page, because if your targeted users will not get their required information they will be not your cutomers and your all money will be waste.

Friday October 18, 2013

Ben Cohen Said:

Hey Lynn,

It seems like such a basic concept as we are doing this everyday but you wouldn't believe how often this point is overlooked. Choosing a targeted landing page is a very easy way to improve your PPC performance!

Thanks for sharing!

Sunday October 13, 2013

Scottie leonard (not verified) Said:

Landing pages of course should be very appealing in order to generate lead and I also agree with Caetano. Landing pages with navigation are little confusing to me.

Beside this, I totally agree to the points you presented that are needed to be considered for a good landing page such as form, call-to-actions, arrows, interactive content etc. Exclusively nice article Ben.

Friday October 18, 2013

Ben Cohen Said:

Scottie,

I left the nav bar on this page as it is primarily for sellling property. Selling a property is a big deal for most and will probably require more page views before a commitment is made (ie. form fill or phone call). The nav bar may help in reducing bounce rate in this situation as it makes it easy for visitors to hit more pages, spend more time on the site and obtain more information. 

Thanks for reading!

Tuesday October 15, 2013

Nancy (not verified) Said:

May I simply just say what a comfort to uncover somebody that genuinely understands what they are talking about on the internet. You certainly realize how to bring an issue to light and make it important. More and more people must check this out and understand this side of your story. I can't believe you aren't more popular since you surely possess the gift.

Friday October 18, 2013

Ben Cohen Said:

Hey Nancy,

I may need to hang this comment on my refridgerator. Thanks for reading!

Saturday October 19, 2013

FergusM (not verified) Said:

I bet Nancy says that to all the guys.

Yes a good article and some good additional comments from contributors in particular the two calls to action. But I thing you could reduce the content and clutter even more. Too many telephone numbers. All a bit too crowded and it took me a little to long to figure that they are both lawyers and property agents, and was initially surprised that a legal firm (Logo) were doing property appraisals. That might be normal locally and may not be an issue.

There are some highly qualified contributors here so if any of you have a moment to to spare please visit my site at www.ieDepot.ie and let me know if there are improvements I could be doing. Thanks. Fergus

 

 

Thursday October 17, 2013

Manzie R Lawfer (not verified) Said:

Ben,

Excellent information. Well presented and high value. Thanks!

Friday October 18, 2013

Ben Cohen Said:

Love the praise Manzie :)

Thursday October 17, 2013

Dave Hassall (not verified) Said:

Hi Ben

Good Article.

For your re-structuring of this page (all landing pages – other areas) I would

  • Name the best known awarding body – “Sunday Times Best…” Estate Agents don’t have a great reputation in the UK so external authority is good.
  • If you scroll down the page you do get a local phone number – I’d put this nearer the top, It’s jumbled in the “header banner” and people want local not a call centre
  • This page is predominantly for Selling so the Navigation Bar is necessary. Alternatively have a button “Buying in Town” which goes to a page specific to that area
  • Are the benefits in the most important order?
  • Social Media – in the “header banner” I’d only have “Contact” ones FB / G+ and only if they are well manned – Better still a Live Chat
  • Yes I agree about having the Form on the right, and experiment with short longer, House No./  Name and Post Code should suffice not full address

A great article, I assume there are separate Ad Group for “Selling in Town” and “Buying in Town” and "Estate Agent in Town"

Like the others I’d like to know the outcome of the A/B Test.

Real world examples are always good - I see a "Monthly Landing Page" series in the making

Regards

 

Dave

 

 

Friday October 18, 2013

Ben Cohen Said:

David,

All of your points are dead on and should be considered for future testing!

Stay tuned for future iterations!

Thursday October 17, 2013

Adam Zahler (not verified) Said:

Hi Ben, nice post. I'd be tempted to take things a bit further and remove the top navigation, replace the phone numbers with just one number and either remove the social networking icons (or at least put them into the footer so they aren't so distracting). I think I'd also re-write the title to talk about the target markets problem and solution instead of the company. Maybe also simplify the form a little by removing the address fields to make it simpler and less likely to put people off.

What do you think?

Thanks again!

Friday October 18, 2013

Ben Cohen Said:

Adam,

I think these are great suggestions and should be strongly considered for future testing. I mentioned in a comment above my reasoning for keeping the nav bar. 

I also think moving some of the social networking buttons to a thank you page could help in spreading the word. 

Thanks for the feedback!

Thursday October 17, 2013

SEMsphere (not verified) Said:

There is too much green into that landing page.
Don't you thing?

Friday October 18, 2013

Ben Cohen Said:

I personally like the color. I think it ads to the website's brand and will draw user's eyes to the areas we want (ie. arrow and form).

Thanks for the feedback!

 

 

 

Thursday October 17, 2013

Scott Brand (not verified) Said:

I was hoping you could evaluate this landing page https://app.instapage.com/builder2?id=24056&version=45&variation=

Friday October 18, 2013

Ben Cohen Said:

Hey Scott,

I would love to. Only problem is that the link you sent requires a user login. Can you email me a live page directly: bcohen at wordstream dot com

Thanks,

Ben

Friday October 18, 2013

Louisa Spice (not verified) Said:

Great article and shows how simple changes can potential make a massive differences.  I agree that it looks a lot less cluttered which makes a big difference.

My company sells one product - hot air balloon flights - and it's always interesting to read blogs such as yours as they always focus on brands that sell more than one product/service.  To date, I have never read an article that fits my brand!  Maybe it would make an interesting subject for you?!

http://www.kentballooning.com

Keep up the good work!

Friday October 18, 2013

Ben Cohen Said:

Louisa,

This would make for an interesting study. I too have never seen an article pertaining to a single product site. 

Stay tuned for future posts!

 

Friday October 18, 2013

Anonymous (not verified) Said:

I want this page to be audited. Please suggest.

Friday October 18, 2013

Ben Cohen Said:

You want our Blog audited? cool

Wednesday December 04, 2013

spookseo (not verified) Said:

Keeping your content long will only bore people out unless they are looking for in-depth information. If you are not working on an academic paper, then, forget about it. The chances are: half of your entry will even be read and that they will only skim through it. You can add photos if you think that you really have to add length to it. 

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