You Never Get a Second Chance to Make a First Impression

Cheesy quotes aside, making a good first impression for a brand is extremely important, especially when trying to build a relationship with a potential customer. The first point of contact a brand has with a consumer is its website landing page, which needs to be optimized to have them wanting more. And all of this first impression effort is to encourage the user to take the final step and give them their email, or else it’s all a complete waste. It’s like a blind date. In order to get that phone number at the end, you need to make an amazing first impression because you won’t get a second chance. But how do you know what will get you that email (or that phone number..)? Well, remember my previous post on A/B testing? By continually testing and retesting landing pages, marketers are able to optimize their design to turn qualified users into lifetime consumers. There are also some tips and tricks that, according to the head of marketing for PureWow Alexis Anderson and copyblogger, will make for the best initial contact with your potential customer:

  • Clean and easy to use interface
  • Clear call to action and large incentive
  • Have an attractive design and click-ready creative content
  • Headline should be clear and refer to the place where the visitor came from
  • Use the same color palette as your ads

To expand on these ideas, Renee Warren, co-founder of Onboardly, says that by including things like clean-looking demo videos and customer reviews in the design of the landing page you can increase conversions by 10-20%. After initiating the outreach, you can then determine where the consumer is in the conversion funnel. Are they uninitiated, or already leaning towards your brand? If they are the latter, then it’s time to target that person with your incentive (promotion, special offer, etc.) to close the deal.

A company that I think has an excellent landing page is Shopify, an ecommerce solution that allows you to set up an online store to sell your products.

Screen Shot 2015-02-02 at 9.10.03 PM

Their trial landing page keeps it simple, with bullet points instead of paragraphs, an easy and straight forward email sign up and a demo video. It has a short headline and is oriented to helping the consumer with the one clear goal of creating their store. Additionally, it is formatted to work well on all devices, be it your smart phone, computer or tablet.

So, now that we know a few tips on making a GOOD landing page, what would constitute a bad one? Here’s a few:

  • A bad headline
  • Not using a clean design with no distractions
  • Asking for multiple things (tip: people actually DON’T like having to choose between multiple options…as the saying goes, “keep it simple, stupid!”)
  • Having ugly aesthetics
  • Don’t waste time grabbing and holding the users attention

Finally, we need a way to measure the effectiveness of the landing page. There’s a few tools that will help with this:

  • Conversion rate
  • Homepage abandonment rate
  • Cost per sale

The conversion rate tells us the percentage of visitors that turn into a lead, sale, or whatever other outcome you desired. So in our Shopify example, it would be the percentage of users who signed up for the free trial, but the most important factor would be how many of those visitors actually started to pay for the Shopify service. The homepage abandonment rate will tell you how many people are bailing after they get to your page. This is where some A/B testing might come in handy, to see if different design elements keep people around longer. The cost per sale is where you divide your advertising costs by the amount of sales to find your average cost per sale. It’s up to you to set the number you want to see for this!

Once again, thanks for the read and happy impression-ing!

(Want to know the rather sassy 10 Commandments of Landing Pages That Work? Hint: thou shalt not be disappointed) –> Commandments – scroll to page 42


How to Drive Successful Customer Acquisition 

Landing Pages 



One response to “You Never Get a Second Chance to Make a First Impression

  1. show that you have an understanding of the topic and how it relates to previous topics. Quality is showing that you see the big picture. What is the value of the landing page over a traditional website, does it have specific uses, is it just a fad, how do you use [insert previous class topics here] to drive traffic to your landing page?

    Otherwise good.


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