Landing pages for B2B: Good design vs high conversions
There’s something wrong with the state of B2B landing pages.
According to CMO Council, almost 80% of B2B marketers are not satisfied with their current levels of customer conversions. One major factor in those conversions is the design of their company’s landing page. Conventional wisdom suggests that some landing pages emphasize good design while others are optimized for high conversion rates, and the two rarely intersect. But is this true?
Don’t give in to false dichotomies when it comes to B2B landing pages: good design and high conversion rates are both within your company’s reach. Conversion-centered design (CCD) seeks to guide the visitor toward completing that one specific action, using persuasive design and psychological cues as devices to increase conversions. Landing pages structured with this method use congruent design, which works towards a single collective purpose, whether it’s giving information about your product or collecting user data before moving customers onto the next phase of the conversion funnel. CCD can fuel higher conversions when the right visual and practical features are prioritized and built into the design itself. In this sense, “good design” can serve the multifold role of being aesthetically pleasing and reliable for users to navigate while having a fluid yet intentional structure that leads to increased sales.
Below we’ll discuss how you can integrate an aesthetically pleasing design with functionality for high conversions on your company’s landing page:
It starts at the top
The best B2B landing pages have a clear and concise message above the fold that gets at the core of what your company offers. As B2B products tend to be slightly more complex than B2C products, explaining them with meaningful and direct copy becomes even more important. The ideal headline elicits a response from the visitor to the effect of, “Yes, how do I learn more about this?” You can also ask provocative questions in your header that get at the crux of your B2B product or service, such as, “How do I source the top web developer talent?”
In terms of its design, your landing page header should take a funnel approach: pull visitors in, guide them to the relevant content, and provide immediate clarity on your product. Strong design at the top means legibility and attractive color schemes that hold the user’s attention as they engage with your company’s virtual presence. Relatedly, there’s just no substitute for great copy. Keep it simple and to-the-point so that your visitors convert rather than move on to your competitor’s page. Your goal here should be to make people care in just two or three words. Your landing page copy should resonate with a need or feeling visitors have as they search around for a product like yours to help them.
Be sure to match good copy with engaging visuals. Since we know that the right picture can express a thousand words, be sure to optimize your visuals as cues for what your business does. Make sure that whatever visual you choose, it conveys the right professional tone for your company. People will be less likely to trust you with their money if they get the impression that you haven’t invested in producing the best possible landing page design for your company.
Offer value from the start
Great B2B landing pages offer rich content such as whitepapers and ebooks that demonstrate powerful industry-related insights. You can also give customers quick and easy access to the products you offer in the form of a free trial. Here you can leverage good design by keeping the number of fields customers need to fill out to a minimum, while also including a small checkbox when they sign up which quickly subscribes them to your email newsletter, increasing opportunities for conversion down the line. When it comes to the efficacy of free trial offerings, a study by the industry research firm Softletter indicated that 66% of online companies surveyed had free-trial-to-paying-customer conversion rates up to 25%, whereas typical conversion rates tend to hover around 2-5%.
It is also important to look at the value (in terms of new, regular revenue) that comes from each of these conversions. Customers offered free trials are otherwise less likely to convert without that extra incentive on your B2B landing page. Make sure you clearly convey what your business (and others) have been able to achieve through using your product as you offer a free trial. You can achieve this with good design by using short video content that features a testimonial from a satisfied customer playing in the background as the customer signs up for their own free trial. Or just toss in some good copy that highlights customer feedback about the free trial leading them to invest in your main product because of the value they derived from it.
Give customers fewer choices
It sounds counterintuitive, but another key element of conversion-centered design involves giving customers fewer choices. Your landing page should have one goal, rather than multiple potential goals for the customer. Many companies overwhelm customers by designing their landing pages in ways that simply share an exhaustive list of their product’s features or a wide array of navigation choices. Unfortunately, multiple website features don’t sell products as well as motivational copy, persuasive design, and a clear path down the sales funnel. A well-designed B2B landing page will succinctly convey how your product will address the pain points that your customers are feeling. Use keywords, in big bold lettering, that speak to your market research about your customers’ needs and then use a few key phrases to express how your product will help them solve it. Providing a very small number of structured choices with clean design will create a visually appealing landing page that increases customer conversions as well.
The final step in guiding customers towards conversion by limiting their choices is a compelling Call To Action. When Firefox changed its Call To Action (CTA) from “Try Firefox” to “Download Now--Free”, conversion rates increased by 3.6%. Similarly, make sure that your CTA has a similar sense of urgency and that it directs B2B customers to the next steps they should be taking with your product. Your design should place a clear Call To Action where it matters most in the context of your landing page. Some research suggests above the fold is better, some suggest below the fold. For example, the Unbounce landing page includes visual cues that implicitly point the viewer towards the CTA button in the middle above the fold. This leads more customers to convert with intentional and visually attractive design, offering them just one simple choice. There’s also a clear and easy-to-read list of more detailed information just below the fold. The most important part of the CTA seems to be the quality of the copy that precedes it and how well it motivates customers to convert.
Help them trust you
You want your B2B clients to see you as an authority in the industry. Stake out your position and let your potential clients know your status in the field by adding links to your Yelp or TrustPilot reviews on your landing page. In terms of design, place some logos from companies you’ve worked with in the past along with a few choice customer and partner testimonials that paint a vivid picture for visitors about how your product operates for people in the real world. A great testimonial can often tell more of a coherent story about a product than any sales pitch can.
Also, customers won’t trust a company whose website they cannot navigate easily (mostly because they’ll no longer bother with that company). Make sure there are clear links to search functions, accessible customer service links, and that your design doesn’t leave users wondering where to go instead of thinking about what your product can offer them.
Your B2B company can leverage great design for higher conversion rates on your landing page with these tips above. Have any other great tips on well-designed landing pages optimized for higher conversions? Please comment below.