The goal of a landing page is to persuade a website visitor to take an action. If this simple definition is true then every page on the internet is a landing page.

We are trying to persuade visitors to:

  • Read content
  • Look at data or graphics
  • Click a button to go to another page
  • Stay longer in the site
  • Pick up the phone
  • Request a whitepaper
  • Watch video
  • Listen to an audio file
  • The list goes on

Persuasion or conversion is the goal of every landing page, which makes every page and actual landing page. As such,  there are some simple rules to follow when optimizing a landing page.

In seconds, a viewer should be able to determine four things.

  1. What they are supposed to do on that page
  2. What they can expect to get in return
  3. How fast it will happen
  4. The credibility of the offer.

In order to perceive these 4 things in seconds, you need to make sure that the content is both scan-able (the elements are clearly defined) and skim-able (readers can dip into content and get the idea without reading too much). You need to focus on a single desired outcome and message.

You need to communicate with:


  • Graphics
  • Images
  • Charts and Graphs
  • Headlines
  • Bulleted Lists
  • Testimonials
  • Video


Ask yourself what your visitor wants from your page or site. Then ask yourself what you want from those visitors. Now try to merge those two desires into an outcome that is a win for you and the visitor. This often results in a quid pro quo. Literally a trade off of what they want for what you want.

Find the Heart of the Dog

One of my favorite mentors, Roy Williams, likes to use the metaphor of appealing to the heart to the dog. This is in reference to the classical conditioning experiments of Ivan Pavlov.  Pavlov was able to train the dogs to salivate on cue because he used a meat paste during the training and dogs love meat. If he had used broccoli or carrot paste, the outcome would have been much different. Make sure you are offering something to your visitors that really gets them fired up. Generic, industry standard whitepapers are available at every website online. They will motivate no one. Take the time to create a document that has real value and get them entering their data and taking action. It needs to sound like something they can’t live without.

Ready – Shoot – Aim

Bring all of these elements together and then watch analytic for results. If you aren’t hitting 3-5% conversion to lead, then you are missing your mark. Change the offering, headline or graphics. Heck change everything, but not all at once.