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If Category pages are designed to be a type of organic search attractor full of keyword rich content then landing pages are the equivalent for page search results. Landing pages are created for targeted campaigns either from print or online. So they have a singular focus and a strong call to action. Here we have an ad for Mother's Day flowers on a Google search results page. If someone clicks through on it, they see this landing page on our florist's site. This landing page is very similar to regular Category page, but the information it contains is all about getting visitors to buy flowers for Mother's Day from this site.
Visitors are unlikely to commit to a big action after just one page. So the landing page should summarize the information that people can use to make a decision linking off to more detail from the page. You don't know what level of detail people will need for each point you make on the landing page. Some will be happy with just the summary. Others will need to drill deeper depending upon their prior knowledge and how much research they've already done on other sites. See how similar this concept is to a regular Category page. The only difference is that all the information on this page is aimed at getting visitors to check out the focused content that's related to the ad campaign and to the call to action.
You also need to make sure the pages you link to from your landing page contain the same call to action as your landing page. That way even if someone clicks through for more detail they will still be reminded of your targeted offer. You may have heard of the concept of a promotional funnel where you draw visitors to one place and focus them on the purchase process. Well, that's all very well, but people won't buy until they've learned enough about the product. Because your landing page could be the first they've ever seen of your offerings it's unlikely they will go straight ahead and order at this point.
You need to give them the additional information to browse so they feel comfortable doing business with you. Landing pages also let you track the efficacy of your campaigns. You set up a different page for each campaign. This is important, because each campaign will also have a different message. So it needs different content. By seeing which ads drive the most traffic and which landing pages produce the most conversions you can begin to work out what designs and wording work the best for your customers. Consider these two adverts that the florist ran to promote Mother's Day flowers.
The advert on the left drew more people to decide than one on the right. However, the landing page on the right had a high conversion percentage than the one on the left. That suggests the florist would do even better next Mother's Day by using an advert like the one on the left leading to a landing page with a design like the one on the right. So, landing pages are a type of Category page that have a specific focus and a call to action around a particular product or promotion. The page will have a similar level of summary content to other category pages so expect visitors to want to click on to subpages before they're ready to make their decision.
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