How Landing Pages Impact SEO Strategy
- Your whole site’s performance can be negatively impacted if landing pages aren’t designed with SEO best practices in mind.
- Meanwhile, landing pages are much more effective if they’re created with SEO techniques.
- You’ll need to prioritise user experience and SEO to get the best results.
Landing pages and SEO: the disconnection so far
Despite their apparent differences, SEO and landing pages are more connected than most marketers realise. Unfortunately, this relationship is often overlooked, leading to missed opportunities for optimal digital performance.
Traditionally, SEO strategies focus on crafting high-quality content, acquiring authoritative backlinks, and optimising the website’s backend infrastructure. These elements, no doubt, are foundational. However, when landing pages are left out, we miss out on an exciting opportunity.
Landing pages, by design, are intended to capture a visitor’s attention and drive a specific action. If they are not optimised for search engines, you miss out on a vast amount of organic traffic that could be directed to these critical conversion points.
Moreover, an inefficiently designed landing page can serve as a bottleneck. Even if other parts of the site excel in SEO, a poor landing page can deter visitors, increase bounce rates, and ultimately, hurt the site’s ranking on search engine results pages (SERPs).
Meanwhile, when we talk about creating effective landing pages, the conversation often revolves around persuasive CTAs, compelling headlines, and showcasing social proof. Though these are essential components, SEO should be included in these discussions too.
Integrating SEO best practices into landing page designs means the page is not just designed for conversions but also for discoverability. When a landing page is optimised for search engines, it stands a better chance of being found by potential customers. And when they find it, the persuasive elements of the page can then guide them towards taking the desired action.
Given this disconnection between landing pages and SEO, there’s a pressing need to unite these two strategies. This would not only increase visibility on search engines but also boost conversion rates once users land on the pages in question.
This article will explain exactly how landing pages are impacted by SEO and give you some top tips for optimising them. Let’s dive in:
What are landing pages?
When potential customers click on a marketing campaign link, it typically takes them to a landing page.
Landing pages serve as the bait at the end of a fishing rod. They may be designed to capture attention, collect email addresses, provide information, attract website traffic, promote products, or secure sales.
Landing pages have a single purpose, and that’s how they differ from regular web pages. Visitors may “land” on them after clicking on an email, advert, or search engine result.
Though landing pages can massively vary in appearance and purpose, they can be broadly organised into two categories: those that aim to convert and those that aim to inform. Here’s one way you could understand these two types:
Sales landing page
A sales landing page will be promoting a service or product explicitly. The whole page’s content will be focused on the purpose of conversion, and therefore may feel more “salesy”. This type of landing page may also be known as a lead-generation page or a click-through landing page.
SEO landing page
When businesses begin to think about SEO, the range of pages that could be considered “landing pages” broadens. In this category, landing pages are designed to deliver information to the visitor (e.g., perhaps about a product, industry, or anything the user may search for) and generate website traffic. These landing pages may be blog posts, event pages, or product pages, among others.
How do landing pages affect SEO?
There are several ways that landing pages can impact the SEO performance of your website or web page. So, it’s worth checking out each of them if you want to improve your performance.
Firstly, think about user engagement metrics:
Search engines monitor how users interact with a page. High bounce rates, short visiting times, and low click-through rates can indicate poor relevance or user experience, which leads to lower rankings.
Effective landing pages that engage users and encourage them to spend time on the page can improve these metrics and positively impact SEO.
Next, think about search query relevance:
A well-optimised landing page with clear and relevant content can help the page rank for targeted search queries. This relevance is gauged by search engines analysing the page’s content, keyword usage, meta tags, and more.
Don’t forget about page loading speed:
Landing pages that are heavy, poorly coded, or filled with large media can load slowly. Search engines factor in page load speed as a ranking signal because it directly affects user experience.
With that in mind, consider mobile optimisation:
Since mobile phones are so widely used for internet browsing, search engines prioritise mobile-friendly pages. Landing pages that are not optimised for mobile devices can suffer in mobile search rankings because they’ve not been created with UX in mind.
Next, consider the quality of your backlinks:
If a landing page is high quality and offers valuable information, it is more likely to earn backlinks from other reputable websites. These backlinks can significantly boost the SEO strength of the page. You may need to use outreach techniques to encourage these.
Plus, internal linking is crucial:
Effective internal linking from a landing page can distribute page authority across multiple pages, helping your whole site to rank well. It also helps search engines understand the site’s structure and relationships between different site content.
If your site has duplicate content:
If multiple landing pages have substantially similar content, search engines may consider them duplicates, which can dilute the page’s SEO value and potentially lead to ranking penalties. Be wary of this when creating new content and be sure to double check this isn’t your culprit.
Search engines like fresh content:
Regularly updated landing pages are seen as more relevant by search engines, especially for search queries where timeliness is critical. So, when thinking about boosting the SEO performance of your landing pages, be sure that you’ve ruled this out.
SEO is crucial to landing pages
Evidently, if your landing page performance has a leak, it could be caused by a range of culprits. In addition, the best-performing landing pages are often designed with both user experience and SEO principles in mind.
So, though you may think the most important parts of landing pages are their ability to convert, their headlines, and their CTAs, there are actually several crucial things to consider.
How to optimise landing pages for SEO
Clearly, there are multiple elements that contribute to landing page success – and that’s on top of the essential CTAs, headlines, lead capture forms, and value proposition.
Once you’re happy with your landing pages, it’s time to optimise them for SEO. We’ve simplified this next step into 7 categories:
1. User experience (UX)
Optimising user experience (UX) is pivotal for the success of landing pages in SEO. A well-designed, user-friendly page ensures visitors can navigate through content seamlessly, enhancing their overall experience and satisfaction.
Focus on a clean design with intuitive navigation, ensuring that information is easy to find and understand. Page load speed is also a critical aspect of UX; faster-loading pages keep users engaged, reducing bounce rates.
Moreover, ensure that your landing pages are mobile-responsive, as a significant portion of users access websites via mobile devices. A positive UX not only keeps visitors engaged but also signals search engines about the page’s quality, contributing to higher rankings.
2. Technical SEO
Technical SEO encompasses the backend optimisation that enhances a landing page’s visibility and performance in search engine rankings.
Key aspects include optimising meta tags such as title tags and meta descriptions for targeted keywords, ensuring URLs are structured cleanly and logically, and utilising schema markup to provide search engines with detailed information about the page’s content. Additionally, ensuring that your landing page loads quickly and is mobile-responsive is crucial.
Implementing proper internal linking strategies also boosts the page’s SEO, helping search engines navigate and understand the content better. Prioritising these technical elements ensures a solid foundation for landing pages, enhancing their overall SEO effectiveness.
Effective keyword strategy is central to optimising landing pages for SEO. Begin by conducting thorough keyword research to identify terms and phrases that your target audience uses to find products or information related to your offerings.
Focus on keywords that align with the user intent and the content of your landing page. Incorporate these keywords naturally within your content, titles, headings, and meta descriptions.
Long-tail keywords, which are more specific phrases, can also be leveraged to attract a more targeted audience. Avoid keyword stuffing; instead, aim for a balanced and natural integration of keywords to enhance relevance and visibility in search results.
The content you create to fill your landing page is perhaps the most powerful indicator of success, although the nature and purpose of content can vary significantly between sales and SEO landing pages.
On sales landing pages, content is designed to persuade and convert. It emphasises benefits, features, testimonials, and compelling calls to action. This content is succinct, targeted, and intended to encourage a specific user behaviour, like making a purchase or signing up.
In contrast, SEO landing pages, often seen in blog posts or informational sites, prioritise depth, relevance, and informativeness. Here, the content is rich, addresses user queries, and is peppered with researched keywords.
Effective CTAs are essential for guiding users towards desired actions on a landing page. For SEO landing pages, striking the right balance is crucial.
Google may perceive pages with an excessive number of CTAs as spam, potentially impacting their search rankings. Instead of overwhelming visitors with multiple CTA elements, the focus should be on presenting a singular, clear call to action that aligns with the page’s primary objective. This ensures that the page offers genuine value to its visitors.
For sales-oriented pages, the CTAs should be compelling, urging the visitor to make a purchase or take another conversion-driven action. In all cases, the clarity and relevance of the CTAs enhance user engagement and SEO performance. CTAs are bolstered further by their design and a full guide to CTAs can be read here.
6. Linking strategy
A robust linking strategy significantly enhances the SEO strength of landing pages. The two components of this strategy are internal and external linking.
Internal links connect various pages within your website, guiding users to related content and improving site navigation. They also distribute page authority and ranking power throughout the site.
External links, on the other hand, link different websites to each other. While links to your website certainly vouch for the credibility of your content, you’ll need to be sure that they are relevant and come from reputable sites.
Remember, both types of links should add value to the user experience and not appear forced or artificial, as search engines prioritise genuine, user-focused content in their rankings.
7. Maintaining and measuring
Regular evaluation and adjustment are fundamental to the sustained SEO success of landing pages. Employ analytics tools like Google Analytics to track vital metrics such as organic traffic, bounce rate, and conversion rates. These insights will help determine which strategies are effective and which areas need refining.
Additionally, keep an eye on keyword rankings to ensure your content remains visible for targeted search terms. As search engine algorithms and user behaviours evolve, it’s crucial to update content, refresh outdated information, and refine SEO strategies accordingly.
Continual learning from performance data, staying updated with SEO best practices, and making timely adjustments ensure that your landing pages not only achieve success but also maintain it in the long run.
Common landing page mistakes
Now that you know what you need to do, you might have begun brainstorming your new strategy. But before you get started, be aware of the following landing page mistakes:
- Lack of clear focus – If you try to achieve too many goals with a single page, visitors will likely get confused. Unfortunately, this means reduced conversions. Make sure you know what you’re setting out to achieve before you begin.
- Inconsistent branding – Failing to maintain brand consistency (colours, fonts, and messaging) can diminish trust and recognition. Plus, let’s be honest, it doesn’t look as good.
- Overloading with text – Using dense blocks of text without visual breaks is all too common on the web. Unfortunately, this makes content much harder to digest and it leads to increased bounce rates.
- Neglecting social proof – Failing to include testimonials, reviews, or other forms of social validation is a rookie error. Including these can seriously boost trust and conversions, so don’t neglect this addition to your page.
- Using generic stock images – Using generic or irrelevant stock photos can massively reduce the authenticity and relatability of a web page. Don’t make the mistake of thinking people won’t notice – because they really do. If you can’t take your own photos, consider creating your own unique designs with a tool like Canva.
- Skipping A/B testing – Not testing different variations of landing pages can lead to untold losses. Until you find out which elements resonate most with your target market, you can’t be 100% confident in your landing page. Conduct testing to secure conversions and connect with your audience.
If this list has made you rethink all your past strategies, don’t worry. These mistakes are super common, and they can be easily rectified with a bit of focus and strategy.
Connecting your new strategy
If we’ve convinced you of the crucial link between landing pages and SEO, you’ll probably be revising your old strategy. Here at purpleplanet, we offer a range of services to help businesses achieve their digital goals. Whether it’s marketing, web design, web development, or SEO, among others, our expert team can help you with your new goals.