The simple landing page, often maligned yet seemingly never truly understood. There are technically as many types of landing as there are reasons for their use. In an effort to clear up some of the mystery surrounding these powerful marketing tools, here’s a round-up of the top 9 varieties we see in use today. They’re ordered roughly from most to least common (at least in terms of effective use by digital marketers in our experience).
1) The Squeeze Page
A somewhat archaic term, the squeeze page is what most of you pictured when you read the headline of this article. This is a general use landing page where the reader is asked for a piece of information (generally an email address) in exchange for a piece of exclusive content (often an ebook or whitepaper).
The name “squeeze page” stems from the sense that the page visitor is being squeezed for information. Hence why we think the name is outdated. In current use, these pages are often called “gated content download” pages, or “contact form” pages, as the bottom line is for the company to collect contact information in exchange for a piece of content.
2) The Click-Through Page
A landing page that doesn’t ask for any information whatsoever. Generally used in social media campaigns, a click-through page will offer further information on the topic that drew the user to click in the first place. They will then see a CTA that is designed to drive them further into the sales funnel.
Click-through pages are great for expanding on the information provided in a Facebook post, for example. Once the reader clicks the post and is brought to your domain, this page entices them to want to dive even deeper into the subject by directing them to a download page, sales page, or contact us page (see below) to continue their journey.
3) Lead Capture Page
Similar to a squeeze page, but beefed up. Lead capture pages are used in similar ways to squeeze pages, with a twist. These pages will ask for more information from the visitor, and in exchange will offer a deeper dive into the content. Instead of a simple email address for ebook transfer, a lead capture page may request 8-12 fields worth of contact information in exchange for a one-on-one consultation or demonstration.
These are designed for use further down the sales funnel, when the visitor has moved beyond Awareness and is somewhere between Consideration and Purchase. The key to successful use of lead capture pages is knowing how much to ask for and how much to offer. For an ebook, don’t ask for more than a name and email. Whitepapers can command a bit more, say 4-8 fields (name, email, company name, role at company, etc). And demos or video calls can command a full bio of 8-12 fields including things like proposed budget and who has purchase power.
4) Unsubscribe Page
Nobody likes talking about them, but they’re absolutely critical. Having an easy to find “unsubscribe” link in all of your email communications can actually increase your open rate as people know how easy it will be to leave the list should they decide to in the future. And having that link go to a clean, unobtrusive unsubscribe page with minimal navigation to other parts of the site will show them that while you respect their decision to leave your list, you would also appreciate if they would stick around and read further content.
5) Sales Page
Also called “long-form content landing pages,” or "long-form landing pages," these are where your copywriting skills will be tested. These pages are content-rich, without being walls of text. They’re designed to move a potential customer from the Consideration stage cleanly into the purchase stage. As such, the CTAs will have changed from “download now” to “Buy Now” or “purchase here.” These are bottom of the funnel only pages, so they need to contain the most persuasive copy you’ve got.
6) 404 Error Page
Yes, technically these are landing pages. They’re landing pages that acknowledge the simple fact that stuff happens. Whether a page got moved and the link needs to be updated or the visitor mistyped/truncated a URL, these pages need to contain some specific information to keep that visitor from becoming disinterested. Stay in brand voice while you acknowledge that something clearly went sideways, then offer links to other relevant pages and reassure your audience that the problem will be addressed.
7) Coming Soon Page
There’s no rule that says companies who haven’t officially launched can’t have awesome websites. To link to these sites from social media and emails requires the creation of a “coming soon” page. Again, the key is to stay in brand voice so visitors can start to get used to your style while you get to let everyone know that your awesome widget drops soon. Offer your value proposition and a CTA for early access or some other equally exclusive offer to entice visitors to convert on the spot. Remember, exclusivity sells.
8)About Us Page
More than just your regular site page of the same name, these landing pages are fantastic for general brand awareness campaigns and for social media posts that aren’t tied to a specific product or service. These pages give you someplace in-domain to send people to where they can start learning more about your company and/or products, and can include CTAs for email subscriptions, ebooks, or for “more information.”
9) Pillar Pages/Content Clusters
These are a bonus of sorts since they serve more than just landing page duty. The pillar page is a content-rich page that offers a deeper dive into a subject that you’ve written about on the blog or have been posting about on social media. It’s a page to link back to from these posts, and provides a convenient page to link to from each post as well. They can also include multiple CTAs for ebooks, whitepapers, video lessons, and more.
This creates what Google is calling “Topic Clusters,” or “Content Clusters,” which increase your site’s authority with the search engine. So the double duty a pillar page can serve is as an SEO gold mine. Google’s algorithm gives a fair bit of pull to sites deemed authoritative, so creating a topic cluster around your niche or industry can create quite a bit of organic pull for your site.