Tag Archives: landing

How to Turn a Long Landing Page Into a Microsite – In 5 Easy Steps

Landing pages can get really long, which is totally fine, especially if you use a sticky anchor navigation to scroll people up and down to different page sections. It’s a great conversion experience and should be embraced.

However, there are times when having a small multi-page site, known as a microsite (or mini-site) can offer significant advantages.

This is not a conversation about your website (which is purely for organic traffic), I’m still talking about creating dedicated marketing-campaign-specific experiences. That’s what landing pages were designed for, and a microsite is very similar. It’s like a landing page in that it’s a standalone, controlled experience, but with a different architecture.

The sketch below shows the difference between a landing page and a microsite.

The landing page is a single page with six sections. The microsite has a homepage and 5 or 6 child pages, each with a persistent global navigation to conect the pages.

They are both “landing experiences”, just architected differently. I’ve noticed that many higher education landing experiences are four-page microsites. The pharmaceutical industry tends to create microsites for every new product campaign – especially those driven by TV ads.

What are the benefits of a microsite over a long landing page?

To reiterate, for most marketing campaign use cases, a single landing page – long or short – is your absolute best option. But there are some scenarios where you can really benefit from a microsite.

Some of the benefits of a microsite include:

  1. It allows more pages to be indexed by Google
  2. You can craft a controlled experience on each page (vs. a section where people can move up and down to other sections)
  3. You can add a lot more content to a certain page, without making your landing page a giant.
  4. You can get more advanced with your analytics research as there are many different click-pathways within a microsite that aren’t possible to track or design for on a single page.
  5. The technique I’m going to show you takes an Unbounce landing page, turns it into a 5-page microsite.

How to Create a Microsite from a Long Landing Page

The connective tissue of a microsite is the navigation. It links the pages together and defines the available options for a visitor. I’ll be using an Unbounce Sticky Bar as the shared global navigation to connect five Unbounce landing pages that we’ll create from the single long landing page. It’s really easy.

First, Choose a Landing Page to Work With

I’ve created a dummy landing page to work with. You can see from the zoomed-out thumbnail on the right-hand side how long it is: 10 page-sections long to be specific. (Click the image to view the whole page in a scrolling lightbox.)

The five-step process is then as follows:

I’ll explain it in more detail with screenshots and a quick video.

  1. Create the microsite pages, by duplicate your landing page 5 times
  2. Delete the page sections you don’t want on each microsite page
  3. Create a Sticky Bar and add five navigation buttons
  4. Set the URL targeting of the Sticky Bar to appear on the microsite pages
  5. Add the Unbounce global script to your site
  6. Click “Publish” << hardly a step.

Step 1: Create Your Microsite Pages

Choose “Duplicate Page” from the cog menu on your original landing page to create a new page (5 times). Then name each page and set the URL of each accordingly. In the screenshot below you can see I have the original landing page, and five microsite pages Home|About|Features|FAQ|Sign Up.

Step 2: Delete Page Sections on Each Microsite Page

Open each page in the Unbounce builder and click the background of any page section you don’t want and hit delete. It’s really quick. Do this for each page until they only have the content you want to be left in them. Watch the 30 sec video below to see how.

Pro Tip: Copy/Paste Between Pages

There is another way to do it. Instead of deleting sections, you can start with blank pages for the microsite, and copy/paste the sections you want from the landing page into the blank pages. This is one of the least-known and most powerful features of Unbounce.

The best way is to have a few browser tabs open at once (like one for each page), then just copy and paste between browser tabs. It’s epic! Watch…

Step 3: Create the Navigation With a Sticky Bar

Create a new Sticky Bar in Unbounce (it’s the same builder for landing pages and popups). Add buttons or links for each of your microsite pages, and set the “Target” of the link to be “Parent Frame” as shown in the lower-right of this screenshot.

Step 4: Set URL Targeting

This is where the connective tissue of the shared Sticky Bar comes together. On the Sticky Bar dashboard, you can enter any URLs on your domain that you want the bar to appear on. You can enter them one-by-one if you like, or to make it much faster, just use the same naming convention (unique to this microsite/campaign) on each of the microsite page URLS.

I used these URLs for my pages:

unbounce.com/pam-micro-home/
unbounce.com/pam-micro-about/
unbounce.com/pam-micro-features/
unbounce.com/pam-micro-faq/
unbounce.com/pam-micro-signup/

For the URL Targeting, I simply set one rule, that URLs need to contain “pmm-micro”.
For the Trigger, I selected “When a visitor arrives on the page.”
for the frequency, I selected “Show on every visit.” because the nav needs to be there always.

Step 5: Add the Unbounce Script

We have a one-line Javascript that needs to be added to your website to make the Sticky Bars work. If you use Google Tag Manager on your site, then it’s super easy, just give the code snippet to your dev to paste into GTM.

Note: As this microsite solution was 100% within Unbounce (Landing Pages and Sticky Bar), you don’t actually have to add the script to your website, you can just add it to the each of the landing pages individually. But it’s best to get it set up on your website, which will show it on your Unbounce landing pages on that domain, by default.

Click Publish on #AllTheThings!

And that’s that!


You can see the final microsite here.
(Desktop only right now I’m afraid. I’ll set up mobile responsive soon but it’s 2am and this blogging schedule is killing me :D).


I’ve also written a little script that uses cookies to change the visual state of each navigation button to show which pages you’ve visited. I’ll be sharing that in the future for another concept to illustrate how you can craft a progress bar style navigation flow to direct people where you want them to go next!

A Few Wee Caveats

  • This use of a Sticky Bar isn’t a native feature of Unbounce at this point, it’s just a cool thing you can do. As such, it’s not technically supported, although our community loves this type of thing.
  • As it’s using a shared Sticky Bar for the nav, you’ll see it re-appear on each new page load. Not perfect, but it’s not a big deal and the tradeoff is worth it if the other benefits mentioned earlier work for you.
  • The close button on the Sticky Bar needs to be hidden (I need to bug a developer for some help and will add it back in here).

Aall in all, this type of MacGyvering is great for generating new ways of thinking about your marketing experiences, and how you can guide people to a conversion.

I’ve found that thinking about a microsite from a conversion standpoint is a fantastic mental exercise.

Have fun making a microsite, and never stop experimenting – and MacGyvering!
Cheers
Oli

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How to Turn a Long Landing Page Into a Microsite – In 5 Easy Steps

10 Steps That Will Map Your Way To Inbound Success With HubSpot Marketing

HubSpot needs no introduction. It provides marketers a hassle-free interface to reach out to their audience and nurture them through various stages of the conversion funnel. Their “inbound marketing theory” is a systematic arrangement of several digital marketing channels, including social media, email marketing, and landing pages, brought together in one user interface that allows you to target your prospects with tailored messages which prompt them to consider your offerings and make purchasing (or other conversion) decisions while moving through your funnel. For inbound marketing, HubSpot is a practical solution for marketing automation. It has only grown in depth to…

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10 Steps That Will Map Your Way To Inbound Success With HubSpot Marketing

The Crazy Egg Guide to Landing Page Optimization

When it comes to increasing conversion rates, few strategies are more effective than the implementation of landing pages. Yet, these crucial linchpins to the optimization process are often rushed or overlooked completely in the grand scheme of marketing. Here at Crazy Egg, we believe it’s past time to give these hard-working pages a little more attention, which is why we’ve created this complete guide to landing page optimization. Even if you consider yourself a landing page pro, you’ll want to read this guide to make sure your pages are on track and converting as well as they should be. Why…

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The Crazy Egg Guide to Landing Page Optimization

Are You Forgetting To Optimize For Awareness & Intent When Designing Landing Pages?

awareness-and-intent

The best color for your CTAs. What hero images work best. How to tweak your headlines. Writing conversion focused copy. All of these are the bread and butter of writers like me. We know these articles are going to grab attention because, well, people are always looking for an easy fix. Marketers the world over dream of changing their button color and seeing a 200% increase in conversions. They fantasies about using a headline template that’ll skyrocket their income, and honestly believe that a better hero image could save a failing business. And so we create content that plays to…

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Are You Forgetting To Optimize For Awareness & Intent When Designing Landing Pages?

Glossary: Bounce Rate

what is bounce rate

The bounce rate is the percentage of people, who landed on your website, but instead of browsing further they exited your website. This metric can be important to certain websites as it gives you an idea about the first impression of your site. It tells you if your landing page meets the expectation of the visitors who landed there. If your Bounce Rate is high, you can suspect that something is wrong either with your landing page or your sources of traffic. You can calculate the bounce rate with this formula: A concrete example Let’s say, that you have a…

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Glossary: Bounce Rate

How to Make Local Mobile Landing Pages That Convert

The second you step away from your desk, or leave your home or office – what do you do when you need to find something to eat, purchase or get directions to? You pull out your phone and do a search. Unfortunately, local businesses aren’t making the best use of digital marketing. In fact, as many as 60% of small businesses don’t even have a website at all. Local businesses don’t see it as a priority. And even when they do have solid websites, in too many cases, mobile is an afterthought, and the landing pages are weak or absent….

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How to Make Local Mobile Landing Pages That Convert

Next Level Landing Page Optimization: Before and After the Conversion

We spend a lot of time on this blog waxing poetic about the importance of optimizing your landing pages.

But landing pages are only one element of a stellar, high-converting marketing campaign. And focusing all of your attention on optimizing only one element is just foolish.

‘Cause — pardon the cliché — but a chain is only as strong as its weakest link.

giphy
Image via Giphy.

If you’ve optimized your landing pages and you’re still not getting the results you wished for, maybe there are broken links elsewhere in your conversion chain — like before and after the landing page?

Not sure? We created a 24-page guide for Unbounce customers to help them maximize the value of their landing pages, but we like you too and figured you might find it useful — regardless of whether you use Unbounce to build your landing pages or not.

The guide will help you optimize every step of your prospect’s conversion journey:

  • Before the landing page: Are you doing enough to send healthy doses of traffic to your landing pages? Are there distribution channels you’re missing? How can you use each most effectively?
  • On the landing page: Are you making the most of that sweet traffic by constantly optimizing every element of your landing page for more conversions?
  • After the landing page: After people convert on your optimized page, are you making their next step crystal clear? Are you missing additional conversion and nurturing opportunities on your thank you page?

Are you optimizing your entire conversion funnel?

Download this 24-page whitepaper and learn how to better optimize your entire conversion funnel — both before and after your landing page.
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Next Level Landing Page Optimization: Before and After the Conversion

How to Optimize Pay-Per-Click Landing Pages

If you’re running a pay-per-click (PPC) traffic campaign, there’s a big chance that you’re sending that traffic to a landing page. Though when using PPC traffic, you can’t just throw up a landing page and expect everything to work out for the best. Rather, you need to ensure that you’re optimizing your landing page for conversions. If you don’t do this, your landing page will never reach its highest potential. In this post, we’re going to cover how you can optimize a PPC landing page. We’ll take a look at the different elements that you need to focus on and…

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How to Optimize Pay-Per-Click Landing Pages

How To Increase Your Landing Page Conversions by Asking a Question

It’s believed that it takes users (who have no idea of what your site does) exactly three seconds to orient themselves and make up their minds as to what they should do next. This is called the “three-second” or the “blink” test and passing it is crucial for your landing page success. Asking a good question on the landing page is a great way to orient a user and steer them into taking the desirable action: Questions may prompt users to stop and think. In our era of information overload when people click links, close tabs and move on in…

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How To Increase Your Landing Page Conversions by Asking a Question

The Big Fat Guide to Content Upgrades

You know how to grow a list, right? I mean, it’s a topic that’s been covered more times than I’d care to count. Well timed pop-ups, landing page best practices and appealing lead magnets have been the talk of the marketing town for years now. And sure, they’re all great methods proven to help you grow a sizable, quality list. But there’s a problem. These methods are often ineffectual without large amounts of targeted traffic. Landing pages need to be ranking well on Google or have large amounts of targeted referrals. And popups, well, they’re often generic and quite disjointed…

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The Big Fat Guide to Content Upgrades