There’s a whole lot of education out there on how to grow your email list. From freebie lead magnet ideas, to creating a welcome sequence, and engaging your list with consistent newsletters, but there’s one tiny thing that a lot of people forget to focus on: The Opt-In Page.
Aka Landing Page. Aka Email Sign Up Page. Whatever you call it is your prerogative, but no matter what you call it one thing is true:
It needs to convert.
I see you over there. Hand on forehead and utterly frustrated that even though you’ve designed the ultimate freebie download… your list just isn’t growing. You know you’ve created something valuable, but no one is signing up. Except your mom (Lord love her!). What gives?!
Chances are, your opt-in landing page may not be designed to convert.
Let’s fix it!
4 DESIGN SECRETS TO BOOST OPT-INS ON YOUR LANDING PAGE
01. AVOID DISTRACTION AT ALL COSTS
The biggest mistake I see on landing pages is link distraction. When it comes to a landing page, there is only one goal. To get your page visitor to enter their email and hit subscribe.
A landing page is not the time to link to your main website, show your swoon worthy Instagram feed, or link to any other spot on the internet. Put simply, there should be NO brand links on your opt-in landing page. Links to where you hang out elsewhere online distracts your landing page visitor from achieving the goal of subscribing.
If designing a pop-up isn’t in the cards, have the statement open in a new tab. That way you are protected, but the opt-in page is still opened in your viewers browser window!
02. UNDERSTAND WHY YOUR PEOPLE BUY
I know I know, opt-ins are free. So why should buying come into play?
Understanding why people buy directly correlates with why people opt-in. In both circumstances, your potential customers are exchanging something of theirs for your offering.
People are wary of handing over their email just like they wary of handing over their money. In the age of the digital boom, protecting our inboxes has become an everyday battle. If spending money is the highest commitment in the customer journey, giving your their email address comes just under that.
People buy (and opt-in) for two main reasons:
- To solve their problems (to move away from pain)
- To see the results they dream about (to move toward pleasure)
Your landing page needs to clearly convey WHY your potential subscriber should want to hand over their email address.
Is it a tool or resource that will help them overcome their biggest frustration as it relates to what you do? Bring to light their pain point and show them HOW your opt-in will help them get to the next step of solving it.
Is your opt-in something they want to fulfill a dreamy need? (Think discount to your shop – to buy something to move them towards pleasure! Or something like a pretty printable they can hang in their house.) Bring to light what they are missing and how your opt-in is just the ticket for fulfilling their wishes!
Either way, knowing WHY your potential subscriber wants to opt-in (and ultimately buy) matters in your landing page copy. At the end of the day, you have to connect the dots for your customer even if it feels like a DUH! Every landing page should at minimum convey:
- Who the opt-in is for. This can be done by pointing out a clear problem they have or dream they are looking toward or simply be a clear are you [ABC person]?
- How the opt-in is what they need to take the next step. Circle back to the reason why they buy by reminding them if you sign-up, I will help you do [XYZ – to help them move away from their problem or toward pleasure].
- A Clear Call to Action. Meaning tell them exactly what to do to. Is there an open form right there on the opt-in page? Point straight to it with an arrow or tell them to input their email and hit submit. Is there a button that will load a pop-up with the opt-in form? Tell them to hit the button and then fill out the form. This is a little reminder that by exchanging their email address, they will move one step closer in the right direction!
03. COLOR COUNTS
This is a tough one for a lot of people to swallow, but color matters when it comes to converting on a goal. All color is not created equally in the land of conversion.
If your brand is a beautiful blend of soft blush or pale blues or you get the point… you may need to switch things up for your landing page.
By now, you know that the main reason to even have a landing page is to get sign-ups. So the way you design your landing page should ultimately lead your potential subscriber to take action.
Color can help you here!
The first thing to know is that your call to action button (your opt-in submit button or the button to bring up your form) should be the brightest and boldest color on the page. It shouldn’t blend into the scene or match the elements around it. Your call to action button should clearly stand out.
If you are one of my all soft loving brand gals, this is a big-time to consider breaking the mold of your brand palette. Getting the opt-in so you can lead to the sale is more important than being perfectly on-brand at all times. I’m not saying you have to use a red button is your brand is all white and sand colors, but a bolder gray or complementary shade that clearly contrasts the rest of the page design will absolutely increase your conversions!
Speaking of red, warmer colors do tend to perform best. Think about a stop sign. It is big, bold, and…. Red. There is a reason they make stop signs red and street signs green. Red is literally a stop color. The human eye naturally stops at the shade of red forcing your brain to focus on the object at hand. If you don’t stop, you’ll crash and hurt other people. So stop signs are red! If you miss a turn because you didn’t see the green sign, you can just make a U-ie. No harm done. Maybe just a little late. 😉
Similarly yellow, a warm happy shade, is the most noticeable color in the entire spectrum to the human eye. We quickly and easily process the color yellow which makes it a great supporter of achieving an action.
If you are one of my bold color-loving gals (you and me both, girlfriend!), just make sure your opt-in button clearly stands out. I tend to use a lot of colors together, so I like to put my forms on an all-white background so that button really POPS!
Using warm shades for your opt-in buttons isn’t a hard and fast rule, but worth a shot to see if they perform better for your audience! If warm colors just aren’t in the cards for your brand palette, just make sure whatever color you go with for the opt-in call to action button is the boldest on the page.
Conversion Talk: The landing page example above was an opt-in incentive we did only for the month of January 2019. In that time frame, 8,432 people landed on the page and a whopping 5,194 people opted-in bringing our conversion rate to 62%. Unicorn status of lead page conversion rates comes in around 11%. (Just do some digging and you’ll see that 11-12% conversion rates for landing pages is considered top tier!) I used the same 4 secrets laid out in this very post to create this opt-in landing page and so can you!
04. DESIGN COUNTS, TOO.
Some people think that copy is the only winner when it comes to conversion and some think that design is everything. But I think that design and copy go together like peanut butter and jelly. Great design primes a visitor for the experience and decision and great copy closes the deal.
Clearly communicating WHY someone should opt-in and HOW your opt-in will move them closer to their desires is pivotal, but how you prime your potential subscriber through design and visuals matters if you want someone to actually read what you have to say.
Your imagery and visuals should work to emotionally support the impact your opt-in will have.
6 WAYS YOU CAN USE DESIGN & VISUALS TO INCREASE CONVERSIONS:
- Are you giving your potential subscriber something tangible when they opt-in like a PDF guide or stock photos? Show a little mockup of your opt-in incentive close to the sign-up form. This will visually clue your viewer in that they are getting something valuable they can tangibly experience!
- Are you giving your potential subscriber something that will help them overcome an objection like a discount code to use for their first purchase? Design the percentage off amount to really stand out in a big bold way!
- People connect with people. While stock photos of desktop accessories have a place, having an image of you is powerful on your opt-in page. Just like purchasing, people opt-in for email lists of brands and people they like, know, and trust. Seeing a friendly face immediately establishes that you are a real person they can connect with and relate to.
- Your web page imagery works a lot like body language. Body language is fascinating to me. It is crazy how the positioning of our bodies can point to how we are feeling about an interaction with another human being. When two people are sitting with crossed legs facing each other, it is a subtle sign of a welcoming interaction. You can use a similar technique right on your opt-in pages by choosing imagery that quite literally draws your potential subscribers eyes toward the call to action. Then your copy can get to work to close the deal!
- Keep what matters above the fold. In web design, the section of your website that is above the fold (aka the section of the site you see before you scroll) is prime real estate. With short attention spans and steep competition in the form of 81 open tabs, your opt-in page needs to get to the point right above the fold. And since opt-ing in is the main goal of the whole page, it is in your best interest to make sure that form is front and center for your potential subscriber to act on without ever having to scroll down the page. If you want to have more information about who you are, why you are providing the opt-in, and what they can expect if they sign up, put it below the fold and opt-in form.
- But come back to what matters below the fold. If you have more info on your opt-in page below the fold, make opt-ing in at the bottom of the scroll easy peasy. Instead of making your potential subscriber have to scroll all the way back to the form to take action, put another form at the bottom to make opting-in a breeze for friends who read every single word before saying yes!
With these 4 secrets mastered, you’ll be well on your way to a conversion savvy opt-in page!
To make sure your opt-in pages are converting and to figure out where you can make small tweaks, download your free guide: The Fast and Free Way to Figure Out if Your Website Converts
*This post was originally posted as a guest feature on Lauren Carnes’ blog!