When a user clicks one of your PPC ads you have to pay for the privilege. So unless they go on to buy your product (or complete some other goal your campaign might have) you’ve not only lost a potential lead, but also wasted some of your PPC budget.

Assuming your ads are set up to drive the right kind of traffic to your site, then you have to look at your landing pages and ask what’s going wrong. Which brings us into the realm of landing page optimisation – the art of fine-tuning the first page users see to increase conversions and PPC profit.

Start with a dedicated landing page

The first point we should make is that you really want to dedicate landing pages to each campaign. Around 80% of paid search traffic gets sent to a homepage (most commonly), a signup page, shopping cart page or a product page. Simple maths tells us just 20% are sent to a specific page, optimised for that campaign – which is incredible.

A dedicated landing page means you can optimise everything for each campaign to get the best results. Your homepage isn’t designed for this and if you start optimising it for PPC you’ll compromise it’s original purpose – to be a homepage.

Landing page best practices

Of course, not all landing pages are the same and it takes a killer introduction to your brand to generate the kind of quality leads your looking for.

Make it relevant

A user clicks on your ad for a reason, so make sure your landing page gives them exactly what they are looking for. You should know what this is, because you’ve been optimising your ads to offer precisely that!

Make it compelling

Above all you have to make sure your landing page is compelling enough so visitors forget all about the results page they just left. They’ve come to the right place and every word in your copy, every visual on your page and even the layout tells them they don’t need to go anywhere else.

Sell your USP

Aside from confirming to visitors they’ve arrived at the right destination you also need to get your USP across in an instant. It doesn’t cost them anything to hit back and try another result – so make it’s clear why you’re the brand for them.

Earn their trust

At the same time you need to earn your visitors trust – along with all of the above – in a matter of seconds. Whether you use testimonials, well-known previous clients or reviews, the point is users need to know their money is well spent with you.

Perfect your CTAs

It all comes down to this moment, when a user sees your call to action. Either they take your lead and all your hard work pays off, or you risk losing a potential customer and the money you paid for their click. So it goes without saying you want to perfect your CTAs and test all the way.

Keep it simple

One of your biggest challenges will be pulling off all of the above and squeezing it into a single page. But you have to keep things simple and easy to digest for a visitor, because information overload will kill your conversion rate.

Test, measure and repeat

Follow the advice in this article and you’ll be off to a good start with using landing pages to improve your PPC performance. Sadly, this won’t get you all the way though and you’ll need to conduct some good old A/B tests to fine-tune your landing pages for better success.

You’ll want to measure traffic metrics and experiment with headings, page content, CTAs and just about everything on your landing pages. The more you test and optimise, the better your conversion rate should get and the more profitable your PPC efforts will become.