Live from Pubcon Vegas: The Best Tactics in Landing Page Optimization

By Janet Driscoll Miller | Nov 10, 2009
More Articles by Janet

This was just frankly an all-star panel of great speakers with great points. There were so many good, unique points about landing page testing and optimization, I could barely keep up! Good info and great tools from everyone.

Kate Morris

Kate Morris from Demon Marketing started by going over the basics of landing page optimization.

Some key basic things to keep in mind on landing pages:

  • visitor intent
  • relevant content
  • include a call to action
  • include navigation (debatable)

It is vitally important to have a call to action above the fold and to keep your forms short!

Relevant content will include the searcher’s intent and include the keyword that the user searched for in the page copy and headline.

Kate also encouraged everyone to utilize white space — it’s not your enemy! Don’t fill in every open area per se.

Some key points from Kate:

  • Conversion rate is a key metric to benchmark campaigns and pages against one another.
  • Track your entire sales cycle if possible.
  • Cost per conversion tells you if you can afford the marketing.
  • Bounce rate is often relative to the product — if you have over 70% is awful. 30-50% isn’t bad.
  • Check out eye/click tracking (available in Google Analytics)

Brad Geddes

Brad Geddes of BGTheory was up next and covered “Where should you send your traffic?”. Brad said that when visitors first come to your site, they’re asking themselves, did I get the right place? Brad said that even though you may think it’s best to land the person far down the buying cycle path, that may not be the best case, so TEST.

RESPECT THE BUYING FUNNEL! If you don’t, you’ll have a higher bounce rate. Brad gave the example of “kitchen remodeling”. Ideally, you may want to land the visitor on an about us type page to give trust, since many kitchen contractors might have a trust issue. An about us page might share how long the contractor has been in business, client samples, etc.

For brand searches, Brad recommended that you send folks to a “new products” page so that you can highlight what’s new. On a thank you page, too, don’t send them away! Give them more valuable links on the page to continue their engagement with you.

Brad made an EXCELLENT point about post-click marketing. Look at what keywords drive visitors to your homepage and make sure your homepage incorporates that information! (You’d be surprised how many homepages don’t do this!!)

Joanna Lord

Joanna Lord of was up next and covered “Advanced Landing Page Tactics”. Joanna said that 50% of B2B companies still land visitors from PPC on their home page, AND, only 25% are doing A/B testing. What needs to be done?

Landing page testing is a way to MAKE MORE MONEY by SPENDING LESS! There are two sides of advanced landing page tactics: in-house vs. on-site tactics.


Streamlilne EVERY process possible:

  • Build out landing page templates
  • Use a CMS
  • Auto-expire pages and redirect when finished (like with a holiday promotion)
  • Preview a Q&A system
  • Data collection
  • Auto-remove bad performers

On-Site Tactics

  • Anticipate user flows
    • dual option button (pre-page them)
    • multiple page pathway (conversion path)
    • Present the same info 2 ways (ex: visual vs. text)
  • Going BEYOND the conversion
    • branding/post-conversion focus
    • viral/social media add-ons (ex: Tweet this, become a fan, share this)
    • Interaction/time on site
  • Really push your testing
    • multivariate testing (test many variables)
    • Macro-summary of data
    • multiple toolsets and integration

Some tools to do testing other than Google Website Optimizer:

  • Omniture
  • Sitespect
  • Widerfunnel
  • Widemile

Tim Ash

Finally Tim Ash of SiteTuners spoke next with a presentation entitled “Conversion Ninja’s Toolbox”. He started with great tools you can use:


CrazyEgg measures in-page web analytics. Some key features include:

  • mouse heatmaps
  • click confetti
  • link click overlay
  • live data gathering
  • excellent graphical reports

You can see:

  • if people are clicking on non-clickable images
  • see if click patterns change based on traffic sources (like Google v. Bing)

The pricing has a 30-day money back guarantee and ….


Clicktale measures in-page web analytics and user monitoring. Some ways to use it:

  • how far do people scroll
  • do they reach the bottom of the page
  • what form field are left blank
  • which form fields cause delay/confusion

It also provides a conversion report in a funnel format… very granular, helpful data. They also show reports for average time it takes to fill out form fields. Which fields are often left blank? is for online usability testing. Some key features include:

  • online test setup and specify task to perform
  • pre-screened subjects
  • very quick results (get feedback within one hour)
  • get audio/video recording and text transcript

It only costs $29!! You can use it for:

  • observe actual problems that uninterested  visitors have with your landing page


CrossBrowerTesting allows for cross-browser testing across multiple OS’s. Helps you find usability issues quickly.

SiteTuners just launched which is a simulated  visual attention tool, using a heatmap of where people likely will look on a landing page.

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