Designing Landing Pages That Work

Designing Landing Pages That Work

Having knowledge on how to create an effective landing page can increase the number of site visitors that take the desired action of the web page. Lets discuss factors and considerations that can lead to a better landing page design.

What is a Landing Page?

Before we begin our discussion, it’s worth quickly defining what a landing page is.

Three popular reasons for creating a landing page are:

Guidelines to an Effective Landing Page Design

Let’s talk about important components and factors of a good landing page design.

Call to Action

A call to action clearly asks and compels the user to take a specific, desired action. An example of a call to action is "Subscribe to our mailing list". Oftentimes the call to action requires the user to click on a web page element (such as a hyperlink or a button) or to fill out a web form.


The landing page of Square is a perfect example of a good call to action. (The call to action is to sign up for a Square account.) They clearly state that they would like you to sign up and, as a reward, they will give you a free Square Card Reader.


An effective landing page has to have a power headline. The headline sends the main message of what to expect in the landing page and it lets the visitor know that they’re in the right place.

Headlines have only one task: to entice the site visitor to stay on the landing page. That’s the main goal to have in mind.

When crafting your headline, ask yourself: Is this headline interesting enough and does it make the visitor want to keep reading?


The Shopify landing page displays a good headline. The copy is short and gives the reader a quick overview of what the service is. It’s designed using a big font and is placed in a prominent location so that it quickly grabs the user’s attention. The use of the key phrase "online store" in the headline may help in Shopify’s SEO efforts.


Landing pages should be simple. If the landing page is too complex, the site visitor might be discouraged to remain on the page. The more complex landing pages are, the smaller the chance users will go through with the desired action. The message needs to be clear and only the essential stuff should be included.


The Dropbox landing page is very simple. It has a logo, a video and a call to action button. The primary call to action is to download the software. The secondary call to action, "Watch a video", supports the primary call to action by showing you some information on why you would want to download and use Dropbox.

Eye Flow

To make sure that the visitor encounters all the landing page elements that will help them make a decision to take your desired call to action, the eye flow should be well-thought-out.

Good eye flow makes the consumption of the information being shared in the page quicker for the site visitor and ensures that they end up seeing your desired call-to-action.


The Let’s Do This! website, which asks site visitors to donate to the Susan G. Komen for the Cure organization, presents a good example of how to direct users towards your call to action. The web page is laid out logically so that you can see the primary call to action right away. Using arrows points your eyes to the call to the "Donate" button. The button and the surrounding arrows have high-contrast colors compared to the dark gray background, making sure it stands out.


Every visitor comes to your landing page from a specific source. The landing page has to be relevant to that source. For example, if your ad says that by clicking on it, the user can buy iPads for half the price, then your landing page better be selling iPads for half the price. Relevance is key.


Reduce the Risk for Taking Action

Internet users don’t like taking risk, that’s obvious. We are often concerned about security, privacy and of being scammed.


Squarespace displays good examples of reducing the risk to signing up and using their web service. By clearly telling users that no credit card is required, that the signup process only takes 30 seconds, and that there isn’t any permanent commitment, they have successfully addressed concerns related to cost, time and security.


One way of designing landing pages that work is by creating a sense of scarcity. If the user feels that the product might run out of stock or that the discounted price might end soon, they may be compelled not to procrastinate and take action now.


On Mighty Deals, they display a countdown of how long until a deal expires. This may prompt site visitors to buy a deal immediately.

Trust Elements

There are many ways to provide users with reassurance that taking the action being solicited from your landing page is safe and secure.

One way is to provide social proof. Social proof can be in the form of displaying tweets about a product, testimonials from previous buyers, and positive reviews on third-party/non-affiliated sites such as review sites and blogs.

Other ways include displaying certificates and badges from third-party companies.


On the FreshBooks landing page, you can see three trust elements: (1) The number of people using their web service, (2) quotes from reputable and well-known sites such as the New York Times and (3) their privacy certification.


The design of landing pages is crucial in prompting users to take your desired action. By following the simple tips mentioned above, you’ll be well on your way to creating effective landing pages.

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About the Author

Karol K is a blogger who’s passionate about WordPress. He works with ThemeIsle, a WordPress theme development company. His work has been published all over the Web, on sites like Web Design Ledger, Quick Sprout, ProBlogger, and others. Reach him at @carlosinho.

This was published on Mar 16, 2012


Best landing page article I have found so far.

This is quite a very informative and detailed article. I will for sure incorporating all these elements (7 total) you mentioned in next projects.


Maria Wendt Mar 16 2012

The design of landing pages is crucial in prompting users to take your desired action. 100% agreed! Great tips that are clearly written and explained. Thank you very much for taking the time to put this together!

….useless. one more “blah blah idiot” is going online….

Wrestlemania Mar 17 2012

I like the Dropbox simplicity it is a good example for a landing page. The video there is also well explained.

Justyna Sep 17 2012

Very good article, Karol!

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