When building an online marketing plan, companies tend to neglect one of the most important components - the conversion strategy. It’s not enough to drive traffic to a website these days when everyone is concerned with return on investment (ROI). Website traffic alone cannot prove ROI, but revenue directly attributed to online leads can.


A conversion strategy requires optimized landing pages that offer something compelling such as downloadable whitepapers or ebooks. These landing pages are typically promoted with advertisements or calls to action (CTAs) on and off the site itself. Once an ad or CTA is clicked, visitors are taken directly to the landing page to view and download the content.


You only have one chance to make a first impression. When someone clicks through to a landing page, they want something interesting, relevant and useful. As the marketer, you want to help solve their problems with this content.


Consider these four tips for optimizing your landing pages to increase conversions on your website:


1. Target Your Landing Pages to Specific Personas

Each landing page should have a compelling offer with a specific purpose. Whether it’s a downloadable report, tip sheet or infographic, give your visitors something of value. Think of it from the customer's perspective. Who are they? Why are they here? Did they click on a shiny banner ad promising to stop their dog from scratching? Did they search for why flea collars work? Each visitor has a different need, so they should arrive at a landing page that speaks specifically to that need.


2. Give Readers Their Own ROI

Many landing pages are nothing more than just another ad. No matter how awesome your marketing copy may be, visitors are smart and have no interest in handing over their contact information for nothing. Give visitors something they cannot live without in that moment, or a return on their own investment. It could be a whitepaper that provides the solution they were looking for, or a discount code or trial version of software. Visitors are more willing to provide an email address or telephone number for something valuable in return, and this value exchange will only make the sale easier to close in the long run.


3. Use Credibility To Drive Conversion

Let's say a visitor happens upon your website who knows nothing about your company. There is no personal relationship, no brand recognition, nothing. How do you convince them that your company is worthy of their business? One way is to prove that other people have trusted you. Showcase customer reviews and case studies on your landing pages. Highlight recognizable companies as current or past clients. People have a tendency to trust the decisions of influencers and brands, so show them who you’ve worked with to build credibility.


4. Be Clear About the Next Step of Your Conversion

You want your landing page to turn clicks into conversions, right? Whether that's newsletter signups, document downloads, or app installs, directing the visitor to the call to action needs to be clear and concise. Use large letters, enticing imagery, or red arrows; whatever it takes to draw your visitors' attention to the action you want them to take. With so much competing for consumers’ attention these days, a hard-to-find call to action will surely be passed over. Don’t lose a customer to poor execution.


The end goal of landing pages is to convert visitors into leads so they can begin their path through the sales funnel. With these four tips, you’ll be able to tighten your focus and turn a mouse click into a sale in no time.