Landing pages are an important part of your overall marketing strategy and making sure that they’re fully optimised is important for them to work effectively. Find out how to create an SEO friendly landing page that will receive traffic and drive conversions in your business.
What is a Landing Page?
A landing page is a page on your website that is specifically made to drive conversions. It targets a particular keyword (or small group of keywords) and should always include a call to action (CTA).
The conversion you actually intend can vary dramatically from page to page. You could encourage users to buy there and then, ask them to join your newsletter, or request they start a free trial of your service. It will depend on the page’s position in your sales funnel.
SEO for Landing Pages
Like any other page on your website, a landing page should include good search engine optimisation. This is a series of best practices that will help your page rank in search engines such as Google and provide a good user experience for your site visitors. That, in turn, will help boost conversions.
Fortunately, landing page SEO is similar to SEO for the rest of your website, though the intention of the page may be different to your blog, shopping pages or home page. However, if you’ve read any of my other SEO guides, you’ll be able to use this How To to adapt your existing knowledge.
If you haven’t seen any of my other guides, don’t worry. I’ll take you through all you need to know.
Before you even start creating your landing page, do some keyword research. This helps you find words and phrases your target audience is using to discover content like yours.
Type a keyword into a tool such as Google Keyword Planner (you will need a free Google Ads account), and it will generate a number of related phrases. Analyse these and pick out one or two to target on your landing page.
Google Keyword Planner gives you an idea of traffic volume per keyword, so pick those that have a decent number of Average Monthly Searches, and a lower Competition rating. This gives you a better chance of ranking than if you were to go for the most popular phrases.
Pick one primary keyword as your main target keyword. Then select two or three others to include on your page to help Google contextualise your content.
These keywords should be used naturally across your landing page, in the main copy, headings, URL, title and META data. I’ll go into all of these a little more below.
Headings help you break up your page into more easily readable chunks. They can be used to make your content scannable (i.e. readers can quickly pick out information); improve the layout of your page; and help search engines understand the structure and topic of your content.
H1 – or Heading 1 – should appear only once on your page and should be the main title. How to Create an SEO Friendly Landing Page is the H1 for this page. It should include your main keyword (preferably as early in your heading as possible), and provide a brief and accurate indication of what the page is about.
H2 – or Heading 2 – is a sub-heading that helps you split your content into primary sections. You can (and usually should) use more than one H2 across your page. Again, they should be informative – describing the section that they head – and include a keyword.
H3 to H6 are additional headings to break down your content further. Generally, you won’t need to use a heading lower than H3. If you do, consider reassessing your page to improve its structure.
Your URL is also important for landing page optimisation. Usually, this is the same as your main heading and page title, though you may trim it down to save on length.
A good URL should be reasonably short (50-60 characters), descriptive, include keywords, and separate individual words with hyphens.
Images and Video
Images and video make your content more attractive and engaging. Include images and graphics to break up your text and help illustrate the points made in your text. Videos add an extra level of engagement and can really help boost sales.
Consider including a transcript of any videos. This will help make your content more accessible and also help Google and other search engines understand the content better.
Remember to optimise all media by compressing and resizing it as appropriate, adding alt tags to describe images, and correctly naming the files. File names should be short, describe the image accurately, and separate words with a hyphen.
Read my full guide to optimising images on your website.
Title Tags and Meta Descriptions
Title tags and meta descriptions are often what you see in the search engine results. Not only do they tell search engines what the page is about, they also – when well written – encourage click-throughs and conversions.
As always, include keywords (though don’t over-stuff them into your text), and describe what users can expect to gain from clicking through to your landing page. A title tag should be around 50-60 characters long, with the main keyword towards the start.
The meta description should ideally be no longer than 160 characters and include a target keyword and variations. If you can include a call to action, all the better! A meta description is like ad copy, so take your time to make it engaging and to optimise it.
Internal Links, External Links and Backlinks
Linking your content provides vital information to search engines about the context of your page in relation to your site.
Internal links are those that go from one page on your website to another. They help establish a website structure and direct traffic to different pages by identifying additional content that the reader may be interested in.
External links go from your website to a different website. By linking to high-quality websites, you can help Google further identify the topic of your landing page. It can also highlight the quality of your own content.
For external links, don’t overdo it, but try to include a handful of external links, as long as they’re relevant to your content. Force such links to open in a new tab so users can easily find their way back to your site.
Backlinks are from other sites to your page. These are much harder to gain, but if you can encourage high-quality sites to link to you, this indicates to search engines that your page is worth a high ranking. You can encourage backlinks by creating shareable content that’s either extremely interesting or includes information that is hard to find anywhere else.
Page Speed and Core Web Vitals
The speed at which your page loads is important for creating a good user experience. It also helps you make more conversions, as slow page load speed can force users to navigate away before they even see your content.
Use Google’s PageSpeed Insights to check your speed and find suggestions for making improvements. Be aware that many improvements will require the support of a developer. However, you can find my top tips for improving page speed that you can do yourself.
Core Web Vitals measure user experience further and help you identify potential improvements. They measure speed and visual stability amongst others factors, providing you and your developer with tips and suggestions for improvements.
SEO isn’t just about jumping through Google’s hoops, it’s about making a clean and easy experience for your users. Improving the Core Web Vitals on your landing page can go a long way towards this.
The length of your content will vary depending on a number of factors, including audience demographics, target action, and subject. There’s no need to bulk out your content just to make it hit a 1,500 character limit, though you should generally include at least 300 words for SEO purposes.
If you want to educate your audience and then ask them to download a worksheet (in exchange for their email address), then longer content may be appropriate. However, if you’re offering a quick solution to a user’s problem, short and sweet content may be much more effective.
If you’re not sure what would work best, take a look at the top ranking results on Google for your keyword. This will give you a good indication of what users want.
If the copy (the text) of your landing page is boring and unappealing, no search engine optimisation will help. At the end of the day, your landing page is a sales page and the copy needs to reflect that. If you’re not a strong writer, consider hiring a copywriter who specialises in ads. You’ll be amazed at the difference it will make to your conversions.
In general, copy should be engaging and clear. It should be obvious the action you want a user to take, and move them towards doing that. At the same time, don’t be too sales-y and pushy. Instead, focus on getting your reader excited about your product or service, or inciting some kind of emotional response that will encourage a conversion.
Check your copy for grammatical and spelling mistakes, and make sure the reading level is appropriate to your audience. It’s not their job to come to you, but your job to go to them. That means you should aim to meet your audience where they feel comfortable and understood. Empathise with their issues and let them know how you can help fix them.
The main aim of a website landing page is to drive conversions. Ensuring your page is search engine optimised makes it easier to find, helps users get excited about your content, and encourages conversions.