You’re setting up an online advertising campaign—a mix of Facebook ads, keyword search ads, and retargeting display ads.
You know who you’re going to target, how much you’re going to spend, and your goal click-through rate and cost per click. You have attention-grabbing copy and an eye-catching image.
But you forgot something. What are your customers supposed to do once they click on your well-thought-out ads?
We see this scenario time and time again. A client is excited to run online ads, but forgot to consider what happens after the click.
In a pinch, most people resort to sending users to their homepage. “That way, users can explore the site on their own,” they say.
Sending users to the homepage is tempting (and easy), but not recommended. One of the basics of online advertising is to make sure the content on the destination page aligns with the ad content. Under that tenet, using your homepage as the destination limits your ad content.
Another quick and easy (and tempting) place to send users is your contact page. If you’re targeting people very familiar with your business, this might work. But if you’re trying to drive new potential customers to your site, your contact page likely won’t have enough information about what you offer.
For example, take a look at our contact page.
This page was created for users who are already familiar with Far Reach, who explored our website, or, perhaps, who were referred to us by an existing client.
Imagine if you were completely unfamiliar with Far Reach and this is the first page you saw after you clicked on an ad. The page doesn’t say anything about what we do.
If the ad content aligns with this page content, it would be a pretty boring ad. Would you be ready to fill out a form if your entire customer journey with Far Reach included seeing an ad and clicking on it? Doubtful.
I’ve covered where NOT to send ad clicks. Now let’s walk through options for where you SHOULD send users.
Option 1: A specific page on your website
If a page on your website meets the criteria below, you can use it as a landing page for an online ad campaign:
- Matches the ad content
- Tells the visitor what’s in it for them
- Is quickly digestible
- Includes a call to action
- Is mobile-friendly (if any ads are on mobile)
Make sure you use UTM URL tracking—or some sort of analytics—to understand which visitors came from which ads and what actions they took.
You may have a page on your site that’s close to meeting the criteria above. If you choose to update it, make sure you don’t lose the flow through your site for your other visitors. If you don’t have an optimal page on your site, and updating one would mess things up for other visitors, you have another option.
Option 2: A custom landing page
When there’s not an ideal page on your site, and there’s often not, you should create a custom landing page that aligns with the ad campaign you’re running. Create landing pages for each campaign as necessary.
Below is a landing page we created for a client running online display ads. Previously the ads were sending users to the homepage; now they’re sending ads to this optimized page that matches the ad content, tells visitors what’s in it for them, is easily digestible, has a call to action, and is mobile-friendly.
We’ve found the best process for creating online advertising campaigns involves developing landing pages side-by-side along with the ad creative. This creates cohesiveness between the ad content and the landing page and makes for a better experience for users. And a better user experience means the click is more likely to lead to the sale.
If you'd like us to look at your landing page—or discuss how to begin to use landing pages as part of your online advertising campaigns—reach out.