6 Steps to an SEO-Perfect Landing Page
For digital marketers, landing pages can become the ultimate source of power — to drive targeted, highly convertible traffic to your site, and get more leads and customers. It is no wonder why they preach catchy headlines, engaging user-oriented copy, powerful CTAs, and user-friendly conversion forms.
When it comes to driving traffic, digital marketers mostly rely on methods like PPC and social media advertising. They do not need any other prospects on their landing pages. Their goal is to attract users who can be easily converted into leads and customers, users for whom these concrete landing pages have been created and customized.
Reliance on Google AdWords and social media traffic is becoming increasingly costly, however. You should at least consider optimizing your landing pages to attract prospects and customers from organic searches. In this article, I will let you in on the most important things regarding landing page SEO.
SEO for Landing Pages
Truth be told, landing page SEO is pretty similar to conventional search engine optimization. You should pay attention to links, content, keywords, etc. However, there are several critical differences to bear in mind when optimizing your landing pages:
#1 Pay Specific Attention to the Page’s Structure
A landing page’s structure plays a critical role in how it ranks in search. It determines the amount and contents of text blocks featured on your landing page, and the better these blocks are optimized from an SEO perspective, the more organic customers you will eventually attract.
Just consider the example below:
This landing page features all the necessary elements of a perfect landing page:
- A logo with a brand
- A nice headline
- A subtitle
- A CTA with description below it
- “In the media” section
- Content sections with bold headlines, subscripts and impeccable copy
- Several personalized reviews
- A footer with social media share buttons
Although all of these elements have to do with the usability component, your objective with SEO is to help UI/UX experts, designers and developers create a page that fits in nicely with Google’s guidelines. You should advise them on elements, their positioning, content, keywords, interlinking and so on.
For instance, your usability professional may argue against placing service description blocks on a concrete landing page, and your task is to communicate with him or her to find the right balance between needs of users and demands of search engines.
#2 Optimize Your Meta Tags
Though this one is pretty basic and self-explanatory, proper optimization of, and tags can become your crucial advantage in the competitive world of landing pages.
<keywords> tag is the least important of the three mentioned above. When you do SEO for Google, you can easily save your time with this one. However, if you optimize for smaller search engines, there is a chance tag will make a difference.
<description> tag determines how your landing page’s description is displayed in search. This is why your have to make it pretty informative and benefit-oriented to satisfy users, and place several keywords in it to make sure you are on the same page with Google.
Here is what Neil Patel writes about meta descriptions:
By itself, a meta description may not improve your search rankings and your quality score. However, it will definitely earn you more click-through rates, when crafted correctly. As your pages move up the rankings list, a good meta description will yield a higher CTR.
A high CTR is what every landing page needs. So, invest in your meta descriptions.
<title> tag allows you to tweak what your landing page’s headline looks like in search engines. You might want to ask your copywriter to help you out with this one. You need to do the following:
- Come up with a title that attracts and encourages users to click the link
- Place your targeted keyword in this title without making it look spammy
- Demonstrate to search engines that the title is relevant to a landing page’s contents
If you do these three tags correctly, you will showcase a clear and compelling search snippet to your targeted audience. It will evoke their curiosity, encourage them to access your landing page, and you will see better conversion results.
#3 Use H1-H2 Tags
From an SEO standpoint, this is the easiest tip ever. Every SEO professional understands why it is crucial to have one single <H1> tag and several <H2> tags per page. The only problem is, you are not the only person responsible for the landing page.
Developers always have problems with H1-H2 tags:
- Forget to place <H1> on the page
- Add several <H1> tags
- Include <H3> tags instead of <H2> tags
- Use H3-H6 tags but miss <H1> and <H2>
And this list can go on and on. The example below demonstrates the problem:
This page features an <H2> tag, and an <H4> tag that is placed right after it. Of course, <H1> and <H3> tags are missing.
Your job regarding H1, H2 and other tags consists of two tasks:
- Ensure that your copywriter has included targeted keywords in your heading and subheadings
- Check to verify that your developers have placed all the tags correctly
#4 Optimize Content and Images
As with any other web page, landing pages feature content, and you need to invest a pretty decent chunk of your time in bringing it up to the required standard.
In general, you have to follow the basic content optimization procedures, but bear in mind the following:
- Ensure that your standard landing page has enough content on it. It has to be no less than 500 words
- Focus your optimization efforts on one high-competition, high-volume keyword.
- Targeting several “heavy” keywords can be risky
- Support your selected high-competition keyword with several relevant, long-tail keywords. These have to be low-volume keywords
- Avoid spammy practices when placing your keywords in content and within a landing page’s teaser elements (e.g. CTA, contact form, etc.) The content should look and feel natural
Optimization of images and other visual elements is also pretty vital, and your job is to make sure that every element supports your landing page SEO. Here is what you should do:
- Optimize alt and title attributes of every image and visual element featured on your landing page. Basically, you have to fill them in
- Include keywords within alt and title attributes of visual elements that are relevant to a user’s search query. This will help your landing page be found in Image Search by relevant searches
#5 Implement Featured Snippets
I cannot stress the importance of this step enough!
Featured snippets give your landing page a chance to get to the #0 spot with almost zero effort (provided your page is ranking in the top 10 already). But this is actually only one of the benefits of implementing featured snippets.
According to Ahrefs’ Study Of 2 Million Featured Snippets, pages with featured snippets do not receive as many clicks as pages without them, but they drive more targeted traffic, which is what you need for your landing pages. The examples below explain why:
The first search result is decent, but it does not provide any actual details about the recipe. A user has to click the result to check out the page’s contents. Meanwhile, the second search result is self-explanatory. It displays the instructions, discouraging users who do not want to use this pancake recipe from clicking the page, but those who do click are more likely to convert.
To make a long story short, investing your time in featured snippets is absolutely worth it. They allow you to:
- Improve SERPs
- Display your offer directly in search
- Attract users who are interested in your offer
- Increase conversion rates
#6 Set Up Your Robots.txt File
This step is considered optional by many SEO professionals. After all, most robots.txt files are fairly similar in directives and structure. However, if you want to use every trick in your SEO book, make sure to tweak your robots.txt file a bit.
I recommend to set it up like this:
I allow images and disallow scripts and styles. Though this approach might be a bit outdated, it never hurts to remind search bots to crawl images and not to crawl JS and CSS files.
Don’t Forget About Commercial Factors
Landing page SEO can be tricky, but even if you master it, it does not guarantee success in terms of tons of traffic and impressive conversion rates. The thing is that so-called commercial or e-commerce factors also play a huge role.
Here are a few:
- Contact Us
- Terms of Service
- Physical address (for product pages)
- Shipping Policy (for product pages)
- Returns & Refunds (for product pages)
All of these impact not only traffic and conversion, but ranking as well. Unless you place these on your landing page, you will not be able to fire up a Google AdWords campaign as well. In short, you have to consider e-commerce factors in your SEO campaign. Do it!
SEO for landing pages is fairly simple and does not impose a steep learning curve. In most cases, it will be more than enough to follow through with your ordinary optimization routines.
Landing pages differ from ordinary web pages, though. They are created for the purpose of driving conversions, not educating or engaging audiences.
When you do landing page SEO, you have to be extremely picky about structure, content, keywords, links, and visual elements, as they have to align with a landing page’s conversion goals. And do not forget about usability.
The six steps to an SEO-perfect landing page provided in this article are hardly unique and innovative — no SEO wheels reinvented here! — yet, very often digital marketers and even SEO guys forget about these crucial optimization basics. I hope you will now remember to consider them.