E-Commerce Link The Other Half of the Equation
By Ken Burke
Marketing and customer acquisition costs are on the rise, and ROI-driven marketing is more important than ever. Accordingly, today's savvy e-commerce marketers invest precious time and money into meticulously selected search terms, carefully segmented e-mail campaigns and highly focused advertising. It's quite surprising then, how little thought goes into the other half of the equation, the landing page.
Sponsored links, paid search terms, e-mail campaigns, banner ads and other external links are designed to attract self-targeted audiences and motivate them to click and buy. Online marketers agree that these ads are supposed to engage customers and make sales, not just generate clicks. But more often than not, the page that actually does the selling is treated as an afterthought instead of an integral part of a targeted pitch.
Fortunately, devoting a little forethought and attention to these pages pays back with dramatic increases in conversion, sales and new customers. The secret? Make sure your landing pages closely mirror the terms, copy and creative in your ads so they act together to make a relevant and strong impression.
According to published studies, a well-crafted landing page can produce sales lifts of 40 percent or more. When visitors see what they expect to see, they buy more. The closer the match, the greater the lift.
Where We Go Wrong
It sounds like good common sense, but take a look for yourself. Click on any paid search listing or banner ad—even on a promotional banner on an e-commerce site's own homepage—and you'll see that most landing pages are only loosely tied to the ad or link that drove you to click. At best, you'll land on an unremarkable thumbnail listing of related products. More often, you'll land on a page that makes you pause and wonder, like many users, if you accidentally clicked the wrong link.