The name of the game on the Internet always has been and always will be about traffic. It’s about getting eyeballs onto your website to follow through with the actions that you desire. Maybe you want them to subscribe to your mailing list. Maybe you want them to buy your products. The actual objective, in this way, is rather inconsequential, because you’ve got to get the people onto your website in the first place.
Maybe this is through some careful search engine optimization. Maybe you’re investing in some article marketing. Or perhaps you’re buying some advertising to feature your sponsored content on social media sites. No matter the actual source, you want those people to click on through and see what you have to offer.
A Big Portal, A Narrow Focus
What a lot of people end up doing is focusing their efforts on the home page of their website. This seems like it would make sense, because your home page is the main portal through which people will access your website. It is through your home page that they can navigate through to everything else on your website too. And it is through that greatest strength that we also find the greatest weakness.
The problem with directing your campaigns to your home page is that there is rarely a very obvious, single call to action. When people arrive on your home page, they might see that you have new blog posts. They might also see links to your social media profiles. They might see a feature about an ebook you just wrote. They might see advertisements from your site’s sponsors.
The purpose and path are unclear, resulting in a certain level of confusion. Where should they click next? Where do they go from here? Home pages inherently have a lack of focus, because they act as a portal to everything else. It doesn’t matter how targeted and how directed your campaigns might be if the new visitor still has to keep clicking through your navigation to find what it is that they want.
And then they get distracted. And they forget why they came to your site in the first place. And then they move on to something else and you’ve lost yourself a valuable lead or sale.
Eliminating the Fuzzy Experience
While there is valuable in generating some general interest about your website for the purposes of brand building and search engine optimization, you should be much more focused and specific when it comes to your actual campaigns. Make it obvious. Make it clear.
If you have a special gift guide on your site that you want to promote, use that as the destination URL in your campaigns and not your home page. If you have a new book to promote, link to a page where the only option is for the visitor to buy that book. Get rid of the distractions and guide the visitor down exactly the path you want them to take.
To this end, it’s worthwhile to develop specific landing pages for specific purposes. It does take some extra work, but after you have an effective template in place (and perhaps with some help from a writer and/or designer), you can rinse and repeat for your future campaigns. Directing your campaigns to landing pages results in higher conversion rates because of much clearer calls to action.
The Only Path to Travel
Too many choices can be confusing and overwhelming. Make it as obvious and as simple for your prospective readers, visitors and customers as possible. And make sure the design of your ad creatives matches up with the design of your landing pages. There’s nothing worse than clicking on a banner and being taken to a site that doesn’t look the same at all.