Imagine you are looking for new pair of jeans to buy and search for ‘buy jeans online’ in Google search engine. The search advertisement on top of search results mentions ‘20% off on Levis jeans for men – also avail next day delivery!’ You get excited and click on the ad and wait for the landing page to open. After 42 seconds of waiting a webpage opens which says – ‘Trending jeans for women – exclusively by Wrangler!’ What would be your reaction? Angry? Disappointed? Not Done? Exactly same will be the reaction of Adwords if it had a consciousness, all owing to a poor landing page experience.
Here in today’s post we will discuss how a landing page of your Adwords campaign (or an ad, to be precise) can impact its performance.
Importance of LP experience with respect to Adwords
Flashback to the days when you started reading and knowing about how Adwords works. If you remember, Adwords states the three critical factors affecting the quality score, and as you might have rightly guessed (or known already) one of them is landing page quality and relevance.
What does it mean by landing page quality? Landing page quality means how well designed the page is, how responsive the landing page is and quality of content of the page. The definition of landing page quality may not be limited to these factors only but also multitude of others depending on the number of navigational pages, size of the content and nature of business represented by the landing page.
Landing page relevance however has a simpler definition although we may not be able to create an absolutely linear relationship between the landing page and the intent of the user landing on the page. Relevancy of a landing page can be closely measured basis the content on the page, the URL, product / services description and alike.
To put it into few but precise words: Your landing page quality and relevancy have direct impact on quality score of your Adwords account (If you don’t know what quality score is, read it here). A relevant and high quality landing page experience improves the quality score and an irrelevant and poor landing page experience reduces the quality score.
How parity and disparity with landing page impacts the performance of the Adwords ads
Now that we know the landing page experience per se is critical let’s explore further on the R word – relevancy.
The ultimate journey of a user targeted by search engine ads starts with entering a search query in search bar and ends on landing on a webpage pertaining to the business and turning into a customer (Assuming he clicks on the ad).Landing page plays critical role in deciding how long this journey will be in terms of time and how smooth in terms of converting the visitor into prospect and a prospect into a customer.
Imagine another scenario where you buy tickets to watch ‘The Ultimate Spiderman’, enter the cinema hall, lights go dim and credits start rolling with movie title saying ‘Les Misérables’. What!? How miserable that would be. As you can see, this is similar to our earlier example, except here you have upfront paid for the ticket; the crux of the issue remains the same – lack of relevancy.
As your ads get only one chance (unless you are retargeting) to showcase the services offered, special promotions, price points, unique selling proposition, and other information about your business; It is imperative and I repeat, imperative that you show the most relevant information which matches with the content on the landing page at highest degree.
Another way to go about improving relevancy is to reverse engineer the process from conversion to search terms through ads. Please make note that as the landing page to ad relevancy should be higher, so should be the relevancy between ads and keywords, ergo, between all three components: Keywords, ad and landing page.
For instance if a user is searching for anything in particular such as a specific product of a specific brand name (e.g. Samsung Galaxy S 8 plus) make sure the advertisement mentions the information about this and this product only and not generic. Also it is equally important to land the user who clicks on the advertisement on the page specifically about that product (in this case: Samsung Galaxy S 8 plus).
On the other hand if a user is searching for options to choose from, your ad should mention variety of options present or no. of options available or names of brands that you sell, and not forgetting to land the user on the storefront page instead of any specific brand or product page.
The key to improve the relevancy is to ensure that your keywords and ad content matches with landing page content and isn’t mentioning any different information. Also ensure the special promotion details are same across your ad and landing page, e.g. if your ad says ‘40% off’ then your landing page should not say ‘30% off’ or miss mentioning the offer altogether.
Another way to improve the landing page relevancy is to create specific landing pages for specific services for which you have PPC campaigns running. This helps in landing user on a page which has exactly what a user is searching page. This also helps an account manager to create and smoothly manage dedicated campaigns for each of types of services.
Is your LP device responsive?
How could we give a miss to this important point? As per searchenginejournal.com, 75% of Internet Use will be mobile in 2017 and 2017 is already halfway through. Is your landing page built for adequate viewing and smooth interaction on different devices?
Google recently released a study stating that 50% of people search only on smart phones. In case you are running search engine ads on mobile, it is critical for you to land the users who click on your ads on a page that is optimized for smooth interaction on mobile.
This highlights the importance as to how critical it is to have a landing page which is ready for mobile and which will give best user experience leading the user to convert.
I would like to mention again about the customer journey we spoke about, from a search term to conversion on landing page. The most important factor is the content relevancy between ads and the landing page. Also know that the page load time impacts the user experience and hence the conversion rate. Remember, your search engine ads will encourage user to click on ads and hence improve CTR but it is the content and relevant information on your landing page that will play pivotal role in generating leads and conversions, so keep it most relevant, easy to navigate and interact and of course mobile friendly.
This is it? Could you not point me to more specific things to look at?
Oh yes, sure. Although there are many things to look at, we will share the most important ones from point of view of Adwords, in the next blog post.
If you want us to perform a comprehensive audit to check if your Adwords account and landing page are happily married or not, get in touch.