Four Tips for Designing Aesthetically Pleasing Landing Pages

How can you decide on the right design for your landing page?

Beauty is relative, cultural, genetic and ever-changing. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and aesthetic judgments are subjective.

The answer is to know your target market and create an appearance that conforms to your visitors’ expectations. We call it the “user’s mental model.”

In a recent chapter of the Creating Landing Pages That Sell book, Don Nicholas and Peter A. Schaible point out the importance of designing aesthetically pleasing landing pages to increase conversion rates.

Here are a few landing page optimization tips for making the look and feel of your landing page comfortable for your user and profitable for you.

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Landing Page Optimization Tip #1: Before you settle on a design, take a good look around at other site designs. Start by visiting CoolHomePages.com. Here you’ll find thumbnails of dozens of sites, with links to the actual pages. Each site is rated, with the rating shown attached to the thumbnail, so you can see which designs are considered good and which are bad.

Landing Page Optimization Tip #2: As you consider designs, keep in mind your main objectives: a professional look, without clutter, that’s easy to navigate.

Landing Page Optimization Tip #3: It’s a fact: people won’t use your website if they can’t figure out their way around it. Don’t Make Me Think: A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability is an indispensable 200-page essay by Steve Krug. It makes a strong case that the navigation systems, main pages, labels, buttons, etc. on your website can either make using it easy and obvious—or they can discourage users by making them think too much.

Landing Page Optimization Tip #4: Be careful of the landing pages you choose to mimic. Real Simple.com is both practical and beautiful. The website designers have taken great care in translating the look and feel of the award-winning magazine into an elegant website. Typeface, colors and use of white space all combine to create a website that is both full of useful content and that is pleasing to the eye. Compare it to another site that holds good design in high esteem, The American Feng Shui Institute. The comparison is stark. Real Simple is pleasing, while its counterpart is merely unobjectionable.

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