Launching your first set of landing pages is a major milestone for your business — one that can, if done right, instantly improve the personalized experiences your leads and customers have with your brand. Whether you’re in the first stages of development or trying to refine the pages you already have, it’s normal to wonder what types of landing pages you’ll need, what their function should be, how many you’ll need, and what you should expect to gain from each one.

Below, we’ve broken down the top five landing pages essential to any growing business along with the elements that go into making each one successful.

Attract New Contacts With a Free Value Offer Page

Before you can market your product or service, you need leads to market to. The goal of the free value offer page is to prompt visitors to provide their contact information in exchange for a reward or free content. As you build your page, there are several key elements you’ll want it to include.

Key Elements of a Free Value Offer Page

Typically, these pages feature compelling free content and a strategically-placed opt-in form, but the first thing your visitors will notice when they view your page is the headline. Research has shown that you have only 7 seconds to make an impression, so it’s important to capture your visitors’ attention right away with a compelling headline that will spark their interest.

Once you’ve won them over with a strong headline, you’ll want your viewers to see your free value offer that highlights what you can do for them. Present a brief description of your free offer and the value you provide with feature/benefit bullet points or short paragraphs, and make it interesting with attention-grabbing visuals. Relevant videos have been shown to increase conversions by 86%, so try adding a testimonial or explainer video to increase your credibility. For maximum effectiveness, place media above the fold.

When it comes time to earn your leads’ contact information, you’ll need a compelling opt-in form. This can be either embedded or pop-up. Keep it simple viewers will be more likely to opt-in for your reward if there are fewer fields to fill out. To entice page viewers to fill out your opt-in form, include a compelling call to action (CTA) that tells viewers exactly what they’ll be getting when they click. Your CTA button should practically pop off the page.

As a final touch, include social share links on the page to allow your viewers to share your offer with their friends and expand your reach.

Draw Attention to Your Offer

When visiting your free value offer page, visitors should be focused on one thing: your offer. To ensure their focus on your offer, eliminate distractions such as navigation menus and outbound links from your page. Also make sure your copy is clear and consistent throughout   your headline should be the same as the messaging on any emails or ads that direct them to the page.

Entice Visitors With a Compelling Sales Page

Once you’ve mastered the free value offer, you can transition from gathering leads to actually selling your product. If you’re selling anything a physical product, digital tools, a 1-on-1 coaching session your sales page is where the magic happens. It exists to inform visitors about the value and benefits of your product, which will ideally entice them to make a purchase.

Sales pages can come in short form or long form, depending on product price and complexity. Higher-priced and more complex products, for example, require more explanation and detail than basic entry-level products.

Short or long, there are a few key components your sales pages should always include. As with your free value offer page, the right headline and subheadings should compel your visitors to check out the rest of your page. Even if readers only skim your content, you’ll have their attention.

Once your leads are intrigued, it’ll be time for your sales page to do its job. Your sales offer copy is the most important element of the page it’s your chance to dazzle your leads and showcase your product’s value. Great offer copy will be enticing, persuasive and easy to read.

Depending on your product, it may be a good idea to supplement or replace your offer copy with a video. Videos can improve conversion rates by 80% and make it easier for your customers to remember you and your product. You can create a convincing sales video to demonstrate your product, its benefits and its shortcomings to instill buyer confidence. Or, you can include customer testimonials to establish social proof and build trust in your brand.

Ultimately, the goal of a sales page is to drive visitors to an order page to purchase your product — and your CTA should make that clear. Like on your free value offer page, your CTA button should command site viewers’ attention. To keep readers on track towards purchasing your offer, avoid adding links that lead anywhere other than to your order form. If your sales page works, your interested leads will be ready to move on to the biggest step: making the purchase.

Make the Sale With a Simple, Trustworthy Order Page

You’ve attracted leads into your funnel with your free value offer page, and you’ve wowed them with an engaging sales page. Once they click on your offer on the sales page, they’ll land on your order page to make the long-awaited purchase.

Your order page should fulfill your ultimate goal: converting leads and page visitors into paying customers. Because this is where customers complete the actual purchase, it’s important to make it easy to navigate and understand.

As with any landing page, your headline kicks off the customer experience. Here, you should clearly communicate the purpose and intent of your order page. In fact, the entire page should be simple and straightforward to avoid incomplete purchases. According to research by Baymard, 28% of online shoppers abandon their carts due to complicated checkout processes and surprises in the last step of the purchase.

On order pages, it’s crucial to solidify trust with your customers and make sure they feel safe giving you their payment information. There are several ways to go about this, but the most impactful is making sure the page is secure, then displaying a clearly visible security seal indicating that your customers’ payment information is safe in your hands. In addition to the security seal, including a customer testimonial or a money-back guarantee will help instill trust in your brand. Testimonials are helpful so leads hear how great your product is from someone other than your sales reps, and guarantees give customers an exit route if they aren’t satisfied with your product post-purchase.

You should also include a contact number or email address to let your potential customers know they can speak to somebody if they have any questions. If all goes well, your customers will leave your order page feeling satisfied with their purchase and ready to enjoy your product.

Hand Over the Goods With a Content Delivery Page

After making the sale or earning the opt-in, it’s time to follow through on your promises with a content delivery page.

If your offers promise downloadable digital content — possibly a free digital download or part of a paid membership site — you’ll need to set up a content delivery page. This page should provide customers with a quick and easy way to access the content you’ve promised.

Again, you should include an enticing headline informing customers that this is where they can access the content they opted in for. For an extra nudge, you can throw in a content or product teaser: a sneak peek at new, unreleased products or a related offer that might intrigue somebody who’s already shown interest in your product.

The focal point of your content delivery page is delivering the content you promised on your earlier pages. You have two options for delivering the content: embedded on the page or downloadable from the page.

Embedded content is easy for customers to access immediately, but it can sometimes be difficult to find later on. It’s perfect for content such as videos, where downloading could take up time and computer memory. Downloads work well for content that customers will want to access and keep on-hand in the future. Offers such as ebooks or free guides are ideal for download, because customers can save and refer to them whenever they need to. If you opt for downloadable content, be sure to make the download button bold and easy to find.

As with any page, it’s important to keep your viewers in the loop. Include some copy that covers the details of the content that’s being delivered and how to access it. You’ll want your visitors to remember why they’re here and what they’ve come to claim.

The purpose of this page is to deliver your valuable content, as promised in your offer, to whomever requested or purchased it. Ideally, this will build a stronger relationship with your customers and keep them engaged after purchasing your product.

Express Gratitude With a Thank You Page

When contacts fill out a form on any of your pages — whether for a purchase, opt-in or any other act worthy of recognition — it’s always a good idea to acknowledge them with a thank-you page.

At first glance, this page is merely a way to express gratitude to leads and customers for performing a desired conversion but, to get the most out of these conversions, it should go well beyond saying thanks. If they’ve reached your thank-you page, they’re at a level of heightened engagement with your business. At this stage in the customer lifecycle, linking other content or special offers for your product can jump-start the process of turning leads into sales and customers into repeat business.

With so much conversion potential, it’s important to drop your leads and customers onto a thank-you page at just the right moment. Some of the best opportunities come right after a customer opts in for one of your free value offers, such as your newsletter, an ebook, a live event or webinar, or a product demo.

Ideally, a thank-you page should continue to nurture your relationship with leads and customers post-purchase. Your headline should be a message of gratitude, both confirming the conversion and acknowledging the person responsible.

Because your thank-you page viewers have already expressed interest in your brand, they will be more likely to share their experience with the world. Make the most out of your word-of-mouth marketers by providing social share buttons.

Another perk of having highly engaged visitors on your thank-you page is the potential to further nurture your leads after the initial conversion. Links to additional bonus content will be the breadcrumbs to your next sale and will keep your hot leads engaged.

About Martin Cogburn
Martin Cogburn, Ontraport's Senior Content Strategist, cherishes and strives to master the art of great storytelling. Originally from Frankfurt, the German native attended UCSB after growing up in the Santa Barbara area. Martin wears multiple hats in his role at Ontraport: story producer, blog author, scriptwriter, and content curator -- all of which get his creative juices flowing. On top of that, he's an avid film enthusiast. Name any movie and there's a pretty good chance Martin can tell you all about it.