There’s a common misperception that websites and landing pages are the same thing. However, there’s a big difference between them: While you likely have a website that gives an overview of your company and your services, landing pages are standalone pages that serve a specific purpose — often to promote a particular product or service.

They’re the place where your contacts should “land” after clicking on your ads or links in your emails or other pages. From there, you want them to take off toward the next stage in your funnel, whether by making a purchase, providing their email address or otherwise engaging with your page content.

“The age of having just one homepage is dead,” wrote marketing expert Neil Patel. “You need multiple pages that target every kind of website visitor your brand encounters.”

Think of it from the customers’ perspective: If they see an ad on Facebook about your meal planning services and click on it to find a one-size-fits-all website home page that talks about meal planning as well as your fitness and other wellness services — not to mention your upcoming events, backstory, contact information and more — they’ll likely feel overwhelmed and decide to bail.

On the other hand, if they see a page solely focused on your meal planning service — specifically about how it helps busy, working moms save time as the ad they clicked on alluded to — they’ll be intrigued and more likely to opt in for what you’re offering on the page.

From your perspective as a business owner or marketer, that means you’re actually getting a return on your investment in advertising. Creating audiences and related messages for ads is time-consuming, and running ads is expensive. When someone clicks on an ad, it means you’ve done something right — it would be a shame to lose them with a misaligned landing page or a general website.

In order for your pages to be hyper-focused, they’ll need to be thoughtfully created within the context of your customer segments and each stage of your customer lifecycle.

Landing Pages and the Customer Lifecycle

If you’re following the customer lifecycle model for attracting leads, nurturing them into customers and developing lasting referral relationships with them, then you have an entire customer lifecycle funnel dedicated to each of your segments.

For example, if you’re a personal trainer, you might have a lifecycle for the segment of your clients who are interested in weight loss and another for those interested in strength building. You’ll attract the “weight loss” segment with ads that lead to landing pages that speak to the challenges of losing weight and position your services as the solution; you’ll continue the conversation via email with additional offerings until they become a client, and you’ll be their cheerleader for their weight loss, encourage long-term workout commitment and even suggest they bring their friends (new clients) along to your training sessions. You’ll do the same for your “strength building” segment, but your ads, emails and landing pages will use messaging and images that relate more to athleticism and physical power. Either way, you’re speaking in targeted ways to unique audience segments throughout the customer lifecycle.

Your landing pages play a role at each stage. The way you position your message and the type of imagery you use on your landing pages should jive with that of your other channels throughout your funnel for that segment. And the calls to action on each page should relate to what the goal of the page is — their purpose is to move the customer along to the next stage of the lifecycle. Your landing pages are one touch point — albeit an integral touch point — in the ongoing relationships you have with leads and customers.

You’ll use different types of landing pages at each stage of the lifecycle in order to achieve their specific purposes. As Neil Patel states, “By providing different pages to users in different locations of your sales cycle, you can move them along through your sales funnel more quickly.”

Attract Stage Landing Pages

This stage is all about making an initial connection with new leads by introducing them to your product or service and, ideally, gaining their email address or social media handles so you can stay in touch.

A proven way to accomplish this is by offering something of high value for free. For example, a personal trainer might offer a free trial training session.

The landing pages you’ll use in this stage should facilitate the initial introduction and exchange of information.

Opt-in Pages

This is the page where you’ll “sell” your free offer. Using the personal trainer example, you’d have one opt-in page promoting a free trial training session targeted for those interested in weight loss and one promoting the same free trial for those interested in strength training.

You’ll differentiate the two by speaking to each audience’s main pain points clearly in your headline, hero image and every other element of the page.

For example, those interested in weight loss might not have exercised in a while and might fear being embarrassed, unable to keep up with a rigorous first-time workout or unsure of what types of exercises to perform. Your messaging on the page would address these pain points by explaining how a one-on-one training session removes the common worry of embarrassment that might come with a group training or gym environment, how you’ll tailor the workout to their ability level, and how you’ll have the exercise program all planned out so they won’t need to worry about what to do. And your images on the page will be of people this audience can identify with.

Your page for your athletic strength training audience would be completely different. Perhaps you’ve discovered that your current clients who are interested in your services for strength training purposes tend to be athletes who are already actively exercising but want to push it to the next level. They’re struggling to push past a plateau in their abilities, bored with their regular workout routine, or aiming for a specific goal to get accepted into a special tournament or win an upcoming competition. Your messaging will address those pain points, and your imagery will display athletic-looking people who this audience can relate to or aim to become.

The goal of this page is to gain your new lead’s trust and encourage them to sign up for your free trial by entering their name and email address on a form on your page. That’s your main call to action, and it should be placed near the top of your page as well as the bottom.

You can also use this page as an opportunity to get to know your new leads even more so that you can segment them into sub-segments. On your strength training page, you might ask, “What sport do you play?” and provide a dropdown menu of options. Assuming you have a series of follow-up emails and landing pages dedicated to each sport type, you could automatically add your new lead to the appropriate funnel based on their selection. Those who are into bodybuilding will only see bodybuilding content from you, positioning you as a specialized expert while also showing them relevant content.

Thank You Pages

Once someone enters their information into the form on your opt-in page, a thank you page should automatically display. But the page shouldn’t simply say “thank you” and confirm the opt-in; it should provide even more value so the new lead is reassured in their decision to enter their information on the previous page.

The additional value you provide could come in the form of links to articles or videos on your blog that relate to each segment. For the weight loss segment, you might provide a video about at-home beginner exercises; for the strength training segment, you might provide a video about foam rolling techniques to alleviate sore muscles.

Convert Stage Landing Pages

At this stage, your leads are familiar with your company and have participated in your free trial or downloaded a free piece of valuable content from you. That means they’ve begun to realize the ways you or your products and services can be of use to them.

The goal of this stage is to sell your core product so your leads become paying customers. You might start with offering an entry-level product before proposing your core product, depending on your price points and business type.

Because you’re asking people to pay and make a higher level of commitment at this stage, your landing pages should thoroughly explain the value of your offer and instill trust in you, your product and the payment security level of your page.

Sales Pages

Similar to your opt-in pages from the Attract stage, your sales pages should speak specifically to each audience’s pain points and address why your product or service is the solution.

Returning to the personal trainer example, let’s say you’re selling your eight-week personal training program. The one for your weight loss group might be named “8 Weeks to Your Summer Body,” and the one for your athlete group might be named “8 Weeks to Peak Strength.” The name of the program itself displays the outcome of the program, and the rest of the content on the page should reiterate the related benefits of participating.

Your sales page is typically longer than an opt-in page because, before people are willing to enter their credit card, they need to feel confident in their purchase. Your page should thoroughly list the benefits of your product or service, explicitly share the outcomes they’ll achieve from it, and use testimonials, reviews or other third-party social proof to back up your claims. You might also include an FAQ to proactively address the common objections to purchasing your program, as well as information on guarantees, shipping or return policies, especially if you sell a physical product.

No matter what, all of the content should relate back to the people in your segment — their common concerns, objections and fears as well as their main interests. It should also remain highly specific solely about the program you’re selling. Even if you offer monthly or annual personal training packages, this page isn’t the time to mention them. Remove distractions, reduce the need for making decisions between products/services, and simply focus on one product/service and one segment.

Order Pages and Forms

When someone clicks on your CTA button on your sales page, they’re taken to an order page where they fill in their payment information, shipping address, email address and any other required information.

These pages should remain consistent with your sales page — the name of the program, the price you stated, the shipping and return policies you noted should all be reflected here to confirm to the buyer that you’re following through on what your sales page promised.

Your order page serves one purpose: to capture the order. Therefore, like all other landing pages, it should remove all other distractions and information. The most successful order pages simply consist of a headline, order form and “purchase” button.

Fulfill Stage Landing Pages

After your new customers buy your product or service, your goal is to get them to use it and find value from it.

During this stage, you might invite your new customers to your Facebook Community so they can collaborate or gain support from others you serve. You might call or text your new customers to welcome them and learn about their specific interests related to your product or service.

There are also a variety of types of landing pages you might use at this stage to support and encourage your customers in using your product or service.

Training or Content Page

If you run an educational membership site or sell a more advanced product that requires onboarding or training, you might send your new customers to a tutorial page or a page to schedule a one-on-one onboarding webinar with your team.

Even if you don’t have a membership site, you might want to create a landing page for the specific purpose of providing bonus content for your new customers that will support their use of your product or service.

For example, the personal trainer might send new weight loss clients to a landing page with resources and videos about home stretches to keep them from getting too sore or to support their flexibility which, in turn, supports the benefit they get from the training sessions. The clients who are interested in strength training might be directed to a landing page dedicated to how to support their exercise regimen with a diet rich in protein; the page might include recipes or your recommendations for the best protein shakes and snacks.

Either way, your overall messaging, imagery and content should follow suit with those from the previous pages in your customer lifecycle.

Survey Page

Because the goal of the Fulfill stage is to encourage your customers’ satisfaction with your product or service, it’s common to request that they fill out a survey to share feedback. You can use their responses to follow up on any needs or dissatisfaction that is revealed, as well as to further segment your audience to ensure you’re meeting their specific interests.

Typically, you’d send an email with a link to a landing page that houses your survey. The survey is essentially a form placed on a landing page. It’s important that customers understand that you’re asking these questions because you care about their satisfaction and want to improve your products and services to meet their needs in the best ways possible. Other than reiterating your “why” and your value proposition, this page should be kept simply focused on your survey form fields.

To keep your survey pages targeted to your customer segments, you might consider two different surveys with questions relevant to each audience.

Delight Stage Landing Pages

At this stage, your customers have been using your product or service and are committed to it. They may be ready for add-ons or complementary products and services that enhance their experience or support their results even further.

During this stage, your goal is to keep your customers engaged with your brand by selling them upsell or cross-sell products or services, as well as events or exclusive loyalty programs.

Your pages at this stage should focus on each specific item you’re selling and the benefits for each specific audience segment.

Upsell Sales Page and Order Page

Similar to your sales pages in the Convert stage, your sales pages in the Delight stage should fully explain the value of the upsell in terms of the outcomes the customer will achieve from it. Because upsells require an additional financial investment — and in some cases, significantly higher investment than your core product — it’s critical that you reiterate to customers the value they’ve received from you so far and the reasons you believe the upsell product is right for them.

The page should provide a detailed list of benefits of the product or service, testimonials or other third-party backup and answer the common questions you receive.

Returning to the personal trainer example, the upsell at this stage might be an annual personal training membership. Just like in previous stages, you’ll have a separate upsell sales page for each segment of your audience. Both will highlight the value of consistency in exercise, but one will be in the context of weight loss maintenance and the other will be positioned as strength achievement. You’ll likely show before and after photos of clients relevant to each audience, as well as testimonial quotes that each audience can identify with.

Similar to the Convert stage, you’ll also have an order page for your upsell product that consists solely of the form and reiterates the basics such as the name of the product and your key policies.

Event Page

Delight stage offers often involve inviting clients to an in-person event, such as a community lecture, networking meetup, conference or a launch event for a new product.

These landing pages will be similar to your other pages but the product you’re selling is an event so your value statements are meant to entice the customers to show up. You’ll likely include specific event details such as maps and locations, as well as images of the event venue or city and information on the event speakers.

The personal trainer might invite clients to a local wellness lecture: one by a nutritionist focused on healthy eating for the weight loss group and one by an orthopedist who treats athletes and talks about avoiding common injuries. Of course, your landing pages here will be unique for each topic and audience, but both will reiterate the value of this added information for their workout goals.

You also might want to segment your event pages even further based on your customers’ locations. If you’re having a meetup in both Sydney and Melbourne, you can use the address data in your customers’ contact record (which they provided when they purchased your product in the Convert stage) to set conditions to ensure you’re inviting the customers to the event near their homes. Your landing pages, likewise, will only include information for one location.

Refer Stage Landing Pages

The last stage of the customer lifecycle, the Refer stage is where you encourage your satisfied, loyal customers to spread the word about you to their friends and family.

The goal of this stage is to garner referrals, so your related pages should be focused on the benefits your customers and their referred friends will receive by referring and purchasing. The pages should also remind your customers of your value and all the progress and success they’ve achieved with you so far, making it natural for them to want to share that with their loved ones.

Referral Sales Page

Referral programs often involve providing a unique referral link to your customers via email and encouraging them to share it. That link will take the referred friend to your sales page — often the same sales page you used in your Convert stage.

If you’re using dynamic content in Ontraport Pages, you can add a unique welcome message that shows up only to those who are coming to the sales page from a referral link. It could say something such as, “Welcome, friend! We’re glad [your friend] told you about us. Purchase today and you’ll each get $10 off.”

Referral Tracking Page

If you have a partner program in place, you can also have a landing page dedicated to displaying each person’s referrals. It can show the names of the people they’ve referred who ended up purchasing as well as the bonus they’ve received for each.

This page should reiterate what your partners are getting by participating in your referral program, provide easy access to their referral code so they can keep referring others, and include resources that support them in making referrals, such as pre-made social media posts or ads they can place on their websites.

Again, the goal of this page and this stage is to gain referrals, so this page should be focused solely on that. Refrain from selling other products, seeking feedback or including other distractions.

There are many types of landing pages you can use at each stage of the customer lifecycle. What’s important is to remember the purpose of the stage and to tailor a page for each of your audience segments to increase your chances of achieving your goals.

About Angela Fornelli
Angela Fornelli is a writer and editor with over a decade of experience covering the healthcare, aviation, and technology industries. A Chicago native, she currently serves as Ontraport's managing editor and has a Bachelor's in Journalism from the University of Illinois.