What is a sales page?
Often, people use “sales page” and “landing page” interchangeably. But in reality, a sales page is different from a landing page. A sales page is precisely engineered to sell a product or service, whereas a landing page aims to capture leads for future sales.
The two main sales page categories are short-form and long-form.
The short versions have relatively little copy, focusing on the sales pitch and the call-to-action (CTA). Because of their brevity, they often include links outside the page to view more detailed resources.
Long-form sales pages include more product details, testimonials, imagery, and the sales pitch and call-to-action.
Now, let’s dive into a few essential ingredients for a kick-ass sales page.
Essential ingredients of a great sales page
Your Big Idea should tie into your customers felt needs or problems. Write a catchy headline that grabs your audience’s attention by speaking directly to them about what’s on their mind.
Engaging sales copy pulls you in and tells a relatable story. No one likes a rambling message. All too often, when brands write sales copy, it feels like they’re just throwing ideas on the wall to see if they stick. There’s a better way. A proven plan and solid structure for your sales copy will significantly improve your conversion rate (more on this later).
Product Cost or Investment Required
Customers need to know the price of your offering. Be direct and clear about cost. This clarity builds trust and removes hesitation in the mind of your consumer.
Similar to pricing, clarity is vital with your call-to-action. Don’t make people hunt for the next steps. Include multiple, strategically placed CTA for best results.
Social Proof – optional
Providing positive social proof goes a long way in convincing your potential customers that you are trustworthy. You don’t have to have celebrity endorsements (though it’s very nice if you do!) but it’s helpful to have endorsements from the kinds of customers and clients you *want* to attract. If your target audience is rural farmers, having a testimony from a Wall Street banker is not helpful.
Another way to show social proof is to include logos from press and media outlets where your product or service has been featured. Ensure these press and media logos are well-known to your audience. Otherwise, the logos will have the opposite effect – showing only obscure or inconsequential media will make you obscure or inconsequential.
Frequently Asked Questions – optional
Depending on the complexity of your service or product, outlining FAQs can be helpful to dissipate any hesitations people may have around answering your call-to-action
Photos and video – optional
We’ve seen some incredibly effective sales pages with little or no images and video – just expertly crafted copy. But “An image is worth a thousand words” is an aphorism for a reason. Curating a group of excellent images to help convey your message goes a long way to helping your sales page convert.
Before building your sales page, here are a few things you should decide.
Before creating a sales page
Identify your audience
It is essential to know your target audience, their pain points, expectations, and what they aim to get from your product or service. You can collect data through customer surveys, web analytics, social media channels, and online research to understand your buyer's persona. The most important thing is that you know who you’re talking to.
Define your value proposition
What is the benefit of your product or service? Familiarity and affection for a product can blind a company’s founder or marketing team. This familiarity causes a failure to convey the value proposition meaningfully to their customers. Be sure to think about your value proposition through your customer's eyes.
Be clear-eyed about the cost of producing and supplying your product and the market demand. Once you asses those things, be unapologetic about the investment required from your customer. Clarity and confidence go a long way. Your service is worthwhile. Your product is valuable. Believe it and convey it.
After you’ve decided these things, It’s time to write your sales copy. Writing incredible sales copy is easier said than done. But don’t worry! We’ve got you covered.
3. How Do I Know if I’m Making Smart Design Choices?
Simplicity is smart, and with branding, less is often more – The more you add, the more you risk distracting from your core message.
As an exercise, we’ll mention a few iconic logos: The McDonald’s golden arches. The Nespresso wordmark. The Nike swoosh. The Mercedes emblem. The Google G. You can likely picture these in your mind immediately. They probably evoke emotions when you see them on the street.
This recognition and attachment exist not because of elaborate logos but because of your personal or cultural experience with the company. In short, it’s because of the brand as a whole. On their own, logos don’t mean much. And neither do other individual parts of a visual brand. But when combined with a great message and product, they represent the experiences customers have with the brand. As a result, these visual elements take on a life of their own.
So, is your logo forgettable or memorable? If your logo doesn’t contribute to your brand’s message in its simplest form— without your tagline, colors or gradients, or product photography— it probably isn’t a strong mark. We recommend stripping away those “extras” when beginning a logo’s design to help you see its strengths and weaknesses.
A great logo is like a great pop song; It doesn’t need a 10-piece band and a choir to make its point. All a great pop song needs is one voice (and maybe an accompanying instrument). Like a song, a logo should be able to catch your attention in its most minimal form.
How to write incredible sales copy
We love Donald Miller’s Million-Dollar Sales Pitch framework for writing sales copy that works. We’ve modified his concept slightly based on our own experience. Our team uses this structure in various sales and marketing situations on a daily basis.
Short-form and long-form sales pages alike should have content that addresses each one of these framework sections. The only difference is the amount of screen real estate and copy you devote to each part.
The customer’s problem
Outline your customer’s central pain point. What is their main problem, frustration, hurdle, or struggle? Make it real, make it personal.
You’ve been there too. Empathy is a crucial element often left out of sales copy. Put yourself in the customer’s shoes and convey that you’ve also experienced the same thing – felt the same pain.
Position your product as the solution
Directly position your product as the solution to your customer’s problem. This simple step will increase the value of your product in the eyes of the customer. As Donald Miller says, humans place a high value on the things that will solve their problems.
At this point, you should address any potential customer objections. First, touch upon customers' objections, like price or time commitment. Second, look for opportunities to address and overcome those objections in your copy.
The three- or four-step plan
So you have the solution to someone’s problem, but how do they get your product? Give them a simple, 3-4-step plan.
Don’t make it complicated. Tell your customer what will happen each step of the way.
If you’ve ever mailed the tops of cereal boxes to receive a special prize, you’ve seen this process in action. Step 1: Cut out 5 UPCs from the top of the cereal boxes — Step 2. Place them in a self-addressed envelope and mail them to this address _____ — Step 3. In 2-3 weeks, you’ll receive your spy decoder ring in the mail. Step 4: Start crafting and decoding secret messages. You’re now a bonafide spy!
Our products will benefit from this same approach.
The negative consequence you save the customer from
Create a sense of urgency by showing the stakes of a customer’s inaction. If a customer doesn’t take action today, what will happen? How could their life be negatively impacted?
The positive result your customer will experience
Paint a picture of your client’s preferred reality. Convey what their life will be like after they buy your product or hire your services. This positive result should address their needs and a solution to their problem.
Your call to action
Make it clear and make it easy. Tell your audience exactly what to do and what it will cost.
“Click here to schedule a free 20-minute assessment call with Sarah.”
Do: Click and schedule
Cost: 20 minutes
“Click here to buy our revolutionary blender for $199.99.”
Do: Click to buy
Coco Chanel is famous for saying, “Before you leave your house, take one thing off.” To ensure a high number of conversions, make sure that you eliminate distractions from your sales page copy. We also encourage removing any design elements that don’t enhance the story and lead people to your Call-to-action: remove sidebars, irrelevant images, and graphics, and keep headers and footers to a minimum.
Include multiple Calls-to-action
Your CTA is one of the most crucial parts of your sales page copy. A CTA helps direct visitors to your marketplace and convinces them to purchase. Give people multiple opportunities to act. We recommend a minimum of three CTA opportunities placed throughout a long-form sales page. This repetition reduces the chances of customers falling through the cracks.
Ensure your sales page design is responsive
Many people shop online directly from their mobile devices, so making a page that works well on mobile devices, like tablets and phones, can increase purchases. Consider using a web design consultant to help create a mobile-friendly sales page.
Direct traffic to the page
“If a tree falls in a forest and no one’s around to hear it, does it make a noise?” If you launch a sales page and no one visits it, do you sell the product? It’s essential to drive people to your sales page through organic conversation, social media posting, and paid advertising.
Test the effectiveness of the page
Little adjustments to your sales page can significantly impact conversions, so it's crucial to regularly test your sales page—experiment with A/B tests on different layouts, headlines, media, color, and calls to action.
• • •
Using our approach to crafting sales pages that make money will place you on the path to having a website that works for you and not against you. Happy selling!
If you’re interested in hiring us to build you a kick-ass sales page, book a free 20-minute strategy call.