Dynamic Landing Pages

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As a common rule of thumb, all pay per click accounts should have landing pages specific to each theme, product, or service.  The more specific a landing page is, the more likely it is that the visitor will convert.  Think of it this way, the landing page is the hook on the end of your line.  You can bait them with the ad text all day long, but if you can’t hook ‘em and reel ‘em in, the efforts are wasted.

What is a dynamic landing page?

A dynamic landing page is a landing page that can be manipulated in order to create a page specific to each unique visitor.  To be more specific, dynamic landing pages can be changed to meet each visitor’s needs.

One of the biggest pulls of dynamic landing pages is that instead of creating multiple landing pages in order to target each visitor, you can create one and use dynamic insertion to specialize it for each viewer.  For instance, if you rented buses, you could create static text describing the specifications of the buses and then use dynamic text to emphasize features that might pertain to specific market segments such as bachelor parties or mission trips.  You can see why you would want to have different landing pages for each of these markets, so although the text describing the bus might be exactly the same, the headlines and features could change to include different phrases depending on the visitor, including: ‘Spacious party buses’ or ‘Comfortable seats for a soothing road trip’.

Why are dynamic landing pages important?

Each landing page should show the searcher exactly what they’re searching for.  If the searcher is looking for a product, the landing page should be all about the product.  If the landing page is about an idea, or a subscription, then the landing page should be extremely specific to the searchers needs.  A dynamic landing page is an excellent way to do this because instead of creating unique landing pages for every need, you can create one landing page with the features and use dynamic keyword insertion to make it specific to each trade.  For instance, if you were selling magazines, you could use dynamic insertion based upon the type of magazine the person was looking for. Notice the difference in the two headlines:

‘Discounted Swimsuits’

‘Discounted Designer Bikinis’

Don’t bother trying to convince your searchers that designer bikinis and swimsuits are the same thing – just give them what they search for!  If you sell designer bikinis and they are looking for designer bikinis, then be up front with your landing page text.  Most searchers don’t take much time to completely read the full text but if they see their search term, they’re in!  Sure, swimsuits is a broad description but that means that once they get to your site they’ll have to do even MORE searching and you may not even have designer bikinis, at this point they may leave costing you a click and potentially a returning customer.

How can it be targeted?

Most commonly, dynamic landing pages can be manipulated by search queries and by IP addresses.

Targeting by Keyword

Where better for the keyword to be than in the headline, a photo caption, and conveniently scattered throughout the text?  By using dynamic keyword insertion, you can assure that each visitor sees their exact search term in the most influential real estate of the landing page. Increase your time on site and decrease your bounce rate by being extremely consistent throughout the search process.  Your ads should include keywords, as should your landing pages.  Google will reward you through your quality score.  You can see a significant jump in quality score by having landing pages tightly themed to fit each ad group.

It is a good way to increase conversion rates, because it makes your page more interesting.  Assuming the searcher is really interested in what they are searching for (why wouldn’t they be), they will want to learn more about that topic.  Parking visitors on a page dedicated solely to the exact topic searched, is the best way to lure in the lead.

Targeting by IP Address

By integrating user IP addresses into your web application, you can create geotargeted dynamic landing pages.  There are several benefits to a localized landing page, including the fact that some consumers may be prone to buying from local businesses (if they are genuinely local businesses that also distribute over the web), and for those bigger corporations, there are those consumers that are not 100% confident in e-commerce transactions.  It seems strange to many of us, but there are still people out there that would rather locate a product and then go out and buy it, rather than enter a credit card online.  Insert identity theft commercial here.  While your site’s shopping cart may be secure, there will still be leery consumers.  Thus, long story short, if your business is not strictly e-commerce, but also has a physical store location, you could benefit from dynamically inserting geotargeted phrases into the landing page when searched by IP addresses surrounding your business.  For instance, if you owned a restaurant in Indianapolis, Chicago, and San Francisco, you could dynamically insert addresses of stores and location specific headlines and keywords for IP addresses in those areas.

Furthermore, if you run a large business, the ad graphic or product offer may vary, based upon location.  You would be able to insert the promotional phrase based upon location, while the product or service description would remain the same.  From there, you could offer the visitor a printable coupon or notify them of in-store specials in their area.   If promotions weren’t running in certain areas, you could restrict people from seeing the promotion in those areas, which means less angry phone calls!

This feature is also especially useful for businesses that need to accommodate several different currencies.  Again, this is an excellent way to localize your business, which is especially important for globalized businesses.

Dynamic Landing Pages: Best Practices

Before you get started with your dynamic landing pages, check out these best practices:

1.     First and foremost, remember that search queries can be misspelled and mistaken.  You don’t want your landing pages to wind up saying something crazy because of problem in the search, so it’s generally best to make sure common misspells trigger default keywords.

2.     Don’t overstuff.  For one, overstuffing keywords is bad in any case, it makes the text hard to read and Google becomes suspicious, which brings us to point number two.  Too many dynamic variables are seem spammy to Google, so keep it to a minimal.

3.     Utilize your hotspots.  Put dynamic insertion in the title, a call to action, and other influential spots on your landing page.  (If you’re not sure exactly where your hotspots are, you can find software that will create a heat map of your landing page.)

Check out this post for more information about the coding of dynamic landing pages.

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  • http://marketandconvert.com/ Chris Braswell

    I love this article. We have been working on some new landing pages for our clients and it has been a huge success.

  • Patrick

    You Said:

    “2. Don’t overstuff. For one, overstuffing keywords is bad in any case, it makes the text hard to read and Google becomes suspicious, which brings us to point number two. Too many dynamic variables are seem spammy to Google, so keep it to a minimal.”

    But if this is Dynamic Insertion on the landing page, the triggering of the keyword only happens when a search is made by the user. So I highly doubt that that would affect any scores or rankings with Google. Is dynamic at the time of the search, not there for google to see. When Google checks the page for Quality score, they would be looking at the default keyword, not what was dynamically inserted. Basically Im dissagreeing and would like to hear why you think dynamic keyword insertion on the landing page would do anything.

    • http://www.batyuchok.com Yoora

      Actually if you’re using tracking urls on keywords instead of ads – google will check the LP as if the keyword was triggered, and crawl LP with relevant LP so it will affect QS.
      I think there can be problems with google bots and your QS if you’re using dynamic LP for different IP’s to show LP in different languages. If the language of LP can change then google bot can enter website from Ireland for example and see LP in English and set low QS for your French campaign.

  • http://unbounce.com Oli | Unbounce

    Great article. “Overstuffing” is one of the most common problems we encounter.

  • http://www.farmerseo.com Greg Uhrlen

    Amy,

    You hit the nail on the head in regards to swimsuits vs. Designer Bikinis. It is often a tough sell to convince businesses that competing for words such as televisions, used cars, etc (generic examples) makes no sense when you have a much greater conversion opportunity with Samsung 3-D television Pittsburgh. We really work to educate our clients on the benefits of long tail keywords.

  • Ronny

    Very insightful! Thank you.

  • http://twitter.com/angle45media Ben Joven

    Yeah I use this ALL the time; in certain niches in increases conversion ratios by 3x but makes sure if you’re using this that the keyword insertion makes sense.

    Ben Joven | angle45media

  • Koslow

    Do we know if this still increases Quality Score? What does google think about dynamic landing pages almost 3 years later?

    • http://www.hanapinmarketing.com PPC Hero

      Hi Koslow,

      We don’t know of a specific response that Google has about this, but their changes to quality score regarding landing pages seem to indicate that they’re not as concerned with keyword matching nowadays. It’s all about site quality. Here’s what the AdWords help section says goes into their LP quality evaluation:

      How relevant, transparent, and easy-to-navigate your page is

      Dynamic LPs should help make your site more relevant to users, so it’s probably a good thing if you can set it up. Odds are, though, that this wouldn’t produce as big of a change in your QS as it may have in the past.

      This is just speculation, though, so if you hear anything concrete please let us know!