5 top WordPress landing page optimisation tips based on psychology
Successful WordPress landing pages arise from a detailed understanding of psychology and human behaviour, combined with best practice UX techniques and the technical knowledge required to effectively leverage them.
Achieve higher conversions from your WordPress landing pages with the following five landing page optimisation tips, each of which is grounded in psychology.
Tip #1: Always Demonstrate Value First
From a psychology perspective, nurturing a successful social relationship is always a two-way street – users need you to offer value first, before asking anything of them.
Too many businesses talk only about the work they can do or the product they can sell, without explaining ‘why’ that product or service is of benefit. Rather than pushing the sale too heavily, a more successful approach to a landing page or sales page relies on your ability to convey the result customers can expect as a consequence of purchasing or converting.
Figure out what’s important to them, what they expect from the landing page, what they want to achieve and how you can help them meet their objectives. Only then, can you offer your solution and ask for the conversion.
Tip #2: Test Your User Behaviour and Gather Data
Any attempt at WordPress landing page optimisation should begin by gathering and analysing as much data as possible. The cornerstone of any good design requires an understanding of your user’s behaviour so that you can tweak and cater for their needs in your page designs. This mirrors the research and experimentation phase of any good psychological experiment, as you use the data to inform your next steps.
In the world of website optimisation, there are many different tools that can assist you in tracking and gathering your user’s behaviour on your pages, including:
- Google Analytics
- A/B testing
- Scroll maps
- Confetti maps
- Overlay reports
Tools such as HotJar, CrazyEgg, and other analytics programs offer these and other conversion rate optimisation tools.
Once you know what users are doing when they land on your page – as well as where they’re clicking and how deep they’re scrolling – you’ll have some of the data needed to make changes. However keep in mind that this is only quantitative data, so it won’t tell you the why. To dig deeper into a problem you’ll also need to conduct qualitative research.
Tip #3: Increase Trust and Security Signals
Users won’t be inclined to interact with a landing page that looks or feels untrustworthy. From a psychological standpoint, trust is a feeling of confidence and security, and in order to instill this emotional state in your users through a webpage, there are a number of visual and informational cues you need to provide.
To increase trust in your WordPress landing page, consider:
- Showing a phone number
- Using consistent brand colours, typography and imagery
- Incorporating verifiable facts (ideally, with links back to the original source or reference materials)
- Promoting endorsements and testimonials (especially those that are verifiable through sources like Google, G2 Crowd, Glassdoor, or LinkedIn profile recommendations)
- Displaying your terms and conditions in clear and easy-to-understand language
- Clearly describing any money-back guarantees, delivery charges, or other services fees that may be applicable before checkout
- Keeping your SSL certificate up-to-date so that the padlock icon displays in the browser address bar
- Displaying any security certifications you’ve earned (especially if you process payments)
- Incorporating security-related imagery, such as padlocks and crests
- Limiting the information you capture to only the items required to complete transactions or fulfil requests
- Integrating with other services such as Google, Apple, or Facebook accounts to limit the amount of information users need to actually type in, as well as to leverage the perception of trust conferred by these services and their trusted safety protocols
Try to take an objective look at your landing page. If you wouldn’t feel confident handing over your personal information, why would your visitors feel comfortable doing so?
Tip #4: Keep Page Load Speed as Low as Possible
Landing pages should load quickly to prevent user frustration and to enhance your SEO. Many factors influence our perceptions of the speed at which time passes, including age, geography, environment, and emotions, to name a few. But according to Stoyan Stefanov in his Velocity presentation, we perceive load times as being 15% slower than they actually are – and when we reflect on the duration, we remember load times as being 35% longer.
The psychology of page load speeds matters, yet many – if not most – WordPress themes come with additional HTML markup that can add to load times, especially if they use site-builder frameworks. Excess plugins can contribute to higher load times as well
To prevent page speed issues, make sure that you:
- Minimise your HTTP requests
- Minimise ‘time to first byte’
- Reduce server response time (e.g. by using an efficient web host that’s optimised for WordPress, by optimising database lookups, etc)
- Enable caching for all non-authenticated web visitors (cache as much as possible when people are logged in)
- Compress images, or serve in next-generation formats where possible and ensure the most appropriate dimensions for the device accessing the page
- Defer off-screen images so that they only load when the visitor reaches them while scrolling
- Use a CDN for as much site content as possible (including large video files), especially if you have a geographically distributed audience
- Turn off auto-playing videos
Google’s free Page Speed Insights tool can help you identify areas where your WordPress landing pages are missing the mark. Further, there are plenty of different free and paid optimisation plugins available for WordPress. And while many of them work well, the best ones for your site will be determined by other plugins you’re using, your desired site functionality, and the way your theme is built.
Tip #5: Leverage Buyer Psychology Tactics
The more you understand your target market the better you’ll be able to tailor your landing page to really connect with them and encourage action.
Yet it’s also handy to know a few extra tactics based on buyer behaviour and sales psychology.
A few to explore include:
- Reciprocity: As noted above, by leading with value and giving the user something first, they’ll be more inclined to give you something back.
- Curiosity: Find a way of pitching your solution that piques curiosity so that users are compelled to find out more.
- Specificity and clarity: The clearer and more specific you are as to what you’re offering (and how your offer benefits your visitors), the more likely a user will be to trust you.
- Credibility: Demonstrate your experience, awards and the results you’ve achieved for others.
- Social proof: When possible, display real testimonials from real people or businesses proving the value of your offering.
- Fear: Don’t overdo it, but do make clear the negative impacts that could occur if a user does not proceed with your offer.
- Scarcity: When you can do so legitimately, test placing limits around time or availability of the offer.
Be cautious to deploy these tactics to a reasonable degree. Faking scarcity or leaning too heavily into fear, for example, risks eliminating the trust you worked so hard to build.
For a quick reference on these and other psychology best practices, check out Sitback’s Cognitive Bias Cards, which are available as both a free PDF download and a printed pack of cards for purchase. Intended primarily for use with user research projects, many customers have found them useful in other areas of their lives too. Use them as regular reminders to pay attention to the biases you may have, as well as to learn ways to react strategically in order to alleviate them.
Or, if you’d benefit from expert help with your WordPress landing page optimisation, get in touch today for help from Sitback’s specialist team of psychologists, cutting-edge software engineers and senior project managers.