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FutureNow Post
Wednesday, Apr. 25, 2007 at 9:49 am

No More Landing Pages

By Holly Buchanan
April 25th, 2007

We don't need no stinking landing pages!Ahah! It appears the choir is growing.

I recently wrote about hitting the landing page optimization wall. I discussed the problems of trying to optimize traditional landing pages. It appears I am not alone.

Check out the No More Landing Pages blog.

Here’s a quick excerpt:

Whatever your conversion rate is, you can do better if you lose the shackles of the landing page. Whatever brand damage you’re inflicting can be reversed if you think differently. Landing pages are outdated, archaic and, like Anna said, they’re a crutch. Just because everyone is doing it doesn’t mean it’s the right thing to do.

Find out more about new ways to think about landing pages to get better results.

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Comments (10)

  1. Holly,

    Just read your ‘hitting the landing page wall’ – love it! Particularly the comment about not knowing what’s missing. Testing and optimization is great, and has its place. But the industry has stopped seeing the forest (the experience) through the trees (the landing page).


  2. [...] ! C’est le thème d’un blog qui vient de se lancer outre atlantique, relayé par GrokDotCom. Au lieu de s’échiner à optimiser des pages existantes, il est temps de remettre tout à [...]

  3. This is a very interesting topic for me. If we don’t make the pages, we never get that traffic. It’s definitely a good idea to rethink the way we make them though.

  4. When did the landing page become a one-page idea instead of a “gateway” to the rest of the site? I must have missed that memo. Does this “one page does it all” landing page idea have anything to do with the rise of multi-variate testing and “auto-optimization”?

  5. JIm, you may have hit the nail on the head. We are so focused on optimization and MVT that we forget to think about experiences. Not experiences just for the sake of doing them, but to engage and segment, and qualify and convert.

  6. Isn’t this a straw man argument? Who would disagree that an experience needs to be considered in addition to the particular characteristics (and location) of particular pages that users, um, land on?

    How do they “land”? They land from banners. They land from direct nav. They land from organic search referrals. They land from inbound links. They land from paid search referrals. In the latter case, you have to call them something. Practically speaking we can call them destination URL’s or landing pages… but we have to call them something.

    Obviously, not all landing pages are created equal. Indeed, according to your definition, maybe what I call a landing page isn’t a landing page. Or what I use as a landing page shouldn’t be my “focus.” You tell me.

    I’ll sometimes test 2-3 different destination URL’s as part of a certain kind of ad test. It might be a category page, a home page, and the product page. I am happy to call all of these landing pages, or none. What I care about most is that I figure out which performs the best – roughly speaking, in ROI terms. It’s usually fairly clear. Or I could multivariate test one of those pages. And yes, I guess that’s that evil testing and tweaking of a single landing page you’re ranting about. Well you know what? It works!!! Doesn’t have to mean the marketer is necessarily blind to context, to the 360 degree view of advertising.

    I’m a very practical guy. I see too many campaigns to give up on just focusing on getting paid search advertisers to implement the basics, which includes something I happen to call landing pages.

    You can tell me I’m wrong to focus on them, or even to call them landing pages for that matter. But I’m unlikely to believe you.

    Multi-stage experiences? Sure, I’m all for those too. Your blanket statements, though, don’t seem to be fair to what many marketers are doing, which is not as far wrong as the anti-landing-page blog implies.

    Whether we’re looking at a very specific variable in a page or an overall online marketing plan, we’re addressing to a certain degree some proportion of (1) persuasion and (2) plumbing. The latter, in my view, is underestimated. It’s all too easy to look over the horizon past the immediate obstacles.

  7. Andrew,

    You bring up some very important points. Let me try to address them.

    you say “You can tell me I’m wrong to focus on them, or even to call them landing pages for that matter. But I’m unlikely to believe you.”

    Let me be clear – I agree with some of the philosphy of the No More Landing pages folks. But I am in NO WAY suggesting we get rid of “landing pages.”

    and I am not saying you are wrong to focus on them, I’m saying the exact opposite. I’m saying they NEED MORE focus.

    When creating ads or driving points,the advertiser ABSOUTELY has to think about and plan for the page or pages the visitor sees when he or she clicks on that ad or driving point. let’s call that a “destination page” as you suggest.

    You point out that your “destination pages” are sometimes a category page, a home page, or a product page. When a visitor lands on these pages, they have choices, links. Hopefully, these destination pages have planned pathways where the visitor chooses where he wants to go next. These pathways take into account how the visitor arrived at the site (what their driving point was – a keyword typed into a search engine, a banner ad, typing in the URL, etc.)so the content and links they see are relevant.

    Too often, this “planning” does not take place.

    you say: “Your blanket statements, though, don’t seem to be fair to what many marketers are doing, which is not as far wrong as the anti-landing-page blog implies.”

    I’m not sure if by “anti-landing page blog” you are referring to my blog post or the NO More Landing pages blog – but let me be really clear here, because it is important.

    I’m all for testing. Persuasion Architecture is based on the foundation that by planning scenarios ahead of time, you can atually plan for and test every click in the scenario. It’s a beautiful thing. You can not improve results of you don’t test. Clearly defined testing/optimization should be done on all your online conversion efforts.

    I do not believe testing and tweaking is evil – I believe it is an absolute necessity.

    you refer to “persausion” and “plumbing” – we have something similar at Future now, we refer to it as “persuasion” and “conversion” – if you have conversion stumbling blocks, they affect EVERYONE – and those have to be addressed up front.

    Where I agree with No More Landing Pages is – when we provide a landing page or destination page that is a “closed funnel” – a single page where everyone has the exact same experience – that does not take into the account different buying modalities or stage of the buying process or visitor intent – then, yes, we are missing opportunities to do better.

    thanks for bringing up those important points.

  8. Holly
    I think this is a great topic
    I have been arguing about squeeze pages for years, mostly with internet marketers who swear by them like they are the holy grail and the only option on the web. I think it takes alot of work to “train” a market to accept this process.

    The biggest problem I see with landing pages is that people HATE them! Clients give an almost viceral shutter when I mention this idea to them – and for many of the same reasons mentioned int the blogs, I understand the nesessity of online lead capture, but anything that converts at less than 10% is saying something. problem is what is it really saying- and to whom? For as much time as we all spend testing and tweeking it’s sometimes hard to remember there is always a person behind the click.

    Technology is best when used as a way to enhance relationships not replace them,… no matter how enticing the idea may be

    thanks for the post
    Jan Riley

  9. REally interesting resource for a beginner like me, i would like to thanks the author for this great and informativecontribution…

  10. The one page landing page makes it easier for users. If all info can get to thepoint it will only build any additional pages for strength.

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Holly Buchanan is a marketing to women consultant specializing in marketing to women online. You can read her blog at She is the co-author, along with Michele Miller of The Soccer Mom Myth - Today's Female Consumer - Who She Really Is, Why She Really Buys.

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