landing page mistakes that steal your conversions

It happens all the time. Your ads get hundreds of clicks, but there are no conversions. You check for broken links, and you’re 100% sure that you’re targeting the right audience. Now, you’re clueless. Why won’t any visitors convert?

Brands lose millions of dollars every year because of low-conversion ad campaigns. So what are they doing wrong? Usually, the problem lies in poorly optimized landing pages.

Your conversions

Getting people to click on your ads is only 20% of the success. Next, you need to deliver a perfect landing page experience for them to click on the “buy” or “sign up” button.

Up next, we’ll walk through 12 serious landing page mistakes that you can easily fix to boost your advertising ROI and keep your cost-per-conversions low.

For those who lack patience, here are all the landing page mistakes listed:

  1. Bad first impression
  2. Your ads and landing page call-to-actions don’t scale
  3. You’re targeting everyone at once
  4. You’re using an unclear value proposition
  5. Your call-to-actions are confusing people
  6. Poor mobile experience
  7. The landing page and ad designs are unaligned
  8. You’re using no images
  9. You’re using the wrong images
  10. There are no images of your product
  11. The opt-in forms and sign-up boxes are hard to find
  12. FBI-worthy opt-in forms (our favorite hack of this post!)

Mistake #1: Bad First Impression

After someone clicks on your ad and lands on your website, you have about 10 seconds to convince them to stay.

During the first 10 seconds, the visitor evaluates whether your website is trustworthy, interesting, and worth staying for longer.

If you’re unsure whether your website leaves a good first impression or not, check your Google Analytics data to see the average time-on-page. If the result is less than 20 seconds, it means that most of the visitors stay on your site for less than five seconds.

So how can you leave a good first impression?

The best advice I’ve heard is to ensure your landing page won’t look like it was created more than two years ago.

Here’s how Hubspot’s home page looked in 2008. (Back then, it was exactly what clients expected, but not anymore)

hubspot pages

The internet’s developing at a rapid pace and what worked eight years ago isn’t relevant today. You need to keep up with the trends that people are used to seeing.

Modern websites use minimal design and light text to deliver the core messages while holding back on business jargon. See what Crazy Egg did there?

Three rules to leave a good first impression:

  • Use a simple layout with professional design
  • Use a clear value proposition
  • Use an image or illustration that’s not a stock photo

Mistake #2. Your Ads and Landing Page Call-to-Actions Don’t Scale

Imagine you clicked on an advertisement that promised to boost your social media ROI by 50% in 7 days. Up next, you land on Buffer’s website saying “Save time managing your social media.”

This could never happen in real life.

Why? Because the smart marketers at Buffer know how important it is to keep the offers in your ads aligned with your landing page value proposition.


Promising one thing in your Facebook ads and then failing to keep the message consistent throughout your sales funnel is a costly mistake to make.

How to keep your value propositions aligned?

Start by finding a unique value proposition that describes your product the best. Next, use the same message throughout your advertising campaign and landing pages.

For example, Scoro uses a straightforward value proposition “Bring structure to your work.”


As you click on the ad, you land on their homepage that has the exact same message. And that’s exactly what potential customers are expecting to see.

scoro webpage

Mistake #3. You’re Targeting Everyone at Once

We’ve previously written about the importance of targeting a closely-knit audience. The better you’re able to touch upon a small target audience’s pain points or aspirations, the higher your advertising ROI will be.

Smart Facebook marketers rarely advertise the same offer to everyone. Because it just won’t work.

Every company has multiple different audience groups, depending on the industry, lifestyle preferences, technical skills, etc. Your job as a marketer is to segment your audience and deliver highly relevant offers to them.

But you shouldn’t stop at targeting different audiences in your Facebook ad campaigns. You should also build a highly relevant landing page experience for each of these audiences.

For example, in Scoro, we created a Facebook ad campaign specifically targeting professional service agencies.


After we had started sending the ad campaign’s audience to a dedicated landing page instead of our home page, we saw a 37% decrease in the cost-per-conversion.

Mistake #4. You’re Using an Unclear Value Proposition

People are selfish. They don’t care about your product’s features, even if you think that your product’s awesome. People who land on your website want to see what’s in it for them.

One of the common mistakes marketers make is to start boasting about their product and its high-tech features.

What their website’s lacking is a clear value proposition telling clients why they should buy the product.

For example, GetResponse’s home page says it’s the “World’s easiest email marketing” and trusted by over 350 000 happy customers. But the huge headline doesn’t say why it’s beneficial to a particular user.


Take a look at AdEspresso’s home page:


Both the headline and the sub-headline explain how you can improve your Facebook marketing while improving your ROI.

How to write a good landing page value proposition:

  • Remember it’s all about the customer, not your product
  • Think about the biggest benefit your product brings to the client
  • Use an action verb to describe the benefit (do, get, win, improve, etc.)

Mistake #5. Your Call to Actions are Confusing

Call-to-actions are nice. They make people click and bring in the money.

Marketers love call-to-actions so much that they’d like to fill the entire landing page with them. If the visitor doesn’t like your main call-to-action, maybe they’ll click on another one, right?

But covering your landing page with CTAs is not the answer. Too many CTAs have the opposite effect of your marketing results – they start to confuse your audience.

Look at the home page design by influitive. Where would you click? There are so many options, and people get stressed out when they have to make too many decisions.


The best practice is to place only a single call-to-action on top of your landing page. SEMrush’s landing page uses only one call-to-action so that it’s easy to understand how to get started.

Semrush site audit tool

How to write a high-conversion CTA button text:

  • Use an action verb (get, do, try, start)
  • Use “You” instead of “My” (Start your free trial)
  • Be specific about what they’ll get (Get your 14-day free trial)

Mistake #6. Poor Mobile Experience

Source: Business Insider

It is likely that over 50% of your landing page visitors are using a mobile device. If your website’s not optimized for the mobile experience, you’re losing both money and credibility.

Mobile visitors have a different intent, higher distraction levels and expectations that don’t always align with desktop viewers.

Here’s a great example of mobile landing page experience. Schuh mobile page has clear navigation, easy-to-read font size, and clear call-to-actions.


It is completely different from their desktop layout:

schuh desktop layout

Simply making your website mobile responsive is not enough to capture new deals.

Here’s what you should keep in mind when mobile-optimizing your landing page:

  • Make it easy to explore the landing page with clear navigation buttons
  • Avoid making the mobile site too text-heavy
  • Ensure that it’s super easy to make a purchase or a sign-up on your mobile site.

Mistake #7. Your Landing Page and Ad Designs are Unaligned

What if you were promised an iPhone and then given a Nokia 3310? In all honesty, we’d feel kinda angry and disappointed.

Unless you’re in love with the Snake game, you’d be mad at the person (or company) that failed to keep their promise.


You should never make the design promises you can’t keep.

Every marketer has at least once created Facebook ad images that attract many clicks but do not align with their brand’s design guidelines.

It’s a thin line to be walking – your ads will attract more attention, but after people click on them, they’ll land on your website with a completely different branding.

In the best case scenario, people won’t notice the misalignment and will buy your product. But we’re not living in a perfect world. It is more likely that your ad audience will feel confused when landing on a landing page whose design greatly differs from your ads the just saw.

Wealthfront, for example, is walking a thin line between design misalignment and efficient advertising. While their ad has a really graphic layout, there are no illustrative elements with the same style on their home page.


Wealthfront’s landing page:

Westfromt Form

Mistake #8. Using No Images

Humans process visual information up to 60 000 times faster than verbal communication. Which leads us to a no-brainer – images matter a lot.

And it’s not only the ad images that you need to pick wisely. The images on your landing pages are just as important. Not using images on your landing pages can leave a huge potential untapped.

There are several reasons to use images on your Facebook ad landing pages:

  • Images help to tell a story faster
  • They help to create emotions and trust
  • They give structure to your page, making it easier to read
  • A well-chosen image drives engagement

Mistake #9. Using the Wrong Images

It is hard to tell which is worse: no images or bad images.

The most common landing page image mistakes that marketers make (and that you can easily avoid):

  • Irrelevant images – always use an image that tells a story related to your product
  • Distracting images – use images as visual cues but don’t let them steal the entire show
  • Untrustworthy images – use high-quality images that ignite positive emotion and trust
  • Small images – use high-resolution images (double size for retina screens)
  • Boring images – make sure that the story your landing page images tell is interesting for the visitor

Here’s a great example of OkayRelax, a company that provides you with a personal assistant. Their image works because it features a real person who could actually be a personal assistant. You instantly feel a closer relationship with the individual in the picture and are more likely to sign up.

instant assistance

Never use free stock images as your landing page images as they can be found on any other site across the web. Find an original photo from sites such as Flickr or Stocksy that really tells your story.

Even if finding great images takes time, it is well worth the effort. Have you ever considered how much time and commitment goes into producing AdEspresso’s blog images? But they work! People love custom images that speak the brand’s language.

Mistake #10. Not Showing your Product

Maybe it’s because marketers are so used to seeing the product they sell, but it’s quite common to not add the product image or screenshot to a landing page.

As a customer, you’d like to see the product before buying it.

So when an ad landing page fails to showcase the product, the prospects are much less likely to buy.

For example, AdEspresso’s home page features a customized screenshot of their analytics tool.

Why this image works so well:

  • Visitors can see the actual product
  • The zoom-in makes the image content readable
  • The image is complemented by the text message

Here’s another example by Scoro: Placing a video icon on the product screenshot helps to draw more attention to the video.

scoro work management software

Mistake #11. The Opt-in Forms and Sign-Up Boxes are Hard to Find

The end goal of your ads is to get something from the audience. Whether you want them to share their email in exchange for an ebook, make a demo request or buy something from your E-Commerce store, there’s always a conversion at the end of your advertising funnel.

It’s not the CTR or CPC of your ads that matter. It’s the CPA.

Translated into human language: You shouldn’t be focusing on the click-through-rate or the cost-per-click of your ads. The only metric that shows the real ROI of your ads is the cost-per-acquisition.

If your landing page fails to convert the website visitor, all the time spent on creating awesome ads and doing customer research goes to waste.

So what’s the secret sauce to converting the maximum number of website visitors? It’s making it super easy for them to understand your offer and sign up.

When visiting Drifts home page, you’ll instantly notice a huge sign-up box. That’s something that most landing pages can manage – to have a clear sign-up box on top of their landing page.


But what if the client isn’t ready to buy right after landing on your page?

What if they want to read about your product, see customer testimonials, and check out a product screenshot?

Here’s the Golden Rule of landing page call-to-actions: Make them visible throughout your page.

As you scroll down Drift’s landing page, there’s a green sign-up button that moves along in the top menu. At the bottom of the page, there’s another sign-up form with a highly relevant offer: “Try our product 100% for free”.

If the customer’s still hesitating, they can pose a question via the chat box in the bottom right corner of the page. Now that’s a considerate landing page experience!

Drift free

Always assume that your landing page visitors convert at different points along your page. Make sure there’s a sign-up box waiting for them whenever they look for it.

Mistake #12. FBI-Worthy Opt-in Forms

Have you ever tried downloading an ebook by HubSpot? Is the extent of information they require in exchange for the premium content great for HubSpot’s marketing team? Yes. Is it making the clients happy? No.

The only reason people are willing to share all this personal information with HubSpot is that they trust the company. And well… who wouldn’t want a FREE ebook, right?

But for many people, this endless opt-in form resembles an FBI investigation rather than an ebook download.

Would someone fill in an 8-question opt-in form to order a product or get a quote? Probably not.

So how can you get the maximum amount of information without scaring away your website visitors? The best practice is to keep your landing page forms short and collect the minimum amount of information.

But there’s a hack. And you’re going to like it!

Create multi-step opt-in forms.

See how Mixpanel does it. First, they only ask for your email. As you’re curious to find out about their product, you’ll enter it and hit the “Get Started” button.

action speaks louder than words

Next, another window will pop up, asking you to enter your name and a password for the new account. “Alright,” you think, “I’ll get this thing over with”. So you fill in the fields and hit the “Continue” button.

But Mixpanel isn’t done with you yet! There’s another layer of questions waiting to be answered. You’ve already spent 2 minutes on filling in the previous fields, so you’ll answer this set of questions as well.

Sign Up 2

And voila! That’s how multi-layer opt-in forms work. And you can replicate this tactic very easily by using a marketing tool such as OptinMonster.

Alright, landing page optimisers. It’s time for a…

Quick recap

If your Ads landing pages fail to convert, look for these common mistakes and fix them as soon as possible:

  1. Bad first impression – improve the overall website experience
  2. Your ads and landing page call-to-actions don’t scale – use the same offers and call-to-actions on your ads and landing pages
  3. You’re targeting everyone at once – target smaller audiences with specific offers and build a dedicated landing page for each new ad campaign
  4. You’re using an unclear value proposition – be clear on how your product will help the client
  5. Your call-to-actions are confusing people – use a clear request or action verb in your call-to-actions
  6. Poor mobile experience – don’t optimize for mobile, design for mobile
  7. The landing page and ad designs are unaligned – use recognizable branding throughout your ad campaigns and web pages
  8. You’re using no images – always include some images to create emotions and trust
  9. You’re using the wrong images – use images that relate to and complement your product
  10. There are no images of your product – including a clear image of your product on each landing page
  11. The opt-in forms and sign-up boxes are hard to find – insert multiple opt-in forms, also for the people who scroll down on your landing page
  12. FBI-worthy opt-in forms – set up multi-layer opt-in forms instead of a single long one

Thank you for reading.


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