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21 Landing Page Mistakes to Avoid From 4 Split Testing Experts

What better way to start 2015 than with a slew of landing page suggestions from four of the world’s leading conversion experts?

Once again we’ve tapped the minds of our panel of conversion rate optimization (CRO) experts — this time we served up a landing page for Spafinder and asked them what they liked and which factors they’d suggest testing.

(Want 32 split testing ideas for your landing page? Get them here.)

Here’s our panel of experts…

  • Chris Goward – Founder of Wider Funnel, author of You Should Test That! and Traffic and Conversion Summit 2015 speaker.
  • Tim Ash – Author of Landing Page Optimization, CEO of Site Tuners and Founder of Conversion Conference.
  • Justin Rondeau – Data Driven Marketing & CRO Trainer. Analyzed 2,500+ Tests Across Virtually Every Industry.
  • Brian Massey – Author of the The Customer Creation Equation and Founder of Conversion Sciences.

Here’s what we asked our conversion experts to critique…

The Search


The Ad


The Landing Page


The Questions

  • What did you like on this landing page?
  • What would you test to boost conversions?

Here’s what four conversion experts had to say about what was done well and what could be improved on this landing page. (NOTE:  We’d love to hear how you would improve this landing page.  Give us your thoughts in the comments section.)

Chris Goward, WiderFunnel


What I liked:

Relevance: The offer on the page matches the ad! (That’s surprisingly rare.)
Clarity: They include a caption under the image
Anxiety: There’s a toll free number in the header for assurance

What I would test:

Similar to my Rosetta analysis last month, the LIFT Analysis below would lead to many hypotheses and potential test variations.
Copy should be all left-aligned, and a whole new page of conversion copywriting should be created. I’d consolidate the CTA buttons into one and clarify that there are more price points available. This page, unfortunately, is in need of a dramatic tested redesign do-over too.
Hear more from Chris at Traffic and Conversion Summit 2015.


Justin Rondeau, Should I Test That


What I liked:

To be quite honest, I don’t like a lot of things about this landing page. We all know we need to keep our landing pages simple, but this page goes a bit overboard.
I feel like the one thing that went right was how they used color to set a visual hierarchy. By having the most compelling offer in the white background, our eyes are naturally drawn here. In fact they do such a good job pulling our eye to the central CTAs, I never noticed the bar with the offer.
What I would test:
There are a ton of things I would like to test and a few other things I would just want to change immediately! I’ll limit myself to 3 examples of elements Spafinder should test to move the needle.
1) The entire header is just wrong. There is an initial top header with the logo and ‘Need help?’ section just above another headline that is in the traditional header spot. In addition to the double header, the page width is different between the branded header and the offer header. This makes the page look awkward.
In this case I suggest testing a variation that has only one header type.
2) The three different card options look like competing CTAs. I’d recommend moving the selection process deeper in the cart and sticking a single ‘Buy Now’ or ‘Get My Gift Card’ button. By simplifying the number of options, you can keep the visitor focused on the most important question ‘Should I buy or not?’
3) Earlier I praised the group for creating a visual hierarchy using colors. They were so effective that I totally missed the offer and was about to blast them for not having an offer consistent with their advertisement. The deal is one of the sexiest parts of this ad, so make it stand out and exciting! A discounted gift card is like free money. If your page isn’t excited about the offer, then your customer won’t be!
There are plenty of other things to test here such as the dated design, content placement, USP placement, page width, etc…
(If you want to utilize some of these ideas on your own page but you’re new to the game, I explain how to set up your first split test here.)


Brian Massey, Conversion Sciences LLC


What I liked:

This page is to the point. It’s well-designed for spontaneous purchasers who don’t need nor want a lot of information.
The page has relevant imagery that “shows the product.”
Everything fits neatly above the fold, so no scrolling is required.

What I would test:

  • Test “Get a $150 Gift Card for $134” against the current primary headline “Spafinder Wellness 365 Gift Cards” which isn’t really a sentence.
  • Help me choose! Test pages in which each of the offers is made most prominent and see which generates the most revenue. The other offers should be links or lower intensity buttons.
  • Keep the other promises of the ad. Test “eGift Cards or Mailed Classic Gift Cards” against each of: “Sales Ends Soon”, “Cards Never Expire” and “Use at over 22,000 spa & wellness locations worldwide.”
  • Add a finder (it is Spafinder, right) to the flow so I can be sure there are good spas near my giftee. This would be a big swing.
  • Test this page against one on which the most popular card designs on the page below the fold and repeat the call to action at the bottom.



Tim Ash, CEO of SiteTuners and Chairperson of Conversion Conference


What I liked:

1)   The color scheme of the page is calm and “spa-like”
2)   Ad headline is repeated on the landing page
3)   Physical gift cards are well displayed at close to actual size.

What I would test:

Although the ad headline offer is repeated on the landing page, it is buried in small print in the middle of the page. There is also a confusing contrast between the physical gift cards, and the triple call-to-action which allows you also print or email the gift card (a concept that many people would have to think about to understand in the context of gift cards).
1)   Repeat the Ad headline as a single large page headline “Gift Card Sale – Enjoy a $150 Gift Card for $134”
2)   Include key bullet points in much larger text “ – Works at over 20,000 spas worldwide, – Never expires” immediately below the headline.
3)   Include about a dozen grayscale logos of well-known top spas that accept the card
4)   Have two calls-to-action – “Find spas near me” (with a freeform search field that accepts cities, zip codes or spa names), and a single “Get My Gift Card!” button (the choice of format physical/printed/emailed is secondary and should be asked later in the purchase process).
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Lindsay Marder

Lindsay Marder

Lindsay Marder is the Co-Founder of She works with businesses in a variety of industries, leveraging digital marketing strategies to help them achieve their goals. Formerly the Managing Editor of DigitalMarketer, Lindsay managed the Editorial Team and the DigitalMarketer blog, generating over 7 million unique sessions in 2017.

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