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Generating targeted leads is vitally important for practically any business and landing pages play a major part in the process. The difference a well optimized landing page that is perfectly designed for your target audience can have on your company’s revenue can be staggering!
Now managing and optimizing landing pages used to be reaaaally tedious. You’d have to code the page from scratch, and 3rd party analysis tools were rudimentary at best, so optimizing was more guesswork than anything. But thankfully this is 2019, not 2003. You no longer need to be a coding wizard or be crazy talented at design (although it does help!), as there are now lots of different solutions available that allow you to deploy battle tested, attractive landing pages extremely quickly (sometimes within minutes), and then provide you with the toolset to analyze how your audience engages with them.
Anyhow, it’s that fact that you have “all these options” nowadays that leads us on to the question that we’re addressing in this post…what is the best landing page builder in 2019? Now I’m no expert on building landing pages, so I got in touch with over 60 PPC and SEM pros that are. They build and optimize landing pages pretty much every day, and have been doing so for years. We asked each of them to recommend the best landing page software they’ve come across, allowing them to put forward up to 3 options, and we’ve published the results and what they had to say below.
So whether you’re a novice looking to create your very first landing page or you’re an experienced paid traffic marketer thinking of jumping ship, then this article should give you a number of very good options to investigate further.
Top Landing Page Builders in 2019: How Our Experts Voted
|Landing Page Builder||# of Votes|
|#1. Unbounce||40 Votes|
|#2. Instapage||17 Votes|
|#3. Leadpages||13 Votes|
|#4. ClickFunnels||11 Votes|
|#5. Thrive Architect||8 Votes|
|#6. WordPress||6 Votes|
|#7. Elementor||5 Votes|
|#=8. HubSpot||3 Votes|
|#=8. Wix||3 Votes|
|#=9. Wishpond||2 Votes|
|#=9. Lander||2 Votes|
|#=9. Convertri||2 Votes|
|#=9. Beaver Builder||2 Votes|
|#=10. MailChimp||1 Vote|
|#=10. Divi Builder||1 Vote|
|#=10. Visual Composer||1 Vote|
|#=10. Landingi||1 Vote|
|#=10. Weebly||1 Vote|
|#=10. Kartra||1 Vote|
|#=10. Google Site Builder||1 Vote|
In total there were 20 different landing page builders mentioned during the course of our survey, but as you’ll see from the table above, Unbounce, Instapage, Leadpages, ClickFunnels and Thrive Architect took home most of the votes between them. So they’re the LP solutions that we’re going to hone in on.
If this were a race, Unbounce would have won it with more than a few lengths to spare. It got over double the amount of votes compared to its nearest rival. Why was that? Well fact that Unbounce has been around since 2009 should tell you something. I don’t know about you, but it always gives me that extra bit of reassurance from the get-go when something has stood the test of time like that. Also, given how many extra votes it got, you might be surprised to learn that it’s by no means one of the cheaper landing page builders either, but as they say, you get what you pay for. With this product you get access to a lot of professional, heavily tested templates, an intuitive drag and drop editor, solid A/B testing – all the standard stuff you’d expect – plus a few really cool features like dynamic insertion to increase relevancy (great for conversions), AMP pages for speed (not on the base plan though!) and a fabulous customer service team and community that is proactive rather than reactive. If you’ve got the budget, you won’t go far wrong here.
Instapage was the next most recommended LP builder and it’s all about ease of use and speed. The interface is super simple and there’s virtually no learning curve unlike with Unbounce, making it a suitable choice for small business owners and novice marketers alike. While it doesn’t offer the same robust feature set (popups are a noteworthy omission) or level of customization as Unbounce, you won’t have to write a single line of code and can setup and deploy stunning landing pages using one of the many attractive templates quicker than it takes you to finish a cup of coffee.
Leadpages was another option that received strong support, and is another LP software that has a more lightweight setup (compared to Unbounce), but is easy to get acquainted with, and has one very attractive feature: its price point. A basic plan can be nabbed for as cheap as $17/month, representing great value for money, and a solid choice if your landing page needs are pretty basic.
Now ClickFunnels is a somewhat different beast in that it’s not a dedicated landing page software. As the name suggests it can be used to setup complete sales funnels in addition to your landing pages, and offers you access to a whole world of possibilities, such as upsells, downsells, onetime offers and much more. In terms of creating landing pages it’s very easy. Drag and drop. It just makes sense and won’t take long to pick up. Having said that, a few experts mentioned lack of customization being a weakness, and if you don’t need to create sales funnels, all of those extra features are just bloat that you’ll be paying extra for every month.
Finally, if you’re using WordPress then Thrive Architect is a plugin you might want to investigate. It’s the only one of our top 5 landing page builders that isn’t a subscription based product, costing a onetime fee that’s cheaper than the price of just one month for most of the other options we’ve spoken about. That’s a big plus if you’re counting the pennies, but still want to create great landing pages. It offers you lots of templates, works great on mobile, and when combined with other plugins produced by Thrive Themes makes for a pretty powerful marketing suite.
1) If you have at least some experience with landing page builders, need access to a superior feature set to optimize for conversions, and are prepared to pay a little more (this is not the cheapest option), this is what our experts recommend:
3) If you’re on a budget and need to make your money go as far as possible, these are two affordable options that represent great value for money (Leadpages is a cheaper monthly subscription than most, and Thrive Architect is a WordPress landing page builder this is available for a one-off fee):
4) If you need to create sales funnels in addition to your landing pages or are likely to in the near future, check out this one:
Read What The Experts Said
Below you can read exactly what each expert had to say when we reached out to them to ask for their top landing page builder recommendations. They each explain their choices, some in great detail, and share a lot of really valuable insights into this software. We hope you find it helpful!
If you already have one or two options in mind and want to read what industry pros are saying about them, use the filters below to easily jump to the relevant content.
This article is not about goal setting & integration, but those play a huge part in picking a landing page tool. So before you go choosing one, you need to know 2 things…
? 1. Know the specific kind of actions, goals, outcome you want to achieve.
? 2. Have a list of your business tools, so you know if they integrate well with the landing page tool.
Are you looking to:
? – Drive ebook downloads?
? – Collect more email addresses?
? – Warm up traffic for an Ecommerce sale?
?? – Educate or sell your traffic with a sales funnel?
Then, once you know your goals, take a look at your stack of business tools:
? – How or does it integrate with your CRM?
? – How or does it work with your Email tool?
Nowadays, landing page tools have out-of-the-box integrations for big-name applications like Salesforce, Zoho, MailChimp, ActiveCampaign, Slack, etc. However, you’d be surprised sometimes. So don’t get caught off-guard by assuming an integration is available.
Now that we’ve gotten past that, here are my top recommendations:
Unbounce – “…for the all-around win. ?
To anyone in the CRO & PPC space, Unbounce is a household name. The company is a landing page optimization leader and pioneer that’s helped marketers convert traffic better since 2009.
Overall, Unbounce does exactly what you’d expect from a top-tier landing page builder:
Makes building great landing pages fast & stupid simple to do – and you don’t have to touch any code. Like other tools, it is a drag-and-drop builder which makes it incredibly simple to place what you want, wherever you want. ?
They also have tons of beautifully designed templates to pick from for inspiration in all kinds of industries too. ? Also, they include the ability to run A/B tests. ??
When you need to check integrations, Unbounce has you covered. Just search their library and find out if they connect to your favorite tools. So far I have not yet run into something I cannot connect directly to or use Zapier for.
Because Unbounce is the best tool out there, it isn’t the cheapest. But it doesn’t break the bank either. Plans start at $79-99/month and go up from there. They also have a 30-day free trial to try it out.
If you’re an agency that manages multiple clients as we do…Unbounce was built with you in mind! They’ve made managing multiple clients very easy – as an agency you can create client sub-accounts with their own integrations and subdomains. If you ever part ways from a client, it’s easy to export the Unbounce landing page and send it to them ~as well they can use~*to be used* in their own account. It’s also a bonus to the client because it cuts a cost to them by doing business with you.
Other than that…
There are other great tools out there; they just pale in comparison to Unbounce when we’ve tried them out.”
We have also found that Unbounce’s dynamic insertion features are great for hacking paid media quality scores and increasing landing page conversion rates. We will often time leverage the location data or service level data to dynamically optimize the landing page content with a URL parameter that will insert the intent variables. This allows us to turn as a headline like “LLC Registration” into “LLC Registration in California”
Unbounce – “Starting my landing page experience with unBounce, much like the other landing page builders, it offers simple creation of the pages. You can create great looking landing pages using templates with simple modifications, and yet there’s a lot of flexibility for adding more advanced features or such as multi form call to action pages. If you’re a PPC expert and understand the value of the Google quality score, one unique feature you’ll like is dynamic keyword insertion (not of the ads but on the landing page itself). This feature alone, has saved my clients lots of money on their ad spend. They have an ideal balance between simplicity and full feature web page development tools, and you can even create a micro website that is SEO friendly.
One other feature I’ve really enjoyed is their annual call to action marketing conference held in Vancouver, Canada. A great conference that will generate new ideas on ways to expand your ideas.”
Instapage – “Much like unBounce, Instapage offers a starting service that is ideal for building landing pages for both simple and complex needs. They do offer a more enterprise option for landing pages experts who have come to realize it’s not just a simple page creation, but a solution to understanding to addressing a customer journey. For example, you can have complete customized information blocks where the web copy, imagery and experience is customized based on the actual customer segment.
If you see yourself as being a landing page design firm in the future with advanced capabilities, this could be a great option for your organization.”
Leadpages – “ Another important feature set that all of these landing page builders have is A/B testing. And the ability to integrate with email or CRM systems. Since Leadpages is a well established solution in this area, they have extensive and well tested integration capabilities there.
An important aspect to remember about landing pages, is that the information just doesn’t stop after the visitor hits the submit button; a successful strategy is integration with other marketing automation tools..”
- Unbounce – “Arguably a household name when it comes to landing page builders, Unbounce features a user-friendly, point-and-click/drag-and-drop page builder. I think Unbounce is the oldest, original landing page builder. The platform supports split-testing, 100+ integrations, AMP, and more. It doesn’t necessarily have a steep learning curve, but I would say it is an advanced tool and not really for beginners. Unbounce also stresses conversions – the whole point of landing pages – rather than simply just building an attractive page. Perhaps most notably, all these great features come at a cost, as Unbounce is probably the most expensive option in this space, especially if you’re creating a large amount of landing pages or needing sub-accounts. Unbounce is likely more suitable for larger agencies and organizations. Ironically, Unbounce’s entry-level plan is $99/month if you choose monthly billing, but it does not include some crucial features and integrations you’d probably want like AMP, client sub-accounts, Marketo and Salesforce integrations, and more. Their next step up is $199/month if billed monthly or $159/month if billed annually.”
- Instapage – “Instapage would be my second choice, a slight step down from Unbounce. As its name implies, Instapage offers speedy landing page building. Like Unbounce, is has a drag-and-drop builder; it is not quite as robust as Unbounce, but is making leaps and bounds with constant additions and improvements. There’s little to no learning curve for Instapage. Again, it is not as robust or customizable as Unbounce, so naturally it is slightly cheaper. It has about 40 integrations compared to Unbounce’s 100. Be sure to check each for which specific integrations you need. At the time of writing, their “Core” plan is $129/month for monthly billing, $30 more than Unbounce. The price drops to $99/month if you choose annual billing. I would argue Instapage is suitable for both beginners and experts alike, depending on which plan you opt for, particularly individual bloggers and small businesses looking to get some sleek landing pages up in the shortest amount of time.”
- Unbounce – “Unbounce has been around for quite some time and is fairly easy to setup and integrate into a site. They have plenty of templates with a drag and drop interface, making it mostly painless to build pages. However, this simple interface can be limiting so more advanced edits will require more time. Additionally, we have noticed that Google Ads does not like Unbounce and that Quality Scores suffer, despite the page loading fast and being as relevant as you can get. Regardless, this is a good solution for those wanting to get up and running with A/B split tests quickly.”
- WordPress – “There is a universe of options to choose from when it comes to WordPress, allowing you to choose what works best for you. Not only do you have the built-in page builder, but there are a number of plugins that you can choose from. The best part is your landing pages will perform great in Google Ads (from a Quality Score perspective, if done right) and can even gain some Organic footing. We by default recommend WordPress for our SEO clients.”
- Custom Built – “Sometimes the best route is to have it done internally. The reason being is that you control it 100% and have essentially no limitations. This can be a time/resource drain, but in the long run can prove the most useful as you will have control of the pages and they will be “independent” of anything going on with your site (or you can integrate them and make them a part of your site structure to add content and relevancy to your site).”
“Just remember that the whole point of a landing page is to help grow and improve your business, so don’t let the decision of what and how impede that. Pick something that works best for you and test it, gain some data, and adjust if necessary.”
As a digital marketer, when visiting a website, I look for three main things: user navigation, clear steps to conversion and a great experience. Building an engaging website is the core of driving sales through a website. Before mentioning my top 3 landing page builders, I’d list the features that I’m usually looking for when choosing a platform to build my website. My clients often don’t have any developer skills, yet there is still a way to create an astonishing website, which will help them engage the visitors with easy user navigation panels, as well as impressive animations, menus and forms, which won’t cost them a fortune.
The criteria I have selected in order to choose the best landing page builders I am recommending to my customers are the following:
- A variety of templates available for any type of business
- Extra tools for creating animations, images, shapes
- App centre or plugins to help with any other type of activity I’d like to offer my visitors – such as a service calculator, price list, location map, forms for submission, pop-ups
- From a digital marketing perspective, analytics tracking is a must for any landing page builder I use
- Automatically adjusting the desktop version to a mobile-friendly version
All 3 landing page builders I’ve selected fulfill the criteria mentioned above. They also are very easy to use offering a drag and drop interface, where all elements are editable.
- Wix – “Offering more than 500 different themes with professional designs and layouts, suitable for any type and size of business. It also has available a lot of widgets and apps to integrate within the website interface. Wix is extremely easy to use and the customer support is very reliable for anything that you might struggle with. The drag and drop interface helps to create a website very fast and it is also automatically adjusted for mobile devices.”
- Weebly – “Recommended for small businesses predominantly, Weebly offers a tidy interface, which really helps to create your website faster. It is the easiest landing page builder, which non-tech savvy people would find it best for. Only 70 themes are available. However, while Wix has focused on the volume of themes, Weebly’s focus is on the quality of those. Weebly offers many more apps to integrate, although there is no browser option to search by type and name.”
- WordPress – “WordPress offers the best variety of features, plugins and themes for people with some coding skills. But even if you’re not tech savvy, WordPress could still be a good choice. It may require some technical know-how in order to use its full potential, but this is not a must whatsoever. You can still work with pre-existing themes, there are plenty of those that you can use and easily adjust to your needs. After all, let’s not forget that this platform is the most popular CMS. With more than 50,000 plugins, WordPress is the number one CMS to use for websites and landing pages that are more complex.”
- Unbounce – “I would recommend only one landing page builder: Unbounce. Unbounce allows you to quickly and easily set up attractive landing pages. The landing pages have in-built A/B testing functionality, are extremely fast loading, and most importantly – they’re very effective at converting visitors into prospective customers!”
Leadpages – “There are so many options out there when it comes to landing pages, but I now only use and recommend LeadPages.net to my clients.
I am not one for over complicating the issue, so I love how easy Leadpages is to use. Everything is customisable, and it will even pull in the brand colours from your website, so you don’t have to worry about finding hex codes etc.
As a Facebook ads strategist, it’s really important that I can track what’s happening on my landing pages, so being able to add the Facebook pixel is key for me. Leadpages makes it really simple to do that so I can track website visitors and create custom conversions for my ad campaigns.
The ability to add integrations such as Stripe and Zapier is also really important for my clients and Leadpages offers plenty of choice.”
Unbounce – “Unbounce was one of the first landing page builders that I got to experiment with and I have to say this is my first choice when looking to build PPC landing pages.
The software has a simple interface using drag and drop features, built in support for Google fonts and can be integrated with a large number of apps.
Reasons why I love Unbounce…
- Nicely designed templates
- AMP ready
- Works with WordPress via the Unbounce plugin
- Can add video backgrounds
- Speed orientated so you can get good speed scores in Google
- Huge support community, if you need to find the answer to something, chances are it’s there!”
Landingi – “Landingi has a well thought out interface, easy to drag and drop elements onto the page. Moving multiple items is no problem as multiple selection is available.
Reasons why Landingi rocks!
- Over 200 templates
- Icon library, reducing the need to import your own icons
- Great reporting dashboard for leads
- Competitive pricing compared to other page builders”
Unbounce – “Which landing page builder is best for you is going to depend a lot on what type of business you have and what you’re looking to accomplish. That being said my favorite by far is Unbounce.
Unbounce is extremely easy to use, cost-effective, and is great for creating custom landing pages to send your paid traffic to. It has a simple drag-and-drop editor, integrates with most email providers, and gives you the ability to fully optimize for mobile.
One of the biggest things Unbounce did for our internal team was save our designer’s time by not having them handle requests to make small changes on our landing pages. With Unbounce (instead of custom builds in WordPress), our paid media team could make most changes themselves and only go to our designers for larger projects.
There’s a few other landing page builders out there that offer similar features, but I haven’t found any of them to offer the same level of design quality and flexibility of Unbounce.”
- Mailchimp’s Landing Page Builder – “If you don’t need to feed your contacts into CRMs or other systems this could be just the beautifully simple, capable landing page builder you’ve been looking for. It has only been out for a couple years, but is an option that should not be overlooked. A free landing page builder coupled with free email automation tools (and free base Mailchimp account even) make this a very powerful platform. MailChimp will also host it for free on an https://mailchi.mp/custom-slug url. Their landing page builder is similar to their email builder and comes naturally. If you want to host it on your own domain you’ll need to fork out $99 / year, which is still a fraction of what most other builders cost. If nothing else, this is a great medium to get your feet wet in email collection and email automation. Learn what you can and expand to a more robust solution if needs be!”
- Leadpages – “Leadpages is an inexpensive option, with monthly plans starting at just $17 per month. This is with a 2-year plan. They also have annual plans and monthly. You can try it for free for 14 days and it has many, if not more, of the same tools, integrations of other landing page builders that cost 5x as much (or more!). Want to run A/B tests on your landing pages? You’re in luck, it’s included. Want to use a pop-up or sticky/announcement banner across the top of your page? Also included. If you need integrations that free landing page builders don’t offer, this is the next option to try.”
- Unbounce – “It seems that every marketer out there has at least heard of Unbounce, if not used it extensively. They are one of the pioneers of standalone landing page builders and have templates that are tried and true many thousand times over. Their robust set of integrations and tools make this one of the best solutions. Paid annually, you can get started for $79 and even run A/B tests. The drag and drop builder is intuitive and quick. They offer a free 14-day trial to see if you’d be interested in continuing. If you want AMP functionality, you’ll have to update to the middle plan which is $159 per month on annual plans.”
- Unbounce – “I’m a big fan of the tool Unbounce. The user interface is clean and easy to navigate. The ability to run concurrent experiments really helps improve conversion rates significantly and as quickly as possible. Two thumbs up!”
“There are lots of great landing page builders on the market, but I only like to use ones with ease of use, that provide templates, and have no monthly recurring payment.
The two landing page builders I use every day are:”
- Thrive Architect – “This landing page builder is great because they provide you with enough templates so you don’t need to start from scratch and enough flexibility to create a gorgeous landing page or funnel that converts. Also, it is just a one time fee and then if you want support you can pay for it yearly.”
- Elementor – “If you want free, then I would start with Elementor and use their templates. I don’t think it is as easy to use as Thrive Architect, but is a perfect solution for someone just starting out that wants to build one or a couple of landing pages. They offer front end design so you can see exactly what you are changing as you do it.”
“Either of these options is great so check them out and just get started.”
Additionally, Thrive Architect is by default mobile first (so you don’t have to worry about responsiveness, and can easily edit both dekstop and mobile versions), it has one of the best customer support teams I’ve seen in the business (they solve every issue within hours), and it has nearly 300 landing page templates that you can easily customize to your own liking.
And finally, it is affordable! At only $67 (one time payment), you get more than you get from other overpriced builders. If you choose to also grab all of their other powerful plugins, it’s still a mere $228/year membership fee (again… NOTHING in this industry…).
Combine it with Thrive Leads, and Thrive Optimize, and you’ll have a beast of a tool for almost nothing!”
- Instapage – “This is the ideal landing page solution for small businesses – especially those without a tech expert on the payroll. You can design incredibly effective landing pages in no time and publish them to your website without any particular coding expertise. It integrates directly with WordPress, builds great mobile pages, and has a decent analytics suite to assist you in bettering your performance. All in all, it’s the best bet for those looking to create custom landing pages without paying a developer.”
- Unbounce – “While Instapage may be easier to use – particularly for those without an in-house developer – Unbounce is still the landing page builder that we use for our own agency clients. Unbounce seamlessly integrates with most of the tools you’re already using and delivers outstanding results for a very fair price. If you’re serious about search marketing then Unbounce is the landing page builder for you.”
When it comes to landing page builders you can either find yourself saving time or ADDING a stack of time if you head down the wrong path. I have 2 favourites.
- ClickFunnels – “If you are looking for do-it-for-you environment you can’t go past clickfunnels.com. The biggest benefit to this service is in its name; it’s not just about the landing page, but about the funnel BEHIND the landing page that will get you most bang for your buck. It’s pretty easy to use (drag and drop) and you can integrate with your favourite email list building tools.”
- Thrive Architect – “My other favourite go-to is Thrive Theme’s Thrive Architect. It is a plugin for WordPress that enables you to transform any theme into a landing page that does EXACTLY what you want it to. Use their templates or design your own, Thrive also have list building tools and conversion elements you can make use of. What I love is that Thrive Architect works seamlessly in the WordPress environment and so can be used with very little additional ongoing cost.”
Lisa Cash Hanson
“There are three landing page builders that I love. Any one of these landing page builders would do a great job for your business. I will differentiate one, however, based on the community that is behind it. It’s vital to remember that a landing page does one thing well: focuses visitors’ attention on what you’re promoting, with a single call to action (CTA) that brings money or leads right to you. Your landing page is like your salesperson. A shoddy salesperson means a lack of sales. It’s the same with your landing page.
Here are my three top options:”
- ClickFunnels – “I love ClickFunnels primarily because of the community behind it, the brilliant templates they offer it and also all the training that Russell Brunson provides. If you love marketing there is a lot you can learn using ClickFunnels. They also provide a huge range of funnels already preset for you to drag and drop. It’s fairly simple.”
- Instapage – “Super user-friendly and very easy to design. They offer pricing that anyone can afford.”
- Leadpages – “I like them for the same reason I like Instapage. User-friendly and very cost effective.”
“All three landing pages offer free trials so I would try them out and just see which platform you prefer. But I’ll leave you with this: No landing page will make money for you if you don’t build it 🙂 So go build that page today an let me know when it’s live! To your success xoxo Lisa”
Unbounce – “Without a doubt, Unbounce is the best landing page builder, hands down….
I’ve been using Unbounce for the past 5 years for all of our clients. It’s powerful, easy to use and packed with powerful features. The ability to A/B test on the fly with confidence levels pre-calculated is essential for Conversion Rate Optimization efforts. All of that is great, but as an agency the ultimate reason we stick with Unbounce is their support staff and active community. You’ll never be left in the dark when asking questions or if you require additional development support..
Unlike other builders, Unbounce allows you to create pages beyond what you can do with most drag and drop design platforms. The pages have full CSS stylesheet capabilities and rather robust scripting abilities. Their team is always rolling out new stuff too! A few key features I can think of are sticky bars, pop ups, AMP pages, script manager and so on.
An example of the platform’s more advanced design capabilities would be Rollovers, or images that change based on browser interaction.
Here’s an example of a Roll Over effect we created for one of our clients.
Of course, if you’re not a designer there are tons of templates to choose from as well as more to be purchased!
We’ve built some beautiful custom landing pages on Unbounce for our clients too, just see for yourself below.”
Juic Wireless Charger – Landing Page Preview:
Coast Flight School – RTP Landing Page Preview:
- WordPress – “WordPress is obviously much more than just a landing page builder. However, it’s still what we use for most clients because of its ultimate flexibility. The reason you want a landing page is to drive leads or sales, and doing that *well* requires precise visitor tracking and conversion tracking (forms, phone calls, chats, etc.), especially if you’re paying for that traffic, such as through Google Ads. We’ve run into so many problems in the past with various dedicated landing page builder sites not being able to accommodate full visitor and conversion tracking that we’d rather just stick with what works. WordPress always works. In addition, if the client’s site is already built on WordPress (and most are), then this approach leads to landing pages that are fully integrated into the website from the get-go, and that are maintainable through the same interface, without any additional work.”
- Unbounce – “If WordPress isn’t on the cards for some reason, or if you need certain special landing page features, then Unbounce likely has the solution. When using Google Ads, for example, one great feature of Unbounce is the ability to dynamically change certain keyword text on the page depending on which keyword triggers an ad. This can help increase landing page relevance both for the visitor and for Google, which can result in higher Google Ads quality scores. One big downside of Unbounce, and of most landing page builders, is that if you decide you’d like to integrate the landing page into your website platform later there’s extra work required, and sometimes it can be extensive.”
- Unbounce – “I think most web designers know about Unbounce. They have amazing templates, along with plenty of features and tools. The editing tools specifically are probably the best out there. I have recommended Unbounce many times in the past couple of years. It’s not very cheap though, so beginners might want to look elsewhere.”
- Leadpages – “Leadpages is probably the best solution for the money. The starting price is low and the features are still rich. They have a great editor, but certain customizations and templates are not always free. For $25 a month, you can have one of the best drag and drop landing page builders on the market.”
- Instapage – “Instapage is my favorite landing page builder of 2019. Although it’s not as cheap as Leadpages or as robust as Unbounce, this is the best choice for beginners and experts alike. The build process is lightning-fast, and the editor is very easy to use. I also like Instapage templates the most, and they have over 100 of them included in the monthly price.”
HubSpot – “While landing pages are only a component of the suite of marketing tools integrated into the HubSpot marketing platform, it’s the ability to utilize the additional tools that make their landing pages effective. For users that have been identified by having their devices cookied it allows for dynamic content to be delivered based on a variety of user behavior and demographics to target the most effective message to the user.
The platform also has robust measurement tools to track submission rates and traffic volumes to compare various landing pages across your site as well as the ability to A/B test variations in one landing page.
The design tools are easy to use as well to build landing pages quickly and a Hubspot subscription comes with Shutterstock built into the dashboard for ease in selecting image assets for your project. HubSpot also has a vibrant community of designers and developers in their marketplace, making it easy to find professional templates for most landing pages at low-cost options including many free versions.”
- Leadpages – “For a low-cost option Leadpages is a powerful platform for building landing pages and progressive forms. With over 200 templates and a number of integrations to connect to your CRM and other marketing tools, it is a great platform to build off of. The platform also has a Facebook and Instagram ad builder to combine your landing pages into a seamless social media campaign.”
- Leadpages – “Personally, I use Leadpages almost exclusively simply because it meets my clients’ needs (most of them just need simple funnels with a lead magnet and opt-in form). I recommend most people try Leadpages first because it’s cheaper than Clickfunnels and you can always switch to Clickfunnels later if you find that you need the extra bells and whistles.”
- ClickFunnels – “The only reason Clickfunnels isn’t at #1 is that, while it IS a great landing page builder, not everyone needs to build full multi-page funnels. To me, it doesn’t make sense to have a bunch of features unless you’re actually USING them. The drag and drop builder is a little more intuitive than Leadpages, but not significantly.”
“If you have a limited budget: Go with Leadpages first and switch to Clickfunnels if you need more features.
If you have a bit more money OR need a fancier and more complex funnel: Go with Clickfunnels”
Unbounce – “We exclusively use Unbounce to build all of our landing pages and we’d happily recommend it to pretty much everybody. Our main reasons for using their platform are:
Ease of use – You can quickly and efficiently put together any kind of landing page you can imagine. Creating something great looking and functional using the options within the page builder is easy, and if you have a bit more technical know-how the possibilities with JS and CSS are literally endless!
Community & Support – There is an awesome community of Unbounce users, who work together to solve problems and figure out new ways of doing things in the platform. Ask for some feedback on a page you’ve built and you’ll always get loads of really positive and helpful advice. If your issue is account based, the Unbounce support team are always there to help, we’ve never had an issue they couldn’t solve.
A/B Testing – A must for any landing page set up, and the main reason we use Unbounce. Again, Unbounce provides for marketers of all levels, from simple ‘version A vs version B’ testing to ‘what exact percentage of my traffic would I like to go to variant F?’ testing – the capability is there.
We love Unbounce and recommend that you check it out!”
Vincent Iachetta Jr
“If you love PPC like me then your favorite part of a campaign is the moment you “flip the switch”, turn on the traffic and flood the funnel you built with fresh users.
“It’s alive, It’s ALIVVVEEE!!!”.
Really what we want to know is, “Did all that damn time and energy we invested researching, developing and building our crazy funnel creation pay off?” The faster we can build and test a landing page or funnel the faster we can hit pay dirt. Like John C. Maxwell said, “Fail early, fail often, but always fail forward.” And I agree.
For me, one of the things that always slows me down is building landing pages. Do we need a landing page? What’s a landing page? Well, it’s a single website page built with one goal in mind. Some of the most common goals for landing pages are filling out a form, making a phone call or purchasing a product. They each have their challenges, but for local clients such as the law firms we manage, we more often than not are simply trying to get the user to either call or fill out a form.
The difficulty of building landing pages might be obvious, but it is two-fold (Design & Coding). I’m not saying I can’t do both, I’m just very particular with high expectations, and while I have experience working with design and code I’d prefer to spend my time as we mentioned earlier; testing the final product. So if you’ve ever gotten stuck and spent hours trying to position an element exactly where you want on the page across multiple screen sizes then you can relate and I feel your pain.
“Nobody’s got time for that!”
With that said here are my top 3 landing page builders that will help you speed up the process so you can “flip that switch” and bring your funnel to life!”
- ClickFunnels – “This is my first choice when it comes to quickly getting up a landing page that you plan on building out into a full funnel by integrating with One Time Offers, Upsells, Downsells, Email Marketing Automation and more. Even though many people think of CF as only a “Funnel” building tool, the visual builder that is used to create the pages is pretty user-friendly and not as restrictive as some other builders that limit access and functionality control. With CF you have access to the header and footer code to add scripts such as a “Dynamic Keyword Insertion” script or “Dynamic Number Insertion” script from Call Rail. On top of all that, the marketplace has some great funnel templates that you can buy and start sending traffic to in minutes with only minimal customization required.”
- Leadpages – “I’d argue this is my second choice. You get a lot for what you pay and their lowest plan is quite affordable. I also really enjoy their user interface. It’s clean, simple and surprisingly fast. It has a ton of templates you can use and modify as you see fit, and some ability to integrate with 3rd party tools. The downside is it does have limited functionality and if you were looking to convert to a funnel at some point, it would be difficult. But for throwing up quick lead gen style pages that you can split test fast and for a good price, then try Leadpages.”
- Elementor + Google Optimize – “Elementor has been making waves as a visual builder, and it’s my favorite visual builder. It’s available for a very reasonable yearly fee, runs on everyone’s favorite CMS in WordPress and is constantly being improved upon. It has a good number of templates built in, the UI is great and the responsiveness is fast when making visual edits. What is missing is the ability to split test natively in the inside of the software like the other builders. That’s easily overcome with something like Google Optimize. Google Optimize is free, built and recommended by “Big G” itself. When these are combined they could be a solid 1-2 punch for your PPC campaigns.”
I got my start in digital marketing as an affiliate marketer. Which back in 2011 meant that I needed to learn how to code to be able to put up simple landing pages to collect data.
(Be thankful you don’t have to go through that now)
Depending on your tech skill level I have 3 of the best landing page builders you could ever need in your life.
- ClickFunnels – “If you’re a complete newbie and have no idea what you’re doing I HIGHLY recommend clickfunnels. Russel and his team have created so much content around how to properly build out landing pages, it’s ridiculous. Anyone from no experience to all the experience in the world can benefit from clickfunnel’s simplicity.”
- Elementor – “Now this is actually one of my favorite page builders if you have a WordPress CMS. Super simple to play around with if you are familiar with a tech background. Maybe take some CSS classes before hopping on this plugin.”
- Instapage – “Super useful tool that lets you create on-brand landing pages. Integration to your website is seamless since it requires no code. Not my favorite, but it works.”
WordPress – “It is a powerful CMS that you can build a landing page, website, magazine or ecommerce website. You can use WordPress for free on wordpress.com or invest a small amount of money and buy a domain name and hosting.
The new version of WordPress comes with the Gutenberg builder https://wordpress.org/gutenberg/ (easy to use WordPress content editor). In case you want to amplify the webpage features you can install a custom theme or plugins for free or you can buy premium ones. WordPress is a really good and flexible platform but you will need some technical skills to be able to make use of all its features.”
Google Site Builder – “This is the perfect solution for people without any technical experience. There are a bunch of free templates that you can manage with a drag-and-drop creator in real time. All templates are mobile friendly.
Also, you can easily integrate google products to the webpage (documents, analytics, maps and etc.) You can use it for free with a Google account or you can buy your own domain name.”
- Wix – “This is one more platform to create a stylish landing page without any technical skills. There are over 30 free templates. You can manage the content though its “drag-and-drop feature. All landing pages are mobile friendly. You can use it for free or subscribe to a paid plan (prices start at 4.50 euro/month)”
“When it comes to converting paid media, I think Unbounce and Leadpages are the best tools.”
Unbounce – “I particularly like working with Unbounce as you can scale large campaigns by using Dynamic Text Replacement (DTR). This helps to personalise the content on the page which always boosts your Conversion Rate.
- Leadpages – “If you’re not very technical and want a tool which is easy to use then Leadpages is perfect. The drag and drop feature and range of templates make A/B testing painless.”
Landing page builders are perfect for marketers who need to maximise the performance of their websites as quickly as possible. The drag and drop interfaces and templates of landing page builders means that marketers with minimal technical skills can easily build great looking conversion focused web pages. Furthermore, most have built in A/B split testing functionality, plus integration with other marketing software such as email services, CRMs, and marketing automation solutions like Hubspot and Marketo.
Most landing page builders are SAAS services and whilst they fundamentally do the same thing, there are certainly differences in price, the range of features provided, ease of use and the number of integrations available.
- Unbounce – “Personally, I like Unbounce which is has some pretty sophisticated features and is easy to use. However, a drawback is that it’s comparatively expensive compared to other services such as Leadpages.”
- Thrive Architect – “Landing page builders like Unbounce, Leadpages and Instapage are SAAS services, meaning they have ongoing subscription fees which can get very expensive over time. For that reason, an alternative I’m a big fan of is Thrive Architect for owners of WordPress websites. This premium WordPress plugin is a drag and drop page builder that makes building web pages very easy for people without design or coding skills. And like those SAAS service it includes conversion-focused landing page templates, which can be easily customised. Simple A/B testing can be done using the Thrive Optimize plugin. Whilst it’s by far the easiest WordPress editor I’ve used, it’s not as easy to use as most SAAS landing page builders. That said, it’s way cheaper and unlike SAAS services, the pages built with it won’t disappear the way they will if you cancel your SAAS subscription.”
“Which landing page builder is the best depends of course on what you intentions are.
How familiar are you with WordPress? Are you willing to scale a learning curve in order to save money? Do you already have a website?”
- ClickFunnels – “I would say in general if you need longer funnels that require multiple landing pages, integrated A/B split testing, scarcity count-down timers, webinars and all the bells and whistles at your disposal to maximize your conversions, then ClickFunnels is a good option because it will save you time. With probably the simplest UI and setup on the market, ClickFunnels makes it super easy to setup your funnels without too much fuss. However, starting at $97/month and with a very generous affiliate program (40% recurring commissions!), I am naturally skeptical of anyone who swears by them and think it is a bit overkill if you’re just running traffic to a couple of landing pages for a local business.”
- Leadpages – “If you don’t have your own website, Leadpages is a very easy-to-use alternative. It has a drag and drop editor, hosts your landing pages on its own servers, and handles delivery of digital collateral (e-books, pdf guides).. At their basic level you only pay $37/mo to get unlimited landing pages or you can pay $79/month to get their built-in A/B split tester, one-click list opt-ins and the ability for people to join your lists via text messages.”
- Thrive Architect – “My favorite, the WordPress plugin Thrive Architect is only $67 for lifetime updates + $19/month if you want premium features such as opt-in forms, A/B split testing, Scarcity/CTA’s, integration with all the email automation platforms and a buttload of conversion-focused themes for webinars, squeeze pages, sales pages, course and coming soon pages. Sure, you could just use a free tool like Google Optimize to conduct your split tests but the themes alone make it worth it.”
Regardless of your choice, there will be an initial learning phase to contend with before you get your bearings. If like myself you’re working in an agency-type environment and the business doesn’t already pay for a landing page service, you’ll want to take all of these factors into consideration to get the most possible value for your client’s money.
In any case, whether you’re creating a long-form sales page, setting up a webinar, or building your email list, you can’t go wrong with any of the above options.
Few digital marketing campaigns are complete without a well-crafted landing page.
It’s the “what’s next” for your prospects when they visit you. It addresses why they chose you and what you will do to solve their problem. It’s key for conversions and turning clicks into customers.
Web pages can, however, be time-consuming to build with no shortage of bells and whistles to include in them. There’s also no shortage of landing page builders out there too and the options can frankly be overwhelming.
As a digital marketing agency, we’ve compiled a short list of some of the top ones and why we feel anyone can use them with little fuss right out of the box.
- Unbounce – “These guys are one of the industry leaders for a reason. It’s just so easy and intuitive to build a stellar landing page with it. They have tons of templates to pick and choose from, and has one of the best A/B testing tools in the market, which is HUGE! It’s loaded with lots of integration, features, and add-ons. The only downsides are the price and learning curve. While not the cheapest option out there, it is one of the best. You’ll need a little bit of time to get used to it, but once you do, you’ll marvel at the full features you have at your fingertips. Even large agencies use them which says a lot. ”
- Instapage – “Sometimes you just want a landing page up and going without having to figure too much out. That’s where Instapages can be your savior. It’s all about instant use. Fast loading pages that can be set up and run in as little as a few minutes. Amazing for beginners and small business owners with great and easy to read analytics reports to see how it’s running. Now for the downsides… Because of its emphasis on instant pages, they don’t have as many features as the rest. There are also no pop-up options and A/B testing isn’t included in their basic package. If you just need a simple landing page builder to get things up as quick and simple as possible, you’d be hard pressed to find anything better.”
- Lander – “Let’s face it. Price can often time be the deciding factor when choosing anything and that’s why Lander made our list. Their prices are very low, but they still have some rich features. All packages include standard A/B testing (did we mention how HUGE that is?), Facebook landing pages, easy drag-and-drop creation, CRM and email integration. Sure, it may not be the best editor around or have the most features, but it’s still a bargain for the price.”
“You really can’t go wrong with either one of these options. Just always keep in mind your user experience and conversion flow first. Now go and convert those leads!”
Landing Page Builders… Love ’em or hate ’em, they have an essential place in the digital architecture of online marketing. Directing customers with specific needs, to bespoke landing pages highly improves all aspects of the web moment – from visual/brand perception, to time spent on page, right through to interaction rate and convertibility.
The following is a collection of landing page builders we feel stand out above the rest:
Instapage – “Instapage is speed. Speed saves money. Saving money makes money. Yes it is limited in its abilities from the box, but with a creative take on the content this is forgotten. The analytics reports are first class and we would recommend this as a good choice for beginners and middle weight users alike. There are some limitations on the entry level option, such as a/b testing, but this can be forgiven when you consider a page can be live in minutes with the templates provided.
A feature, however, it can’t be forgiven for missing is pop-ups… a necessary evil in the industry; the omission of this is a concern. Overall a great option if volume of pages, and speed are a major factor, but definitely worth spending extra for the higher tier packages if you’re a more experienced user with advanced requirements.”
Wishpond – “Speed does save money… but being cheaper means you never spend it in the first place. The cost of this package is greatly reduced from the other options considered here. Coupled with the fact you can have unlimited pages per subscription. It has all the basic automated marketing features and pop-ups, but lacks in the ability to customise the pages to the same detail as the other two options considered here. Though the editor is basic, it redeems itself by the fact it is more than just a page builder. It is also ideal for social contests & competitions amongst other things – A feature most other landing page builders simply don’t have.
No, its not a dedicated Landing page builder, but when you weigh up the cost and ability with the extra functions and growing network of users… it seems like a great deal for beginners and entry level users.”
Unbounce – “If what you are looking for is a great industry accepted landing page builder, with a/b testing options and a flexible editor, you won’t find a better product that covers these requirements. Reflecting this standard, is the price… being one of the most expensive solutions on the market today, though it reminds us of the old phrase “you get what you pay for”.
Unbounce involves spending a fair bit of time making yourself familiar with the interface, and to be blunt is really not the ideal solution for a beginner or basic user. All in all it still remains the go-to industry standard for this niche.”
To review, the landing page builders listed above are all capable and each is more weighted to a specific user type, marketing style & budget available.
However if you could only pick one, the industry still seems to direct you towards Unbounce. Though if you are a first time user taking this option, be prepared to face a steep learning curve before you can build real confidence with it.
Designing a brand new website, from scratch, is often suggested too easily without considering LP Builders, as typically a new site, re-design or adjusted navigation can, in many cases, solve the need for bespoke landing pages. We feel it’s important to weigh up the options, think ahead for the future, and ensure your decision is a cost effective one, whilst maintaining the integrity of the project/objection.
Unbounce, for us, is the leading and preferred choice when it comes to building high quality custom landing pages geared towards to interaction and quick conversions. At CornellStudios.com we take great pride in producing high quality, beautifully designed, landing pages & websites for clients all across the UK with a real emphasis on conversions.
Unbounce – “Without a shadow of a doubt, the landing page builder of choice that’s our go-to is ‘Unbounce’. It may not be the cheapest, but with PPC competition increasing all the time, I think it’s imperative not to skimp on arguably the most important part of any digital campaign; the landing page.
I have found the drag and drop functionality remarkably easy to use, which considering I am to design what Piers Morgan is to rational, respectful discourse is no mean feat. For those who are even less impressive with their design skills, there’s a plethora of templates to choose from.
The best thing about it for me is the ease with which you can duplicate and edit pages. This makes absolutely acing PPC when it comes to reducing CPC’s and improving account performance a doddle.
I prefer having a landing page for each specific keyword I am targeting, this way the relevancy of the ad and keyword match up fantastically. As you can imagine, with some accounts having hundreds of keywords, this could become a nightmare. By duplicating and amending the pages slightly, you can continue that relevancy throughout the journey.”
Thrive Architect – “Thrive Architect is a powerful and highly intuitive WYSIWYG WordPress editor plugin. Whatever type of page you want to make, from product pages and lead generation pages, this software can achieve it. It has a brilliant user interface and a host of great features, from flexible layout options to hotkeys for when you want quicker actions. Thrive Architect also has device-specific styling for greater customisation to your pages and you can view the responsive designs in the builder itself, whether it’s a tablet or mobile view.
The beauty of Thrive Architect is that you can create any type of page using drag and drop, making it easy to design impactful landing pages, but without the need for a designer to build your pages for you. These elements don’t need to be contained as there are no sections, so it provides more flexibility than some other builders. The downside, however, is that it doesn’t come with any free options, so it’s probably not the best option for budget-conscious marketers. But it’s still cheaper than a lot of page builders on the market and the value it provides more than offsets the cost.
Thrive Architect is a must-have landing page builder that replaces the need for dozens of different plugins by providing conversion-focused elements which are in-built. From countdown timers to customisable buttons and lead generation forms, there are plenty of elements that are designed to increase growth within your business and get more leads. For anyone who’s serious about building profitable pages, Thrive Architect is one of the best tools for achieving online success.
- Inline text editing
- Device-specific responsive views
- Incredibly flexible in terms of layout options
- The properties panel is overcrowded and not as well-organised as it could be
- Can on occasion be a little buggy”
ClickFunnels – “The goal of ClickFunnels is to save marketers time and to achieve what would otherwise require a lot of technical skill or a range of third-party applications. In that regard, it’s a brilliant piece of software to have in your arsenal. ClickFunnels brings all of your marketing tools into one place, making it the easiest way of selling practically anything. Gone are the days of using multiple tools – you can think of this as more than just a sales funnel and landing page builder, but also as an e-commerce platform.
It has a great selection of features including template editors, reporting and organisation tools, and integration functionality. There’s also no need for a website, as the landing pages are hosted on ClickFunnels’ servers but it’s easy enough to insert them into your own site if you want to. Using this software removes the need for plugins and provides marketers with a professional-looking landing page that enables clear focus on guiding prospects through a multi-step journey. One of the main benefits of using this tool is that it includes sales funnel templates that allow you to pick the funnel that best matches your requirements, whether that’s selling an e-book or marketing a subscription service, to accelerate success. What’s more, you know they’ve been thoroughly tested for best results, so you remove the trial and error element of building a page.
This intuitive software gives you everything you need to sell and promote products online, but without the need for various tools and hiring developers. The templates in ClickFunnels are positioned in sections so the elements can be dragged and dropped wherever you need them to be – while there are other landing page editors that are more flexible, ClickFunnels still allows you to achieve virtually any design and is a useful tool to have on hand once you have mastered the interface.
- Great community support for users
- Wide range of features
- Intuitive and easy to use
- Some of the features may feel a little superfluous
- Hosted on ClickFunnels’ servers, so if they go down, so does your page”
“I’ll start off by looking at the top landing page builders from my personal choice.
With these three landing page builders, you will be able to create all kinds of pages such as; sales pages, squeeze pages, membership pages, webinar pages, course pages, confirmation pages, and much more. Most importantly, with minimal time and coding skills required.”
- Thrive Architect – “Thrive Architect is a landing page plugin that allows you to build and customize conversion focused pages – fast. You get landing page templates at your fingertips so you can build out new pages very easily. These templates are designed in themed sets, so you can build out an entire sales funnel that fits together visually. Integrates with major email CRMs.”
- Unbounce – “One of the early adopters of landing pages. Unbounce offers one of the easiest ways to build and test custom landing pages, website popups and sticky bars. Improve your post-click conversion rates and launch more campaigns, fast.”
- ClickFunnels – “Great tools for designing simple landing and sales funnels, easy 1 click “up-sells” feature and much more with support from a great community. Only problem is that customisation is really limited.”
Having spent more than 10 years helping clients (ranging from multinational corporations to small webshops) with SEO, Adwords, Google Analytics and Conversion Rate Optimization, one thing I have found that is very important for the success of a client’s digital marketing campaign, is their landing pages.
A good Landing Page Builder is therefore something worth considering, when you have to look at ways to improve the conversion rate of your digital marketing campaigns.
- Unbounce – “One of the best Landing Page Builders I have come across is Unbounce. The Landing Page Builder from Unbounce has a ton of great features. You get 100+ great (and modern) looking and stylish landing page designs, sticky bars and various pop-ups. I can definitely recommend Unbounce if you are more serious about building a great landing page. The price is not on the low end, but you pay for a quality product, which is worth the investment.”
- Instapage – “Another great Landing Page Builder is Instapage. The price for Instapage isn’t high, when you look at all the great features you get. It is definitely a great investment, if you are looking for a serious Landing Page Builder. You get more than 200 templates for great looking landing pages, and lot of very useful features. Another great thing about both Unbounce and Instapage is, that you don’t need any software developer skills to build great looking landing pages.”
There are many other Landing Page Builders on the market, even free ones, so when you select one, it is important, that you first look at your needs. Both Unbounce and Instapage are not free products. But you get great value for the money, and most important of all, you get something that works really well and is very easy to use.
- Unbounce – “I’ve used Unbounce on many occasions to create landing pages. It isn’t really built for beginners, but if you have any experience working with website content editors, I’m sure you’ll pick it up pretty quick. There are plenty of templates to use or at least start from, so you’re not having to build anything from scratch. I love the A/B testing features and the ability to track form fills and clicks — because if you don’t have the juicy data to support your campaign then what’s the point?”
HubSpot – “Hubspot is a content influencer/leader so nobody will be surprised to see them as one of my choices.
You can build a landing page in minutes by using the easy drag and drop tool. You can also build contact forms. A/B testing is easy, create smart content and get detailed analytics from your marketing campaigns.
Hubspot is a powerful landing page builder in terms of the advanced features you get. As such, the price is higher in comparison to other landing page builders.”
Lander – “Lander is great for beginners, again utilizing a simple drag and drop editor, you can create great looking landing pages in minutes.
The simple layouts are clean and useful, and like other great landing page builders, it offers A/B testing and integration with other marketing tools.”
Instapage – “The interface is by far I feel the most user-friendly, and again utilizes a drag and drop feature. You can again build great pages in minutes. The templates are fantastic, and they offer something fantastic for any type of page.
Like the other tools, you also get advanced analytics, split testing and integration with other marketing platforms.”
- Divi Builder – “In my opinion, Divi Builder is the absolute best landing page builder bar-none. Divi gives you the functionality of all other page builders but also allows you to use it to build a beautiful website. With Divi, the possibilities are endless. You can setup funnels, you can build beautiful websites, and you can do so much more! The best part about this? You can do all of this without writing a single line of code. What also separates Divi from the competition is that, when you purchase Divi for WordPress, you don’t have to pay for it on a month by month basis. There’s also lots of plugins that you can integrate Divi with that further enhances the experience you get with it.”
“Some honorable mentions are also: Unbounce and Leadpages. I’m so amazed by Divi though and recommend that everyone use it!”
My favourite landing page builder is Clickfunnels, which I switched over to a few months ago and highly recommend. I also recommend Unbounce, but really it depends on what you’re using it for and your experience with building landing pages.
ClickFunnels – “ClickFunnels to me is really easy to use and if you’re a landing page novice, then it will take you no time at all to become familiar with it. Templates are really simple and it’s hard to go wrong really… the only thing that does irritate me is that you can’t click an “undo” button if you make an error! (ClickFunnels please add this feature if you happen to be reading this 😉 !) It’s also super easy to integrate with other apps and CRM’s.
If you’re a little more advanced and need a lot of customisation then Clickfunnels may not be the best option for you.”
- Unbounce – “This was one of the OG’s in the landing page builder world, and is arguably still one of the best. It’s pretty intuitive to use, has an easy drag and drop editor and is great for A/B testing. One of the only downsides to Unbounce is that it’s quite expensive for the more premium plans, but I would still highly recommend it.”
- Unbounce – “As an ad agency, we use Unbounce for all of our landing pages. It is best for groups that run ads on Google Ads, Facebook Ads, and other advertising networks. It allows you to split test landing page variants. It is not ideal if you need navigation on your pages, which is why it is preferred for paid ads only. It can be a little pricey.”
- Leadpages – “If you are an information marketer, coach, consultant, or like linear funnels that get people to incrementally purchase products from you, Lead Pages is for you. It is similar to Unbounce, but tends to be used more by people who do a lot of email or affiliate marketing, as opposed to PPC.”
- WordPress – “If you need landing pages, but you want to preserve your existing website structure, we recommend just using WordPress. You may need to use a theme that is very simple or even install a separate WordPress instance under a sub-directory or sub-domain, but for a lot of people WordPress works fine, and it’s free.”
The set-up is easy, even for non-technical people. The design interface is intuitive and allows anyone to create a serviceable landing page, choosing from a vast number of customizable templates in the platform. For our landing pages, we worked with our designer and we were all very pleased with what he was able to do to take our design further. He gave positive feedback on the design environment as well.
The Unbounce solution resides on a subdomain of your site, so it’s not locally hosted, which allows you to link Unbounce to virtually any CMS you run. All in, it’s an affordable and easy solution when you need landing pages outside of your main site/CMS.”
Convertri is an incredible page builder for landing pages and sales funnels. It has even built in e-commerce features so it can accept payments directly.
But it excels in two features over almost any competitor out there:
- It is incredibly fast.
- It is optimized for mobile.
We all know what happens when a site takes too long to load or if it is not optimized for viewing on a smartphone. The visitors drop off and the page gets penalized by Google.
The infrastructure and the code that Convertri uses is incredibly fast. Its speed is on par with the biggest e-commerce sites. This is fantastic for conversions, particularly on mobile where every millisecond counts.
These are the results of one of our landing pages. There was no optimization done whatsoever:
Convertri also has hundreds of amazing templates to choose from. This makes things easier when starting out with the website design.
I can recommend Convertri for digital marketers and small/medium companies for building their landing pages. Convertri is also suited to digital agencies that create sales funnels for clients. With Convertri there is no need to get involved in the hassle of hosting and optimizing websites for speed, nor looking after the security.
What Convertri is not ideal for:
- It would be cumbersome to build multi-page websites with Convertri.
- There is no automated menu system with dynamic menus and dropdowns.”
Wishpond makes it simple to get more leads and customers from your landing page. There are over 100 mobile-responsive landing page templates to choose from – so there’s bound to be a design and style that suits your brand.
It’s a seamless drag-and-drop editor, there’s no need for design or programming knowledge. You can add popups, welcome mats, slide-in pop-ups and opt-in bars with ease so you can maximise your conversions.
Price: $49 – $199 a month”
Unbounce – “Recommended for intermediate marketers.
Arguably one of the best landing page builders in the game, Unbounce has been designed with one purpose alone: to generate conversions.
It’s designed to enable marketers to launch customised and branded landing pages which maximise conversions. The tool features a highly responsive drag-and-drop editor, an array of stylish templates, valuable A/B testing and CRM integration.
It’s one of the best all-round builders. You pay more to get more – the advanced customisation is great.
Price: $79 – $399+ a month”
HubSpot – “Recommended for advanced marketers.
You’re probably not shocked to see HubSpot on the list. HubSpot is an inbound marketing and sales software that supports businesses in attracting traffic, generating conversions and turning those conversions into customers.
You can choose from their built-in library of mobile responsive templates that are optimised to push conversions, or you can build your own page from scratch. Add forms optimised for completion in just one click and automatically alter content based on the visitor who is viewing your page.
In terms of advanced features, HubSpot is certainly one of the very best landing page builders you can find. But the price does reflect the complex nature of the software.
Price: depends on what model you go for, expect to pay around $655 a month.”
- Unbounce – “I’ve used a handful of landing page tools for clients, but have found one of the easiest is Unbounce. The platform is fairly intuitive and user friendly, which means that someone such as myself (who is not spectacularly gifted at design) can whip up new landing page iterations quickly. Tracking implementation can be a bit tricky for some clients, but in my experience the customer service team has been helpful for times when we’ve become stuck trying to resolve an issue.”
Having used a range of landing page builders for clients with hugely contrasting budgets, I’ve been fairly well-exposed to the challenges of choosing a landing page builder.
My view is that there are a lot of terrible free and cheap platforms, a small handful of fairly average platforms and perhaps 2 or 3 extremely good platforms. The one that I will always come back to and keep using is Unbounce.
Another favoured platform is Instapages – again, very easy to use; in fact, I actually prefer the UI of Instapages to Unbounce. I also think some of the templates are better than Unbounce.
However, Instapages can’t compete with Unbounce’s customer service, which is second to none – they once sent me a bunch of free Unbounce t-shirts, purely because they liked the humour of one of my client’s pages – and Unbounce also has a number of integrations that are ridiculously easy to implement and make it so much easier to manage whole campaigns with accurate results tracking and automation.
So to summarise, if you like free t-shirts, a decent UI, flexibility of design, ease-of-use and nice clean templates, use Unbounce.”
- Unbounce – “I’ve personally had great success with Unbounce, specifically with driving traffic from Google AdWords or Facebook Ads. Two benefits I almost instantly experienced were lower CPCs due to higher landing page relevancy and higher conversion rates. The higher relevancy increased my quality scores which directly affected my CPCs. And as for the conversion rates, I created tested multiple page variants, which enabled me to increase conversion rate over time. I would also recommend Unbounce for the following reasons: built for both DIY marketers and big brands, LP creation is incredibly nimble and quick, and the data you can acquire from A/B testing can drive real results. I will say I saw more success using Unbounce for lead gen than with e-commerce–it was much harder to build pages for e-commerce.”
- Instapage – “This platform is great for PPC marketers. It’s so much better when marketers can have control over the post-click experience which is exactly who Instapage is designed for. It’s the perfect balance between template-based LPs and custom LPs and almost anyone could build a page in 30 minutes or less. One of the coolest features is the dynamic content replacement because it customizes your page’s text and images based on the visitor! With such a personalized experience you’re bound to see an increase in conversion rates, which is why we’re doing all of this, amirite? If you’re building pages for clients I do recommend setting the expectation early that the pages are not 100% customizable and at the end of the day you are limited by what the software can do. This way you’re all on the “same page”–pun definitely intended.”
- Unbounce – “Unbounce is probably the most popular landing page builder on the market. It requires little to no coding experience, integration with 3rd party tools (like Google Analytics) very easily, and allows for a/b testing. AMP pages are also available, which shows Unbounce is keeping up with modern best practices. In the past, Unbounce may not have had many templates, but now they’ve expanded to a few dozen, which should be plenty for most teams’ needs. And, the platform is super affordable – you can’t go wrong by starting out with Unbounce!”
- Instapage – “We’ve been so happy with Unbounce, we haven’t explored many other options. One that’s on our radar, though, is Instapage.com. This platform is more enterprise compared to Unbounce, for those who need these features, particularly website user personalization. This may work instead of a tool like HubSpot’s or Marketo’s landing page builder for b2b advertisers, and could also replace the need for Optimizely for all advertisers.”
Looking for a game changing Landing page builder for your current project? Here are a few things that you maybe trying to accomplish with your LP:
- Conversion focused LP to convert PAID traffic
- You are looking to use this as a static web page and wish to earn traffic
- You are looking to put your first web page up and start learning the online world
This are the 3 main reasons that we are ripping around online routing through the gazillions of Page builders trying to make sense, yet the more you look the more you lose hope…I know!
- Unbounce – “Looking for a conversion monster then Unbounce is your best bet. Oli Gardner and his team have been ROI focused for over a decade. They understand conversion and assist in better conquest acquisition. Pros – Great pop ups, Templates and A/B testing.”
- WordPress – “You are looking to use this as a static web page and wish to earn traffic. This is where I see too many mistakes made! If you are looking for a page that will build authority and stand the test of time then page builders are not the way to go… Page builder = Wigetized Short code that translates into a web page that uses a drag and drop editor. These are not the best solution these days when it comes to crawl-ability. They actually drive Google nuts for the most part. Also the fact that you pay monthly makes this choice wrong for the “pay-as-you-go” page builder. If you want to rank, go with a modern CMS like WordPress… This way it may cost a bit up front yet you eliminate the monthly and you are in a better machine to compete in your space.”
- Wix – “If you are just looking to have fun and see something that you will be proud of then any type of Wix type will make you pull out less hair to get what you want. Just don’t invest to much in the marketing of these sites.”
- Unbounce – “I’m a strong advocate of Unbounce for landing page creation and testing. It may feel a little complex to start with, but once you have the mindset it becomes quick and easy to use. The template gallery of tried and tested landing pages is very useful, as is the ability to share and send your landing page designs. The drag and drop facility is simple, and you can create your own branded templates to work from. Unbounce can be integrated with a wealth of other platforms, including WordPress in one click, and your own domain, using your URL. The fast, mobile-friendly pages are well optimised for search. Unbounce is a great platform for any size business, unlike many landing page platforms which are aimed at only the biggest in their field. Unbounce also offers a 14 day free trial, competitive pricing and great customer service.”
Unbounce – “Having used a number of SaaS providers over the years, I was somewhat sceptical about trying another web builder tool. Online page builders are great if you’re happy to select an option that looks and behaves a certain way and are not too fussy about detail. Select a template from a library, change the copy and images and you’re good to go. They definitely have a place.
Where it gets tricky with these online tools and templates is if you want to dig a bit deeper, maybe apply your own UX and Brand. One can end up spending hours and hours reworking or hacking someone else’s code to fit your requirements, only to be frustrated by the end result. You’ll wish you’d started from scratch with your own code and design or employed an expert to do it for you.
Having been disappointed by other providers, we’ve consistently had our basic needs met by Unbounce.
- Drag and Drop interface
- Simple to set up
- Good documentation (although you do need to sign up separately to your account)
- Easy to set up desktop and mobile viewports
- Lots of 3rd party integrations to plugin to (we used Zapier)
- Custom fonts
- Builder interface is responsive
- Custom domain
- Easy to set up A/B testing
*This is a big pro. Being able to add custom code raises the bar as it allows the creator to bring the page to life and is only limited by their imagination.
- Preview can be quite slow
- Initial dashboard is quite busy
- Form confirmation can be a bit clunky
Overall I was quite pleased with Unbounce. It’s intuitive and quite customisable. From a design/dev/UX point of view, I’d definitely recommend it.”
“When it comes to lead generation, your landing page is one of the most important components. In my opinion, custom coding is the best option because you have no restrictions. Building landing pages in this manner requires design and development experience, as well as a deep understanding of conversion rate optimization (CRO) best practice. You can/should pair this landing page with CRO platforms such as Visual Website Optimizer, Optimizely, or Google Optimize to run many different tests including, heatmaps, recordings, A/B tests, and multi-variant tests. If you have the resources and traffic volume to combine a custom landing page, as well as CRO this would be my first option.
With that said, many business owners and marketers will not have the time, expertise, or resources to run a custom campaign like this. If that’s you, don’t worry about it. There are many easy to use landing page builders that can/should be used in lead generation. These ‘out of the box’ builders are perfect for those who want to begin their campaigns quickly without having to spend additional time and resources on a custom landing page. Most landing page builders include a drag and drop editor (WYSIWYG) and even come with templates which already incorporate CRO best practice. They are fairly simple to set up on your domain or subdomain and can even connect with common content management systems like WordPress.”
- Unbounce – “My favorite is Unbounce.com for many reasons, but primarily because they are one of the most mature having been in business since 2009 and because they have been doing this for so long, you reap the benefits of their intuitive software, 100+ conversion-focused templates, built in integrations, and the ability to split test variations (among many other things).”
- Instapage – “The ease of use here was a huge plus. I found this to be the easiest to work with in terms of layout, adding/removing elements, even using custom html, this was a better performer. I believe this has been put together by Wix so expect a good UI and simplicity – which it does deliver. A good one for novice users.”
- Leadpages – “Leadpages was one that was chosen for its pricing and also features. This at the time of using Leadpages was one of the only ones that used dynamic text replacement features, which were needed by me. It was also the best in terms of the number of sessions that you pay for. A nice library of templates. Using the system was a little clumsy at times. Setting up subdomains was a bit of a pain. That being said it was a good cost based solution. There is a WordPress plugin, which makes publishing a little easier, however if you aren’t using WordPress, publishing is a bit of a pain.”
- Thrive Architect – “Used specifically for WordPress installations, I found this to be much better than some of the other WordPress page builders. There is a nice library of templates. Playing around with elements on different devices is a piece of cake. This plugin also allows for dynamic text insertion, which is a very powerful feature, especially for PPC landing pages.”
Instapage – “Instapage is my go-to platform to build quick and easy landing pages.
Instapage provides hundreds of templates that you can use to build your page. You can also create a page from scratch. The drag and drop function makes it easy to create sections on your page and add your own personal content.”
“There are also a couple of other tools I’d recommend. These aren’t landing page builder, but rather focus on the optimization side of things.”
- Optimizely – “Optimizely is more of a landing page testing tool, which is great if you want to test different landing pages that mainly get organic traffic. It allows you to set up different goals and see how well your variations are performing across all of them. You can also set up multi-page testing, which might come in handy if you want to include several steps of your funnel into 1 single test.”
- Google Optimize – “Google Optimize works quite similar to Optimizely. The standard version of the platform is even free! As it’s a Google product, it seamlessly integrates with Google Analytics and Google Ads.”
“It used to be just a few years ago that page builders were absolutely frowned upon by all developers due to the bloated code and scripts slowing down a website and even breaking other functions. Divi and WP Bakery, formerly known as Visual Composer, were notorious for this. Then came higher-heralded builders such as Beaver Builder, Elementor, being lightweight and much more functional. Now even WordPress itself has a page builder built-in with the Gutenberg editor.”
The widgets you can put into blocks on Elementor and WP Bakery number greater than Gutenberg. However, with Gutenberg block plugins and WordPress bringing them into their own separate repository, that part of the gap may close. One of my favorite things about the Elementor builder is the Google Maps block – with this one all you’ve got to do is type in the name of a place and it gets it correct, no need for iFrame code, address or anything else and shows the exact business.”
- Beaver Builder – “We love Beaver Builder on WordPress. It’s easy to use and priced right. Depending on your use-case, likely at least half the price of something like Unbounce or LeadPages. Both of which are totally solid products by all means. But if you’re working in WordPress, Beaver Builder is really just a joy.”
- Visual Composer – “Visual Composer is also solid. Especially because you can swap out headers and footers. Which can be really important for PPC landing pages, where we frequently want to reduce or remove navigation options.”
Sometimes we need a bunch of landing pages or tons of variations, or something really custom for a project. These guys are really great as a full-service, ‘we’ll build your landing pages for you’ option: landingpageguys.com. We’ve also used them for custom landing pages built on Drupal or other less common CMS platforms.
Instapage – “Instapage is an end-to-end solution for building personalized post-click landing pages at scale. Build. Personalize. Experiment. Win.
They have the most comprehensive suite of tools available for fast landing page implantation for small or large projects. You can A/B test potions of your page, create personalized experiences and really build around your audience segments. This is the tool I use almost exclusively.”
Unbounce – “I really like the flexibility that Unbounce provides in their landing page builder. You have many options of A/B-split-testing the designs.
One of my favorite features is that you can create dynamic headlines from URL parameters. This makes it possible for you to change the headline by adding parameters like ?h=Add+Your+Headline+Here.
From working with Google Ads (AdWords) for the past 8 years, I’ve used this quite often. It helps me split-test different USP’s – and even more important – to optimize the Quality Scores, get cheaper clicks and more bang for the buck.”
All three page builders below will allow you to build:
- Landing Pages
- Squeeze Pages
- Sales Pages
- Video Sales Pages
- Checkout Pages
- Thank You Pages
…plus a lot more too.
ClickFunnels – “ClickFunnels is a great place to start. It has some great points and some not so great points, so, here we go…
Firstly it is really good for beginners. If you have never built a Landing page then ClickFunnels could be the perfect place to start. It has a drag and drop set up that allows you to easily (once you’ve got the hang of it) build a page within a few minutes. You can set up split tests really easily and setting up the flow of your funnel is easy too. You can integrate a lot of other platforms with ClickFunnels and so pretty much any autoresponder you use is there, so you can gather your list quickly and easily. It is a basic system that does work and the biggest selling point for me is the additional training on offer (at a price) from the marketing master Russell Brunson who owns the platform. It has a 14 day free trial and if you go for the lowest cost set-up ($97 per month) then you get the page builder and that’s about it, but if you go the extra mile ($297 per month) then you get an inbuilt (albeit limited usability) email autoresponder and an affiliate platform all built into your account.
Now the downsides. Although ClickFunnels has a huge following, it is mainly down to the marketing skills of Russell and his team. The platform is quite restrictive when wanting to build the page exactly how you want. Although it has templates for you use and get you going, you do need to pay for the top performing ones.
The biggest issues for me though are the number of glitches in the software. Sometimes things don’t save when you want them to. Sometimes the system goes down and the worst thing is the page load time. It. Is. Slow! Which let’s be honest, is a pretty important thing when running traffic to a Landing Page. The other thing is that if you’re looking for a platform with great customer support, look elsewhere.”
- Convertri – “Convertri is my go-to place for building Landing Pages and is the brain child of the genius Andrew Fletcher.
Why is this you may ask and what is Convertri?! Well, Convertri is a page builder very similar in a lot of ways to Clickfunnels and all the rest, however, it does have amazing plus points.
Firstly, as a platform, it is so flexible that sometimes, especially if you are not used to building pages it can be a little too clever in that you can place anything you want, anywhere on the page, a bit like Photoshop. For me, this is great and allows me to build amazing looking, clean pages that convert. Talking of clean pages I once had a client that wanted me to duplicate everything she had in Clickfunnels and build it in Convertri too. Purely by accident, I ended up at some point with both pages together next to each other on one screen and the difference in clarity was astounding! Convertri just looked clearer, crisper, less fuzzy, nicer somehow. It does have it’s annoying bits like the way you add something new on the page, and when you go into mobile view it is all the way at the bottom of the page and you have to shuffle things about a bit. It does not put it in the perfect mobile friendly state, so you have to mess about with that and split testing is not as easy…
But, and this is a massive but, it is quite simply the fastest loading page builder on the planet. End of. It is so fast I couldn’t believe it when I first saw it. Also, it has never, EVER had any downtime at all. None of the others can say this. It is also well priced beating the others with cheaper monthly costs.
Convertri also has a 14-day free trial and then has three price ranges. Standard $53 per month, Pro $58 per month and Agency $166 per month. Customer support is amazing and for the sake of taking a little bit of extra time getting to grips with building pages in it, Convertri is the one I would recommend.”
Kartra – “Kartra is an all-in-one platform and is brought to you by Andy Jenkins and Mike Filsaime of Webinarjam and Everwebinar, and Frank Kern.
As an all in one platform, you can imagine that it does basically everything you need to build out any marketing funnel you can think off. It does email campaigns, it builds pages and funnels, it hosts videos, gives you the ability to have a helpdesk for your funnel and does everything you want to complete the customer journey in one place. But what about the page builder?
Well, you can choose from a lot of templates again and it is a drag and drop platform again. However with Kartra. although the pages look really good, it is not the most intuitive page builder. Once you get the hang of it it is very good and the pages do look great but I thought it had a steep learning curve.
Some of the best bits about it are that it has a lot of functionality that the others simply don’t have such as animations for certain components and very pretty sections that you just don’t get with other platforms. The bottom line is that you can build extremely good looking pages with Kartra if you have the time to learn everything the page builder has to offer. Couple this with the other integral parts of the platform and it is easy to put together pages and tags and triggers that build up a well working funnel.
It has had some bugs though and although I haven’t experienced any major problems myself, I do know people that have.
Kartra pricing starts with a $1 for a 14-day trial and then the packages range from Starter at $89 per month to Diamond at $699 per month. Although this might seem a lot, if you add up all the costs of email autoresponders, video hosting, helpdesks and everything else that Kartra has, then it’s not bad at all.”
- WordPress – “My favorite landing page builder is a little old school and can be more complicated, however I love using WordPress landing pages with a custom built theme. You can really match the look and feel of the site and customize every aspect of it to fully suit you.”
- Unbounce – “Unbounce was great fun to use and was easy to implement. I loved how it had readymade styles / templates which you could change to suit you. Alternatively you could start from the ground up and really make the pages your own.”
- Instapage – “Instapage has great integration features, however the available styles / themes were not as extensive as Unbounce, in my opinion.”
- ClickFunnels – “Overall I’d recommend ClickFunnels. There is a reason they’re the biggest and most ubiquitously known landing page builder; it’s because they’re the best. Russell and his team know what they’re doing and know what’s going on with regards to online marketing and all its facets, and the software really shows it. Simplicity is one of the first things that comes to mind with this software for me, being able to understand how to use the platform from the get-go is a plus with their drag and drop builder, ready to use templates, and tons of tutorials on how to integrate any possible third party software are reminiscent of using an iPhone for the first time where everything sort of “just made sense”. Another big plus is the ability to split test in real time all variations of pages and entire pages themselves, so you always know what’s working best. The downside of ClickFunnels is it’s pricing, with the cheapest plan costing $97 per month; however you can get a 14 day free trial on its site or from everyone promoting their affiliate link. Consider using ClickFunnels if you have a nuanced funnel to setup as you can go really in depth with this software using upsells and shopping carts and more, rather than just the need for a landing page/optin page to be followed by a basic thank you page. Bonus points for having GDPR ready features for anyone operating in the UK and everywhere else sooner or later. ”
- Elementor – “Next, if you’re on a budget and looking for a free software, I’d recommend using Elementor (if you’re using WordPress). Offering a lot of the same features as companies like ClickFunnels, like pre-designed templates to give your page a professional appearance and drag and drop editor. Some caveats I will include is I have found it can fall short when it comes to support. It can occasionally get finicky with other WordPress plugins, and I’ve had problems before trying to alter tags for SEO purposes. Elementor is a great software if you’re trying to save your pennies, just know you might run into problems here and there.”
- Leadpages – “I would be remiss in not at least mentioning Leadpages in this article. This software comes in a lower price than ClickFunnels at $25 a month, while retaining a lot of the same features, which will satisfy many of the needs of marketers reading this article. With tons of templates that are easy to build and modify, mobile responsiveness, payment processors, webinar integrations, and marketing automations, Leadpages an easy choice for many looking for an in-between.”
“Well designed, and conversion optimised landing pages are certainly essential for well executed PPC campaigns (or any marketing campaign for that matter).
The two landing page options we like are:”
- Unbounce – “Easy to use (maybe not as easy as they claim, but easy none the less). There are a few things that are really useful as an agency. Firstly, we can run our own landing pages on a sub-domain so no need to deal with or mess around with a client’s main website. Alternatively, they have a WordPress plugin to load the pages onto a site, which makes implementing them into many client sites very easy. Secondly, we can do split testing very easily. Recently Unbounce has been adding some great new features such as popups, sticky bars and AMP pages for improved page speed.”
- Beaver Builder – “In a former life, I used to be a WordPress Developer and run a web design company. I’ve seen WordPress go through many iterations and tested hundreds of plugins. Without a doubt, Beaver Builder is unparalleled for ease of use as a page builder, enabling you to create and edit landing pages of pretty much any design incredibly quickly. With features such as global rows to share and update certain parts of multiple pages all at the same time, it really is a dream to work with. Admittedly, it does mean you need at least some WordPress competence to get it up and running. Also, it lacks the split testing features of Unbounce and you’ll need another form plugin to capture leads, but really you can build a very capable, easy to use and cheaper landing page solution for your site (and your whole site) if you go this route.”
I have my Top 3 Landing Page Builders preferences below.
- WordPress – “This is just my preference, but custom WordPress templates are most ideal for me when building out a website. If you already have pages that continue to rank and convert well, I feel like these are ideal pages to have a template page within WordPress (or whatever CMS you use). There are a number of tools out there that can help you create a custom page from scratch very quickly. Using a tool to customize content page by page is great when it is needed. However, when global updates or redesigns are in the works, it might make it difficult to streamline a website that made every other page unique. It may also give an inconstant user experience if you go overboard. In extreme circumstances you might feel like you are visiting a different website every time you visit a new page. ”
- Instapage – “If you need a page created quickly, a custom WordPress template isn’t always the best option. Using a tool like Instapage is one of my next favorite choices. This can help to quickly launch a quality landing page in a short amount of time for a reasonable cost. If the page converts well, you might want to consider building out a custom WordPress template that can then be used for new pages. The best part about a tool like Instapage is the template option. I recommend choosing a template that is as close to what you want then to start customizing rather than beginning from scratch. This will save you time and help to ensure that your layout and design flows. ”
- Unbounce – “In my opinion Unbounce has similar features to Instapage, but the template options look more professional/polished. It is a bit more expensive, but there are conversion features such as pop-ups and A/B testing that give them a competitive advantage over a number of other tools. Unbounce also integrates with WordPress, Zapier, and I imagine several other platforms.”
Unbounce – “In short, we have tried multiple landing page builders & as an agency that heavily relies on landing pages – we’ve found unbounce.com to work best for our needs.
We love unbounce due to very simple reasons:
- Their UX is very user friendly, so implementing design files into a landing page format is pretty easy
- No matter what type of a landing page we create, google’s pagespeed insights has never been lower than 90/100 for mobile (nearly 100/100 for desktop every time)
- They have a very large community that experiments with their code, so finding scripts to make landers more interactive is very easy
- They have an insanely fast response time on customer support & the CS is not just there to take notes, but they, for the most part, are able to find answers for you instantly
- Last, but not least – they allow you to create client sub-accounts
>> While we usually don’t give our clients access to their landing pages due to several reasons, we do have cases where we work with companies that are very technically inclined & they want to set up webhooks / email / CRM integrations on their own, so this is very convenient.
I know, I’m talking Unbounce up like it’s the best thing since sliced bread; but while it’s a great tool – there are still a few flaws in their system:
- While the tool analytics sections shows landing page form submissions & conversion rates – that is a VERY vague insight on the actual test results. The analytics does not reflect results based on device type; there is only 1 goal available, aka – they offer very limited data insights. To conquer this issue – we build each landing page on a different URL, and then we implement optimize.google.com redirect tests to paint the full picture based on Google Analytics data.
- There is only 1 time zone available in the whole account, and it can’t be changed.
- Mass script implementation is available, but it’s based on domains – not specific pages you’ve created.
As you can see – if you’re ok with saving some serious development time coding the pages, but understand that there will be far more work to do as far as setting up tests, analyzing data, etc…. This is the right tool for you!”
You have plenty of people visiting your website, looking at your products, and even putting items in their carts. BUT (you knew there was going to be one) for some reason a lot of these “browsers” don’t seem to be turning into customers. They’re not crossing the finish line and completing your checkout.
Sound familiar? That’s because it is. Shopping cart abandonment is a major problem in ecommerce. There have been lots of studies done, and while the percentages may vary (anywhere from 55% – 80%), the message is always the same; an incredibly high proportion of online shoppers are bailing and heading out the door before they hand over their money. Here’s one such study by the Baymard Institute, and some more stats provided by barilliance.com.
But rather than viewing this as a major problem, look at it as an opportunity. Ask yourself “why customers abandon shopping carts?” If you can reduce the number of people abandoning their carts and convince them instead to go ahead and buy, you can generate more revenue for your business without driving any additional traffic to your site. What’s not to like?!
If you have no idea of where to start or you feel like nothing you’ve tried so far has made much of an impact, don’t panic. There are lots of different factors that can cause visitors to turn into cart abandoners, and we spoke to 36 ecommerce experts to hone in on the top reasons for cart abandonment you should be looking at, as well reveal possible solutions for each of these problems.
How to Reduce Cart Abandonment and Make More Sales: An Overview of the 36 Causes
- The Wishlist Basket – People using the cart as a wishlist
- Cart doesn’t show sufficient product info (sizes, colors etc)
- Not enough delivery options
- Customers that are researching now to buy later
- The customer doesn’t trust you
- Lack of gifting options/controls at checkout
- No option to checkout as a guest
- Ignoring store data and not tailoring your design to what it’s telling you
- Unavailability of stock
- A shopping cart that is difficult to edit
- First Name/Surname Vs Full Name
- Customers leaving the website to look for promos
- Getting distracted by something offline
- Form fatigue caused by long checkout forms
- Shopping charges that are either unclear, unexpected or expensive
- No shipping options or high customs duties for international customers
- Discount codes that don’t work
- Customer Address Information Form is Below Par for Today’s Shopper
- Fear and sense of risk causing the potential sale to be lost
- Fraud screening process causing false card declines
- Complex buyer questions that haven’t been answered on the website
- Long and/or complicated registration process
- Price promoted is not the price that is later displayed at checkout
- A lack of confidence in either the product or retailer
- Concerns about payment and data safety
- Customer thinking that they may be able to get cheaper or faster shipping elsewhere
- A lack of user reviews
- Complicated or unclear return policy
- Worried about getting the best value available
- Insufficient payment options
- Your checkout funnel not being properly optimized
- Ambiguous delivery timeframes or delivery options that are simply too slow
- International taxes and duties not being communicated before checkout
- Fantasy shopping – a form of 21st century entertainment
- No 3rd party validation for the store
- A checkout experience that is waaaay too cluttered
What the Experts Said: Solutions for Each Cause
Each ecommerce pro that we spoke to outlined one cause of cart abandonment that they’ve encountered, and also shared some strategies and ideas that you can implement to overcome it. There’s some absolute gold in there! Take action on what you read here and you’ve got a good chance to improve cart abandonment metrics and close more sales.
Use the filters below if you want to skip to a specific cart abandonment cause.
- Ambiguous or Slow Shipping Timeframes
- Bait and Switch Pricing
- Checkout Funnel is Not Optimized
- Cluttered Checkout Experience
- Complex Buyer Questions
- Complicated or Unclear Returns Policy
- Complicated Registration Process
- Concern About Getting the Best Value
- Conducting Research to Buy Later
- Customer Address Form is Below Par
- Discount Codes Not Working
- False Declines
- Fantasy Shopping
- Fear and Risk
- Fear That It Is Cheaper/Faster Shipping Somewhere Else
- First Name / Surname vs Full Name
- Form Fatigue
- Getting Distracted By Something Offline
- Inability to Easily Edit Cart
- Insufficient Payment Options
- International Customers: Retailer Doesn’t Ship or High Customs Duties
- International Duties & Taxes
- Lack of 3rd Party Validation
- Lack of Confidence in the Product or Retailer
- Lack of Delivery Options
- Lack of Trust
- Lack of User Reviews
- Leave to Search for Promos
- No Guest Checkout Option
- Not Collecting or Making Decisions Based on Data
- Payment or Data Safety Concerns
- Poorly Implemented Gifting Experience
- Poorly Structured Data
- Shipping Costs
- Stock Availability
- The Wishlist Basket
Ambiguous Timeframes for Delivery or Delivery that is Not Quick Enough – “One of the great challenges, and opportunities, for retailers is the growing demands of consumers. The challenge is that the last ‘wow’ experience for a shopper becomes their new baseline. The opportunity exists for retailers who can cohesively bring technology and process together for an innovative proposition – they get to lead the expectation wave, driving loyalty and further acquisition in the process. And we know that people buy experiences, not just products … experiences that add value, and experiences they can share with others.
It’s no surprise then that post-cart in the online shopping journey, when the next consideration for the consumer is “how will I actually *get* my purchase”, that many will decide not to progress if the fulfilment options don’t meet their expectations, and this is particularly the case for younger generations. In fact, according to a Neolane study in 2018, up to 97% of shoppers born after 1995 abandon their carts over order fulfilment woes and two out of five would cancel an order if the shipping was going to take too long.”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “This is not necessarily a quick or easy fix. It’s not like adjusting the CX of the checkout. Shipping different order types and sizes to different geographies with different services and couriers can lead to a large logistical matrix that needs to be represented to the consumer in a simple fashion. Adding to that different stock locations and ensuring inventory is visible in as real-time as possible brings complexity in logic and systems integration. Then adding again a variety of different sales channels such as marketplaces, call centres, apps, from which orders need to be consolidated before fulfilment and the level of rocket science goes up a notch!
Typically, order management systems are used to alleviate this challenge. Integrating with sales channels and fulfilment channels and providing logic to optimise the order distribution. It’s particularly useful for retailers with a distributed store network, which can operate as a fulfilment channel as well as sales, allowing for additional fulfilment options including BOPIS (Buy Online, Pick-up In Store), ship from store and ship to store. This provides additional options to the consumer as well as speedier delivery, but also efficiency across fulfilment costs for the retailer as well. An OMS can be implemented at any point, but it makes most sense to do so when designing the systems architecture to minimise duplicated effort in setting up logistics.
However, the hard work under the hood is not the only consideration. Presenting the options to the consumer in a clear and concise way is critical, and making this accessible to them throughout their shopping journey including at checkout is also key. Happily though, this is simpler and often works well when the customer can dynamically enter their location for a list of fulfilment options and shipping services to choose from. One site that does this well is Mr Porter in the UK, where the page is presented in a separate window that doesn’t take the consumer away from the page they are on – simple but effective.
A further tip, that I don’t see too often, is to use photos on the shipping info page. Product photos are important for convincing the customer to add to cart, and including a packaging/unboxing photo can enhance the service proposition that a customer looks for when deciding to complete the purchase, and increase conversion.”
Poorly Structured Data Leads to Confusion and Doubt – “Online shopping can be rather addictive due to the dreamy hypnotic state we find ourselves experience whilst doing it. The fluid journey through search engines, marketplaces and websites on the quest for material satisfaction is only possible when the information upon which that journey is based is carefully optimised and structured. It’s the unseen side of ecommerce that customers never think about, and frankly shouldn’t have to. The effort required to structure and optimise data properly can be onerous and time-consuming, but it is something that merchants overlook to their peril.
Cart abandonment is nothing more than getting cold feet at the last minute. So what makes us chicken out of something we at first thought was worth devoting attention to? If the website looked dodgy in the first place, we wouldn’t have even reached the Cart at all. So it’s fair to assume the website design was pleasant enough for us to press on.
We’ve found the perfect product, just what we were looking for, and at a fair price, so we select the colour or size variant from the product page and add it to Cart before checking out what else might be worth looking at. The shopping cart is like a personal assistant holding all the stuff we give them just in case, so we can go through it all later and make our real decision. So when we go to check what they’re carrying for us and they can’t tell us the colour or size of some products, wouldn’t that make you a little annoyed?
The size and colour variants are typically crystal clear to understand and select on the product page, but if the child SKU data fields have not been optimised to display the attributes of each variant, then what’s displayed in Cart will be a vague reference to the product with no specific attributes. Would you buy a pair of shoes if the Cart didn’t display the size you’d selected? No, I wouldn’t either.”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “Structuring and optimising product and category data requires a knowledge of how people shop online, how they search and browse, and how what they see sets unconscious expectations about what’s coming next. When those expectations are not met, confidence is diminished and confusion or doubt can take over very quickly. Nobody parts with their hard-earned money if they’re not feeling completely safe and assured. Arriving at a website Cart to be met with uncertainty is a pretty good motivator for walking away and shopping elsewhere.
Online retailers need to be willing to put in the effort to understand how customers think and react to what they see online. Curating that customer journey is no accident, and won’t engage or convert well if the data upon which it functions is flawed or incomplete. Don’t undercook your online business by ignoring product data. If you’re willing to put in the effort required to attract customers to your website, don’t sell yourself short by failing to address the quality of the data that will keep them there and entice them to buy.”
- Lack of 3rd Party Validation – “Research shows that a lack of trust is the easiest way to lose customers on your ecommerce website. Simply put, people do not like to buy things from people or companies they do not trust. Trust is an interesting topic, as there’s a variety of ways to message, achieve and convey trust to new and existing customers.”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “A quick, easy way to convey trust is through 3rd party validation and trust seals. At it’s core, the concept is to use a well known company or brand to “back up” your reputation as a trustworthy online retailer. Originally this idea has been pioneered by organizations like the Better Business Bureau and Norton Secured.
The goal of 3rd party validation is to convince potential customers that the they will have a safe, secure, and reliable shopping experience when buying on your website. During the split-second purchase decision, shoppers will look for this validation to give them confidence as they prepare to hit the “Complete Order” button.
The Norton Shopping Guarantee program achieves this validation by providing shoppers with Identity Theft Protection, a Purchase Guarantee, and a Lowest Price Guarantee. Here’s an example below:
The beauty of trust programs and 3rd party validation, is you can easily run A/B tests to measure the conversion rate impact. Don’t just take my word for it, let the data do the talking!”
Conducting Research to Buy Later – “Research indicates that over 17% of people abandon their cart because they were simply conducting research to buy later. This is particularly true nowadays with omni-channel purchases on the rise, as well as the simple fact that people do exactly as the research states, RESEARCH.
They may come to your site to check out the pricing, color options, and even shipping options. I mention the last one because quite frankly if they have gone so far as to add an item to the cart they may very well be looking to get further details beyond that of something that can be found on a given product page. That said, however, people use the cart as a means of bookmarking products, and it makes sense.
I tend to focus efforts on the issues that can be solved at least in some respect from technology and tech intervention. Until recently I had not considered this issue to be something that could really be resolved in such a manner that could prove overly beneficial until…”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “I was thinking about when I used to work in retail and thought about how many people originally walked into a store only to tell me they were just browsing, then ended up buying something in the end. I then did a little digging and thinking about options to address these types of people so that you can CONVERT them into sales.
Some might tell you to add a countdown timer, and in some cases this may work, but beware as it may also anger more people then it does win you business. So this is not my suggestion.
I started thinking, if I already have pixels in place to track these people so that I can start targeting them with FB ads once they leave, then at least I am doing something, small win. MAKE SURE YOU’RE DOING THIS! Use pixel ads to re-target all your cart abandonment traffic, it’s a huge opportunity lost if you are not!
BUT there had to be something else!
How can I get them to buy while they are on my site, and not through offering discounts or anything of this nature. The answer to this is to increase the customer satisfaction. Ensure that you are using your onsite chats to answer any questions and to truly engage the customer in an experience that is second to none. Again this may have as much impact as changing a buy button from brown to beige. But who knows, at least its worth a try.
I came to the consensus that this is not retail, it is eCommerce and these people are doing what they said, researching to buy later. SO…
So here is my solution: GET THEIR EMAIL!
Use a custom script on the page that triggers a page-takeover when they are about to leave the site. This could specifically say something to nature of “Email me my shopping cart” (*We can do this for you, just hit our link and contact me).
There is evidence, albeit still VERY limited which indicates that these emails converted 22.73% of shopping sessions, and were responsible for 44.74% of triggered email revenues.”
Unclear, Unexpected or Expensive Shipping Costs – “Just about every report/study I have read on the topic of cart abandonment lists unclear/unexpected or expensive shipping costs among the top three reasons. It’s usually the leading cause.
People have become accustomed to free shipping. It started with Amazon Prime. Free 2-day shipping has always been one of Prime’s key differentiators. It’s one of the most important moves Amazon ever made and it changed ecommerce forever.”
Ideas on How to Solve It– “If you have an ecommerce site selling physical goods and charge for shipping, you’ll want to take a look at your analytics data. Odds are that it’s driving a high abandonment rate. If so, do a deeper dive on your data to determine exactly where people are dropping off. If you find shipping to be the issue, there are several strategies you can employ to reduce your abandonment rate.
I recommend taking a phased approach to tackling the issue, as you might find that what customers are reacting to is confusing shipping terms/costs vs. the fact that shipping isn’t free.
Customers want to know what their total cost will be before they spend a lot of time filling information out. Take a look at your checkout process. If you can’t get to an all-inclusive total until a customer has reached the final step, you’re likely losing a large percentage of people before they’ve even seen the shipping cost. Try displaying an “estimated shipping rate” on the basket/cart page. The simple step of displaying an estimated total can significantly reduce your abandonment rate.
If free shipping is really what your customers are after, but your business model doesn’t support it, try one of the following:
1) Offer “free shipping” by building the cost of shipping into the price of your products.
Assuming you have a clear understanding of actual shipping costs, you can test offering free shipping by building the cost of shipping into the price of your products.
2) Offer free standard shipping but incentivize paid/premium shipping.
One approach I have found to be quite effective is to create a tiered shipping model. For example, offer free standard shipping with a longer lead time, and faster shipping for a premium. Many customers will opt for the faster method if the cost is reasonable.”
- Fear and Risk – “Purchasing is an emotional experience, and whilst for some this can be an exciting and addictive experience, for others it can trigger emotions of fear and risk – there have been a lot of studies into the psychology of online buying.”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “To help stop your potential buyers from “bottling it” I’d suggest that you look at a few key things. Firstly convey that your product is wanted, and is high demand – that will give you social proof that your customer is going to fit in with the crowd. We’re tribal beings so this will go a long way into the process.
We love choice, but too much choice can bring indecision and “analysis paralysis” – do you really need to offer that T-Shirt in 24 different colours, or will just six options do?
Both of these areas are tied together with creating a feeling of urgency and demand for your products. Using widgets that say “Somebody from Manchester just bought this product” on your website is a great way to show people are buying your product RIGHT NOW and if you only have five left show that on the site, people will be more likely to snap it up!”
- Getting Distracted By Something Offline – “Let’s admit it, we all get sidetracked by our family members, friends, business associates, cold callers, our favourite TV show and even our pets :o), and sometimes this happens while we’re in the middle of a checkout process of an e-commerce site on our phones or desktops. You may then close that window and not even recall you were about to buy something.”
- Ideas on How to Solve It – “Unfortunately, there’s no way to mitigate that kind of user behaviour. However you can always run win-back campaigns by sending a cart abandonment email once or more with an incentive such as a coupon code to get free shipping or a discount. You can also run advertising campaigns on Google and Facebook to a segmented list of cart abandoners, whether it’s done via cookies or with email list uploads. I would suggest not doing it for longer than 7 days post abandonment.”
- Complex Buyer Questions – “Complex Buyer Questions that haven’t been resolved on the rest of the site. As I run a business in a complex e-commerce space, the customers have a lot of questions, and the answers aren’t readily available on the site. Sometimes, it’s almost impossible to have all of the answers.”
- Ideas on How to Solve It – “We use a layered approach of aggressive live chat, both facebook messenger and our site, as well as retargeting on cart abandons.”
Your Checkout Funnel is Not Optimized – “The checkout funnel is all the steps from Shopping Cart to the Thank You page after purchase. Many eCommerce sites have several steps for checkout. Usually it goes something like this: Cart > Customer Information > Shipping Method > Payment Info > Purchase
Most eCommerce sites tend to build in these steps by default. This is because there are a lot of fields to be collected in the process of making a purchase and having more than 1 step makes it feel simple and less overwhelming for the visitor. There’s also the advantage of capturing that customer email first so you can re-market to them.
I’ve also seen some clients have just one step/on page to checkout. This can work too, especially if the product is less expensive or something your customer has purchased before.
Regardless of your funnel, there is almost always something you can do to improve and optimize. So, as with everything in digital marketing, you need to test to find out what works best for your customers and product.”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “Why should you optimize your checkout funnel? Think of the checkout as a huge lever in your sales (check out this article). The closer you optimize to the bottom of the funnel, the bigger the impact. For example: If you can decrease your abandonment from the payment page by just 25%, this will bring a 25% increase in sales (on the same ad spend). Think of what this would do to your ROAS (Return on Advertising Spend) and ability to scale your marketing!
How to Decide What You Should Test?
If you’ve configured enhanced eCommerce tracking for google analytics, the shopping behavior report can be helpful to see where the drop off is happening so you can hone in on a couple of ideas. Here’s where you can find this report in Google Analytics: Conversions > eCommerce > Shopping Behavior report.
Collect Feedback from Website Visitors:
As a site owner, you are too close to your product to really view it objectively, so it’s a great idea to have some outside eyes help you with optimization. There is software for this, like Hotjar or Crazy Egg. Or you can just ask a few friends to go through your checkout process a few times (don’t forget mobile!) as if they were a customer. Have them take notes during each test on where they had questions or what they found difficult or confusing and how long it took them to make a purchase.
Here are some simple best practices I’d recommend in optimizing your checkout funnel:
- Have clear and concise button text i.e. ‘proceed to checkout’ ‘proceed to payment info’, ‘add shipping info’ ‘place order’
- Add notes of reassurance where necessary, like ‘You will have a chance to review your order first’ or ‘no hidden shipping fees’.
- Show the progress to checkout with labeled steps, highlighting where they are in the process.
- Remove excess: fields, navigation, wordy text, anything that doesn’t NEED to be there can be removed.
- If you have something important you want to note with your customers, don’t invoke fear, just state clearly and concisely. It doesn’t need to be a pop up or big red text.
- Add an exit popup to bring back those trying to abandon with a simple incentive.
- Mobile first! Do what you can to improve the experience and increase mobile conversion.
- Test, Test, Test, don’t assume you know what will work best for your customers, always use data to guide your decisions.
Lack of Trust – The Easiest Way to Lose a Sale – “We know there are a million reasons why a customer might not complete their purchase. This article offers lots of valid causes of abandonment from a bunch of really smart ecommerce experts. Some solutions are metrics-driven, some require UX adjustments, and some are as simple as clear expectation management.
But the one cause that I always obsess over is a toughie – it’s a broad and nebulous idea, which makes it harder to identify and therefore more of a challenge to address: LACK OF TRUST.
The struggle is bigger for relatively small or less-well-known sites. A customer shopping on Amazon knows the retailer and has some idea what to expect. They’re skipping the courtship and going straight to meeting the parents, because there is already established comfort and history.
But if a customer stumbled onto your site from a search result or found you from a link or ad, you’ve got an uphill battle ahead of you. Because you’re not as well known as your larger competitors, you need to convince the customer that you can be trusted – and you’re starting from square one. Even if they’ve been on a few dates with you, how can they know it’s safe to trust you?”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “Your mission is to prove that…You’re legitimate, reliable, and safe. You will deliver as promised, both in terms of the product’s details and quality, and the delivery of the item itself.
You can be trusted with their personal information (you won’t spam them or otherwise abuse their data). You stand by your product and your promises, and your customer care staff are trained and equipped to make it right if you fall short.
What does this look like on site?
1. Start with the basics! Ensure the website looks clean and current. If it looks frequently maintained and not neglected or out of date, it instills confidence in legitimacy. This has become easier than it used to be. There are now very affordable ecommerce platforms with free themes and upgrades that make it simple to continually adjust to changing consumer expectations.
2. Have a secure website with an up-to-date certificate so the browser will show that it’s secure and won’t pop up warnings (which are a giant off-ramp for customers).
Above: Browsers have some version of these icons next to website URLs. A fully secure site is basically a requirement these days (Google won’t like it otherwise) but especially on pages where personal information is being entered, it really is necessary. This is one small step toward seeming trustworthy to your customers.
3. Demonstrate history to make it clear you’re not a fly-by-night operation. Do this by using blog posts and other content that you add over time. Speak authoritatively about your products and services, and make it clear you’re an expert, not just a storefront.
4. Be very consistent with your brand voice. Just like people, a brand is judged by how consistent and genuine it is. This should cross over into every touch point, from ads to on-site copy, to the call center.
5. Make it easy to get in touch. Whether or not they take you up on it, feeling like there are real people available to help and an actual company behind the website will absolutely build that trust. Want to seem sketchy? Avoid all contact information, offer no support, and cause your customers to wonder whether you’re maybe just a fake website designed to take their money and never deliver. (That was sarcasm. Please don’t do that.)
Above: Link to support and phone number prominently displayed at the top of the website, just above the cart – in the top-right corner, where users’ eyes naturally go.
6. Include guarantees, display them prominently, and follow through on them. You might have a guarantee of quality, of shipping delivery times, or of satisfaction in general. Be clear about how you’ll correct these issues (free returns? Replacements? credit?) and again, deliver as promised.
Above: A brand that uses its real estate to hammer home its commitment to quality is one that consumers will want to trust. It helps when it’s a known brand with a history of providing good value, of course. The website also has a page with details about the guarantee that are easy to understand.
Above: Left side of cart page has links to these policies in a very clean layout. It also shows the shipping options clearly, including the automatically-applied free method.
Make your offers clear and easy to apply. Free shipping over a certain amount? Don’t require a code, and do make sure to put this offer right up front. It breaks down a major barrier to purchase (paying shipping costs) and can increase your average order value as the customer is incentivized to reach the threshold for free shipping (if it’s within reason). Great offers that apply only to a small subset of products and don’t make this very clear up front only create annoyance, which whittles away at trust. Make it painfully clear and extremely easy what the deal is and how to get it if you value your customers’ trust.
Above: Free shipping offer front and center at the top-center of the website, on every page. No gimmick, no catch, no code required – what you see is what you get. The offer is clear and easy to receive.
Above: Note the discount code field. It is not hidden, collapsed, or otherwise hard to find. Your discounts are out there. Don’t deter your customers from using them – they’re much more likely to complete the purchase if they have an offer to use! Extra Credit: publish your own perpetual (or constantly changing!) discounts on sites like RetailMeNot so that customers have something to find and apply if they’re looking.
9. Never bait and switch offers. There’s nothing worse than a giant “80% OFF” when the fine print says “up to” above it and “one item” below it. I’ve even seen scandalous ads like “FREE SHIPPING ON EVERYTHING” and it wasn’t until optionally clicking into the details to find that they meant “EVERYTHING over $200.” People might be drawn in by the over-promise, but the switcheroo doesn’t make them want to stay. It’s the best way to destroy trust and lose a customer in frustration. Even with the best of intentions, a poorly worded, unintentionally misleading, or difficult-to-qualify-for offer is a bad move. It’s all too easy to offend and annoy online shoppers with click bait. Don’t do it.
Because trust is an emotional feeling, it’s impossible to pin down every little thing that might instill it or shake it. This list is a good start, but if you think like a consumer and continually evaluate, you will certainly find more ways to build it.
Spend time browsing your website with your “I’m a first-time customer” glasses on. Look at other sites to see how they make you feel by comparison. Make no assumptions, and think like a nervous shopper. Evaluate that first impression and the ongoing experience and make sure a new browser to your site has every opportunity to feel comfortable enough to become a buyer.”
Stock Availability – “Over the years I have discovered that the single biggest driver of Abandoned Carts (other than product + shipping price) is stock availability.
Let’s think about a real life example.
I go to website A and want to buy products B, C & D. Products B & C are in stock now, but D is not. On some websites I can place the order and D goes on back order, while B & C ship immediately, but on many sites you simply cannot place items on back order or complete an order with out of stock items in your cart.
Let’s say site A is a site where I cannot place anything on back order.
Now, of course I want to qualify for free shipping thresholds, product/cart level discounts, loyalty incentives and other bonuses on offer if I buy products B, C & D together/at the same time.
So, I am faced with a dilemma:
- Do I remove item D from my cart and potentially lose some of my bonuses but complete the purchase anyway?
- Do I wait until the item is back in stock (assuming the site offers back in stock notifications and if not, I’d have to check back frequently to even know) to complete my full order?
- Do I abandon my cart and shop somewhere that has ALL of the items in stock and available for immediate shipment (assuming their prices are competitive)?
I know what I do in these scenarios and I know what most people do too. They abandon their cart and purchase elsewhere. No amount of Abandoned Cart emails or workflows is going to prevent this!”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “In other words, one of the biggest levers you can pull (other than product + shipping costs) to reduce abandonment is to ensure you have most of your catalog in stock and immediately available at all times.
The higher the frequency or volume of out of stocks you have as a % of your total catalog, the higher your Abandoned Carts will be and the lower your conversion rate overall.”
Fantasy Shopping – “Does anyone remember the last time they used the wish list functionality in your account? Does anyone remember even seeing it recently? I don’t. I wouldn’t use wish list anymore because my cart is just as good a wish list as any, since most carts are persistent. Many consumers use the cart in the same way.
Fantasy shopping is a sport, a way to kill time, another form of entertainment. You fill your cart with no intention of checking out, basically using the “add to cart” button like you would a ‘like’ on social. Given this behavior change of the last 5 – 7 years abandonment rates are up significantly, and it doesn’t mean anything is wrong with your checkout or cart functionality. It’s just a change in consumer behavior.”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “So what to do about it? In-cart promos that speak to hitting thresholds help. Cart abandon emails and targeted display ads help. Payment options and delivery options help.
An example of a payment option is Afterpay. The total price in the cart may say $39 total price, but isn’t it more attractive / a bigger conversion driver to pay only $9.75 today, get and enjoy your product and pay the rest in 3 installments of $9.75 later on? An example of a delivery option that helps is Postmates. As you are considering buying items in your cart, you see you can have the items delivered for $9 flat fee to you in less than 2 hours. These tactics all help drive conversion and decrease cart abandon.”
- Poorly Implemented Gifting Experience – “With Father’s Day fast approaching, I’ll be purchasing my gift online, but trusting a site to deliver a decent gifting experience is a big ask and one where many sites fail. Users infrequent use of gifting and the lack of GUI conventions, means many gifting experiences are poorly implemented. Often gifting is a neglected feature of the checkout flow which can have a detrimental effect for both purchaser and recipient if the site does not perform well. One reason for abandonment is the address field, if the user has specified the order as a gift, then the billing address should not default to auto-fill the shipping address with the same details, as this can frustrate the user.”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “I encountered a similar issue with GAP, who allowed me to select a gift message but little else, and it was within the context of the standard checkout flow, so there was no true personalisation or gift receipt options. Whereas Etsy, have thought about the user flow and include a gift checkbox explaining that prices will not be shown on the packing slip and upon selection of this checkbox allows the user to enter a free gift message.
To help resolve this issue, I would ensure that the gift flow includes the following conventions: Billing address should not default to the shipping address, you should provide descriptive text explaining the gifting options and process and make the process more convenient by providing personalised gift options (message, receipt or wrap service). This should ensure a smoother more convenient gifting experience.”
Inability to Easily Edit Cart – “Often when shopping visitors will add multiple items to their cart in order to make a final decision on checkout. If your cart doesn’t allow a user to easily add quantity, delete items, and change size or color, you risk losing taking them out of the checkout flow and potentially losing that order.”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “When enabling cart edits (size, quantity, color), you keep customers on a forward path trajectory, and I have seen this increase cart conversion by as much as 10% points on various clients.
You’ll also want to make it as clear as possible what items may or may not be covered under a promo code – especially when there is a spend threshold to reach a certain discount. Make it as clear and upfront as possible how much a customer is saving and what a great deal they are getting!”
The Wishlist Basket – “When you look at abandoned carts the range of potential reasons very much relates to the products or services that you are selling.
In many cases, I’ve seen with my customers at the moment – High Value Purchases (above £2000) having a high abandoned cart rate as they are looking to check the prices both online and offline or do not have enough information immediately to make a purchase..
So the question is WHY? – simply; many sites are not making full use of the “Wish-list” functionality that is available in most, if not all, eCommerce platforms. The Customer knows that in most cases a basket will persist for a period of time, allowing them to move around, even sometimes for days at a time (thanks to cookies) – to be able to find the best deals, read reviews, and make the final decision.”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “So what can we do to help?
- Provide a Wish-list functionality
- Where possible, allow comparison to related products
- Allow communications to remind customer of the basket
These 3 items are merely the simple solutions that you can implement to be able to solve the top level problem. Where the root of the problem lies is to be discovered from your analytics and looking at your customers journey.
A number of root causes on your site could be:
- Lack of product details
- Lack of user generated content (customer reviews)
- Supporting content
While we all fuss and worry over how many carts are abandoned in our monthly or weekly reports – and we try and remedy that – if you see a continual trend in this area, you need to look further at the reasons – first looking at the display of the content of the product, but also look at the competition and what it is that makes the difference.
Always remember any eCommerce is a connected ecosystem and every part of content and product detail, imagery, and tone of voice is connected – therefore the make sure there is synergy throughout your journey – this leading to a supportive customer journey and higher conversion rates.”
No Guest Checkout Option – “The art of a fabulous website is to give the greatest number of options in the very simplest of formats.
Sure, we don’t have the same ability to smile at our customers, welcome them warmly or extol the value of our products as they walk through the store or engaging them with our wit and expertise at the check out counter as we would in offline retail but we do have online tools to do these things as brilliantly as possible online.
Often, eCommerce owners look to apps as their sole means to engage customers. This is not, though, the best or the most authentic methodology.
eCommerce is fundamentally no different to any other offline business; all business SELLS a product or a service to a customer or client who NEEDS or WANTS their particular offering and hopefully does so at a PROFIT. The equation is not rocket science.
When we sell online, we need to mimic the offline sales experience as closely as possible. Humans are still buying from humans, so…….be HUMAN in your website messaging.
There is competition everywhere – someone will ALWAYS be willing to sell the same or a similar product to your customer base (hello – China’s modus operandi) and therefore SERVICE, VALUE and ENGAGEMENT are critical in every transaction and especially in eCommerce as we basically remove the actual human element.
One thing that, to me, seems so incredibly elementary is the option at checkout of a guest checkout or to establish an account.
The stores that do not allow guest checkouts and virtually railroad you into setting up an account prior to payment are simply asking for cart abandonment issues.”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “Of course, there are exceptions – for instance, if you are setting up a payment plan or a subscription then, of course a customer is going to have to establish an account because the transaction includes ongoing business, however in the vast majority of cases, the customer does not NEED to establish an account so, in these cases – give them the option.
I understand that, in most cases, accounts are infinitely easier for an eCommerce owner;
- they can give customers access to their invoices and tracking details and therefore save on the resources of customer service for everyday issues, leaving your savvy customer service team to handle only the important stuff.
- collection of data for further communication is golden
However, the brownie points (aka reduction in cart abandonment) that you will garner from offering the option of a guest checkout far outweigh the above.
The option of a guest checkout is also critical for the 3 aforementioned critical elements of eCommerce.
1. SERVICE – offering the guest checkout option sub-consciously demonstrates to the customer that they are King or Queen. They call their own shots, they decide on the option best suited to them.
A hint here would also be to reword the options such as “Checkout as a guest” and “Checkout as a VIP”. Think about it; which option would YOU choose??
2. VALUE – When the difference between the two is clearly explained, you have another golden opportunity to demonstrate the after-sales value that you offer to the customer.
For instance, the fact that I can track my package is a HUGE plus on a checkout page – maybe stipulate that this service is only available for account customers. Maybe offer an incentive to people to sign up as an account customer, for example, $10.00 off their next purchase from your store (emailed or messengered to them immediately after finalisation of this transaction.)
3. ENGAGEMENT – when offering the option, you allow those who may be purchasing a one-off or simply not interested in keeping yet another password to checkout simply.
However, the copy used in the explanation of the two options can make a customer feel part of a tribe, a community, an online family if they choose to establish an account.
It is true that there are many ways to run an online store however, if we all understand that the HUMAN element in all transactions is the key, we see the common sense in offering very simple options such as a guest checkout as just one way to keep a customer and to avoid cart abandonment.”
- Cluttered Checkout Experience – “I’ve seen my fair share of cart pages that are cluttered with header and footer navigation. Even though there have been a lot of studies and testing done, there are still ecommerce businesses that have not taken the step to clean up their cart pages. This causes the shopper to click away from the cart and wander off back into browsing mode, instead of checkout mode.”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “The way this can be handled to improve checkout conversions and reduce cart abandonment is to look at your cart page, and remove ANYTHING that can be a distraction to your shoppers cart funnel. It’s one of the changes that is simple and can yield incremental sales for your business.
Don’t underestimate this small adjustment. In ecommerce, the smallest changes can bring the highest return.”
- International Customers: Retailer Doesn’t Ship or High Customs Duties – “International customers can be a source of cart abandonment on your site. Consider the scenario where you’ve found a product on Instagram which you LOVE and just have to have it. You go to their website, you add a few things to the cart to get over their free shipping threshold and then you go to checkout. You go to put in your shipping address and it either doesn’t let you select your country or when you do, the shipping costs change and all of a sudden you are whacked with customs and duties (if they are disclosed). You have invested all this time and effort to put together your perfect order to find out you can’t order. This negative experience is far greater than landing on the site and being told up front that they only ship to certain counties (Glossier does this well). Even if you open up shipping to other countries in the future, it is unlikely they will come back.”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “Set up segments in your analytics for customers from countries who can get their orders delivered and those who can’t. Compare the bounce rates, conversion rates (some will order through forward shippers or friends) and key exit pages. Look at the percentage of traffic coming from outside your current shipping areas. This will help you quantify the issue and potentially identify an opportunity for where you could open up shipping or another third party channel like an Amazon US store where you can use Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) to handle local distribution, shipping and customer service.
Then make sure the messaging is clear on your website upfront for all customers, way before they get to the cart. Ideally use a personalization tool to display different content to users based on their geo-location such as “Now Shipping to Canada. Flat Rate Shipping $9 For All Orders”. This way you are not compromising the experience for your local customers, but you’re also making it much easier for your overseas customers. Always ensure you have an International delivery page in your footer as well, even if you don’t offer it so the information is easily accessible.
One last thing, which will impact returns more than cart abandonment, but ensure whenever the international customer will incur duties and taxes this is clearly marked. Think about adding a check box so they need to acknowledge they understand this, and aim to provide links to third party pages with more information on likely costs. If customers are rejecting orders at customs due to the additional costs, not only is it a bad experience, it’s also going to cost you more money in the long run.”
- Long and Complicated Registration Process – “A long and complicated registration process is a major reason for cart abandonment. People often get scared when they see a long registration form and, to avoid the hassle, just abandon their carts.”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “There are several ways to overcome this problem. You can simplify your registration process and reduce the number of form fields. You can also give them the option to register using social profiles like Facebook or Google, making it much easier to register.”
If you want to take it a notch higher and further simplify things, you can provide consumers the option to check out as guests. This would eliminate an entire step in the checkout process and enable people to make quick, hassle-free purchases.”
Customer Address Information Form is Below Par for Today’s Shopper – “This cause of cart abandonment comes early on in the checkout where customer and address information is requested. There are 12 guidelines for this area to prevent a shopper’s doubt or frustration and to provide what they need to confidently complete the element and move forward to finalize the order.
Here are some of the usability issues at this point in the checkout:
- Explain why seemingly unnecessary personal information is needed
- Use “Shipping Address” as “Billing Address” by default
- Auto-detect city and state immediately after Zip code is provided
- Have a single phone field and avoid asking for phone type
- Use a single “Full Name” field
- Use IP geo-targeting to pre-select the user’s country
- Consider hiding “Address line 2” behind a link
- Avoid or clarify “Business address” selections
For one client I could see that their cart completion rate was average, between 30-35%, and as I looked at their checkout process I knew it could be better.”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “Baymard Institute has researched shopping cart abandonment and compiled their findings into 134 guidelines based on usability reviews of 50 leading ecommerce sites.
I acquired the research and scored my client’s checkout. It revealed 35 guidelines that were either not acceptable or broken.
As I went over the specific elements of my client’s cart that cause shoppers doubt or frustration and showed them what to do to fix these issues, they agreed that the customer and address form could be better.
Next to the Phone field: “Just in case we need to talk about your order.”
By the Email field: “We’ll send you a confirmation email later.”
This change impacted my client’s checkout completion rate, but it wasn’t the only factor. There were a number of changes made all at the same time from other areas of the checkout like credit card form, order review, validation error and persistence, etc.
But, as soon as the changes to the checkout were implemented, their checkout completion rate went from 30-35% up to 40-45% and they still have a number of recommendations to implement.”
False Declines – “Most conversations with merchants around the topic of cart abandonment rarely include fraud screening considerations, but this problem is real and extends beyond the initial cart abandonment. When a customer’s payment card is rejected by a merchant, more than 40% ditch the cart without trying another payment method. Worse, about a third of falsely declined customers say they never shop with that merchant again. So not only do false declines lead to cart abandonment, they also drive up customer churn rates and drive down the lifetime value of those customers.
This is a huge problem, because false declines are so common. They cost merchants far more in lost revenue than completed fraud does. Thirty percent of shoppers say they’ve been wrongly declined, and false-decline loss estimates range from $118 billion (according to Javelin Research) to $300 billion (according to Aite Group). Shoppers who’ve had a negative experience are more likely than customers who had a good experience to talk to friends about it, in person and on social media, which can damage the merchant’s reputation.”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “Reducing false declines can reduce cart abandonment, customer churn, and brand damage. And it’s possible to drastically cut false declines without experiencing more fraud. Here are the steps we help our clients put into practice:
First, know your false decline rate. Many merchants don’t track this data, and their third-party fraud solution may put false declines and stopped fraud into the same bucket for reporting. Next, implement manual review of all flagged orders by fraud analysts instead of automatically rejecting them. If you don’t have the resources to do this in-house, you can outsource it, either year-round or during sales peaks. Then, feed the data from these reviewed orders back into your machine-learning program so the fraud-detection algorithm gets smarter and flags fewer good orders.
Finally, track your false decline rate and cart abandonment rate changes over time to see the impact of more comprehensive fraud screening. Whether you want to tweak your current process, or overhaul completely, a large library of industry resources around fraud can be found here:
Fear That It Is Cheaper/Faster Shipping Somewhere Else – “OK – here is the situation – your customer has just dropped something in their shopping cart and they get nearly all the way through checkout. They love the product – that color is going to look GREAT on them. The price seems good. Shipping charges are clear. But before they click on “Submit Order”, they hesitate.
Somewhere in the back of their mind is fear that it is on sale somewhere else, or Amazon can get it to them tomorrow, or, or, or… These customers are so fearful that they didn’t get the best deal or the most convenient delivery option so they stop and check pricing somewhere else. And guess what happens when they look somewhere else – they buy there even if your original deal was a little better. They do that because they are tired. Shopping sucks, checkout forms aren’t fun.”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “You know that I am right – you’ve done it too… There is a solution to the human proclivity towards “downside protection”. It isn’t a fancy shopping cart plug in, it isn’t a nifty graphics treatment, an it sure as hell isn’t a chatbot. The solution starts way before your customer gets to checkout. It starts back with your branding and messaging around customer satisfaction.
By messaging throughout the process (callouts in search ads, customer promise in your nav or on the product page, quality reviews from Google or Stella or whomever, and some checkout messaging) that show your commitment to making your customers feel valued and safe makes the “in the moment” fear of getting a sub-optimal deal drop dramatically. When the proof of your value as a great retailer is everywhere, and your commitment to servicing your client permeates their experience, that “Submit Order” hesitation disappears.”
- First Name / Surname vs Full Name – “Perhaps the most interesting cause of abandonment I’ve seen over the years came about from a split test we conducted where we looked at conversion rates when we asked for first name & last name in separate boxes vs one box for the full name.”
- Ideas on How to Solve This – “If one box was used for the full name the conversion rate for the checkout improved. Amazing but true and reducing the number of required fields is always a winner. I’ve experienced +3% in conversions from this small change.”
Payment or Data Safety Concerns – “Slow page loads, freezes, glitches, and even cheap-looking design elements can lead buyers to a change of heart after they’ve placed items in their carts and are ready to check out. In my experience (as both a consultant and a buyer), skepticism plays a strong role. Data security has become an area of focus for modern consumers, and people in general are far more savvy about breeches and mismanagement than they were even a year ago. Anything that triggers an alert signal can upend a sale.
A flashy pop-up promotion that interrupts the flow of the checkout process can send customers out the door. A stray typo can do the same. Anything that suggests a fly-by-night operation that might sell, store, or otherwise abuse data or credit card info sends a clear message: better to buy your socks, event tickets, or service subscription from someone else.”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “To prevent this kind of nuanced misstep, you’ll need to place yourself in the buyer’s position at every stage of the process. But general empathy isn’t enough; you need a professional marketing pro to review your entire sales process from end to end if you’re seeing too many abandoned carts.
Strong analytics and tracking can also help. Are the abandonment rates increasing? When did the increase start? Are the increases correlating with high cost totals? Is the checkout process too complicated? Do you explain what you do with customer data and how you dispose of it at the completion of a sale?
Have you taken a hard look at site elements that may come across as spammy or unprofessional? Customers worry about several things when they make an online purchase, including shipping times and the accuracy of product descriptions, but in 2019 we can add data security to the list.”
Complicated or Unclear Returns Policy – “Acquiring new and loyal customers is challenging and often costly, but once you’ve driven a qualified customer to your website, your hope is that they’ll make their first purchase and begin the journey towards becoming a loyal customer who purchases from you regularly.
One thing that will prevent a customer with the intention of purchasing, from completing their order, is an unclear returns policy or one that has a returns fee associated to the return.
In the world of apparel, customers who have never purchased from you before, often won’t be sure of what size to purchase, even when you have a size chart that is easily accessible to them. Customers will often buy 2 sizes of a particular style with the intention of returning the size that doesn’t fit. This isn’t always the ideal scenario for retailers, but if it’s the first step to a customer becoming loyal to your brand, the return is merely a drop in the bucket and is easily absorbed.
With this in mind customers will often abandon their shopping cart if the following criteria are not met:
- The customer can’t find the return policy on your website
- The customer finds the returns policy but is unclear what steps need to be taken to complete the return
- There will be a charge such as a restocking fee or the customer will be charged for shipping to return the item
80% of shoppers will not make a purchase unless there is a hassle-free return policy.*”
Ideas On How to Solve It – “Make your returns policy accessible and visible throughout the site. There should be a link to the returns policy in the footer. As well, consider adding it on your product page.
Within the returns policy, be clear, what the steps are to complete the return. Does the customer need to contact your customer service department first or not? Do they need to access a link for a free return shipping label? Are returns in store possible, assuming you have a brick and mortar store and if so, what documentation is required to support the return?
Lastly, and this may be painful in the short-term; don’t charge customers a restocking fee and if possible provide a free return shipping label. The increased cost to the retailer in the short-term will break down barriers to purchase for the customer and help generate the initial sale and future sales.
Remember, when it comes to returns, make it as seamless as the purchase experience and you’ll have loyal and dedicated customers.”
- Leave to Search for Promos – “Customers are smart and they abandon carts to discover promos offered by retailers to try and bring down the price of their shop.”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “A way to counteract this is to A/B test your cart abandonment emails. You can run an A/B test offering an incentive a week after abandonment instead of immediately. You can also A/B test the different types of abandonment offers.
Discover if you need to offer an incentive. For example, a client we worked with, SKICKS, A/B tested Free Shipping vs FREE Shoe Laces & the version offering Free Shipping outperformed the version offering free laces by 49%!”
International Duties & Taxes – “For businesses shipping internationally, it’s essential that shipping timeframes and costs are clearly communicated at key points during the online sales funnel. Depending on the shipping location of the end user, they may be subject to import duties and government taxes when the product crosses the border.
It’s a friction point that raises anxiety and uncertainty in the mind of the end user. “Will I have to pay for duties in addition to my shipping cost?”, they ask “Or is this incorporated within the product price?”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “If your business does ship internationally, we recommend solving this possible cart abandonment by;
1) Highlighting this on the Product Detail Page E.g. “All Import Duties are included”. Personalisation of this message using Geo-location will provide extra reassurance. E.g. “All Import Duties are included when delivering to *Country*”.
2) During Checkout: Provide a small line of copy adjacent to the “Shipping Address” when an “Import Duty” country is selected. E.g. “All Import Duties are included”.
- Concern About Getting the Best Value – “Online shoppers are savvy and are looking for the best value. Big-store sites have conditioned the shopper to expect low prices and quick shipping and so other online stores need to make sure the value is communicated through checkout.”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “While it is easy to say to provide value outside of product price, let’s assume your store positioning is well defined and your customer focus top-notch.
If you use promotions, it should not be a game to apply them during checkout. If the traffic was served a coupon before or during their site visit, consider investigating ways to capture and apply the coupon during checkout. Another option is to communicate available coupons based on what is in the cart.
If you are facing a high abandonment rate and you are in a competitive space, there are tools & techniques available depending on your store platform to address this, including:
- Countdown clocks: offer a nominal promotion that is only good for a few minutes if the checkout stalls
- Mouse/tap-triggered light-boxes: Offer a promotion when the traffic attempts to navigate away from the cart. These can also be used to “email my cart for faster checkout in the future” and helps create a specific segment.
- Abandon cart audience segment: Remarket & Email specifically to those who left the cart, coupled with a dynamic product feed to resurface their products, leverage their visit to bring them back. Remember to set your cart page as the landing page.
- *To avoid:* Surveys: Checkout abandonment is not the time to try and gather additional data from the traffic, it is a distraction from the task at hand and will most likely not be as insightful as surveying site browsers or completed sales.
Ultimately, it is best to address any value concerns prior to checkout, though the reality is that it is a consideration throughout the purchase and addressing it head-on can help drive some of those who would have jumped through to the confirmation page.”
Not Collecting or Making Decisions Based on Data – “Many online stores try to pack in offers, signups, share features, and a slew of payment and shipping options which is a problem so simplicity always has my vote. Unfortunately a simple checkout process always isn’t an option with all the type of online commerce.
My number one rule of thumb is to trust your data. I make the majority of my decisions for my clients based on an educated and informed source. If you don’t have the data in place to make an educated choice, hire someone to put that data in place. I cannot stress this enough, get your data to a place that you’re able to not only understand, but have the knowledge to make an informed decision. The right data will help you see a glimpse of the future for your checkout process.”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “A great example is women’s clothing websites and who their audience typically is. If 70% of their website traffic is shopping on iOS devices by all means focus Apple Pay as the first option to check out. Apple Pay speaks for itself in terms of conversions, but will also help diminish the abandon rate (they also spend more). If your website traffic browses on mobile but checks out on desktop, then give your customers the option with dynamic payment method depending on the browser they are using.
The home improvement market can be a challenge. I’ll use a specific example for this, a tile company came to us with a range of issues that needed help and cart abandonment was one of them. Their customers would browse, add a few products to the cart and checkout with samples of the tile. The attribution window was upward of 3-4 months before checkout for actual product, which simply wasn’t doable for a number of reasons. In 3 to 4 months the product the customer may have added to their cart wasn’t in stock, no longer in production, or limited quantity. The result was a lost customer which is something no business wants. Tile is something that isn’t an impulse buy, so a long attribution window can be expected. The tile company’s checkout process was nearly perfect, so optimizing the cart or their checkout process wasn’t something that would help the abandon rate.
The solution was a strategic re-marketing plan that targeted shoppers using custom events. This means collecting specific website events before the checkout process starts. When a customer would calculate the price of tile (which is priced by the square foot) a custom event would trigger, putting that customer in a custom audience inside Facebook. After the event trigger Facebook’s ad network would do its job. The customer would immediately get ads about “limited quantity”, “limited stock”, “percentage off” or something directly relevant to that specific product and other product suggestions. This was one of many custom event triggers, but the example can be applied to virtually any areas of a website.
The outcome was less abandon carts and a shorter conversion window. Now, this setup was a little more advanced in terms of tracking custom events from Facebook, but it was discovered through website data.
A few takeaways would be to make sure you have a Facebook pixel installed on your site and at a minimum, get familiar enough to understand what it can measure. Google Tag Manager can be your best friend to track and measure specific events so learn a little more on what it is and how it can be used, the same goes for Google Analytics and how it’s used. I always advise my clients to install some form of website tracking tool like Inspectlet.com. This give you the ability to watch recording of user sessions so you can see with your own eyes the success or failure of your website.”
Lack of User Reviews – “As humans, we want to be liked, be a part of ‘the tribe’.
We look to others to see if it’s safe to go there, and then, will it be a good experience.
It’s no coincidence that there are ‘like’ buttons all over! Who doesn’t love the addictive dopamine rush of an ego-boost whenever we learn of someone liking one of our posts!
In the online world, Customer Reviews are an easy indicator to first-time shoppers to let them know if this is a ‘tribe approved’ road worth travelling or not. Reviews help answer our monkey-brain’s question: ‘Will I be liked if I shop here?’
No wonder studies show 55% of online shoppers expect customer reviews.
Often a shopper will arrive at your site as a result of a specific product search. Shopper sees the product is what they are looking for, into the cart it goes and then off to checkout.
But wait…is this product any good? What about this site I’m about to buy from for the first time — can I trust them? Oh, let me take a look at the reviews…”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “Solicit both product and overall site experience reviews. When I was running my online store, every customer would get an automated email a couple of weeks after delivery asking for two reviews, one of their overall shopping experiences, and then another about the specific products they purchased. This enabled us to show an overall review score front and center as an item in our header menu, as well as individual product reviews. Two different ways to reassure shoppers.
Don’t edit out negative reviews — they lend authenticity to the positive ones. Negative reviews actually make your positive reviews look even better! And when a visitor sees only positive reviews, eyebrows get raised as to whether or not you’re hiding something; after all, no one — and no shopping experience — is always perfect. These days, transparency is crucial.
Take the opportunity to turn negative reviews into positive ones. By reaching out to each negative reviewer, you not only let them know that you actually care about them and what they think, but often you can resolve the situation to their satisfaction and then get them to post an update to their review, which lets others know about how you turned lemons into lemonade. These can be among the most powerful and impactful reviews, even more so than the positive reviews!
Make sure your site’s reviews are front and center on your home page, and on every page. Your happy customers are your best promoters, make sure to show off your best reviews as high up as possible on the home page. On other pages, make sure there’s a link in the ubiquitous menu, and don’t forget to include specific product reviews on product pages.”
Discount Codes Not Working – “In recent years, one of the primary reasons that shoppers abandon their carts is when discount codes don’t work at checkout. In fact, in the United States, 46% of shoppers according to Statista reported that they’ve abandoned a shopping cart because the discount code they had didn’t work.
With more and more ecommerce stores using discount codes to drive shoppers to their website, it can be a huge disappointment for shoppers when they think they’ve been promised a discount and the code doesn’t actually work. This can create distrust in the brand and can deter the shopper from ever coming back to the store.”
Ideas on How to Solve It – “Luckily, this is usually a pretty easy problem for most ecommerce stores to fix: Make sure your discount codes are always working! Whenever you share discount codes with your audience or include ones in your ads, diligently monitor them on a regular basis to ensure that they never expire or accidentally get turned off.
Don’t forget to also make it super clear where shoppers can input their discount code in the checkout process so they don’t have to search around to find where to put it. The easier it is for shoppers to use their discount codes, the more likely they are to follow through with their purchase and possibly even purchase from you again.”
Lack of Confidence in the Product or Retailer – “Being confident in the product and the company selling it to you is key to any purchase decision and online retail significantly magnifies this factor, way beyond any face-to-face interaction where the tone of voice and body language also play a big part. Humans are naturally suspicious, they seek out value, they like their ego to be stroked and our decisions are based on emotion as often as logic, so you need to cater to many personality types to be successful. A website is attempting to communicate all the required information at once and customers can struggle to absorb this information in the way it was intended. This means helping the customer to make the emotional connection required to purchase is not so easy via a screen.
The psychology of buying, how people make purchase decisions and what influences their choices are not limited to buying online or limited to products that are delivered to their homes. Buying psychology affects every purchase we make – from pens and printer cartridges to food, clothing and furniture, right up to the largest purchases most of us ever make, vehicles and houses; we will not buy if there is a lack of confidence in the product or the person selling it to us. Don’t get me wrong, the PC, smartphone and tablet are fantastic platforms to reach a far wider audience than ever before, but simply presenting your products is no longer enough – your customers need more from a retailer to feel confident. They need help, expert advice and reassurance in the service to really feel confident in spending their money.”
Ideas On How to Solve It – “How does a retailer cater to the needs of a customer who wants to engage at key stages during the shopping journey and how do they know the ideal moment to help? In my experience, the best results are obtained with a mix of AI + messaging + humans. These elements can come together in a seamless combination, providing a retailer the opportunity to influence the purchase decision at the optimum moment for the customer, boosting satisfaction levels and revenue simultaneously.
Artificial Intelligence alone can become frustrating, as chatbots are nowhere near as capable in a pre-sale environment as we had once hoped. Humans in contact centres taking one call at a time are expensive and eat into your margin. However, combine the two options and add real-time messaging, where AI handles the FAQ type questions and each live agent can handle 2-3 messages at once when the chatbot escalates them. Now efficiency is high, NPS scores are rising, Lifetime Customer Value is increased and AOV goes up because the customer has a new level of confidence that the products will satisfy their needs and the retailer is there to help when they require it. AI can achieve great things, but just remember the human touch is essential to truly understand the emotional beings that are your customers.”
Bait and Switch Pricing (Price Promoted Not Same as at Checkout) – “The other day I was looking to buy two tickets for a local concert. Once I found the concert tickets on the website, I added them to my cart. As you can see the price is $15 per ticket as seen in the cart. I clicked on checkout and I realized that instead of paying a total of $30, I had to pay $42. How did this happen? All along the price was advertised as $15 per ticket. This is a typical approach seen on many websites selling concert tickets online. Why not disclose the price of the processing and service feels ahead of time. Needless to say I abandoned the cart and ended up getting the tickets at the door where I did not have to pay those additional feels.”
- Ideas on How to Solve It – “This website could have eliminated abandonment by clearly stating the cost of the ticket (including the fees) ahead of time so visitors are not caught by surprise. Another annoyance was the fact that they had a timer on the site, so by the time I thought of it and was ready to pull my credit card out the timer had expired and I had to start all over again. Just a bad experience all together.”
Price at Checkout…
- Form Fatigue – “Particularly on mobile, folks do not love filling out all the required information when they can checkout on Amazon with just one click.”
- Ideas on How to Solve It – “One of the easiest ways to help solve this issue is to add alternative checkout and payment providers (e.g. Apple Pay, Google Pay, PayPal, Amazon Pay). A combination of these four typically leads to a 15-30% increase in checkout completion (especially on mobile) and is relatively easy to implement on most eCommerce platforms.”