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Clicking Me Softly: A Five-Day Crash Course in Conversion (Day 3)

by Oli Gardner  |  
February 23, 2011

In this article, you'll learn...

  • Why focus is vital for conversion—and why your cluttered homepage undermines focus
  • Four reasons why you might want to forego using your homepage as your landing page

In days one and two of our five-day crash course on conversion, we covered the economics of conversion and how to effectively use a "call to action" (CTA) to get results. In part three, you'll learn why your homepage is likely not the right choice for conversion success.

Day 3: Sorry, your homepage sucks at converting!

Conversion is about focus—slapping blinders on your customers and shuffling them toward the bright light that is your call to action. Your every marketing campaign should have distinct conversion goals and metrics so that you can design experiences that maintain focus.

For most businesses, however, their homepage is simply not the most focused page on their website. Why? For various reasons...

1. Your homepage has too many messages

Even if your website promotes a single product or service, there is the potential for message overload. Perhaps you are driving prospects from your email list, encouraging them to visit you for details on a new feature. If they arrive at your homepage—where there might be other features, seasonal promotions, and special offers—they could get distracted and wander from your intended goal.

A common train of thought is this: "Well, as long as they buy something, I don't care where they go, or what they do."

The problem with that approach is that the campaign you are running, measuring, and paying for isn't being given a fair opportunity to succeed (or fail). Marketing can only really be effective when it's measurable and you are accountable.

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Oli Gardner is a co-founder of—The DIY Landing Page Platform. He writes about conversion-centered design, landing pages, and marketing theory. Reach him via email at and Twitter @unbounce.

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