7‑Minute User Experience (UX) Audit For Landing Pages

July 10, 2014


A fellow LunaMetrician recently returned from SMX Advanced and said it was refreshing to hear how much user experience (UX) and conversion rate optimization (CRO) were included in the SEO conversation this year.

The days of simply ranking for a high-volume keyword or getting visitors to the site have been eclipsed by metrics that more closely resemble offline business objectives. Now SEOs think in terms of sales leads and keep a close eye on landing page bounce rates, conversion rates and direct impact to the bottom line.

But before diving into the world of A/B and multivariate testing, it’s crucial to know where you stand. This 7-minute UX audit for landing pages should be the first step.

Which pages should I test?

Landing pages are (in a simple sense) places on your website dedicated to welcoming a visitor and efficiently completing a goal, or converting. If your website is designed to capture sales leads, these might be service pages, case studies or other informational pages that allow people to contact you to continue the sales process.

The UX Audit

This is the UX audit. Open your landing page(s) in another tab or window and answer the following seven questions. Remember: objectivity is key.

1. Digestible Text

Too much text and someone won’t even start the first line. Too little and they won’t receive enough information to complete the goal. Let’s see where your landing pages lie in that spectrum.

How long does it take to read the text aloud?

2. Strong Calls to Action

Call-to-action statements are short phrases near the conversion button or link that tell visitors what to do. “Learn more today!” might sound cheesy, until you see how many more people do click to learn more.

Which phrase most closely resembles your call-to-action button?

3. Above-the-Fold

Harvard recently redesigned its online courses page after UX testing revealed that only a small fraction of visitors clicked on links below the fold. And that’s Harvard, where students would kill for an opportunity to take an Ivy League course. Chances are your clients are not beating down the door in the quite the same way.

Without scrolling, are you able to:
(1) determine what is the product or service,
(2) understand why it is valuable and
(3) see how to begin the conversion process?

4. Easy on the Eyes

Landing page graphics provide a welcoming first impression and help visitors decide whether or not to read the accompanying text. The right image can make all of the difference, whereas the wrong one, well, you get the idea.

Which statement most closely describes your landing page image?

5. Accessible

Not every industry or company or product needs to position itself for mobile traffic, but conversion rates from mobile devices are rising in many sectors, so it is at least worth asking the question: Are my landing pages mobile-friendly?

With smart phone in hand, navigate to your landing page. Do you have to pinch or pull or slide to read the copy and complete the goal?

6. Discoverable

Site operators act as quick indicators that search engines can crawl and index pages on the website. Copy your URL and paste it in Google with “site:” immediately before it. For example site:http://www.domain.com/folder/page

Does the page appear in Google’s results?

* Note: PPC-only landing pages are sometimes designed not to appear in the search results.

7. Page Speed

Page load speed is critical for conversions, and not just for e-commerce sites like Amazon. Study after study find that maximizing page speed positively impacts conversion rate.

Test landing page speed here. What are the results?

Your Total:

Scoring Your Results

12 points is a perfect landing page score, meaning that >9 is good, 6-9 is weak and <6 is, well, time to dedicate some attention to landing pages in need.

Other Landing Page Resources