I’ve been reading a book about blogging recently, and in it they talk about the value of having a good landing page design. I’m curious, if you’re a blogger – do you have a landing page, or do people come directly to your blog content? My theme had the option of having a landing page, but I chose not to use one. The theory is that a good landing page provides conversion rate optimization – basically meaning you get more people to act (subscribe, enter giveaways, or in the case of a business, make a purchase). What do you think?
I don’t have a landing page, and I would probably want to go directly to the new content first.
If I really like what I’m reading, then I usually look for more info on the blog.
I agree, Samantha! To me a landing page is like a middleman, and going directly to new content is like cutting an extra step out, making it easier for readers.
I don’t have a landing page. I would rather it go right to what people want, my content :)
I’m not a blogger, but since my husband designs the occasional website (and I read lots of blogs!), I can tell you that both his and my opinions on the subject are the same. Basically, if you have a landing page, it keeps you from getting directly to what you want to see. And that’s just not cool. :)
One of our biggest pet peeves is when website/blogs have flash intro pages, where the flash intro takes up 2 minutes of your time for no reason other than it “looks fancy”… and it’s usually just annoying and doesn’t provide any real value to the page itself except getting people annoyed! :P
Moral of the story: Get me to what I want to see as quickly as possible! I haven’t got all day to search around for the content!!
I SO agree with the flash intros! Hopefully they’ll fall by the wayside – they do seem like “fanciness” just for the sake of being fancy. I’m also w/ you on wanting to get to content more quickly. I read so much online that if I had to navigate past a landing page/intro for each one it would get really old.
I think it’s best to direct readers straight to your best content, which is why I have a Best of LambAround button
I’m also not a landing page fan…unless it’s a retail operation.
I agree with Lucy! It is content not the landing page that will bring in more readers and get them to act in some way.
I don’t like being forced to reload a page before I can see any content. If I like what I see I’ll read more, if I can’t decide if I like anything because there’s nothing there to judge from, I’ll end up moving on. I am not a fan of magazine style layouts either, I want to see the latest thing at the top so I can tell if I’m up to date.
I would put myself into the “no landing page” camp, depending on what you consider a “landing page.” Now, multiple paragraphs of open opinions and stuff you already know!
I’ve heard that the more clicks it takes a reader to get somewhere, the more readers you lose. It’s possible that a much larger percentage of your remaining readership might act on a click-through, but in my opinion, there’s no advantage to “hiding” your content or trying to get readers to go where you want them.
However, I think there’s a lot of advantage to designing outside the template box, once you know where you differ from the common denominators. Completely hypothetical example: not every blog title is so long horizontally that the social media buttons or links to “about” and “contact” pages couldn’t go the right of it, potentially freeing up space for a link or something without changing the centrality of the blog post readers came for. Or maybe you find that 90% of users are using a wider screen than you’ve designed for, etc.
I think it is important to surround your content with the important “landing-page” information and features, but I definitely think the research shows that where you’re trying to merge content and action, users are always going to want the content front and center.
Great thoughts, Daniel!! I love the idea of having social media buttons to the right of the blog title to free up more space “above the fold.”