Landing Page Optimization: OnlineShoes.com

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Senior researcher Boris Grinkot reviewed this landing page, which was submitted by OnlineShoes.com.

Keenshoesgooglefullpage.png

Analysis of Channel:

A visitor searches for “Keen shoes” and clicks on an ad that promises a “huge” selection and “free shipping & exchanges.” As competitors also offer free shipping, the differentiators in the ad are selection and exchanges. Onlineshoes.com may have other important value to offer, but it is not communicated in the PPC ad copy.

  • Test recommendation: use PPC ads to test other expressions of the value proposition, and use this knowledge to modify the value proposition expressed on the landing page.
    • For example, the landing page displays a 15% discount, which could be communicated in the PPC ad to capture visitors motivated by a price discount.
    • Also, the landing page highlights 90-day “unconditional” returns. While exchanges are mentioned in the PPC ad, their “unconditional” nature is not and should be tested.

keen-shoes-header-full.png

Analysis of Landing Page:

The value proposition of OnlineShoes.com is expressed immediately on the landing page and also connects with the visitor’s motivation to shop at a store with “free shipping” and “free exchanges,” as communicated in the PPC ad.

keenshoesfullpage.png

  • Test recommendation: company value proposition could be supported with third-party credibility indicators.
    • While the value proposition could be supported with customer testimonials, it may be early in the shopping process to do so. Test adding testimonials in the right column.
    • Test moving the seals from the bottom of the page to a more visible location, such as the right column. However, “Verisign Secured” may also be too early in the process, as payment is not yet an issue.
  • Test recommendation: specificity will strengthen the expression of your value proposition.
    • Test quantifying how “huge” the selection is.

The value proposition of the product (Keen shoes) is not immediately clear on this landing page. The page requires substantial brand loyalty for a visitor to continue browsing. The primary graphic, which monopolizes attention on the page, may be communicating Keen’s overall brand image, but not products that the visitor may be seeking.

The visitor is required to proceed deeper into the site before seeing any products. There is a paragraph below the logo, but it largely re-states the selection options (women’s, men’s, girls’, boys’ — imagine that!). Perhaps the key value proposition statement is about using recycled materials, but it is lost. The large banner about “hybrid life” makes a huge value promise, but clicking on it returns little value.

  • Test recommendation: test placing a more specific value proposition statement or introductory paragraph more prominently at the top of the page, next to Keen’s logo. Test various aspects of the value proposition, such as the use of recycled materials or spell out what the banner implies.

Since visitors had searched specifically for Keen shoes, it is likely that they are highly motivated and have an idea of what product they wish to buy.

  • Test recommendation: for highly motivated visitors, test presenting them with specific product images, rather than abstract brand images. These could be grouped still further by major category (women’s, men’s, girls’, boys’).

Finally, the friction on this page is considerable. There are two competing navigation menus (text and tabs), and the image is an eye magnet that does not add value. The real estate is further consumed with the large banner at the bottom, which also is too vague to add real value. In the case of the Keen brand, the logo’s design is such that it stands out, but it’s possible that on other pages, the brand logo is not immediately visible, creating a degree of confusion when a visitor initially lands on this page and then moves to another page.

  • Test recommendation: create a single-column layout for the product (aside from the “shoe box” in the right column).
    • Start with a headline that expresses Keen’s value proposition, followed by short introductory text to begin a conversation with a visitor about the benefits of Keen’s shoes, followed by representative images for each of the four major categories, with clearly visible buttons to click to the next step.

Audience: What do you think? Use the comments field to post your suggestions for this landing page, agree/disagree with Boris’ assessment, and let the page owner know what you would do differently.

We’ll post our next landing page on Friday …

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2 Comments

  1. Carrie Eller says

    Greetings,

    Thank you for taking the time to review Onlineshoes.com PPC ads & KEEN landing page. I manage the SEM efforts at Onlineshoes.com and I appreciate your analysis, but have some items to point out.

    For the 15% off on click-thru that was messaged on the landing page, Keen is an excluded brand from offers & we are working on functionality to remove site-wide offer messages from excluded brand landing pages. In this instance where the brand KEEN is excluded from the offer, we would not message 15% off in ads for this brand to avoid driving irrelevant traffic, site abandonment or disappointing consumers by not fulfilling expectations.

    On another item, we have tested with our partner, the Rimm-Kaufman Group, the Unconditional Returns in our ad copy against other value propositions & find this to be a less effective selling proposition. Consumers respond more to seeing the large selection and free shipping messaged in the limited character space of the ad. We do also include some ad variations with the exact # of styles available on the site for a particular brand.

    You point out some other excellent recommendations for the landing page. I will definitely share these with my colleagues here at Onlineshoes.com.

    Best,

    Carrie Eller

    SEM Manager

    http://www.Onlineshoes.com

  2. Hunter Boyle says

    @ Carrie,

    Thanks for your reply. We’ve been having issues with blog comments being eaten (thanks MovableType), so I’m “guest posting” Boris Grinkot’s response to your note …

    Carrie,

    Thank you very much for your kind words. I am glad that you found our recommendations applicable, and I hope to hear back about your test results!

    It appears that you have already run some of the tests we proposed (emphasis on “unconditional returns” and quantifying the product selection statement in PPC ad copy), and thank you for sharing the outcomes with us. PPC ad copy is a great place to test your value proposition statements, and then apply test results to your landing page.

    Your test result appears to suggest that “unconditional returns” is not as important as other aspects of your value proposition. Now that you know this, you should test weighting your emphasis on “unconditional returns” and other value proposition statements accordingly on the landing page. If “unconditional returns” is indeed less important, it should consume a smaller share of the valuable real estate on your page.

    Again, thank you for submitting your site and your detailed response!

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