Landing pages exist to drive leads and conversions.
But what if your landing pages could do that and drive meaningful organic traffic?
Effective landing page optimization attracts organic traffic and the right potential customers.
In this guide, we’ll explore best practices for creating SEO-friendly landing pages that rank.
What Is an SEO Landing Page?
An SEO landing page is a strategically designed webpage that aims to rank well in search results and drive conversions or leads.
SEO-friendly landing pages focus on specific, targeted keywords and search intent.
And they always include a call to action (CTA).
This CTA can be a form for leads or signups or a button for conversions.
SEO landing pages are typically part of a larger inbound marketing campaign, where the goal is to increase your share of total search traffic within your industry.
Effective landing pages are clear and direct in hopes of providing an overall positive user experience.
They don’t distract with gimmicks.
They funnel users efficiently toward a conversion event.
If you want your website to perform well in search engine results pages (SERPs), you should focus on optimizing new and existing content for organic search.
This is especially true for landing pages, where conversion and click-through rates (CTR) rely on quality content.
A content audit can help determine if your landing pages are appropriately optimized.
And you can apply the tips below to new and underperforming content.
Landing Page SEO Best Practices
SEO best practices can make your landing pages rank higher in search engine results and ensure you reach your target audience.
With the right SEO, you will attract people interested in your topic, product, or service.
This allows you to generate more leads and conversions.
Here are some of the SEO basics to follow when creating landing pages:
Focus on Keyword Research
Keyword research is the foundation of a successful SEO landing page.
Landing pages aim to convert targeted traffic into leads or conversions.
So you should choose transactional, bottom-of-funnel keywords.
These are usually long-tail keywords.
Semrush’s Keyword Magic Tool can help you find such keywords to target with SEO landing pages.
Open the tool and enter a keyword that describes the product or service you’re making a landing page for.
Using the “Intent” filter, select “Transactional.”
This will display only keywords that have a transactional intent.
This is a great way to source keywords you can target with SEO landing pages.
You can use further filters to include or exclude specific words and phrases.
Or narrow your results by keyword difficulty, search volume, or the presence of certain SERP features.
You can go a step further by using the Organic Research tool to identify the transactional keywords your competitors already rank for. And target them.
Once you’ve chosen suitable keywords, use them in the content naturally and logically.
And write for human readers, not bots.
Search engine algorithms recognize keyword stuffing.
And this won’t help you climb the SERPs.
Good SEO copywriting means using secondary keywords to contextualize what your landing page is about.
You should also consider semantic keywords.
These are phrases you don’t want to rank for specifically but support the primary keyword.
They clarify the search intent you are trying to meet.
Semantic keywords will help your page rank better and in a more targeted manner overall.
Here’s an example of how this might look:
- Primary keyword = “SEO landing page”
- Secondary keyword = “landing pages,” “best SEO landing pages,” “SEO tips for landing pages”
- Semantic keywords = “search engine,” “page ranking,” “blog posts”
Curate Content and Design for Search Intent
Getting the search intent right means serving up exactly what the user wants and expects to see.
Think of it this way.
If you walked into a McDonald’s, but the interior looked like that of an Ikea, how would you feel?
Could you get a Big Mac there?
The point is: You should give your users what they want, expect, and even need to see.
If you don’t, they’ll feel confused and may just leave.
This is bad for them. And bad for your business.
Put yourself in the user’s shoes and ask yourself what the page needs to be and what it should look like.
Then perform your own Google searches to see what turns up for the keywords you intend to target.
Don’t just copy your competitors.
But use what they’re doing as a guide for understanding the keyword’s search intent.
The search intent should influence your page design, content, imagery, and even the headers.
For example, the landing page below works very well for the gaming chairs it’s selling.
But would the colors, design, and style be suitable for a landing page that sells baby clothes?
We think not.
Leverage On-Page SEO
Optimizing landing pages takes more than keywords.
Your content needs to be structured so that search engine bots can read, analyze, and recognize it.
This way, the search engine knows what your landing page is about and can index it correctly.
This is called on-page SEO.
And it’s one of the most important aspects of landing page SEO.
Here are some points to address in terms of structuring your landing page for SEO:
The page’s title is the first thing users will see in the SERPs.
So it should be short, compelling, and include your target keyword.
Ideally, place the keyword at the start of the page title and put less important words last.
A clear meta description can convince a user to click on a search engine result.
Write a succinct and to-the-point meta description that tells users what they will find on the landing page.
And include your target keyword.
Google typically styles search terms in bold when used in meta descriptions.
This could increase your CTR.
Which means more traffic to your landing page.
Include an H1 heading tag that matches your page title.
Break up other content on the page using H2, H3, and H4 headers.
Include secondary keywords in these headers naturally and as appropriate.
This will help users and search engines understand how your page is structured and what it’s about.
Add alt text to your images in HTML.
Alt text describes images in a way that search engine bots can read.
This allows search engines to better understand your content.
Additionally, alt text enables people with visual impairments to understand image content with the help of screen readers.
And when images don’t load properly, the alt text will appear instead.
High-quality alt text will offer a brief description of the image and its context.
Here’s an example for a photo of a girl driving a car: <img src=“girl-driving-car.png” alt=“Girl driving a car on an empty highway in the day.”/>
Add relevant internal links using appropriate anchor text.
If possible, use the linked page’s primary keyword as the anchor text.
Internal linking helps search engines comprehend the context and content of a page.
Just make sure you don’t overdo it with internal links.
Your goal with the landing page is to convert visitors into leads or revenue. Not to send them elsewhere on your site.
Images and Videos
Add images and videos, which show search engines that the content is valuable.
Visual elements also engage readers. And keep them on the page longer.
Label these files appropriately, with the primary keyword in the file name, title, and alt text.
The best practices above will help you improve your on-page SEO efforts.
But Semrush’s On Page SEO Checker can identify further issues with your on-page elements.
The tool will also provide actionable suggestions to help you get the most SEO potential out of your landing page.
After configuring your project, you’ll see a dashboard with different ideas for how to boost organic traffic to your pages.
You’ll also see a list of top pages to optimize.
They are prioritized based on the number of ideas, the amount of potential traffic, and how easy the proposed changes are to implement.
Click on the “ideas” buttons to see lists of recommendations for how to improve the SEO potential of a particular page based on your target keywords.
Recommendations may touch on SEO considerations like keyword cannibalization, schema markup, backlinks, technical SEO issues, and more.
Optimize the URL
In SEO, every detail counts—even your landing page URL.
The URL helps communicate information about the content that people can find on the page.
It also reflects the site structure, revealing how a piece of content fits into your overall website.
This helps search engines better understand what your content is about.
Try to keep your URL to no more than 65 characters.
Ideally, it should be somewhere between 50 and 60 characters.
Use hyphens to separate words.
And use lowercase letters.
You can use forward slashes to separate concepts, similar to how you’d use a vertical pipe in a title.
Place important landing page keywords further to the left.
Remember that the URL informs not only search engines but also viewers.
Take a URL like this, for example: example.com/landing-page/meta-description-for-landing-pages.
A person can identify the general category (landing pages).
And they can figure out the subcategory that this specific page addresses (meta descriptions).
Similarly, a search engine bot can tell that this page is part of the cluster of a larger pillar page.
Your blog SEO will play a role in this as well.
Monitor Page Speeds and Core Web Vitals
Page speed and Core Web Vitals are important factors in search engine rankings.
Fast loading ensures a user-friendly experience.
But slow, inconsistent loading can frustrate users and increase bounce rates.
This can hurt your rankings.
Use Semrush’s Site Audit tool to analyze your Core Web Vitals and identify where you can improve.
Many relatively simple tweaks may help you improve loading speed.
And the Site Audit tool will lay them all out for you.
Using smaller images, reducing the number of requests your page makes, and removing redirects are all possible improvement opportunities for your site.
Learn more about how to use Site Audit.
Backlinks consist of links from other platforms to your website.
High-quality backlinks from respected, authoritative, high-ranking websites will boost your landing page SEO.
Reciprocal linking is one way to get backlinks.
If you mention a statistic or fact, cite the source.
You then increase the odds of that source referring to your own page.
Creating quality shareable content will also increase the chances that others will link to you.
Examples of shareable content include infographics and noteworthy statistics.
Videos are also an excellent way to share useful information in a concise and engaging manner.
You can generate organic backlinks by publishing content on social media platforms like LinkedIn or content-sharing platforms like Medium.
If you’re wondering which sites to focus your backlinks efforts on, use our Backlink Gap Tool.
You can compare your site’s backlinks with up to four competing domains.
This is a great way to uncover opportunities to pursue with your link building efforts.
Optimize Your Landing Pages Today
A landing page is useless if your target audience doesn’t see it.
Landing page SEO helps get the right eyes on your landing page.
This increases lead generation. And conversions.
The above SEO tips provide a basic starter guide to effective SEO for landing pages.
But Semrush’s Site Audit Tool can help you identify pages in need of optimization. Allowing you to take existing landing pages to new levels of success.