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    How to Launch Your 

    Startup Landing Page


    “For many businesses, a website is the first way that your clientele will look at you. The quality of your site is often a measure of the quality of your business."

    - Rand Fishkin, founder of Moz


  • Ready For Launch!

    Thanks for joining us today. Let's clear up the easy questions first - 

    Do I need a landing page for my startup?

    Yes, you do. Empires may fall and oceans may dry, but let there be no doubt about this - your startup NEEDS a landing page. 


    Have you developed a beautiful app or product to shake up the world? Are you a creative entrepreneur or restauranteur, on the hunt for your first few customers and super fans? Maybe you're a student or devoted hobbyist wanting to throw your project out there, test out the waters, see how far your potential extends.


    Whatever your venture may be, the internet has greatly leveled the playing field for startups, entrepreneurs and small businesses. And having a great landing page will let you show off your business idea, build up your audience, and score conversions to kickstart your early growth.

    When am I ready to launch the landing page?

    Now, if not yesterday. As Gmail creator and Y Combinator partner Paul Buchheit advises all startups: "Sell before you build."


    Many startups wait until they are fully ready to launch, or at least have an MVP (minimum viable product), before beginning to market themselves and connect with audiences. But even a soft launch or bug-infested beta can take months to prepare - months which could be leveraged powerfully with a great landing page. Some of the hugely beneficial moves you could make in that time include -

    • Collecting feedback to improve your product or idea

    • Promoting visibility to audiences and potential investors

    • Building an email list of early customers and fans

    • A/B testing your key message, and various site elements

    We're obviously not telling you to drop everything, drop your pants, and launch a broken business website in the next ten minutes. But assuming you have your fundamentals in place, then a great landing page - even pre-launch - lets you gain visibility, learn what your audience wants, and begin amassing customers to kickstart your momentum.

    How do I use this guide?

    Each section is a usable mini-guide on its own. But to get the most value here, you should first go through the whole thing, then as you start making your own site piece by piece - probably using a website builder or hiring a designer - refer back to relevant sections and ideas here. We created this guide to provide you with the tools, know-how, and best practices to build and launch your startup landing page. 


    We've intentionally created this guide using one of our actual site templates, to show you what you can do in the most direct and actionable way we can. Alright - let's get started!

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    1. Header - Sell Them Now, or Never


    Your site header is the first section of your website, that people will see as soon as they land. Our attention spans online are brutally short, and the quality of your header design determines whether your site visitors will stay to learn more, or leave immediately. 


    A good header will need to include these three to five elements: 

    1. Headline - The instant pitch. Short, crystal clear, and captivating.
    2. Custom Logo - If you don't have one yet, here are some free resources to design your business logo.
    3. Background photo/video - Use your own, rather than a free stock resource, to reflect your startup's uniqueness.
    4. Value proposition - The quick pitch. Either in or just after the header.
    5. CTA (maybe*) - You might choose to include a call-to-action here.

    That's all - what's important is to get each element, as well as the overall balance, right. Make sure everything is sharp. No scrappy images or rambling headlines. Remove clutter - clutter is confusion, and confused visitors aren't staying or signing up for anything. Either focus people's attention on a CTA, or have your header be simple and attractive enough to make them scroll down to discover more. 

  • Writing A Good Headline

    As Brian Clark of Copyblogger made it known“8 out of 10 people will read headline copy, but only 2 out of 10 will read the rest.” 


    Daunting statistic - but even more reason why your headline needs to deliver high impact in the tiny window you have to snag your site visitors' initial attention. The best landing page headlines are short and easy phrases - direct, simple, memorable. Avoid jargon and long words altogether.

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    Locations. Analysis. Simplified.

    In three words, Elenytics indicates what problem they are aimed at ("locations"), what solution they offer ("analysis"), and what value they ultimately deliver ("simplified"). 

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    Focus on quality users.

    Datable's headline pops off the page instantly. It's a simply worded and crystal clear message, written in active voice, and leading into the rest of the value proposition.

  • (FREE) Custom Logo & Font Design Resources

    If you don't wish to drop heavy capital in your visual design and branding assets just yet, here are some free resources we recommend to play around with -

    Remember to pick colors, shapes, and styling elements that reflect your own style and branding, and don't clash with other elements of your header (like overlaid text or a CTA button). 

  • Value Proposition


    “A value proposition is a promise of value to be delivered. It’s the primary reason a prospect should buy from you.” - Peep Laja, author of ConversionXL




    Your value proposition - which goes either in or just after your header - is the follow up to a compelling headline. It can include a slightly longer sub-headline, a few bullet point explainers, or perhaps some graphic depiction of your idea or product. 



    Your value proposition will become something that can be cited anywhere, anytime - on your landing page, on social platforms, and in real conversations. It should make a strong and lasting impression on others. Here are 3 questions to help you craft yours -

    • What are you doing or producing?

    • How are you doing it differently than others?

    • What problem, for who, are you ultimately solving?

    Don’t think here in terms of selling a product - think in terms of solving a problem. Then it should be clear who you are really speaking to, and how your value proposition should be communicated to them.

  • Good Landing Page Headers

    Take a look at how these three different examples each work well. 

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    Virtual Reality

    No value proposition, no CTA, hardly even a headline - here's a header that succeeds purely on design. Text is bolded and centered, a custom image is used, and the mix of black, red and white feels intense and intriguing. Even if you have no idea what Fire Panda is - which you probably don't - you would scroll down to see more, based purely on the visceral appeal. 

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    Your education. Funded.

    With a playful custom logo and blurred background that creates a cheery feel, Scholarflip cuts right to the big idea - "We're changing the way students pay for college". There's no CTA here, but a powerful headline like that leads you right on to the rest of their value proposition below.

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    Where Muslims match and meet.

    The header for Salaam Swipe is all about about emphasizing the CTA. In order to make it work, a simple headline is used - read it once, and you know whether you're in or out - then you have the value proposition, and the signup button in contrasting green.

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    2. Churn Out CONTENT

    Your startup landing page needs more than just a great header – it needs great content. From pre-launch until happily ever after, producing great content lets you converse with your audiences, develop branding and thought leadership in your field, and also strengthen your search engine visibility to attract new customers and partners.


    A lot of content can be created for free, using your existing assets and knowledge. Your content strategy should include some of the following:

    • Blog
    • Media gallery
    • Social feed
    • Launch video or product demo
    • Background info - team, story, mission
    • 'Premium' content - guides, reports, tutorials etc.

    Even if you have yet to launch, you need to prove and indicate that great things are coming - otherwise, why would people bother to follow and be part of your story? Aim to publish unique and valuable content regularly, and feed it to your subscribers through email notification.


  • Content Types

    Let's think about content in three main types - static, interactive, and ongoing - and then look at examples.

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    Static Content

    Static content - such as header sections about your story, team, and mission - is timeless and reliable. It also helps balance out busier content like rich media. Too many moving parts will overwhelm visitors, and slow page loading speed too.

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    Interactive Content

    Curated photo and video galleries will always be one of the best ways to not only visually showcase your startup, but also forge an emotional connection with your site visitors. Bonus points for a launch or demo video!

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    Ongoing Content

    'Ongoing' content sections - like a blog or social feed - are ones you update regularly. These are powerful ways to keep your audiences in the loop. Feed them fresh, valuable updates that will retain their interest and loyalty.

  • Storytelling

    What motivated you to start your business venture; what is your vision of the future? What were the struggles and triumphs when you started out? What are they now? 


    Whatever stage your startup is at, you undoubtedly have a story worth sharing. Startup marketing is all about building an authentic connection with audiences, and storytelling is a powerful technique for your branding. Writing a compact but memorable story on your landing page will win people over quickly and authentically.


    Check out how Carica Road and Bontourage captivate you with their stories.

  • Meet the Team

    Introducing your team and cofounders is another great choice for static content. It also functions as a form of social proof


    Be sure to pair each member's description with a pleasant, professional profile photo. Regardless of your business or branding, the tone should be cheery and expressive. Nobody wants to see a team of motionless stormtroopers. 

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    Mengting Gao


    Mengting is the mind behind Kitchen Stories. She is responsible for product development and marketing, ensuring that Kitchen Stories brings the fun back to cooking.

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    Christian Lohse

    Double-starred Chef

    "Berlin’s Master Chef 2009" serves his guests modern French cuisine with his signature take at Fischers Fritz. For the seventh time in a row he has been awarded two Michelin stars. 

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    Verena Hubertz


    Verena is the backbone of the team, always ensuring that things run smoothly. She looks after our partnerships, manages the finances, and coordinates all PR activities. 

  • Embed a Video

    Video is one of the most engaging forms of content - among many other statistics, site visitors are 64% more likely to buy a product, and will stay on a site 2 minutes longer after watching a video.  


    If you've previously created some kind of launch video or teaser trailer for a pitch or demo, embed that onto your landing page. And if you haven't, you should consider making one - research locally to find a video production agency that suits your style and needs.

    Watchmaster includes a colorful and dynamic product demo with the catchphrase "design your time". It's dynamic, has audio pumping, and definitely creates energy. 

    Nicecream Factory sports a short video introducing its creators, giving an inside look at their process and philosophy... and of course, showing plenty of mouth-watering ice cream being made. 

  • Offer 'Premium' Content

    'Premium', 'advanced', or 'gated' content is an unofficial category including high-value content that takes more time and expertise to produce. You could justifiably sell premium content - but as a startup making a name for yourself, you're probably better off giving it away or at most, using it to incentivize signups. 


    Offering premium content is a great way to express your initiative, authority, and commitment to helping your audiences beyond your pure product offering. Premium content gives that extra "wow" factor that potential customers and collaborators are always looking out for.

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    Written Guides

    E-books, whitepapers, how-to's, case studies and so on - hand-crafted educational resources related to your business can be marketed to help draw in your target audiences. 

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    Tutorial Videos

    Kitchen Stories provides crisp and active video guides walking you through various recipes. A natural and effective content choice that their customers undoubtedly love.  

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    Podcasts & Webinars

    Packpoint lets you listen to their podcast - "Travel Smart" - for free. That's a great free offer, and audio is a smart choice of channel given their travel-inclined target audience. 

  • Write a Blog

    "We had a blog in place, even before product development. By talking about the problems we aimed to solve, we began drumming up interest with so much advance notice, we had more than 14,000 interested buyers when the product came to market." - Phil Fernandez, founder of Marketo


    We're not saying you need to have 14,000 readers pre-launch. But the principle holds here - blogging is one of the best ways to build lasting, loyal audiences, even if your actual product or service is not live yet. Aim at a regular posting schedule, and encourage feedback and interaction. Engage your audience in a direct and meaningful way, addressing their hopes and needs. Grow and lead your readership.


    Here are some free tools, design tips, and ways to drive traffic. Don't forget to pair an email list with your blog. And whenever you publish a new post, share it across all your social platforms.

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    Blog Post Ideas

    • Expertise and experience sharing

    • Thoughts on industry movements

    • Personal and team reflections

    • Tips, tutorials, how-to lists

    • Stories and 'behind the scenes'

    • Guest posts and interviews

  • Add a Social Feed

    As a startup, you should have at least one active social media account. Add a social feed to your landing page to let people see your freshest posts, grams, and tweets all in one place.


    Entertain, educate, and make people feel like they want to be a part of your story. Your social feed is a strong reflection of your branding, so make sure you're sharing valuable, proper content that represents your startup mission and ideology. 

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    3. Present Social Proof

    When everyone suddenly looks left, do you do the same?

    If no one is wearing a certain color, do you avoid it too?


    That’s “social proof” in action - the influence created when someone finds out others are doing something.


    One of the greater goals of your landing page is to establish credibility to your startup name. And one of the best ways to do this, is to offer up “social proof”. Social proof statements can be numerical (such as number of customers or downloads), or qualitative (like recommendations). Some of the most common and effective types include -

    • Testimonials
    • Press kit
    • Affiliated parties' logos & links

    Social proof can be leveraged to great benefit in all aspects of your branding and marketing. If you’re not yet at the stage where you have much social proof for your startup, it’s probably worth beginning efforts to gather some. In the meantime, even pictures of happy users or team members will do. 


  • Display Testimonials

    Testimonials connect with people emotionally. We can all relate to simple words and feelings from other people, better than almost anything else.


    Display your testimonials in a paragraph, slider, or listing as shown in the three examples below. Keep them short and sweet!

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    Kitchen Stories

    In their "Opinions" section, Kitchen Stories features a glowing paragraph each from four reputable figures.

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    Strikingly present a few user recommendations in a slider, along with a quote and call-to-action.

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    Embr Labs

    Embr Labs presents their Wristify testimonials in a short and fun video collage. 

  • Downloadable Press Kit

    Press kits, or media kits, are packaged sets of promotional materials typically given out for your upcoming launch or release. You want to make one so complete and easy to use that a journalist, blogger, or media representative would be able to do a story on you just like that. 


    If you want to put one together, here's an Entrepreneur article that walks you through what to include. Check out these examples from Znaps and Kitchen Stories as well.

  • Show Off Your Affiliations

    If you have partners, clients, and sponsors that you're proud of working with - or if your startup has been featured in any publications, blogs, or other media channels - then by all means, show that off on your landing page.


    Like the "resume" section of a personal website, this kind of social proof brings an air of trust and familiarity that is difficult to earn in any other way. 

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    Press Feature Listing

    Embr Labs plainly lists where and how they've been featured, across various news publications and other channels. 

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    Press Feature Links

    In their header, Packpoint slips in direct links to all the renowned publications they've been featured in, establishing context and credibility right off the bat. 

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    Compiling and showing off icons of your business partners and sponsors, as Kitchen Stories does, conveys instant legitimacy. 

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    4. CTAs - 

    Let People Take Action!

    You’ve got a sharp header, quality content, and some glowing social proof. Now for the final ingredient of your landing page - the CTA (call-to-action). CTAs are what earn you direct conversions from your site visitors, whether it be signups, pre-orders, donations or something else. They are a key element of your landing pages that cannot be overlooked.


    CTAs should have simple phrases, be free of surrounding clutter, and be highlighted in color contrast with the rest of the page. Depending on how early and how effectively you've "sold" your site visitors, you can place your CTA in your header, further down your page, or have it repeated two or three times. Whatever you do, make it dead easy and visually compelling for site visitors to take your desired action.


    Here are some likely candidates for your landing page CTAs -

    • Email signup form
    • Social media buttons
    • Contact and feedback form
    • Donation link

    Let's examine these examples in more detail.

  • Leave a Contact Form

    'How can I get in touch to say hi, ask questions, or offer feedback for your startup?"


    Leave a form for your site visitors to get at you directly with comments and inquiries. Wufoo or Google Forms lets you integrate a nice, clean contact or survey form for free.

  • Add Email and Social Buttons

    Place big, juicy buttons to let people contact you via email, social media and other platforms like LinkedIn or Youtube. Make sure to embed links into the icons, so visitors can reach you in one click.


    Adding a social feed helps as a form of contact CTA, but you'll still want social buttons at the bottom of your site because they're more focused and obvious, leading your site visitors to clearer actions.

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    Strikingly on Facebook


    Strikingly on Twitter


    Strikingly on Instagram


    Strikingly on LinkedIn


  • Leave a Donation Link

    For early stage startups, many of you may be looking primarily for funding. You might even already have a campaign going on a crowdfunding platform like Kickstarter or Indiegogo, which you should definitely provide a link back to on your landing apge. 


    Convince your site visitors of the worthiness of your cause and the strength of your product with a great value proposition, content, and social proof on your landing page.


    THEN, leave a donation button or link to your funding page, encouraging your site visitors to step up to become your invested donors and fans. 



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    5. Promotion - All Out Launch!


    Well done making it so far - by this point your landing page should be more or less completed, and it's almost time to share it with the world.


    Before we go further, you'll first need to invest in a custom domain, and then perform a few SEO (search engine optimization) tweaks. We'll take you through a final checklist too, to make sure you have all the most important elements of your site in order.


    When everything is ready you'll share your site across social media, and also reach out for some promotion and PR to give you extra exposure, on your way to launch day and beyond. 


  • Get a Custom Domain

    A 'domain' is the essential piece of any website URL – the “website.com” part. A domain functions like a geographic address for a site on the web. We find websites by typing them into the address bar, or by coming in through links to the domain.


    A custom domain refers to a unique web address, such as www.google.com or www.parkerlovescats.net.

    Why does my landing page need a custom domain?

    It would be a mistake not to invest a few bucks in a custom domain name for your startup landing page. A custom domain provides higher professionalism as well as SEO benefits - but main reason is simply that your startup won't be taken as seriously without one. When you share your site with others, you only have one chance at a first impression - and www.Travelsmart.com shows a different level of commitment than www.Travelsmart.somedefaultsubdomain.com.


    For help on how to choose and actually claim a custom domain, read more hereBut basically - keep it simple, clear, and memorable with www.(yourstartupname).comIf that's taken, go with the closest and most natural variation possible. No funny business here.

  • SEO Quick Fixes

    Search engine optimization makes your site more highly ranked and visible on Google, Bing, Yahoo and so on. This is hugely important if you are trying to gain authority in your niche, build a focused content strategy around certain keywords, and also be found by the seas of digital writers, investors, and potential customers who live online, looking for emerging startups and businesses like yours.


    Take a look at Quicksprout's chapter or Moz's beginner guide to learn more about SEO. Otherwise, here are some easy but effective SEO tweaks -

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    Submit your site to Google

    Letting Google index your site is quick and easy. Just type in your domain URL, and the search keywords you want to your landing page to be associated with.

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    Page description and meta tags

    Fill in as much info as you can for your page description and meta tags. Your description should be several sentences long, with several meta tags. 

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    Put keywords in headings

    Search engines give additional weight to headings, so you should add descriptive keywords into them. For instance, “About Johnny’s Bakery” is better than “About” .

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    Add image descriptions

    Since search engines don’t understand images, image descriptions help them index your images and by extension your site. Also known as adding HTML “alt” tags.

  • Final Checklist

    Before we move on to the final step - sharing and promoting your landing page - this is a good time to take a step back and do a final review. All of us are blind to our own little mistakes. Take this step seriously. You'll find that some fixes and revisions are needed, and they will pay off.


    Think about the start-to-end experience for your site visitors, and answer these questions -

    1. Will They Stay?

    • Seconds within landing, will visitors like the feel of my site enough to stay?
    • Are my site title, header, and headline attractive and accurate?

    2. Will They Engage?

    • Is my site layout simple and easily navigable? 
    • Do I give my audiences valuable, relevant content to browse and interact with? 

    3. Will They Act?

    • Did I clearly indicate and streamline the actions I want people to take?
    • Did I provide easy, eye-catching CTAs and contact methods?

    4. Does Everything Work?

    • Do all my links, icons, and media assets work? Nothing broken?
    • Are my domain, page description, and other SEO elements nice and tidy?
  • Social & Email Sharing

    Now that your landing page is ready for the world, it's time to promote it! Start by shouting out on social media, and sending an email out to everyone in your and your team's contact lists.

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    Shout out on social media!

    Social media has become so prevalent and powerful that every startup should be leveraging it to reach audiences. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Youtube, Instagram, and Pinterest are some of the best choices. Go after the two or three where your main audiences are. 


    When your landing page is live, shout out across your platforms, using hashtags, mentions, and brief and catchy copy to help increase reach. Encourage people to follow your page, and sign up to your early access list. 


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    Send out an email -

    Send an email out to your contacts, providing the link to your landing page and inviting them to check it out and then take some action (email signup, product feedback and so on). Make the message exciting and sincere - your earliest fans will be some of your most important ones all the way. 

  • Outreach & Exposure

    There are countless ways to go about this, so you need to prioritize which few channels would work best given your startup and audience. If you're setting up a physical business, focus on local press and word of mouth. If you're testing a tech product, go after ProductHunt, BetaList, and other relevant news & listing sites. Choose the promotion strategies that will let you most effectively find and engage with your best potential users.


    You'll need to find a balance between reach and relevance. Since you (should) already know who your target audience is, it's best to start with them - stay smaller and highly targeted, and build some success in a niche market before expanding your reach and taking over the world. 

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    Connect with influencers

    Use a tool like Buzzsumo to find influential figures, journalists, and bloggers in your niche. They're always on the lookout for promising stories, so pitch them and see if they're interested in sharing or writing about your startup.

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    Submit your page to directories

    Getting listed in business directories like Yahoo Directory, Google's Local Business Center, and Insiderpages will earn you backlinks to boost your search ranking, and help raise your local visibility.


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    Engage with niche communities

    Your best potential users might not all be on Facebook. Find them on boards and forums, through local meetups, and other less obvious places. Usually, hitting just one niche ends up kickstarting your startup growth. 

  • Beyond Launch

    "Ideas are easy. Implementation is hard." - Guy Kawasaki

    Keep track, and keep improving.

    The beauty of the modern web is that you can test, learn, and iterate quickly to continually find what works best. Use Google Analytics to gather data on your landing page and blog visits. Try Mixpanel or Optimizely to A/B test important page elements, like your CTAs and social proof format, to find meaningful improvements in conversion. Analyze which demographics, social platforms, and blog posts your traffic is coming from, and pursue those channels and efforts. 


    Talk frequently with your users, friends, and mentors to better understand how to improve your startup and landing page flow. Reply to every comment, question, call, and feedback email you get - always let your customers and fans know that you care about them.

    Don't forget to K.I.S.S.

    For all the careful thought and work you've put into crafting a great landing page, don't forget at the end of the day to keep it simple (, stupid). Does my landing page -

    • Give a great first impression, visually and emotionally?

    • Show and tell audiences what we're doing, and why?

    • Lead people to a clear and easy action to take?

    If so, awesome.



    Keep your landing page short, shorter than our pitiful attention spans. Simplify or remove navigation entirely, so your visitors don't even have to think about sections and where things are. Write purposeful content, but don't kill yourself stuffing keywords everywhere; A/B test a few CTAs and important sections, but don't drown yourself in infinite tweaks.


    As an entrepreneur and startup team, your landing page is one indispensable tool that will help you grow, to launch and beyond. Use it to bring your unique value to the world, and welcome on board all who wish to be a part of your journey.



    Strikingly Team

  • Give us some feedback?

    Thanks for staying with us until the end! Leave a comment, question, suggestion - let us know how you liked the guide :)