Affiliate marketing is all about performance and employing pre-landers can allow you to improve your conversion rates across the board.
That being said, setting up a winning pre-lander has become a complex art form.
Below, we’ll discuss the basic concept behind pre-landers, go over the most common types, and tell you what elements they need to help improve your conversions.
What Are Pre-Landers?
Before delving any further, let’s go over the basic definition of a pre-lander. Simply put, a pre-lander is a page that appears before your offer.
While your offer is usually displayed in a dedicated landing page, pre-landers are meant to prepare your visitors for this stage.
The Key Difference Between a Landing Page and a Pre-Lander
Pre-landers do add another step to the conversion process, but they assure that the visitors who ultimately end up on your offer page know exactly what they are in for.
At the same time, landing pages may provide users with detailed information. Landing pages give visitors all the details they need and the ability to accept an offer. Here’s how you can optimize your landing page.
Pre-landers, on the other hand, tend to be brief and concise (but there are exceptions).
The definition of conversion will vary from industry to industry. However, landing pages are designed to display your offer and provide conversions. Pre-landers give visitors just give basic details to spike their interest and predispose them at the same time. Check out our review of the top 10 landing page builders.
Affiliate Marketers and Pre-Landers
As we mentioned before, affiliate marketing is all about performance. Despite the fact that many affiliates achieve high traffic volumes, they still struggle to acquire conversions.
This is where pre-landers come in.
Pre-landers are intended to give enough information to engage visitors. Many users are compulsive, and pre-landers can also look to take advantage of that split-second decision making.
At the same time, to reinforce the idea, your visitors should be taking steps that lead them to the next stage. This can include pressing a button or filling out a brief form.
Should You Use a Pre-Lander?
Pre-landers are great tools that can help you improve conversions and identify areas for improvement.
So, in short, the answer is yes!
You should be using pre-landers, whenever possible. Which leads us to our next point…
Not all advertisers (the companies that pay for advertising) allow the usage of pre-landers. These restrictions are due to the fact that some affiliates use unethical practices, such as misleading, to improve their conversion rates.
As unfortunate as this may be, you should keep an eye out and always check that the advertisers you work with allow pre-landers. At the same time, you need to make sure your pre-lander relies on quality elements rather than using sketchy tactics.
Pros and Cons
Below, we have summarized the pros and cons of pre-landers.
How to Create a Great Pre-Lander
Like all other elements of your marketing campaign, you need to structure your pre-landers properly in order to succeed. Although they are defined by the industry and context they are used, all pre-landers should include:
1. A/B Testing
Setting up a pre-lander from scratch is tricky. After all, you have no benchmark or parting point. This is why setting up A/B testing right off the bat can help you identify what works and what doesn’t quickly.
2. Symmetric and Engaging Headlines
Your pre-lander headline should match the title of your ad, in order to create a consistent feel. And, by default, your ad headline should be attractive and concise.
3. Attractive Images
Humans are visual creatures, so make sure you have attractive images that engage your audience. This will depend heavily on the industry and type of pre-lander you’re using.
4. Relevant Content
This is critical because using irrelevant pre-landers to attract irrelevant traffic is considered an unethical practice. Your ad, pre-lander, and offer page should all align and be relevant to one another.
5. User-Friendly Layout
Your pre-lander should be easy to navigate and have a clearly-defined path for users to follow. This will reduce your bounce rate and improve user experience at the same time.
6. Calls-to-Action (CTAs)
CTAs will ultimately tell users what they need to do to accept the offer, so make sure your pre-lander has a catchy and specific call-to-action incorporated.
7. Loading Time
Capturing a user’s attention is one thing, but keeping it is a whole new game. Most users will only wait seconds before closing your pre-lander, so make sure it loads quickly and give it a chance to make an impression.
Types of Pre-Landers
Now that we’ve covered the different elements all pre-landers should have, let’s take a look at the types you can choose from.
These pre-landers often offer to clean up the user’s computer and improve its overall performance. They usually display a technical message about the computer’s performance and promise to fix the problem.
Games always make a smart pre-lander decision because they rely on a proven engagement channel. Just remember that these pre-landers need to have amazing graphics, feature a character from the game, and a short intro to the game.
Sweepstakes rely on a different strategy as they offer people the chance to win a prize. Again, this may vary, but the prizes often consist of a new gadget or a similar item. Sometimes, they also feature a timer to urge people to participate.
This type of pre-lander is visual and should speak directly to the user. Dating pre-landers also emotional factors as they entice users to join a community of happy people.
Utilities (very often Antivirus) pre-landers are similar to performance booster, with a slightly darker take. These claim to identify viruses and offer a solution, promising improved security and better performance.
Pre-landers are extremely versatile and they can be used in combination with features such as geo-targeting. There are many other types of pre-landers, but remember to always include the elements we mentioned in the section above.
Even if some affiliates use them for the wrong purposes, pre-landers can help prepare users and ultimately boost your conversions.
But, keep in mind that all of these versatile pages need to include elements that engage and inform users at the same time.