Landing pages for your small business using DIY website tools

It’s that time of year again: the holiday landing page is a beloved tradition. The big companies will display dazzling ad pages created by dozens of graphic designers to ring in the holiday season. The lights will be spectacular, each more impressive than the previous one. A small business owner who has a DIY site will be in awe.

What if you’re a small business owner yourself? You can join in the fun, too!

Yes. Anyone can create a landing page for a holiday promotion with the right tools and some know-how.

What you will need:

Paper – 1-2 sheets

A pencil

Photos taken with your digital camera or from a stock image site.

One website with simple DIY tools. You need a website where you can freely move text and images around without knowing HTML. I enjoy websites created with Wix Squarespace Webs and our FoundHere website.

Note: If you have a website that is difficult to edit, it’s still possible to create a temporary free website with one of the above providers.

Identify the promotion and call to Action

First, what do you want them to do? And how much pressure are they under to do it?

You want them to…

How to print a coupon

To be contacted or to schedule an appointment, do you need to fill out a contact form?

Buy a product via your shopping cart?

Are you on Social Media?

Share your holiday experience and content with others.

Your landing page will be shaped by this element more than anything else. You’ll need a coupon, a form, or a shareable link. Don’t forget to track. Google Analytics is a great way to see how many people have visited your page. You can also add a unique identifier to your CTA (a coupon code special, a form header unique, or a hashtag to use on social media). This will only be known by people who visit this page.

It is essential to consider your visitors’ time constraints when creating holiday content. Is your content geared towards a particular task they must complete before a specific date, or is it a business model based on a project they want to postpone until after the holiday season? Give them a deadline to force them to act quickly before they are distracted by holiday shopping. You still want to get them to work, but you might consider a CTA where you promise not to contact them again until January.

Draw your landing page

Grab a piece of paper and a pencil and sketch your landing page. You will get a better understanding of the text and images you’ll need by drawing your landing page.

You must include at least the headline, graphic, CTA, and any explanation text.

It is a good idea to draw this out several times with different elements. Consider versions with one column instead of two and the headline before the CTA. Keep the other arrangements for testing.

Gather your content

Write at least three headlines in a Word document. It is usually easier to create multiple headlines and select the best than to find one perfect headline. Keep your headlines focused on the most exciting aspect of your promotion. You should not try to cram too much information into your headlines.

Write your explanation text. Focus on why your visitor might want to take your call to Action. Consider why your visitor might be reluctant to follow through with what you are asking.

Use a digital photo to capture a holiday-themed picture, or visit a stock image site and choose appropriate images. If you’re looking for prints that are free, consider Flickr Creative Commons. You’ll usually need to add a link to your site, but the fact that it is free can’t be beat!

Create your landing page

It’s now time to add the content blocks. For most DIY website solutions, you can copy and paste the content directly from Word then drag it around the page. Adding and uploading images, forms,, and social sharing buttons is also easy.

Why would I recommend creating content first in Word before transferring it to the page? Copying and pasting forces you to review your content. You may have designed and edited an initial draft without even knowing it.

Create variations: Optional holiday entertainment

Many providers (including Squarespace, FoundHere, and others) let you set shared content blocks across multiple pages. This makes it simple to create different variations of your landing page. Create a new landing page, then share content blocks on the new page. Arrange them differently. With just a few mouse clicks, you can create other pages to test if your call to Action is better on the left, right, or center.

After a few weeks, you can still gain some valuable information by switching your landing page to a variant. You should have at least a week to promote your product, so you can test a variety of variations and decide which one is the best after a couple of days.

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