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The Lean Entrepreneur: How Visionaries Create Products, Innovate with New Ventures, and Disrupt Markets by Eric Ries, Patrick Vlaskovits, Brant Cooper

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The Infamous Landing Page

The landing page2 test is probably the most familiar to people. The basic premise is that you put up a basic one-page website comprised of your messaging and a call to action, drive traffic to the page, and measure clicks on the call to action.

Landing Page smoke tests are at the same time the most abused and underutilized of tests. Most abused because the interpretation of the results is highly subject to experimental bias: Entrepreneurs see what they want to see. The Landing Page test has three variables in play:

1. How good is your acquisition method? If you drive traffic using Google AdWords, but nobody is searching for your solution, then you haven’t really tested your value proposition but, rather, your ability to drive traffic via search marketing. Furthermore, if you don’t draw the right traffic, in other words, your target segment, then you can end up with hundreds of e-mail addresses from casual passers by who have no deep interest in your product.
2. How good are your messaging, positioning, and design? People who click on the call to action are persuaded (among other things) by their belief in whether the product is targeting them (positioning), if it might benefit them (messaging), and if the design reinforces the product appeal to the necessary degree. If you’re selling bridal products, but the landing page looks like a GeoCities website circa 1999, you’re going to have a hard time converting visitors even if they would value your product ...

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