Line of military recruits waiting to begin doing a military course
Marine Corps Obstacle Course

How To Remove Friction From Your Landing Pages

Increase conversion rates and lead your readers to the bottom of the page without them even realizing it.

If you were to go in as a new recruit in the U.S Marines, you’d probably quickly learn about their infamous obstacle courses.

Dating back to WWI, military obstacle courses have been a staple in training new soldiers into top physical shape.

If you’ve never seen one, imagine a 300 foot stretch of land filled to the brim with low logs, high bars, tall wooden walls and rope climbing sectors.

You’d be tasked to do things like climb, jump, run, balance, carry, throw and crawl yourself through a labrinth of challenges towards an end goal.

Marine Obstacle Course
Marine Obstacle Course
Something like this (Military Obstacle Course)

These courses, which can take more than an hour to complete, are made to strengthen a soldier’s stamina, agility and increase their situational awareness.

And yet when we’re talking about landing pages…

We can sometimes make our leads feel like they’re going through a small obstacle course of their own.

Which is why we need to be careful of not implanting any more friction than necessary into our pages.

But what is friction?

Friction is like an obstacle you’d find on a typical military course.

It’s anything that might stop your lead from continuing through your page.

It’s those little awkward moments that make them question your offer in any way.

Or any moments where they feel like they were “stopped in their tracks”, even if it was just for a second.

Do you know what I mean?

Like, if I wasn’t talking to you sentence by sentence like this…

And instead I was making a very long paragraph that took up a lot of space line by line in which I don’t even include periods anymore because why even include periods and oh look this sentence is so long wow I could make this about me couldn’t I Let’s make it about me I was born on a farm where I had 3 pigs named Curly Larry and Moe and…

You’d notice that flow was interrupted.

In both article writing and copywriting, there’s the concept of flow we always need to watch out for.

It’s present in our writing, in the page layout, in the images we use or even in our designs.

Any interruption of flow on our page is what we call friction, and it can be caused by a variety of things.

Things like:

  • Bad message match
  • Awkward page design
  • Obvious stock photos
  • Lack of “slippery slope” from one paragraph to the other (the concept of ideas not flowing well from one to the other)
  • Mis-spelings (Like this)
  • Walls of text. (Made when there’s a lot of fluff and longs sentences.)
  • Too many form fields needed to opt-in.
  • Not presenting enough information about your offer to push the lead to want the opt-in.

Basically anything that could make your lead subconciously say…

“Wait… what?”

Is a telling that flow has been interrupted.

So what’s not surprising is that to avoid interrupting flow…

All you really have to do is try and keep your leads “in the moment”.

Pages that help leads stay in the moment use

  • Effective message match (Unbounce is the king of explaining this concept)
  • Good (or pretty simple) page designs
  • Real or not so obvious stock photos (they don’t even have to be professional looking. A picture of a happy customer is more trustyworthy than whatever this guy is doing…)
Don’t use these on your pages (Found this here BTW)
  • Good element flow between page segments.
  • Spell-check. (Especially if english isn’t your first language)
  • Smaller, more concise messages. (Some good advice for this: get to the point and read your pages out loud. Show others your work and use the Hemingway App).
  • Ask your leads for the least amount of information possible (So use less form fields wherever possible).
  • Present all the information your lead needs to want to opt-in. (Friction can also happen if you present something like price too soon.)

Not respecting flow is a pretty big sign that your page isn’t converting well.

Take the necessary steps.

Read things out loud and make things easy on the eyes.

And remember…

Always test.

That’s how you create pages so smooth, you’ll feel like you’re on ice…

Or driving in a car with tires like these.

A very smooth car tire (Not recommended for your car)
A very smooth car tire (Not recommended for your car)
Your leads won’t be able to stop… reading

Okay, sorry for the bad joke. But in the spirit of giving, I want to send you an insightful landing page idea every Wednesday

My name is Mauro [Maw-ro] and I’m the guy who wrote this article. I have a newsletter where once a week I send an insightful idea on how to improve landing pages for your marketing campaigns. If you’re interested, you can sign up to get them in your email here.

Weekly insights on landing pages in your campaigns

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store