5 things you absolutely must have on your sales page
Who here has been personally victimized by Blank Page Syndrome? 🙋♀️
You know, that dreadful feeling of sitting down in front of your computer to write something and feeling totally bullied and beaten into submission by the blinking cursor and that giant, white, glowing rectangle. Like, so taunted and scared that you become frozen and you quit before you even begin.
Happens to the best of us.
That’s why having an idea of what you need before you even begin helps. I’m not talking about templates here (although…templates, love you, call me!) or even an outline.
Nope, just a few of the elements that you need to include. That way, you know where you’re headed. It’s not aimless, it’s not unplanned, it’s not total chaos.
I mean, how many times have you sat down to write a sales page and come away empty handed?
It’s probably because you didn’t know where to start.
Do you remember in high school (or maybe grade school?? honestly it’s been so long since I was in school and now I’m just making myself feel old…) your English teacher taught you how to write a five-paragraph essay?
You had an opening paragraph in which you stated your thesis.
You had three paragraphs following that, each of which supported your thesis.
And then you had a closing paragraph that summarized your points and wrapped things up.
Wasn’t it easier to have that direction? To know, okay, I just have to write five paragraphs and these are the things each paragraph has to do?
What I’m going to tell you today is eerily similar. It’s just the elements. But they allow you to get started – and that’s a pretty damn good step.
Let’s start at the very beginning. Your headline’s a very good place to start… (Yep, I was totally writing that to the tune of Do Re Mi.)
You need a headline. Plain and simple.
No one wants to come to a page and have no idea what it’s about. You don’t want to make people scroll through several paragraphs of text, painstakingly reading every word to understand what you’re talking about.
And, let’s be honest: Unless someone already knows you or loves you unconditionally, they probably aren’t even getting that far.
So make sure your headline grabs their attention and gets them interested in reading more.
Make sure it’s compelling and focuses on the benefit or outcome of your offer. For example, the headline for my Sales Page Second Look offer is “Get a stronger sales page in 48 hours or less.”
It’s pretty clear what you’re gonna get, right?
Your headline should be compelling. It should grab your client’s attention, it should get them interested in reading more, and it should totally focus on the benefit or outcome of your offer.
So think about what the ultimate outcome of your service is and lead with that.
If you’re not feeling particularly clever, your headline can totally just be the name of your package (heh), although I’d definitely recommend adding some sort of subheading or tagline underneath it. That way, you’re being clear on who the offer is for and what they can expect.
Like, if my Sales Page Second Look had a subheading, it might be: “For health and wellness pros who want their sales page to actually sell.”
Where they’re at now (aka The Before)
The before is how you get your clients interested.
It’s how you show them you understand what they’re going through, what their problem is, what their struggles are.
And, if you’re using their language (none of that jargon shit, my friend), they’re going to see themselves in this before. In every situation you’re pointing out and every word you’re writing. They’re going to totally relate.
Your before absolutely DOES NOT have to belittle or badger or berate your client. Unless, of course, your ideal client responds to that kind of thing…
But a little sympathy and empathy go a long way here.
Show them you get it. You’ve been there. It sucks. You know how it feels.
A really easy way to do this?
Picture your ideal client going about their day-to-day life. What problem are they experiencing and how is it showing up? How is it keeping them from doing something? How is it affecting other things in their life?
For me, I pictured my ideal client super proud that they hit publish on their sales page. But the initial excitement wore off when they realized they weren’t making any sales. Like, crickets. So they spend days, weeks, months tweaking the copy, tweaking the layout, marketing less, marketing more, taking another course, spending money left and right, avoiding the dreaded sales copy more and more.
Maybe they make some progress, but still not what they were hoping for.
So they ask for some feedback from their trusted business buddies. And no one wants to give constructive feedback. Which puts them right back where they started.
They know what they have to offer is amazing. They know they’re good at what they do. But they’re starting to think they’re missing something critical. They’re starting to wonder if maybe they’re not cut out for this.
All the doubts and fears start to creep in, start to settle in, and they’re feeling pretty down. Frustrated. Stressed. Overwhelmed.
And then I wrote with that person in mind. See how much easier it becomes when you know who you’re talking to and what they’re doing now?
Where they want to be (aka The After)
My clients want to have a sales page that’s making sales on autopilot. They want to wake up everyday to find new sales coming in. Another coaching call booked. Another spot sold in their upcoming workshop. Another member added to their program.
They want to feel confident that their sales page is speaking to their clients. That their ideal clients relate to their message. That their ideal client understands exactly what they can help them with and want that help.
They want to be booked out, doing what they love, making a difference, helping people.
Here’s the thing: You can’t just tell people what they’re doing wrong or what they could be doing better. That’s just going to make them feel shitty.
You have to give them a sense of hope.
Again, you’re showing them how you understand what they want and – oh hey! – you’re the perfect person to help them achieve those results.
The no jargon rule doubly applies here, by the way. Make sure you’re talking about what your client actually wants and saying it how they’d say it.
This might not always be the same as the results you’ll deliver so it’s your job to make that connection. This is where you show them the possibilities, all the magic that comes from working with you.
Super specific steps on how to get started
I’ve gotta be honest with you: Nothing annoys me more than visiting a sales page and then having to click over to ANOTHER sales page.
Like, why are you making me jump through hoops?
People are impatient. It’s not just me.
The more things I have to do to buy something, the less likely I’m actually going to buy it.
So don’t spend all this time talking about how amazing your product or service is and then make me click another button to go to another page to read even more copy about your product or service.
(Also, another pet peeve of mine that drives me absolutely freakin’ bonkers: Not listing the price. Don’t surprise me when I click the button. Don’t make that the first time I see the price. It feels like a slimy tactic to me, probably so they can retarget me. I don’t like it. Just a little rant for ya…)
Give me all the details on one page.
Shouldn’t you make this super easy for your customer?
Don’t you want it to be a no brainer?
When you’re unclear and being all mysterious and willy nilly and what have you, you’re making it harder on yourself and your client.
So here’s what you’re gonna do instead: Be very very VERY explicit about how they can get what you’re selling.
Spell it out for them. Like:
Click this button.
Schedule your appointment and make your payment.
Look for an email from me.
Do your adult homework.
Hop on the phone to chat.
Don’t leave any questions about HOW they get started. Make it step by step and people will follow those steps. Truth.
A call to action
This little ditty goes hand in hand with the one above.
There’s a call to action after those steps, right?
You’ve got a button that takes them to step one, right?
And for God’s sake, please make it a button.
If you’re really trying to sell something, don’t just hyperlink some text. That’s WAY too easy to miss.
(Okay, fine, hyperlinking text totally has its place. As with most things… It’s great when you’re not on your sales page and you’re linking to another blog post or a resource. Maybe you’re casually mentioning your services in a post but you don’t wanna be super obvious about it. Time and a place, my friend.)
Put a giant ass button that they can’t miss and that’s super clear about WHY they should be clicking that button.
Make your call to action something fun, something easy to understand, something that’s telling them what they’re gonna get.
I talked a bit more about what your call to action should be in this post, but here’s a quick recap:
Have some fun with your call to action.
Make it emotional.
Make it grab their attention.
Make it say something the reader might say as they’re actually signing up for your offer.
So there you have it – the five elements your sales page must have. Knowing this will make writing your next page five times easier. Probably a lot more but the two fives in one sentence sounded catchy so I went with it.
Now, here’s what you’re gonna do next: Hop on over to your sales page. Check to see if it has these elements. If it’s missing one or if one could use some sprucing up, take a crack at it!
And, if you enjoyed my unique brand of humor and my stream of consciousness writing that totally has a purpose and a method to its madness, I swear, dude, you’re gonna love my live class Smooth(ie) Sales Pages. It’s a totally free, totally fun, totally uncensored quick class on my signature 4Cs sales pages framework, and I’d love to see you in the next one so you can learn more about oh-em-ghee slick sales pages.