Starting a website isn't easy. Whether you're going for your first site or have several under your wing already, getting started with a new project may be exhausting. Beginners have it harder, that's for sure because they still have a lot to learn and a lot of tools to find. But even professionals take time from the idea to the end result both they and the clients will be happy with.
Even if you are developing locally, the chances are that you have already registered the domain or at least have that on the checklist. But instead of having an empty page shown to random users who end up on the site or postponing the registration process, you can start working on the marketing of your new site. That's where coming soon pages come in handy.
What is a coming soon page?
Coming soon page is a simple landing page which entire purpose is to capture the attention of the first visitors. This simple page usually contains as little information as possible. It should tell website visitors that “the real” website is still in the workshop and should show that you care about those first visits.What's great about coming soon pages is that it's a great asset to both parties. While the users will appreciate your efforts to build it for them, you will appreciate the fact that you can start marketing your product way before the website is completed.
What do you get from it?
Unfortunately, there are still people who don't appreciate a good coming soon page. There are still many who don't even know they can/should build one. Do you know what are the benefits of such a page?
Show you mean business
Usually, people respond well to proactivity. While landing on an empty page might imprint negative feelings to visitors, preparing a nice coming soon page will do the opposite and show people that you care both about them and your product. The first impression counts, so make sure you make it right.
Start marketing a product
Sometimes, designing a website will take months. That doesn't mean you should sit in the dark and just wait for everything to power itself up. If you have a product or service, a coming soon page will help you put it on the market right away.
You can just create hype and show a few features to entice people or you can start selling the product directly. It completely depends on you and the business you're running.
Appear on Google and other search engines
Just like you would optimize a site for search engines, you can optimize the coming soon page for Google and other search engines as well. That means that you can start working on your SEO while still designing the site.
Every marketer knows how important it is to start working on SEO in the early stages, and how important just one place in SERP can be. A coming soon page lets you “cheat” the system and start earlier than you might have thought.
On average, it takes about 6 months until you get some results from Google and other search engines (the results that you will actually like). SEO is complex, and there are numerous factors that will affect it. But if you tailor your coming soon page the right wait and optimize it for search engines, you will get there much sooner. Yes, you will have just one page in this case, but it will still make search engines index you and accept your existence. Keywords will still count, and you can actually outrank some site with just having a coming soon page. Also, search engines give older sites more authority.
Connect with people
Start building relationships with people. Allow them to follow you on popular social media, let them contact you via email or phone. Start collecting emails or think about getting feedback. Whatever you do, it will help you become better and maybe even create a better website.
Elements of a coming soon page
Although a coming soon page is something custom that should be designed for each site, there are some elements that should be always considered. Obviously, you will not have all these elements on just one page, but you will use those that you want & need.
Since a coming soon page is like a billboard you are trying to display in front of your audience, a headline is crucial. This is usually the first element that will capture the attention of your first visitors.
Whether you are going to write that the site is under construction or just emphasize the name of the brand, it has to be there. Make sure that the font is right and that you are using the colors of your brand.
Whether you go for a monochromatic background, add a custom photograph or maybe be a video which gets more popular on an everyday basis, the background is one of the most important parts of a coming soon page. Besides the headline, it will be something that can make or break the entire page.
Just like a good photo can help you bring in the audience, a bad one may do the opposite and paint a negative image on your site even before it's live. So, be very careful when designing the background, and don't forget to ask friends and colleagues about their opinions. A nonprofessional eye may be more helpful than a critique from a fellow designer. WordPress plugins UnderConstructionPage PRO and Coming Soon & Maintenance Mode PRO allow you to select from more than 400,000 free images. You can even upload custom photos or add videos to make the background even more vivid.
Although it should be a simple page, sometimes you can't go without having extra content on the coming soon page. This may be text, photo or actually anything that you really need on the page. Be on point and try to keep things simple – no one wants to read novels here.
No matter what kind of website you are working on, you must provide contact information. Be it a contact form or a simple email address you will display on the page, make sure the first visitors can easily get to you. I can't explain how frustrated I get when I can't find the contact information on a page of interest. I am sure others share this feeling, so always make sure people can reach out to you.
Social Media Icons
Even if the site isn't ready for the public, social media accounts should be. The modern world can't run without Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and all the other popular networks, so prepare the accounts on time. Those will let you connect with people and show extra information even before having a site.
And if you put social media icons on the coming soon page, you can start attracting first followers and people who will really appreciate the brand. If you do it right, the coming soon page will help you step up your game.
Let people subscribe. Those that are really interested in your future site will be eager to leave an email address. This will be your chance to contact them when you launch.
Those people loaded your site even before it was ready, so they must have some interest. Make something out of it.
If you follow all the new rules, you can even use those email addresses for marketing purposes.
If you know the launch date, a simple timer might do the trick. It will inform people, and it may also be a visual attraction on the site. Timers can be easily animated and make your site look more alive. This is a must-have element if you want to create a hype.
If you have a business with a physical address (office or store for example), you might want to show your location on Google Maps. The coming soon page is a perfect place to embed a map and point users to the address of interest. It goes well right next to the contact information, so don't forget about embedding a map when possible.Summing it up
Coming soon pages can play a big role. If executed correctly, those pages will help you attract more people to your new website, and can even help put the product on the market. People will get a chance to reach you out and you get a chance to show off what you got ahead of time.
Like it or not, coming soon pages are something you shouldn't start without. They can jump-start your entire business, so give them a chance.