Much of this is steeped in buyer psychology. The best marketers in the world know that there is a psychological process that must occur for prospects to whip out those credit cards and turn into buyers or even hyper-active buyers. One such person whose perfected this process is Russell Brunson, an "underground entrepreneur" who founded a company called ClickFunnels, a sales funnel SaaS business that empowers marketers from around the world to build marketing automation without all the hassle. 
Once the prospect is in the proverbial funnel, you've peaked their awareness. That's the first stage of the funnel. However, getting a prospect aware of you is no simple feat. Depending upon how they've arrived to your website (organically or through a paid ad), those customers might view your funnel differently and your opt-in rates will vary significantly. 
Landing page optimization (LPO) is one part of a broader Internet marketing process called conversion optimization, or conversion rate optimization (CRO), with the goal of improving the percentage of visitors to the website that become sales leads and customers. A landing page is a webpage that is displayed when a potential customer clicks an advertisement or a search engine result link. This webpage typically displays content that is a relevant extension of the advertisement or link. LPO aims to provide page content and appearance that makes the webpage more appealing to target audiences.
The first helps direct attention to the goal of the page -- for you to fill out the form -- in a way that's unobtrusive and feels less like a chore. The second gives this page an SEO boost (search engines will have more content to crawl) and assuages any worry from folks who need to know more about a piece of content before handing over their information, all while not distracting people from the chat window.
Of course, regardless of how they enter into your funnel, your goal as a marketer is to move them through the multiple stages that will take them from prospect to buyer. And once they're aware of you, you need to build their interest. To do this, you need to establish a relationship with the customer. You might have enticed them with a great offer (lead magnet) to grab their email address, but actually moving them through the funnel is a far greater challenge. 
Hi Terence, first off I would like to say that an interesting and thorough review. The fact that you go into so much detail about Funnel hacks, both the pro’s and the con’s really makes me believe in it and you. It sounds like something I will definitely consider as soon as I get my own product to sell (which I am still working on at the minute). And if it works then it’s worth every penny I say.
Whimsical isn't usually the first word that comes to mind when you think of HR software, but Teambit's illustration-heavy landing page is exactly that. A simple, one-field form is accompanied by a delightful office full of animal characters -- all of whom are very pleased with Teambit, in case you were wondering. An animal cartoon appears beside each informational section of the landing page, keeping visitors scrolling down to learn more.
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