How to write successful headlines

Headlines on webpages serve as navigation.

Each content block should have its own heading: it makes blocks stand out, and helps visitors find their way on the page. A good headline immediately grabs attention.

Although we wanted to tell about an exclusive offer of 40% OFF, we bet that the first thing you did was to read the copy on the right. Because it has a headline that catches your eye.


20% OFF THIS WEEKEND

Although a 20% OFF discount is less than 40% OFF, thanks to the headline a lot more people will read this copy than the one on the left.

A headline of any page fulfills the same purpose as a title of a book — it tells what the article is about.

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Two types of headlines

Headlines on a website page either name the topic or summarize the main point of copy.

  •  topic headlines give a general idea of what the copy is about: About Us, Testimonials, Contacts, Discounts.
  • summary headlines serve as spoilers by summarizing the main point of the piece.

Discounts for Birthday Boys and Girls

We give you 20% OFF food of your choice including drinks and a bottle of red wine. To get a special offer and a full pack of surprises on your birthday, show any document with the date of birth.


Celebrate Your Birthday with Us — 20% OFF for the Birthday Child

We give you 20% OFF food of your choice including drinks and a bottle of red wine. To get a special offer and a full pack of surprises on your birthday, show any document with the date of birth.

The offer on the left has a topic headline and the one on the right has a summary headline.

Topic headlines help visitors find their way around: they instantly prompt the reader what block can be of interest to them.

Site visitors seldom read the copy, more often than not they just skim through the section titles.

Scanning summary headlines is like reading the synopsis of a book chapters.

5 practical tips

1. The main purpose of a customer is not a product or service that you offer but the result they can achieve using them. Write about the benefits your customers can get.

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2. Identify what aspects of your product or service make it stand out from the horde of competitors. Just don't go to the extreme. Such intensifiers as "most", "best", "first" arouse customers' mistrust and are banned by the regulations on advertising.

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There is always an actual benefit you can use to attract attention.

3. Don't hesitate to give specific figures. If you are sure about the offered weight-loss program, state it in the headline.

Weight Loss Program

24 Days Weight Loss: up to 6 kg

4. Avoid using ALL UPPERCASE or Starting Every New Word With A Capital Letter. It looks hysterical and unprofessional. It may seem that this formatting will attract more attention but it isn't true. Such headlines are harder to read and only provoke annoyance: Internet users have become accustomed to Seeing Such Screaming Headlines.

Cameras for professional photography

Cameras For Professional Photography

CAMERAS FOR PROFESSIONAL PHOTOGRAPHY

Here you can find cameras that chain stores don't offer. We thoroughly select each camera and look for some rare items on the world markets.

All three headline types can be used for various cases. The first one looks most natural to the eye and is easy to read. The second type is used for book and article titles. The third one works wonders when used sparingly.

Let's have a closer look at all-uppercase headlines. Capital letters are a perfect choice when you need one idea to stand out among the rest. When all the headlines are in uppercase, any emphasis becomes impossible — everything competes for the reader's attention.

CAMERA FOR PROFESSIONAL PHOTOGRAPHY

Here you can find cameras that chain stores don't offer. We thoroughly select each camera and look for some rare items on the world markets.

CAMERA FOR TRAVEL PHOTOGRAPHY

You need a light and easy to use camera that can fit into a bag or a pocket, and no heavy interchangeable lenses to carry around.

CAMERA FOR STUDIO PHOTOGRAPHY

An ideal solution for studio photography and professional work.

In the example below, only one card headline is written in uppercase, what immediately catches our attention and makes the offer harder to ignore.

Camera for professional photography

Here you can find cameras that chain stores don't offer. We thoroughly select each camera and look for some rare items on the world markets.

Camera for travel photography

You need a light and easy to use camera that can fit into a bag or a pocket, and no heavy interchangeable lenses to carry around.

CAMERA FOR STUDIO PHOTOGRAPHY

An ideal solution for studio photography and professional work.

Although before emphasizing the headline visually, first try to draw the visitors' attention with the sense.

Cameras for studio from $700

An ideal solution for studio photography and professional work.

DEAL: Camera for studio photography

An ideal solution for studio photography and professional work.

Buy a camera and get a free workshop on shooting in studio

An ideal solution for studio photography and professional work.

Headline length

Boxing in San Francisco: Try an Intro Workout for Free

Book Free Workout

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A headline should not be longer than 2-3 lines, ideally it should contain 5-6 words. Otherwise it'll be difficult to read.

Welcome the new boxing gym in San Francisco: book a free intro workout. Our workouts are suitable for first-comers and experienced boxers alike. 

Book Workout

Moreover, don't forget about those who browse your site on mobile devices. They won't see anything but the long headline on the first fold.

Testing of headlines

If you have several variants and can't decide on the killer headline, delegate it to your visitors. Set up two sections with different headlines on the site and launch A/B testing to learn which headline your audience likes best.

A/B testing is a tool of online marketing that allows testing two variants of the same section to find out which performs better. You design two sections that differ only in one aspect — the headline. Then you test them out to see which attracts more visitors: it can be measured with the number of followed links or clicks, the amount of submitted forms, etc.

The most tested part of any website is the first fold (the content a visitor sees before scrolling down the page).

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Learn more about how to launch A/B testing on Flexbe here.

Summary

В сети много статей, где вам предлагают «проверенные» формулы заголовков, и чем больше погружаешься в тему, тем больше путаницы возникает.

Лучший заголовок на лендинге — тот, который ясно транслирует ваше торговое предложение, он короткий и по возможности там есть глаголы:

  • Ремонт автомобилей → Отремонтируем ваш автомобиль
  • Пошив штор → Шьем шторы на заказ за неделю

Глаголы дают динамику в предложение.

И самое главное — старайтесь, чтобы ваших заголовков не коснулось божественное провидение. Не пишите:

  • Лучшая в городе, да что уж там — во всем мире — стрижка кошек от Лизы Кузьминой
  • Самая потрясающая мойка окон 
  • Наш крышесносный клининг принесет вам прекрасное настроение на всю жизнь

Будьте кратки, честны, не лейте воду — и если вы действительно делаете крутой продукт и оказываете качественные услуги, вам всегда будет что написать в заголовке.