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Landing Page Services as a SaaS

This article covers what Landing Pages are, the technology used to create a Landing Page Service as a SaaS, the cost of that technology, and the business pricing model used for launching this new service in an over-populated business arena.

For the video version, watch:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fRACrD6J0kc

Why do people use Landing Pages?

Most companies offer lots of services or products.  It's been proven that if a person is searching on the internet for a specific thing they are more likely to take action if they find a page that only has information about that one thing.  This is mostly because people's attention spans have gotten shorter and shorter.

Landing pages are targeted for a very specific need, service or product.  Landing Pages are short, sweet and ask for a Call to Action. They turn a visitor  into a lead! They help build your emailing list of potential customers.

If a person searches for something and finds your home page, the sad fact is after a minute of surfing around if they do not find the exact detailed answer to what their original search was... they may close the tab and choose to look at the next link on the Google search page.

Behind the scenes a good Landing Page Service tracks visitors so you can analyze the information.  How many people visited the page?  How many of the visitors gave you their email address?  Where did those visitors come from so you know which of your advertising methods are working the best?  That way you know where to advertise more and what advertising is a waste of time and money.

A Landing Page targeted for a specific service or product will rank better on SEO and convert more visitors to leads.  That's why people use landing pages.

Now to the Technology Used

Primarily this was built using the Wizards Toolkit.  It's a low-code library based on PHP, SQL and Javascript.  It makes building data-driven websites and mobile apps extremely fast.

The color picker is JScolor.  This was amazingly easy to implement and is super intuitive for the users.  The licensing fee is only $18.

The WYSIWYG text editor is Summernote.org.  To do some of the more advanced features was a little tricky and StackOverflow answered some of the questions that were not well documented on their website.  But the end result is excellent and I was quite impressed with their image upload functionality.

When I decided to scale up, I purchased a Virtual Private Server from A2hosting with more RAM, 4 core processors and 450GB SSD HD space.  I migrated my current web server to the new VPS and now the speed is given a 99% A score on GTmetrix. If you need hosting, this company has incredible pricing, very fast servers, and excellent service.

For those interested there are links to each of these in the description below.

History and Competition Review

Initially I needed a landing page for Programming Labs to share our Coding Standards and collect emails.  Of course since we're a software development company we just created our own landing page.  Later I needed a landing page for Project Management  functional and technical documents.  Frankly I'm giving away programming ebooks and advice to collect emails so I can later notify these people when the Wizards Toolkit launches.  Instead of creating a new landing page I made the landing page template data-driven since the basic functionality of the page is the same and only the content needed to be different.  The analytic tracking was solidified to track based on page.  Then I realized this could easily be scaled up so others could use it.  Plus I could make everything using the Wizards Toolkit so it would be a nice portfolio project.

Only then did I start looking at what others were offering in the Landing Page Services space.  Frankly I was shocked.  The cost was much higher than expected and often the offerings were not what I think most people would really want.

Here's what I found:

  • high consulting fee cost from some companies
  • others required they do the hosting of your domain
  • and when they bundled the hosting the monthly cost was excessive

Consulting fees included professional copywriters and marketing experts with costs ranging from $1,400 to $3,200 per page.

For those requiring the hosting the costs ranged from $37 monthly up to $495 per month! Click Funnels is more of a "Sales Funnel" company than landing pages and their cheapest plan is $97 monthly but they have lots of up-sells and generally try to push you into their $300/month subscription.

A Landing Page should be a simple way to turn visitors into leads.  Entice the viewer to give you their email address so you can follow-up and start a conversation.  That's all!

Business and Pricing Strategy

Some of our competition is charging $1,500 or more for design consulting.  They have "copy-writers on staff".

Others are charging a minimum of $27 month if you pay a year in advance which comes out to $324 yearly and they require they host your domain.  So you give up control.

We do not want to get into the hosting business.  However it is important that we host the landing page so all the analytics can be tracked.  So we chose a generic domain name which should work for everyone:  https://extragood.info/
Then at the end we add the unique hash so the website knows which landing page to show. Like https://extragood.info/Landing-Page

We see a need for low-cost landing pages that allow people to simply turn visitors to leads and build an emailing list.  We already built the analytics for our own needs so there is no cost for us to share that technology with others.

We offer a 30-day free trial whereas most competition offer only 14-day trials.  In sales that is called the "puppy dog close" because once a person takes a puppy home for a night they fall in love and almost never return it.  We hope after a person builds their landing page and sees the detailed analytic reports, they will want to continue and make more landing pages.

Our basic price is $36 per year.  That is less than our closest competitor's monthly cost.

We do offer an up-sell of $18 to customize your URL on our domain.  This is optional but allows you to change your link from something like:
https://extragood.info/EFGHIK
to something like:
https://extragood.info/coding

Of course our pricing may increase in the future.  These prices are for our initial launch.

When we had to decide what will happen after the 30 day free trial expires, we tried to consider what would we want if we were the customer.  It's a pandemic and many are struggling.  So we decided instead of killing their page if they don't pay the $36 annual fee, we would allow their page to continue if they want and just add a small banner at the top.  Most likely the banner will just be advertising our Landing Page services.  That's a win-win and if their business starts succeeding they can always pay our annual fee to have the ad removed.

Business note to you developers:  if we end up with 10,000 landing page customers that choose not to pay and are only getting 100 visitors per month, that is still 1 million page views monthly.  At that point we can start selling the advertising space which is another revenue source.  Since we are an ethical company we would make sure the ads never went to competing services, but that would be easy to manage.

During out initial launch we are offering free landing pages for a year.  This is only available for the first 50 landing pages and no single person is allowed more than 3 landing pages using this offer.  This includes having a custom link so is a $54 value and no ad will be displayed. We're doing this to gain initial clients, testimonials and feedback.  The link below will take you to our landing page that provides the Promo Code for this discount.  If it is past the launch stage, still check the link to see if we have any other specials going on right now.

Business note: this is another win-win. It's tough to find your first few clients.  Only leaders and risk-takers are willing to be first.  Or those that want something free.  But after you have some happy clients and good testimonials others gladly follow.

We know that a lot of people will wonder how the landing pages will look.  We want our clients to succeed so we made a Client Listing page where people can see the pages our clients have built.  Currently we have three demos that we made but we'll remove those once we have more clients.  The order is always going to be random so every client has an equal chance to be at the top of the list.

What about clients that need technical support or want something outside our basic templates?  We are a software development company specializing in web technology so of course we took this into consideration.  In the client dashboard you can choose to "Allow Tech Access".  This will allow our programming staff to access your landing page and help with any minor issues you may have.  If you want major changes to the design, our UI programmers can create a custom HTML template just for you (we have a demo page showing that below as well).  Then our staff will work with you on an hourly basis.  This way your page will still have all the powerful analytics and you will still be able to edit the content, but it will have the custom HTML template designed by a User Interface professional.  How long it will take depends on the customizations you want, but unless you're building something crazy it will be a lot less than the $1500 to $3200 that other companies charge.

Summary

If your company is selling a service or product and making over $20K annually from that one service... you probably should hire one of these other companies and pay them $1K to $3K to make you the perfect landing page.  Maybe that will boost your sales from $20K to $50K.  But for the rest of us that are just starting out, or we want to experiment and see if a brand new service will be popular or not... it’s just not smart to throw $1,000 into a landing page.

I'm hoping that Programming Labs can be the solution for those wanting low-cost Landing Pages. They can test it out and if it has no traction after 30 days just let it continue on the free plan with a banner at the top. If it has traction and is building traffic and leads, then pay the $36 for a full year of service and analytics. You can't lose with a plan like that. Once they are making $20K annually they should buy a Landing Page from some other company.

Developers: using the right tools you can build a useful SaaS for very little cost.  For this Landing Page SaaS the cost was $18 for the JScolor license, $15 per month for the VPS hosting, and 1 week of coding to make it work for my needs, then another 4 weeks to enhance the user interface for clients and add bells and whistles. That's all it took... well that and 20 years of programming experience.  All built using Wizards Toolkit as the low-code development environment.

Links

Landing Page Services

Discount Promo Code
https://extragood.info/Landing-Page

Custom HTML demo
https://extragood.info/Landing-Pages

Home Page
https://programminglabs.com/landing-pages/

Low-code library used

https://wizardstoolkit.com

JS Color Picker

https://jscolor.com

WYSIWYG Editor

https://summernote.org

Speed Testing

https://gtmetrix.com

Web Hosting starting at $2.99/month

https://wtk.pw/A2Hosting

Minimizing CSS file size

https://cssminifier.com/

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