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Conversion Tip: Proof That Strap Lines Matter

5 strap lines

It’s simply amazing how many websites have no strap line (usually single line of text next to the logo that tells you more about what the site is about), or one that’s so weak it’s just a waste of pixels.

Guys, I’m here to tell you that strap lines matter for conversion.

Why? Well, when you land on a website, you have one main question on your mind…

“Am I going to find what I want here?”

So your eyes immediately set about picking out clues that could tell you you’re in the right place.

If you find enough positive signs, your attention will increase.

If you don’t find enough positive signs, your attention will wane, eventually to the point where you say to yourself…

“I’m more likely to find what I want by leaving this website than by persevering.”

One of the first things you’ll look for to help you in your quest is the site’s identity: the logo, the strap line, and any other clues in the top branding area.

Here’s The Proof

I realised I actually have three conversion optimisation tests running right now that involve strap lines.

Strap Line Test #1

One one lead-generation site, I’m testing three alternative strap lines against the control. All three are having a negative impact on conversions.

The worst performer made it 56% less likely that a visitor would complete the lead generation form!

Strap Line Test #2

On another site, which had no strap line, I tweaked the site logo and added a strap line that I thought would add clarity.

My alternative is currently performing 14% worse than the control (no strap line and old logo), and has a 30% chance of winning the head-to-head test.

Strap Line Test #3

My final example comes from this site. I tested four alternative strap lines against my previous default: “All the Help You Need to Grow Your Business Online”.

Can you guess the winner?

5 strap lines

The goal I was testing was how many people clicked through to my Pro Web Design Course site.

The fifth strap line (“How To Design Websites That Really Work!”) is proving to be a runaway winner, making it a staggering 88% more likely that someone landing on my site will click through to the PWDC site!

That’s potentially almost double the visitors, leading to double the sales!

From a simple strap line change!!

The critical questions I then have to ask are…


What is it about that phrase that is more appealing?

What need is already there in my visitors’ minds that this phrase helps to express?

(I’d be interested to hear your views. Just leave a comment on this post.)

Strap line test results

6 Key Lessons

  1. Strap lines can really matter – specially when most of your visitors are likely to be new or one-time visitors!
  2. The wrong strap line could be worse than no strap line at all!
  3. Nobody knows all the answers, even the pros, so always test any changes!
  4. Ask yourself why the winner won and the losers lost. This is vital whether your tests result in a gain or a fail. Then see if you can come up with a follow-up experiment to prove your hypothesis, and hopefully get an even better result!
  5. See if you can apply the insights you learn in other messages.
  6. Don’t stop testing!
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