Hi there, welcome back to our second installment in our series of landing page tools reviews. This time around we're going to be analyzing yet another heavyweight contender to the throne of the best landing page builder of all: Lander, a webapp that promises to help you put your portfolio, business, or event online. Right away.
As you might remember, for our last featured review we explored the benefits of Unbounce and decided it was a pretty neat offering and quite a good tool. So, how does Lander stack up? Is it worth giving it a try? Let's go find out!
Lander aims toward ease of use and, rightly so, their homepage design conveys a streamlined sense of simplicity. This is the kind of approachable, flat visual design being favored by many an SaaS website nowadays and which looks inviting in its accessibility. In fact, it's got an AWWWARDS's Site of the Day ribbon. A good starting point, we must say.
So, bearing that in mind, Lander's offer is mainly focused on four top features:
- Categorized customizable templates;
- An user-friendly editor to quickly get your page done;
- An A/B testing tool for all your conversion optimization needs; and
- An option to integrate your landing pages into Facebook, called the "Facebook Page Tab" (more on this below).
But that's not all. They also offer:
- Email tools
- Unlimited landing pages creation
- Confirmation pages
- Mobile design capabilities
- Integrations with Google tools: Analytics, Fonts, and Maps
- PayPal integration
This should all be good and enought to get you started, right? We'll see.
Sir, there's a template for that
As with any landing page builder, Lander comes with a wealth of customizable templates to speed up your work. If you're not seasoned designer you'll welcome the availability of these ready-made templates. And if you're already a web designer, Lander can help you out by providing a framework to start with.
Lander offers the following six categories so you can choose the best template to suit your needs:
- Products & Services: pretty much self-explanatory, ideal for things like apps as well as all sorts of—you guessed it—products and services.
- Events: choose these templates if you're hosting webinars, conferences or any type of upcoming events; it's even got a built-in feature to place big, urge-inducing countdown timers on your site
- Portfolio: these ones are aimed toward the professional or freelancer wishing to showcase its talents.
- Coming Soon: these templates are ideal for product launches, also incorporating the countdown timer of the Events type templates
- Ecommerce: specially designed for featured products, with descriptions, info, and more.
- Layouts: these are kind of "blank templates" in case you just want to start with a basic layout and build from there
You should find the perfect match for your marketing goals among those templates and layouts, but anyway, if you just don't have the time to build or even customize a landing page yourself, you can always request a quote by going straight to their Contact page.
Integrations & connections
Building and optimizing a landing page is just part of the work and Lander promises to take care of it, but what about any other tasks you need to add into your pages? That's where integrations come in handy and Lander features extension capabilities to add integration with twelve well-known online marketing tools including Marketo, Mailchimp, AWeber, Salesforce, Zapier, and Google Analytics.
Once you decide you want to try Lander and sign-up for a free 30-day trial you proceed as usual with a standard sign-up process, the likes of which you might have experienced countless times before. However, Lander really, really wants to make sure you use a strong password, so make sure you use a mixture of capital and small letters, numbers and symbols (which we bet it's already your common practice for creating passwords, right? Right?), or else the sign-up form will remind you that your password isn't strong enough.
After you complete your sign-up, you will be asked to choose a "folder name". That folder is where all your created landing pages will be stored and, therefore, it will be part of their URL unless you have a custom domain of your own, so choose the name carefully as it cannot be changed afterward.
Building our page
Once these few preliminary steps are out of the way, we're ready to create our first designs: click on the "New Landing Page" box, enter a name for your page, select a template from the available categories, and enter into Lander's editor.
When we mentioned above the "sense of simplicity" in Lander we weren't just talking about their homepage, as the first impression the editor gives is that very same sense: there's nothing overwhelming about it. Whereas the Unbounce editor feels fully-featured, Lander's feels simple by design, but not without useful features, of course: you get a WYSIWYG editing pane with sidebars on the right for more tools and editing options.
Everything on the editor pane is editable once you click on it, as it should be, and the Properties tab on the right sidebar changes accordingly to let you fine-tune the shape, position, and borders of the selected item. Additional actions can be performed on page items by double-clicking on them, or by clicking on the little pencil that shows up on top of them once selected.
For example, double-clicking on a text element opens up a text editor:
Forms can also be edited in this same fashion:
Images can also be uploaded (no stock images are provided though, which might be a good thing after all):
On the upper right corner of the editor you will find a series of five buttons: three for ordering elements (send backward, bring forward and duplicate), one to show/hide guides, and one to show/hide a grid. However, during our test run, these last two buttons did nothing on our editor. There were two guide lines present at all times that just wouldn't hide and, tried as we might, no grid ever appeared. We don't rule out the possibility of a browser incompatibility, though (we're using the latest Firefox version). However, there's nothing on Lander's website regarding browser compatibility issues.
From the Tools sidebar you can access the "Basics" toolbar to add items such as images, boxes, text, buttons, videos, and lines.
Embedding a video, for example, opens up a dialog to include a video URL:
The "Social" toolbar is also located on the Tools sidebar and that's where you can add:
- Social sharing items such as Follow buttons for all sorts of social media sites (look at the image below);
- Sharing bars for Facebook, Twitter, email, LinkedIn, Google+, Pinterest, and more;
- Facebook LikeBoxes and widgets; and
- Dedicated Twitter follow buttons.
This is the "Follow" dialog where you specify your preferred social networks:
Finally, there's an "Advanced" menu to embed custom HTML code, countdown timers, Google maps, and PayPal buttons.
Here's what the countdown timer option looks like:
The next set of toolbars is comprised by the Properties/Goal double feature, with dedicated tabs for each option. As mentioned above, the Properties tab depends on the item being selected for editing, but it generally deals with sizes, shapes, borders, metadata, and some other specific, item-related properties. From there you can also tinker with general settings for the page, including background images and additional scripts:
Finally, the Goals tab includes a checkbox for "Form Submission" under the title "Conversion Goals", which is not readily apparent at first sight. But after a quick search on the help section, we found out it's also an item-dependent feature. In this case, we were working with a template that included a data form, so there are conversion goals linked to that form. There can also be goals set to PayPal buttons (E-Commerce) and to links. It's up to you to decide which conversion goals to set up.
So, once you're done customizing your template, dragging stuff around, writing your copy, uploading your images, setting up your forms, and more, just click on "FINISH" on the upper right corner of the editor page and voilà! It's time to enter into the Dashboard.
The Dashboard, as it name implies is control panel of sorts where you can:
- Watch your conversion stats;
- Add variants of your landing page and perform A/B tests on them;
- Customize your confirmation or thank-you pages;
- Activate and then edit the mobile version of your landing page;
- Set up your integrations with your online marketing tools of choice; and
- Set your welcome emails for your hard-earned leads—always be grateful!
Mobile versions of your landing pages use the same editor and every template already has a responsive variant to fit smaller screens. The example template we tested defaults to a 480 x 1510 screen size on the editor, but you can always (carefully) change those values.
Another smaller editor you can fire up from the Dashboard is the one for Welcome Emails, where you will be able to set sender names, subjects, logos, and the message body. Custom HTML can also be used instead of the ready-made template.
When you're absolutely sure everything has been taken care of, click on the green Publish button on top of the Dashboard and off you go! You will have your page online through a www.mylanderpages.com/your-folder-name/your-landing-page-name URL.
Is The Price Right?
It's up to you, but we bet you'll find an ideal price to continue using Lander after your 30-day trial and if you're happy enough with the app.
Lander has three plans (Basic, Professional, and Enterprise) and three ways to pay them (monthly, every six months, and annually). Below you can see the prices for the monthly payment option:
Every subsequent payment option comes with a slightly lower price tag per month: if you choose to pay every six months the Basic, Professional, and Enterprise plans go for $24, $58, and $108/mo, respectively; whereas the annual option ends up being $22, $52, and $97/mo for the same plans.
But that's not all. Lander also includes additional pricing plans for when you need more than 100,000 visitors, ranging from the the "Enterprise 200K" to the "Enterprise 1M" for landing pages with super-serious traffic volumes.
On the image above you can see the main points of difference between plans: numbers of visitors and custom domains, as well as the allowed integrations with third party tools. Aside from that, pretty much all the plans share the same key features.
We'll repeat ourselves: Lander strives for simplicity. Its editor is easy to use, with a totally no-frills approach where everything is just a click away. And, more importantly, it gets the job done.
Their templates are "built by designers", with visually attractive and uncluttered layouts. We're sure you'll find something to your liking to start working on your custom landing page.
The added capabilities of A/B testing and integration with an assorted array of online marketing tools make Lander a well-rounded tool for your inbound marketing and conversion objectives at reasonable prices.
A tool like this needs to be used for some time before really making the most out of it, as well as to detect any non-obvious deficiencies. However, we spotted a couple quirks: first, the guides/grid buttons not working at all on our browser (Firefox), and second, sometimes the webapp felt a little laggy when some other buttons were clicked: for example, the "Page Settings" button on the Properties tab felt slow at times.
But anyway, go on. Give Lander a try, there's no need to input any credit card info and the trial lasts 30 days. That's plenty of time to make your mind up, and once you're done, share your experience with us!