I remember back in the good old days. Blogging was, comparatively, easy. You just bought a domain, made your blog page your homepage, and called it a day. Heck, I remember even having to hack my way around WordPress just to make a static page my homepage.
Nowadays, though, you need to differentiate yourself, which is why many bloggers have started making their homepage a landing page rather than a simple list of their blog posts. This strategy is effective because it lets you push your readers towards exactly where you want them to go.
It's not limited to bloggers, either - maybe you just need to create a sales page or a squeeze page for your WordPress site. You can do that, too.
No matter what you’re doing, though, you need a good landing page plugin if you want to work effectively. And that’s what I’m going to detail in today's post - the best landing page plugins for WordPress! If you're more interested in themes, you should check out Oli's list of the best WordPress landing page themes.
Why You Shouldn't Just Use Any Old Page Builder Plugin
At this point, you might be wondering, “Colin, isn’t that what page builder plugins are for?”. And yeah, page builders are great for adding eye-catching button CTAs and other landing page-esque elements. But here’s the problem when it comes to most WordPress page builders and landing pages:
They work within your existing theme layout.
So even if you use a page builder to create a beautiful, conversion-hungry page, it’s still just going to be another page inside your theme’s framework. You’re not working with a fully blank canvas.
So, if you want to create the most effective landing pages possible, you need a solution that lets you work outside the confines of your theme. And that solution is a WordPress landing page plugin.
The Best WordPress Landing Page Plugins
Because many of the best landing page builders are external services, this list is going to contain two types of landing page plugins:
- External services which offer a WordPress plugin to easily integrate their designs with your WordPress site.
- Landing page builders that work 100% within WordPress.
I’ll make sure to note which tool is which as I move through the list.
Thrive Landing Pages - Easy Content Builder
Discovering Thrive Landing Pages was a revelation for me. In my experience, it’s the nicest landing page creator that works inside WordPress. Essentially, Thrive Landing Pages functions similarly to how you would expect most page builder plugins to work. In fact, you get to use the normal Thrive Content Builder interface.
BUT, it has the huge benefit of eliminating the problem I discussed above - you can create your landing pages from a fully blank canvas that functions outside your WordPress theme.
Thrive Content Builder includes all the elements you need to build your landing pages from scratch. But if you don’t want to start from empty, they also include 159+ templates you can use to get started. The templates are all themed - so you can quickly create entire funnels that maintain a consistent aesthetic.
The only downside is that, if you’re a creative, the templates don’t really fit with that aesthetic. I think they’re well optimized for conversions, but won’t fit every site’s aesthetic.
Thrive Landing Pages includes the Thrive Content Builder and costs $67. Click here to go to Thrive Landing Pages.
Elementor - A WordPress Page Builder That Handles Landing Pages
Elementor is a freemium WordPress page builder that can help you create some beautiful pages. Before, I counted Elementor in the list of “any old page builders” that were great for regular WordPress pages but couldn’t handle dedicated landing pages.
But that all changed when I found a free third-party extension called Elementor Page Templater. Elementor Page Templater gives you a new fullwidth blank template for your pages. When you choose that template, you can work from a 100% blank canvas:
That means that Elementor, already one of my favorite WordPress page builders, can also be used to build landing pages. The extension also comes with another fullwidth template that lets you keep your header, if you so desire.
If you haven’t read my Elementor review, here’s a quick primer on what you get with Elementor:
A fast, glitch-free visual editor with tons of control over positioning. You can easily add margins and padding and rearrange/style all of your elements.
While the free version gives you a good element selection, if you want to create the best landing pages, you’ll probably need to go premium. Going premium gets you some cool post grid features, portfolios, pricing grids, and more. Click here to go to Elementor.
OptimizePress - Landing Pages, Membership Sites, + More
OptimizePress is a feature-packed plugin that lets you create membership sites, sales funnels, and, you guessed it, landing pages.
OptimizePress’ landing page creator comes in both a theme and a plugin, so you can use it with your current theme if needed. It functions similarly to normal WordPress page builders, but again, it eliminates the issue I discussed above by giving you a truly blank canvas.
If you don’t want to start from zero, they include 30 templates for free. There’s also a marketplace with hundreds more premium templates.
I always hesitate to fully recommend OptimizePress because it includes so many features beyond just landing pages (which ups the price). But if the other features appeal to you, then you won’t have that issue.
OptimizePress costs $97 one-time for use on up to three websites. Click here to go to OptimizePress.
Leadpages - Expensive but Easy to Use
Let’s get one thing out of the way before going further:
Leadpages is not cheap. It’s a monthly SaaS with a price that, quite frankly, most small bloggers won’t be able to afford.
But if you’re generating some income, it’s definitely one of the quickest ways to create and test landing pages. Here’s why:
First, they offer over 350+ premade templates, with a much broader variety of styles than Thrive Landing Pages. It’s important to note that only ~70 of these templates are free, but I already told you that Leadpages wasn’t cheap!
If you want to tweak any of these templates, you can do so using Leadpages’ drag and drop editor.
Second, Leadpages will host all of your assets so that you don’t need to worry about uploading PDFs or anything else to WordPress.
And whenever you’re ready, you just need to click a button to send the landing page to WordPress via the Leadpages WordPress plugin.
If you’re willing to pay for the pricier plans, you can even A/B test your landing pages from Leadpages.
Leadpages starts at $25 per month when billed annually. Click here to go to Leadpages.
Coming Soon Page & Maintenance Mode by SeedProd
Ok, I swear I didn't add SeedProd to the list just because it has a demo about "hog warfare".
This one definitely isn’t for everybody, but if your site hasn’t launched yet, SeedProd is a great plugin to create a landing page to start collecting subscribers.
That’s right - you don’t actually need to wait for your site to launch to start building a subscriber base.
While there is a free version of the plugin, you really need to go with the pro version to get helpful features. Here’s why:
The pro version includes integrations with MailChimp, AWeber, and other email marketing services. Without those integrations, you’ll find it difficult to build your list. The pro version also includes more designs and lots of other bonus features.
So, if you want to build some buzz before your big launch, give this one a shot.
The pro version starts at $29 for a single site license. Click here to go to SeedProd.
WordPress Landing Pages - Free with Premium Add-ons
WordPress Landing Pages is a free landing page creator with lots of premium add-ons. There’s a lot to like, but it has a few key drawbacks.
Let’s start with the good stuff, though:
You can create your landing pages from scratch or start from one of the included templates.
Even better, you can A/B test your landing pages in the free version of the plugin and automatically pause the losing variant.
But here’s the bad news:
First, I personally think the included templates are fairly ugly, so you’ll probably need to create your own designs from scratch.
Second, essential functionality like integrations with email marketing software is locked away behind premium add-ons. So by the time you purchase enough premium add-ons to get the functionality you need, this “free” plugin can actually be more expensive than some of the other options on this list.
The basic WordPress Landing Pages plugin is free. Click here to go to WordPress Landing Pages.
Final Thoughts & Which Landing Page Plugin to Pick
If budget isn’t an issue for you, I would recommend Leadpages. It’s the most user-friendly service on this list and it truly makes landing page creation simple. But, it’s expensive, and it’s a recurring fee, which I know isn’t for everyone (myself included).
That’s why my general recommendation is Thrive Landing Pages. It’s what I use for my portfolio website and I’ve been really happy with it. The only downside is what I previously mentioned - I don’t think the templates fit with the aesthetics of many modern, creative-looking websites.
Have you used any of these landing page plugins? Or do you have another suggestion? Let’s talk in the comments!