Most product pages pair up their headlines with an image, but experience tells us that design can support as well as hurt conversions. So we decided to test if changing our headline deco could impact conversions. Check out these two tests and their results below, and feel free to emulate them for your business:

1. Removing the Image

This was the original headline design on one of our landing pages for the Silva Life System:

This particular style added a touch of elegance to the site. But we were concerned that the human faces might affect our conversions. As a rule of thumb, never put a human face next to a headline. Human faces capture the visitor’s gaze instantly and take attention away from the headline. So we removed the image completely, including the background color, to make the headline stand out. The new version looked like this: The result? A 7% boost in opt-ins. Up to 20% when we tested this on our other pages as well. This test proved that images of human faces, particularly those that look directly into the camera, drag a customer’s attention away from the message in the headline and subhead. But there’s a problem here. The raw headline on its own looks ugly and doesn’t help the elegance of the brand. So we launched a second test.

2. Improving the Headline Design

This particular test was inspired by sites such as Square Up and The Lean Startup, which uses a transparent or defocused image as a background to their copy. For this, we split-tested two different designs. This time we scored BIG:

Result: 230.41% Boost

Result: 112.05% Boost

Pretty awesome, right? Give it a try. To recap, here are some tips before you start:

  • If the image doesn’t communicate value – do without it.
  • If using an image of a model, choose one that faces the headline and not the camera. The human gaze pulls eyeballs away from your headline.
  • Use easy-to-read fonts on a light background, or experiment with transparent images such as the above.

The philosophy here is – copy is king, and design is the sidekick.