Is it ethically correct to ask a candidate to build a better landing page version of the own company?

albertoroldanq profile image Alberto Roldan ・1 min read

From my point of view, they will have a bunch of different ideas for free. And still, there is no way of knowing if they really want to take advantage of it or it is just a reliable test to know if you can match their requirements.

What do you think?


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I see your point of view and I don't think that it's incorrect but for many companies their landing page is their pride and joy and as such they've probably spent a lot of time working on it. So if you could actually provide good/fresh ideas that they haven't tought about it would show that you've actually familiarised yourself with the company and that you can think out of the box.
With that said this is just my opinion after reading your question, never heard about this kind of request in an interview before.


Hi Kristijan,

I agree with you, but the thing is that they are going to receive as many free ideas/designs as candidates. It seems more than they need to renew all their site's design and they can use the landing page style for the rest of their site.


True that, but I highly doubt a company will go trough a whole hiring process just to get free design ideas. I mean if they schedule 10 interviews where you probably get 2 people interviewing (so spending time and in return spending money) why not just hire a top freelance designer to give them some pointers for their landing page? 🤔

Then again it's possible such company exists, it just seems highly unlikely to me.

The point is not to redesign 'My company website'. It seems to me that landing pages are designed by groups of people, marketing even the Pres. maybe.

  1. How could one new person design something better than a group?
  2. All projects have trade offs. What would you gain or lose if 'your new idea' that you spent 2 days on bring to the 'table'.
  3. If you are artistic, do your ideas fit with the group. Group questions are very big now-a-days...
  4. hundreds of legit reasons...


I don't think that all companies have groups of people to work on their websites, in the small ones (so most of them) probably the web developer and marketing person are the same ones.

Yes, Alberto, I agree. I did not know the size of the imaginary company. haha. ;)


It occurred to me that it may be possible to copyright your 'new website' ideas, if you are really interested/or worried. lol


I guess there is no problem with asking. The question exists to challenge the candidate. Sure, you have to trust the company's loyalty. Do they "really" have a job to offer?

Are you afraid of giving free pieces of advice or free design?
But why pretend that you'll give them something really useful?

It might be a trick question. Maybe this company's current landing page is looking very bad but perform very well. Just think about it!

Now pretend you can give them something useful.

What is the question? A better landing page? The purpose of a landing page is to convert visitors to leads, customers, to make sells. For the company, it's a business matter (most of the time, a money matter). And they want you to care about the company.

So, how to do a "better" landing page?
Thanks to the best design in the world? No, it's very subjective, and you don't probably know enough their market yet to tell what their visitors like or dislike.
By using the last PHP beta version, or Angular beta framework and making some cool animations in WebGL. Neither!

You first have to know what's wrong with the current one. Where are the metrics, the analytics that shows what fails on it?
Then start to make recommendations to avoid it, and propose a new page that tries to resolve it. Then go for A/B testing, compare the results and iterate.
If they are looking for a new idea for their design, goes on Google, search for "the most beautiful landing page" and talk with them about it.

I think that "making a better landing page", is more a process than a simple task that anyone could accomplish. Describe the process and don't fall into showing off only one of your skill that's already on your portfolio. They probably know you can code or design.

In summary, you can't build a better landing page on your own. You have to work with them, understand what's wrong with the current one, and share until the metrics say that the conversion rate is higher.

Hope it helps!


Very interesting question. I like it.

An architect friend was telling me about a city that wanted a nice Senior Recreational Center. So his company got together and came up with several ideas. The company even went so far to build a foam board model and drawings.

So when the time came, his company submitted their idea along with four other firms. This is done ALL THE TIME.

As someone said, it is a test. E.g. Our landing page has x,y,z features. Convince me why you feel a,b,c features are better. Also, show me yr creative side.

I hate to say it but it seems like a fair question.


Not ethical? hmm, that could be debatable.


Alberto, is this a circumstance you have actually come across? or hypothetical?


It’s a real case.