How to Create the Perfect Call-To-Action

There are a lot of factors that can have a positive impact on the profitability of your blog or website, but one of the most important factors is, without a doubt, having compelling call-to-actions that people can’t help but click. This post will help you master the art of creating super effective call-to-actions.

 

What exactly is a call-to-action?

‘Call-to-action’ is a term that is widely used in the marketing world, but what does it really mean?

Basically, a call-to-action (sometimes referred to as a ‘CTA’) is an image, a button, or a line of text that prompts website visitors to take a specific action, for example, subscribe to a newsletter, register for an event, buy a product, or even just fill out a contact form. A high-quality call-to-action entices people to take the action that website owners want them to take.

Call-to-actions are literally everywhere. Chances are high that all the websites you’ve visited today had at least one call-to-action. Let’s take a look at some examples of call-to-actions.

Screenshot call-to-action Facebook

This is a call-to-action you’ve probably seen before. What Facebook tries to accomplish with this call-to-action is to get people to sign up for Facebook.

 

Screenshot call-to-action ProBlogger

This screenshot was taken on ProBlogger.com. This is a call-to-action that is likely to convert well because people love free stuff!

Screenshot call-to-action Evernote

Evernote’s call-to-action text is short yet powerful.

Golden rules

Now that you understand what a call-to-action is, let’s look at what makes a well-designed and highly effective call-to-action.

Shape

The basis of an effective call-to-action is its shape.

Most of the times, a call-to-action consists of a piece of text with a button instead of a piece of text with a plain text link. This is simply because buttons are much more appealing to click than boring text links.

Preferably, your button should have rounded corners. Rounded corners draw the attention to the center of the button and enhance information processing, research found.

Screenshot call-to-action Netflix

An example of a good call-to-action. Netflix’s call-to-action makes it very clear why you should click the button and what you get when you click it.

Color

Opinions on what is the best color for call-to-action buttons are divided. Some experts say that people should color their call-to-action buttons red, while others suggest that you should use orange for optimal effectiveness.

The truth is that there is no secret color that will instantly skyrocket the conversion rates for your call-to-actions, but, as you can see in the table below, colors do have differences that should be considered.

Colors & call-to-actions

The color that will work best for your website’s call-to-actions is the color that increases the visibility of your call-to-actions, while still fitting the style and overall design of your website. It is important to use the same color for all of your call-to-actions, because consistency creates a good website user experience which subsequently improves your conversion rates.

Location

In order to achieve the best possible conversion rates, you have to make it as easy as possible for your website visitors to see and click your call-to-actions.

Try to keep your most important call-to-actions above the fold (in the portion of your website that is viewable without scrolling). Besides that, your call-to-actions should preferably be located at the right side of images and text to best catch a website visitor’s eye (here is why).

Performable call-to-action

When Performable switched from the green button to the red button they saw a 21% lift in conversions.

Text

Call-to-actions, and especially buttons, don’t allow for a lot of text, so you have to make sure that your call-to-action text perfectly describes the action your website visitor is about to take.

‘Click here’ doesn’t make for a good text for your call-to-action button. Of course, you want your website visitors to click the button, but what exactly will be the result when your visitors click? Will they first land on a page with product information or will they immediately be taken to a payment page?
When your website visitor is about to pay for a product or subscribe to a service, you want them to be confident about the action they are taking. Try to imagine what your website visitor needs to know before they take the action you want them to take. Make sure your call-to-action text is as clear, descriptive, and concise as possible.

Jobsite.co.uk call-to-actions

An example of bad call-to-actions. This is the old website of Jobsite.co.uk. It is unclear what action they want you to take first because there are too many call-to-actions and there is no call-to-action that stands out from the rest. Image source: Yoast.

A/B testing

Now, hopefully, you understand the theory of what makes a great call-to-action. It’s a great begin to create your call-to-actions with the above advice in mind, however, you can create even more effective call-to-actions by doing A/B tests. A/B testing may seem complicated, but it’s a wonderful way to optimize your call-to-actions and get the best possible results.

What exactly is A/B testing?

An A/B test is a test in which 2 versions of a page or call-to-action are compared to each other by sending traffic to each version to see which one converts best. A/B testing (also known as ‘split testing’) is done by virtually all big websites because it can be really valuable for discovering what type of page or call-to-action gives the best conversion rates.

A/B testing call-to-actions
How to get started with A/B testing

Getting started with A/B testing may look daunting at first, but it’s actually pretty easy with the right tools. There are a lot of different ways, both free and paid, to do A/B tests for your own website.

One of the most well-known free ways to do A/B testing is with Google Analytics. Take a look at this Crazy Egg guide if you are interested in learning how to leverage Google Analytics for A/B testing.

A/B testing with Google Analytics

A/B testing with Google Analytics.

In addition to Google Analytics, there are a number of free A/B testing WordPress plugins, of which the most well known are Optimizely and Nelio A/B Testing.

If your marketing budget allows it, you may want to try one of the paid A/B testing tools out there that come with more advanced features than the free solutions. On this page you can find a great comparison of almost all A/B testing tools and software that are available on the market.

 

I would love to hear your thoughts on call-to-actions. What do you believe makes a call-to-action that people can’t help but click? I hope this post will help you create effective call-to-actions that result in more leads and more sales and, overall, a more profitable website. Thanks for reading!

2017-09-30T17:52:38+00:00

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