Take Action: Create an Effective Call to Action on Your Website

People are bombarded every time they surf the web with call to action messages. “Subscribe today,” “Buy now,” “Join our team,” “Don’t miss out!” What makes someone decide to purchase your product or utilize your service (or even just learn more about it) is an effective call to action message. So, how do you create one? Your website needs a call to action.

First and foremost, you have to have one. A survey a few years ago by Small Biz Trends found that 70 percent of small business owners don’t even have a call to action on their home page! People who have a problem or specific need have found your site looking for a solution, so make sure that you have a CTA on your home page that addresses the problem you can solve. Some examples are Picaboo’s “Your life is worth printing” above its “Make a photo book” button, and Allstate’s “Get a Quick, Personalized Insurance Quote Today. A Great Rate is Just a Few Clicks Away” above its request for the visitor’s ZIP code and type of insurance quote he or she wants.

As shown with in the insurance example, a call to action isn’t just getting a person who visits your website to immediately purchase your product or hire your company. CTAs also include requesting a quote, subscribing to an email or downloading a white paper. What’s key about these types of CTAs is that the visitor provides you with information you can use in the future when attempting to convert them into a customer.

Your words matter. The words you use can impact whether the visitor to your website is converted into a customer. Generic text such as “Buy now” or “Submit” may not spur someone into action, but text like the Picaboo example triggers a personal and emotional feeling, which may in turn lead the person to buying a photo book.

According to an article on Entrepreneur.com, an experiment found that the button language “Find Your Gym and Get Membership” received a 213 percent higher conversion rate than the language “Get Your Membership.” Entrepreneur also points out that using “today” or “now” in your copy in general leads to higher conversion rates.

Keep in mind that what language triggers some people to take action may not work for others. Sprout Social provides a list of phrases to use, depending on your target audience or end goal. For example, if you want a person to buy your product, Sprout Social suggests using “you,” “free,” or “new” in your CTA copy. But some people want to feel like what they are buying is special and scarce, so terms such as “exclusive access” or “members only” may be more effective. Sometimes you have to use A/B testing on your site (creating two versions of your website with different copy or design, in which some visitors get version A and some get version B) to find out what works best for your target customer.

There are many other elements that influence people to take action, including website design, graphics and placement of the CTA. Don’t worry if you’re a bit overwhelmed, we can help. Contact us at katie@ksgilmore.com

Jennifer Nelson