While a call to action (CTA) may seem like the simplest element on the page, in actual fact, there is planning, testing and thought behind that rectangle with text on it. In its prime, a strong CTA button generates conversions. At its worst, users can have all the desire in the world to procure your offering.
They’re searching for the button to seal the deal, and they can’t find it. They hit the back button and find a similar product – most likely a competitor.
CTA buttons are the gateway to conversions. So how do you consider its important element and take the steps to ensure it’s serving you well?
What is a Call To Action Button?
Your call to action is a piece of text that tells the user what to do next.
“Click Here for Proven Results!”
“Don’t Miss Out!”
So why does something so seemingly simple require improvement? If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, right? Well, not exactly. You can always improve.
This button bridges the gap between the content your user is currently engaging with, and an offer of higher value. It turns leads into customers.
You can modify your CTA in any number of ways, sometimes to your own detriment. Less is certainly more when it comes to CTA buttons. But by altering the core elements – colour, copy and placement – a CTA button becomes an incredibly testable and crucial page element. With the right tweaks, you can convince qualified users to take action (and make them think it was their idea all along).
1. Your CTA Button Looks Clickable
This might seem obvious, but considering the amount of websites that fail on this UX front, it’d be remiss of us not to say it.
If visitors aren’t sure whether to click that box that kind of looks like a button, how sure are they meant to be about the action itself, whether that’s purchasing a product or downloading a free PDF guide?
- Its shape should be defined (rectangles only; rounded edges at the most)
- It should have a clear border of a contrasting colour (white is always a safe bet)
- It must have text on it
2. Your CTA Button is Logically Placed
To give your CTA indisputable button status, it should follow three basic principles:
It’s important to think of your page from the viewpoint of the user. Whether you’re optimising your PPC landing page or analysing the user’s viewing patterns with the aid of a heatmap, your CTA should be placed somewhere that the user will arrive at naturally.
Placement of a CTA button will depend on the type of page it is on, as well as the nature of your offering and what you want users to do. For a product’s PPC landing page where the primary goal is purchase, here’s what you need:
A HUGE CTA. SMACK-BANG IN THE CENTRE OF THE PAGE, BELOW AN IMAGE OF THE PRODUCT.
On the other hand, if your desired action is for the user to read more of your content, a CTA with the words “Read More” would be well placed at the base of a list of your recent pieces.
Let go of your ego as you decide what goes where. You might want to take up all the space above the fold with that high-quality shoot image you forked out for, but if it’s distracting the user from the CTA when they’re about to convert, how much is your investment in that image really worth?
3. Write Simple & Intentional Copy
I’ll let you in on a secret: you don’t have to be a professional copywriter to write compelling CTA copy. All it takes is a knowledge of the four pillars of CTA copywriting, and pretty much anyone can do it.
Here they are.
- Build. Join. Learn. Start with a strong command verb.
- You. New. Proven. Use words that provoke emotion.
- Last chance! Today only! Use urgent language and create a sense of scarcity.
Know what the user wants, and how badly they want it
Each of these rules makes for compelling copy in different ways, but they all have the same thing in common regardless of the angle you take.
All of them elicit an emotional reaction and get users to convert as quickly as possible.
But will all of this advice in mind, the most important takeaway is this: keep it simple.
Trust that what you’ve read here will sink in. Next time you sit down to write CTA button copy, clear the mental slate. Trust your gut.
Human-oriented, plain-English copy will always win out. Users trust what they know.
Make the user feel, truly, that it is their decision to hit that button.
Get Data-Backed Answers
A/B testing is the only way toimprove your CTA buttons and increase conversions. When you conduct A/B testing,you are creating two variations of the same page and testing both to see which is most effective in making users take the desired action. While it takes a little time and effort, it will almost always give you insight into the exact tweaks that need to be made.
- Use the visual editor tools in Google Optimize to create variants of your pages with the above changes to your CTAs. Test every piece of advice we’ve given you in this post.
- Determine what percentage of traffic you want to send to each version. Generally, it makes sense to divide traffic evenly. If you’re testing two variants, send 50% of visitors to each.
- Once you’ve had a significant amount of visits, analyse the results and see which variant generated the most CTA clicks.
- Implement the button permanently to maximise conversions.
Simple changes can have drastic effects. Test your copy. Test the button’s placement, and its surrounding design elements. Not all of our suggested changes will work for your business; the only way to know what makes your business grow is to test.
And then test some more.
When you’ve found something that boosts your conversions, you can always boost that number even higher! What change can you make next? At Vine Digital, we are experts in the perpetual cycle of decision, action, reaction. Give us a call if you’d like to draw on our wealth of experience in A/B testing and our passion for data-driven choices.