In every effort we commit, our highest hopes is to convert. For us marketers of the digital age, conversion is the ultimate objective, the end goal of all our endeavours, the centre of everything that is commerce. It is the sole subject that gives justification to everything that we’ve been doing up to this very moment. How do we convert? First, we call, we announce, then we cajole. We convince customers that what we are up to is a big deal for them. This process, this act of cajoling potential customers into buying, is called Call To Action. First and foremost, what is Call To Action? As the name suggests, a “call to action” (CTA) is an instruction from us for the site user to do a certain deed. This may be to submit his or her email address to subscribe to some trendy marketing program, or simply to click a button to download apps or other brochures. To make it even simpler, a CTA is where we convince the audience to buy whatever it is we are trying to sell. It is the path leading to our virtual check-out counter. From a marketing perspective, a user who follows the CTA is a conversion. Simply put, your website must have a CTA. Your conversion rate, the very life of your business, depends on the effectiveness of your CTA. Below are some of important techniques gathered and compiled from experiences and testimonials of several marketing experts across the globe. These tried and tested methods will help you create an effective CTA.
1. Create the need
Creating a need is a basic rule in advertising. It’s like laying the foundation of commerce. It puts the user in a position where he has virtually no choice but to belong to those who are in need of your product. Techrepublic.com makes a very good example in their site by providing a statement beneath an email submission field that says: “No, I don’t want to stay on top of my game.” Users will think twice before ignoring this statement. It will help them think that they need to subscribe to be “on top of their game.” What follows is that users input their email addresses and click the submit button.
2. Create urgency
This is also a basic advertising technique that has been used by sellers all across the world for many years. Like the creation of need, where users are made to believe that they need your product, this follow-up technique makes them think that they need your product NOW. By using phrases like “limited offer”, “expiration date”, and “order now while supply lasts”, users are made to believe that their urgent action is needed; that the sooner they act, the better it would be for them. An effective CTA would make the user believe that they have to act now, or there is no more hope for them.
3. Make it visible
A good CTA can be seen right away amid all the content of the page. Overloading the page with information and putting the CTA in the midst of all the content clutter will only make it hard for the user to see it. The point is making the CTA separate from other content, so it calls the user’s attention immediately. Consider placing the CTA above the fold of the page. By doing this, it calls the attention of the user even before the user begins scrolling down. Consider also putting some white spaces around the CTA for it to get more attention.
4. Offer some extra stuff
A little extra would not do any harm. In fact, users will feel encouraged if they feel they are getting free stuff in the process. It makes them think they are getting the upperhand in the deal, that they are not getting ripped off. Consider this copy: Sign-up and get a FREE tshirt! When users see this deal, they are most likely to sign-up just because of the free tshirt alone that you are offering. To us marketers, it kind of speeds up the process of conversion.
5. Use distinct color
For the CTA to stand above all the content, it is necessary to use different colours from the one being used in the page’s theme. It doesn’t have to be an opposite contrast of the overall colour theme. On the contrary, even though the CTA must be different from the rest of the content, its colour should also complement the overall palette being used. Aesthetically, it must not hurt the user’s visual discipline. A lot of resources in the Web offer colour palettes that will help us decide on the right amount of combinations that we can use when designing the CTA.