And now, we’re at the most important part. After taking your customers on the perfect user journey, you’ve got them in the palm of your hand. There’s only one thing left for them to do:
Click the buy button.
It’s the simplest, but most important part of your whole website. To make them click, you need a powerful, irresistible call-to-action button.
What Is A Call-to-action?
It’s the end of your sales funnel. It’s the ultimate goal. It’s getting your customers to buy something.
Your call-to-action (CTA) is the small button that asks tells your customers to do something. You see these buttons online all the time.
‘Click to sign up’
‘Subscribe to the newsletter’
‘Add to cart’
‘Download the software’
They’re straight to the point. But, sometimes they’re a bit boring, aren’t they?
Your CTA needs to be short, sharp, and creative. It’s got be magnetic.
And yes, I’m about to spend 1000 words telling you how to write just three or four! But they’re three or four VERY IMPORTANT words.
Here’s how you make them click.
1. Tell them what to do
The biggest mistake made online is assuming that your users know what to do. And worse, assuming they’ll just buy your products, or sign up, without any prompting.
Now is not the time to be polite! Now’s the time to be straightforward, and tell customers what to do.
The best call-to-action buttons use strong, powerful verbs. You’ve probably noticed Apple’s call-to-action button on the App Store. Rather than the predictable ‘download’ button, the button says ‘Get’. It’s almost arrogant in its language. But it provokes a response. It works.
2. Tell them exactly what they get
A call-to-action should never be vague. In fact, nothing on your website should be vague. But especially the CTA.
Let’s take a look at a real world example. Elegant Themes is a development website selling WordPress themes and plugins. One of their goals is generating email signups. Now, they could have chosen a normal call-to-action. Something like: ‘Sign up to our weekly mailing list’
But instead, they did this:
They tell their users exactly what they’re getting exchange for their email address.
They’re also using a whole host of other clever tricks here. Including my next point.
3. Make it all about them
Let’s face it. We all know that websites want us to sign up to their mailing lists. Or buy their products. Or download their software.
But the best websites make you want to do it.
This is marketing 101. Use your call-to-action to explain all the benefits they’ll get from clicking it.
Starbucks have got this just right. Why sign up? Simple. Because you get exclusive offers.
They also use a little clever language here. The phrase “simply registering” makes the customer think it’s no big deal. Why wouldn’t you sign up?
4. Use first person language
Did you know that changing just one word could boost your conversion by 90%?
Is it a super magical, secret word?
Just change your call-to-action pronoun from ‘your’ to ‘my’.
Instead of: “Start your free trial”
Use: “Start my free trial”
Let’s take a look at a real example in situ. Look how digital marketing company Crazy Egg draws you in with first person copy. This CTA is so magnetic, you can’t NOT click on it.
It’s basic psychology. We feel like the offer is being given directly to us. And us alone.
It also makes it feel like clicking the button is your own idea.
My favourite example of this is the food delivery website, Hungry House.
Their brilliant copy used the words ‘feed me’ as the call-to-action. This CTA works for so many reasons. It’s playful and creative. It’s bold. And it talks to me in first person.
5. Make it time sensitive
So far, I’ve shown you how to create a call-to-action button that is compelling and intriguing. But, we’re not done yet.
There will still be plenty of people who aren’t convinced enough to click. It’s your job to give them that (not-so) gentle nudge over the edge.
That means an extra line of text; I like to call it the clincher. It’s the extra little motivation you need to make people act right now.
One of the easiest ways is to make your offer time sensitive. Or include some sort of time pressure.
Something as simple as: “Download your free trial today” is enough to make people act.
For really powerful results, start a limited offer: “Sign up today, and get a 20% discount on all offers. (Ends 31st August!)”
This CTA works really well if you’re trying to build up an email list quickly before a big campaign. Or maybe if you need to shift some stock quickly.
6. Take away the risk
As I said before, some people will still have reservations about signing up or buying. After all, we sign up for so much these days. We’re getting reluctant about handing over our email addresses.
So, take away the risk. This trick is called the ‘anxiety-suppressor’. It’s another clincher line of text that gives people confidence.
Netflix offer a completely free trial for their service ( which is pretty risk free already!) But they still include this simple line that removes any last shred of anxiety:
“No pressure, cancel at any time”.
Here are some more good examples you can use:
We hate spam as much as you, we never share your email address with anyone.
No credit card details required.
If you’re not happy, we give you your money back, no questions asked.
Remove any possible barrier for signing up. Give them an incentive, then remove all their anxieties.
7. Colours and placement
I’ve spoken almost exclusively about text and copy here. Good copy is at the heart of your CTA. It’s all about communication, intrigue, and convincing users.
But, you can also use psychological design tricks to help the process along. That means paying attention to the colours and placement of your call-to-action.
You’ll notice that all the pictures I’ve used here have brightly coloured CTA buttons. It’s a simple trick that draws the eye immediately. Separate your call-to-action button from anything else and use colours to draw the eye.
Pro tip: greens, yellows, and oranges usually work best here – create a contrast!
Colour can also be used to prioritise your call-to-action buttons. In some cases, you’ll have two or three on your site, but you really want users to click on just one.
For example, Buffer give you the option to sign in with different accounts. But, guess which one they want you to sign in with.
Elegant Themes (a WordPress theme developer) does a similar thing to encourage you to buy their mid-level product. There’s a cheaper entry package, but (as you can see), they’re drawing you to the more expensive version.
Get Your Call-to-action Right & See Your Conversions Soar
Your call-to-action is the shortest, but hardest piece of copy to write on your website.
When you get it right, you’ll see your conversions soar.
Please share your favourite call-to-action buttons in the comment section. Or let me know how you get users to click on the buy button at your site.
Daren Low is the founder of Bitcatcha.com and co-developer of the free Server Speed Checker. With a decade of experience in website development and internet marketing to his name, Daren is considered a premier authority on all things related to building and managing an online presence. Feel free to pick his brain by connecting via Google+ and Twitter.
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