If you have a website, and you want people to buy something from you, how will your audience know when to buy it? That is a valid question because every single day, they are inundated with a barrage of videos, images and sales pages that promise them that they need to solve every problem in their life, is by paying a very small amount on that page.
What’s the result of this constant marketing messages they receive? They are fatigued with the decisions they have to make. They decide to put that decision off till a later date when they have more free time.
Then guess what?
They forget about it because they never have free time. Let’s be real. Everyone has priorities. Some have kids, others love to play snooker. They would rather do that than decide which marketing program to buy.
So does this mean that you are doomed to fail before you even make an attempt?
Having a crystal clear call-to-action (CTA) is the solution.
The Importance of Having a Call-to-Action
Having a simple statement that tells your prospective client what to do next is a huge relief for them. Remember, you are creating this product to make their lives better. So there’s no shame in providing value upfront and asking them to pay if they want the whole thing.
I know people feel shame when they’re marketing. But if there’s an exchange of value, there is no need to feel shame. The client is paying for something that is important to them. Now as long as you deliver on the promises you’ve made, you’re good.
Having an effective call-to-action means that your visitors won’t have any decision fatigue. They won’t need to put it off until a later date. Your CTA tells them exactly what they need to do to proceed from here.
But Nabil, how do I decide what people should do when they reach a certain point? It’s not like I’d know every person that visits my website.
Great question, website visitor I’ve never met before. And here’s the answer:
Direct Your Visitor’s Attention Based on What You Want Them to Do
When you’re thinking about creating a CTA, you are the one who decides what they should do next. You are the one in control here. So you want to make sure that you are guiding the visitors in the smoothest way possible.
By smooth I mean everything should work exactly as they expect it to.
Let’s say that you want them to subscribe to your newsletter. So at the end of a juicy blog post, your CTA would be something like, “subscribe to my email newsletter to get these types of blog posts 7 days before I post them on my website. And you can talk to me directly!”
Boom! That’s your CTA.
And now, you embed a form below your blog post so people can enter their name and email address to subscribe to your newsletter.
Now, your visitors expect that once they enter their name and email address in the form, the form will tell them that their submission was successful and the next step they need to take to make sure that they are officially on the list. Usually this means clicking on a confirmation link they receive on the email address they entered in the form.
You need to make sure that all those things work perfectly.
Increase Your Sales With Just 2 Words
That’s true. I see so many websites that fail to mention that people need to submit their payment to get access to the product. And I know that they are losing sales because of that. By just adding two words, “Submit Payment” you can increase your sales.
And if you don’t have any products to sell, you can ask people to follow you on Instagram, or whatever social media platform you like the most. It really is up to you what you want them to do. Adding a line that just says, “Follow me on Instagram” will urge people to follow you on Instagram.
I know it sounds so simple and obvious, but people forget that it’s these little things that add up.
Now that we have the importance of having a CTA out of the way, let’s talk about the best placement for a CTA.
The Best CTA Placement
These are the three basics rules you should absolutely follow when it comes to CTA placement:
Have Multiple CTAs
People think that they are bothering their visitors when they place multiple CTAs on a single page. Multiple CTAs make sure that at any point on the page, the visitor has the chance to convert.
It is possible that they might forget about your CTA while reading the amazing blog post you’ve posted.
With multiple CTAs, you will definitely see a boost in your conversions.
But make sure that your CTAs are not competing with each other. Don’t try to confuse the visitors with too many options. Keep them similar, concise and to the point. Don’t make the same mistake other people make on their websites.
CTAs on Every Page
Every page gives you the opportunity to convert a visitor. So why not take that opportunity?
Even if a visitor is reading multiple blog posts on your website, it is possible that they might want to read more before they decide to convert. So give them that chance.
Make Your CTAs Prominent
There’s a strategy when it comes to placing your CTAs.
You want to make sure that they receive the maximum attention. They should stand out from the rest of the page. Research has shown that many website users scan pages in an F shape.
They start in the upper-left corner. Then they make two glances across the page horizontally and then look vertically down the left. This means that you should place your CTAs in the headers, side-panels, once in the middle of the article and once at the end.
But you should always test things out on your website to find out which placement works best for you.
Your CTAs Should Be Well Defined
What do I mean by this?
I mean that your CTAs should be set off the main body of the text. Again, this is very important because if the visitor is not able to differentiate your CTA from the rest of the body of text, they won’t recognize it as a CTA.
You need to make sure that it is so obvious that they cannot ignore it.
This doesn’t mean that you should have a thousand pop-ups on your website because people hate those. This means that you should include the CTA in your blog post and make it stand out by using contrasting colors around it.
They Should Be Appealing
Nobody wants to fill out a boring old form that was made in the 90s by some 40-year-old in the basement of his parents. It’s not fun.
Make sure that your CTAs look good. I know you’re not supposed to say that looks matter, but they do. There’s no going around the facts.
A good looking CTA is more likely to convert better than a CTA that looks bad. Of course it depends on what niche you’re in and what your audience likes. But in general, professional & good looking CTAs perform better.
One of the most well-known design tips for creating a compelling CTA is having an image of a person looking back at the viewer, or an image of a person pointing to the form that needs to be filled out.
The person pointing to the form image works well because humans are designed to look toward things that someone is pointing to. And since you’re pointing toward a form, where do you think your visitors would be looking?
Here’s an example to get your creative juices flowing:
The Copy Still Matters
I know, we live in 2019. It’s the post-modern era where the dreams of people who lived in the 80s have come true. But we still haven’t found a way to make hover cars. And we are yet to colonize Mars.
Similarly, text copy is still one of the most important things when it comes to conversions. Yes, we have photos and videos, but people won’t watch them unless you tell them to.
And how do you tell them?
Your CTA must ask the visitor for a sale, or a newsletter subscriber, you name it.
Your CTA must always be concise, clear and tell the user exactly what they need to do. After all, it is a call-to-action. This is the push you’re giving to the user to convert and jump over the fence and come to the other side.
Think of CTA as concentrating all the power of your website to a single point. This is the point where the user will either take an action or not. And once you understand the basics and the importance, it is just a matter of testing and figuring out what works best for you.
Remember, the end goal of a CTA is to have one that works consistently. It is an art. But it depends on your imagination and the amount of testing you’re willing to put in.
You won’t get immediate results, but the end goal will be worth the wait.
The best time to start creating CTAs was yesterday but now is the second best time. Get started!