Call to Action best practice

Website Improvements – Call to Action best practice

megaphoneHave you ever considered what you would define as a “successful” visit to your website? 

It’s a simple question but by finding out the answer, you can figure out what you need to do to increase the number of successful visits to your website.

For example – an ecommerce website would consider a successful visit as one that resulted in a sale.  For others it would result in the visitor making contact with you (either through a phone call or email enquiry).

Whatever the goal, your users can’t be relied on to get there on their own – they need to be pointed in the right direction and this is where a call to action (CTA) comes in.

What is a Call to Action?

A call to action is a highly visible button or line of text that directs your users towards the page or location where they will achieve your goal.   

So for an ecommerce website, if the user is on a page describing a particular product then the call to action would be an “Add to cart” button.  For a page describing a service on a plumber’s website then it may button saying “Contact us now” linking to a contact us page.  It could even be as simple as a bold line at the end of the page saying “For more information, give us a call on 0123 456 789

The key thing to remember is that every page on your website should be directing your visitors towards a goal.

Ways to achieve a goal

There are different ways to achieve a goal.  So whereas your goal may be that a user gets in touch with you, there are a number of different ways to contact you. For example, some users won’t want to call you but will be happy to email you. Therefore your CTAs should cater for a variety of them.

Just some of the ways that they might want to contact you would be:

  • Getting them to call you
  • Getting them to email you
  • Getting them subscribe to your newsletter
  • Getting them to fill in a form asking for a quote
  • Getting them to fill in a form asking you a question
  • Getting them to request a callback
  • Getting them to ask for a live chat
  • Getting them to follow you on Twitter

Your CTAs should allow for at least some of these.

Bear in mind that a user has to be sufficiently motivated to contact you. You have to establish your credibility first, so a call to action (say, from the homepage) may be a request to look at some of your work and case studies, since the initial goal is to establish credibility.  Then the actual call to contact you may appear in the case studies page once they feel you are credible.

Multiple CTAs

Having more than one call to action is OK.   A user may not be sufficiently motivated enough to call you but is interested enough to want to learn more.  In which case a “Find out more about our work” button would be fine alongside a contact us button for those users that are motivated enough to contact you.

What next?

As a first step, go through the key pages on your website and establish whether there are clear calls to action on those pages.   The rule is that the content should be establishing your credibility and motivating them into carrying out an action.  Then the CTA should tell the user to carry out the action and take them to where they can do it.

There’s no single correct way to do this.  Experimentation is key.  Try different colours, a mixture of text and buttons, various locations on the page and different contact methods for your CTAs and note the effectiveness of each.

By the way, the CTA for this page is below – we’d love you to share this article with your friends!  If you’re sufficiently motivated then please do so!