So you invest quite a bit of time, money, and resources into driving targeted traffic to your website. But what types of things are you doing to encourage conversion once a visitor arrives? Creating effective calls to action requires more than throwing up a phone number and a “contact us” menu selection. Here are 5 tips for creating effective ‘calls to action’ on your website:
Communicate The Benefits – Visitors to your site care about how you can help them solve their legal issues. When constructing your calls to action you have to think about what you are offering and how it helps the visitor solve a problem. Most importantly, you need to clearly explain the benefits of your offer prior to asking your visitor to do something. Take for example the MailChimp email marketing service homepage:
They describe what the service does and how it can help you:
MailChimp helps you design email newsletters, share them on social networks, integrate with services you already use, and track your results. It’s like your own personal publishing platform.
This is followed by call to action asking the user to sign up for free.
If you are offering a “free consultation”, concisely describe the benefits of the consultation and what a user can expect to get accomplished during the meeting. It is much stronger to provide context and a compelling reason for the consult than simply offering one for free with no other basis.
Be Clear & Specific – If you want people to take an action on your website you have to be very clear and specific about what you want them to do and how they should do it. Simply having a phone number in the upper right corner and a contact us page doesn’t tell me what you want me to do. Not that having these things on your site a bad idea (I would recommend it in fact), it’s just that this isn’t a strong call to action for a visitor.
Do you want them to call you directly? Do you want them to download a guide or e-book? Do you want them to fill out a more detailed evaluation online first? Think about what you want to happen and then construct a call to action that lays out the exact steps for the visitor to take. The more guidance you give users the better the user experience will be for them and the higher your conversion.
Make Sure The Visitor Knows What Happens Next – Have you ever started a process online (ie: registration, download, signup, etc) only to stop because you aren’t quite sure what is going to happen next? This is very unsettling and the end result is usually abandonment by the user. Do I have to go through a long and cumbersome sign up process? Am I buying something immediately when I click this? What happens with my personal info I’m filling in? Making sure your call to action and the subsequent process clearly explains to the user what is coming next, what you are doing with the information, and set expectations accordingly.
Size & Color – You want your call to action to stand out. Two effective methods for getting your call to action noticed is size and color. Making your call to action big and a contrasting color from the areas around it draws people’s attention. Check out this call to action on the download page for the Firefox web browser:
The call to action makes it pretty apparent what you should do next.
Placement – There are a couple of points that are important regarding placement of the call to action.
- Above the fold – It is a good idea to always have at least one call to action above the fold. This is the area of a webpage that is visible to users without having to scroll down.
- Put the offer on multiple pages – It’s great to have a call to action on your homepage, but remember that people will arrive on your website from a multitude of entry points. It’s important that you have an offer on all pages of your site. This way if someone visits just one of your articles but doesn’t visit the homepage, you still present them with an offer.
- Integrated into the copy – Using a relevant call to action within the content itself is a very effective way to entice action. Using specialized, highly targeted calls to action, as in the example below, is a great way to increase your conversion. The more segmented and personalized the offer, the better it will convert. For example, on the Hubspot Blog they authored an article on Facebook for Nonprofits and integrated a call to action at the end of the article that was a highly relevant offer to readers of the article: