5 tips to create an irresistible call to action

When people land on your website, you want them to do something — something that progresses your specific goals. Encouraging a prospective customer to take a desired action is one of the hardest tasks that markets face. “You need to focus less on beautiful design or amazing copy and more on creating a powerful and compelling call to action,” says blogger, author and social media strategist Jeff Bullas (jeffbullas.com).

Vaibhav Kakkar, co-founder of RankWatch, a developer of online marketing software, offers these five tips for creating more compelling calls to action.

1.   Be direct. Stop beating around the bush. Your website means business and you should be direct in your approach. Be precise and tell your visitors what you do and what exactly you would like them to do. The action must be simple, short and strong. Make sure there is no room to play guessing games so your visitors aren’t clueless about what to do next.

      Some examples of direct language: “Get started,” “sign up,” “submit,” or “download.”

2.   Be unique. Find something that makes your call to action special; it could be ridiculously simple or something that aggravates a problem. For example, Quick Sprout’s, “I Want To…” call to action plays on their prospective customers’ desire to solve a problem.

3.   Use actionable language. Some verbs and phrases are stronger than others. Use action words that compel your visitors to do what you want them to.“Call us today for a free sample,” for instance is a good call to action as it is actionable. You are giving clear direction to the reader using the verb “call.” In contrast, something like “Give us a call for a free demo” is a less desirable call to action. Even though the verb “give” is actionable, it’s meaning is usually associated with handing a tangible object to someone, rather than making a phone call.

4.   Be urgent. Your call to action should create urgency so that your visitors convert. You can do this by conveying a message that your visitors are missing a great opportunity should they choose to do otherwise. Convince them that the clock is ticking and delaying would result in missing the opportunity. Take examples from sites such as Amazon where they create a sense of urgency with calls to action like “Buy now to get 50% off.”

5.   Make it easy. The transition from call to action to performing the task must be seamless.

      A complicated call to action is bound to fail. For example, if you want your prospective customers to call, provide your phone number. Also, tell your prospects that converting is not timely or costly. If you are offering something free of charge, such as a free demo or a free sample, don’t forget to mention that in your call to action.

Similarly, if you want your visitors to sign up for your newsletter, make sure it does not take a long time to complete the process. There is a reason why most successful magazines and blogs, use calls to action like “Sign up in less than 60 seconds.”

Creating a persuasive call to action takes creativity and time. It needs to be simple enough so that users can easily understand your message and at the same time compelling enough to persuade them to do what you want them to do. That being said, it is essential to remember that practice makes perfect. Be experimental and see what works best for your audience.  


Get our newsletter and digital focus reports

Stay current on learning and development trends, best practices, research, new products and technologies, case studies and much more.