Driving Conversions through CTAs: The Most Effective Tips

  • Daniel Vysh 06-21-2020 Read time (6 min)

Driving Conversions through CTAs: The Most Effective Tips

What kind of call-to-action do you use? How effective is it? Good CTAs must be clear, compelling and action-oriented if you want them to drive conversions. But it’s not all this simple. Other factors come into play as well such as the layout, design, placement, white spaces and even the color.

When conversion is the focus, what techniques should you use? Let’s review the most effective strategies that you can try out to and enjoy greater conversions.

What Phase of The Buyer’s Journey Is a Potential Customer At?

The buyer’s journey can broadly be divided into three stages: awareness, consideration and decision. Effective CTAs vary for each of these states. For instance, if a user is at the decision stage, you would not want them to sign up for a newsletter. Instead, you would throw in a discount offer or something similar so that these users do end up buying.

But be careful because you can’t always offer a discount—– sometimes, you may want them to evaluate upsell or crosssell or consider another of your product if they’re already your existing customers.

Consider the Timing

Timing is an important part of CTA optimization. So for instance, when a user is on the payment page of your ecommerce website, you shouldn’t recommend any product right then because these users have already decided to buy from you and quickly want to get done with the process. However, when they are done, you can ask them to sign up for a newsletter to stay updated or offer a discount if their next purchase is within 7 days.

Focus on the Copy

For every optimized CTA, the copy must be effective and of high quality. Many business owners don’t focus on the copy and keep placing CTAs here and there without even ascertaining if they are related to the content. CTAs must be associated with the content on your page – without this, don’t expect your visitors to convert.

Work Out the Tone

Add a ‘trustful’ element to CTAs, but generally, this works when you have already established some kind of credibility in the market. Also, whatever you promise in the CTA must be something that you can deliver.

So how do you become a trustworthy brand and company? It’s a gradual process – you build better and trustworthy relationships after you have spent some time offering value to your targeted audience and established your credibility. But trust can also be built if you use appropriate words in the CTA – words that can drive and increase your rates. For instance, phrases like last chance and buy today create an urgency. Worlds like astonishing, surprise or breakthrough garner attention, forcing a user to consider your company as their choice.

Understand CTA Types That Drive the Most Conversions

CTAs can be divided into several different types and the conversion rates vary from case to case.

1. Button
This kind of CTA features text written on a clickable button. The shape and size of the CTA button can be changed, but should be consistent with the rest of your website design. Borders and shadow can be added to increase visibility.

When in the form of a button, CTAs are flexible and can simply be placed anywhere on the page.

2. Lead Generator
As the name implies, the purpose is to generate more leads. Generally, whenever you ask for contact information, you should provide something valuable as an exchange. This is usually a free report, whitepaper or tool.

Lead generators are placed on blog posts, usually towards the end, near the sidebar or as a floating banner.

3. Form Submission
When visitors are on our landing page, they must conduct two more steps before they can be treated as a lead. Fill out the form on the page and then click the accompanying button so that their information can be stored in the contact database.

Obviously, visitors on your landing page are usually ahead on the buyer’s journey. This means that you must offer something in return for their details, as already explained. Also, pay attention to the form design, limiting it to the minimum number of fields required.

4. The ‘Read More’ Button
Generally, most of the content may not look nice when displayed on the entire page. So only feature the first two paragraphs and then place a Read More Button. Readers who are interested to know more will automatically click the CTA.

5. Product or Service Discovery
If visitors show an interest in your products and services, make it easier for them to find information by placing a CTA button that stands out on the page.

Design Principles for CTA Optimization

Now that we have discussed some general techniques to increase your CTR, now let’s focus on the design and see what you should keep in mind for greater effectiveness. As a rule of the thumb, avoid cognitive load because it often causes important information and visual cues to be ignored, especially if your visitors are in a hurry and the CTA is placed incorrectly.

That being said, let us now go through 6 main design principles for CTA optimization.

1. Positioning
Like we said, placement matters. But let’s elaborate, where exactly? CTAs can be effective only when they are positioned in areas where visibility is greater. But that isn’t always top of the page. How do users read a web page? Generally, visitors begin at the top left and then scan the page downwards. As such, left-sided CTAs are a better choice even if they are placed a bit lower.

Which other position for the CTA can increase your CTR rate? Position it right where you present your core content or the main points – this is the focus and the most appropriate place, as well as time, to recommend your desired action to the reader. Contrary to this, if you place CTAs in the header and footer, users might pay less attention to them. Also, when placed between the text, they are hard to miss.

A research suggests that CTAs placed between the content can increase your conversion rate by a massive 304%. Consider an example; you want visitors to sign up for your newsletter. If you place this right at the top of the page, users wouldn’t have to read your content and wouldn’t know if they should follow you regularly. In such a case, placing CTA towards the bottom might be more appropriate.

Figuring out the most effective position can be tricky. When CTAs are placed too high and too low, users are less likely to perform the desired action. As a recommended practice, run a heatmap and evaluate places where they put in the maximum attention.

But remember, other page elements also matter and must be considered during CTA optimization process. When surrounded by text, audio, video and other elements, they can either increase attention or decrease. Consider all possible situations.

2. Pay Heed When Using Images
Visuals are more compelling and can help you increase the conversion rate. In fact, visuals can be more effective if they contain people, especially faces. But like the content, the image should also be relevant to the CTA or it will just be ignored.

As per studies, left hand images perform better than images on the right side.

3. Increase White Space
The white space around visuals should be clutter-free to increase impact. An average user only takes 8 seconds to assess a page. If there is limited information on the page, the reader will be able to focus more on key elements. But is reducing the content always preferable? No! And this is exactly why you should increase the white space around the CTAs so that they stand out on the page.

4. Ensure the Size is Bigger
Bigger CTAs are registered almost instantly – there is no doubt about this. But leverage the power of the size of your chosen CTA. If possible, add a secondary call to action as well.

5. Play with Color
Colors are one of the best ways to increase your conversion rate. If your website is blue, then your CTAs should be white over a dark background so that they stand out. Generally, colors that are opposite each other on the color wheel complement each other and are a preferred choice.

6. Use Animation Subtly
Animation is powerful, but it must not be overused. Stick to one promotional animation per page, keeping it subtle.

Which of these tips were effective for CTA optimization? Comment and let us know.

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