Calls-to-action. What are they and how can I use them effectively?

What is a call-to-action? In email marketing a call-to-action (usually abbreviated as CTA) is a button, banner or some type of graphic or text meant to encourage a user to click. The action you want people to take could be anything: purchasing items to booking hotels and attending events. Calls-to-action are common place not only in email marketing but on websites, ebooks and even at the end of blog posts.

Email newsletters should have some sort of call-to-action, a response you want readers to complete. But how do you encourage users to act? How do you create an effective call-to-action? Here are a few quick, essential tips for creating a quality CTA.

Striking design
For a reader to click on your CTA it must first be noticed. A good sized CTA button or text which is contrasting its colours against the over all design will make it immediately visible.

Get the position right
Another important factor is the position of your call-to-action on the page. Ideally it should be placed high on the page and in the central column.

White space
It is not just the position of your call-to-action that matters. It is also the space around it. The more space around a CTA the more attention is drawn to it. Clutter it up with surrounding content and it will be lost in the overall noise of the page.

Copy to get people to act
Buttons that read ‘submit’ or ‘click’ aren’t enough to entice potential customers because they simply come across as a bit uninspiring. To really grab attention use active urgent language or phrases like: ‘call’, ‘buy’, ‘subscribe’ and to create a sense of urgency and a need to act now, these words can be used alongside phrases such as: ‘Offer expires March 31st’ ‘For a short time only’ and ‘Order now and receive a free gift’. If you’re hungry for more email design tips, check out this blog post.

Leave little to the imagination.
People should know exactly what will happen when they click on a CTA. Will they be re-directed to the company’s website competition page or are they going to be linked to buying that shiny electronic device they’ve always wanted? Give people a clue by making sure the CTA explicitly tells them what they’re getting in exchange for their click. If they are going to be a real customer they will value your honestly and integrity,

Create Urgency
Creating a sense of urgency through the CTA, such as a limited-time offering or a special discount for an immediate purchase, can overcome buyer hesitation.

There we have it. A quick few essential tips to using calls-to-action effectively. And remember to subscribe to receive up-to-date display block blogs!

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One comment on “Calls-to-action. What are they and how can I use them effectively?

  1. Great content here. I think one more thing could be added. Im a little surprised nothing was mentioned about competing CTA’s in the same email or web page, and sticking closely with “the one thing” we want the customer to do. Multiple CTA’s confuses and detracts from the conversion.

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