7 Ways You’re Ruining Your Calls to Action

April 21, 2015

Let’s face it. You spend more time combing through stock photos than you do crafting your calls to action. CTAs are easy, right? Just tell your lead to sign up or download. Simple!

Actually, there’s a lot more to creating effective CTAs, and if you’re not using a sensible strategy, you’re probably seeing a lot fewer conversions than you could be getting.

If you want to create calls to action that crank out conversions, you can make a great start on it by checking for these CTA mistakes.

Call to Action Mistakes You Need to Stop Making Now

1) You’re using CTAs on landing pages.

Well, actually…yes, you should use CTAs on your landing pages. But not ONLY on your landing pages! CTAs belong on EVERY web page and blog post. And in your marketing emails and newsletters. And all your downloadable content. And anything else you give your leads!

Every time you’re interacting with a lead, you should include a call to action. You never want them to read your content and walk away, but to be nurtured further through the sales funnel.

2) You’re telling them what to do.

The worst CTA ever? The Submit button. “Send” and “Download Now” are high on that list too. Why is that? Because you’re giving a command to your lead. When you think about it, it sounds pretty bossy, no? Whoever thought “Submit” would win over customers in the first place?

Instead, craft benefit-oriented, not command-oriented, calls to action. CTAs like “Grow My Traffic” or “Start Saving Now” get more clicks because they clearly deliver the lead a valuable benefit.

3) You DON’T tell them what to do.

Use actionable language in the active voice. Make it clear what you’re asking your lead to do. Wishy-washy calls to action get wishy-washy results.

4) You’re asking for the sale.

The purpose of a CTA isn’t to convert new customers but to nurture leads through the sales funnel, one step at a time. Be patient. Ask for the sale when it’s appropriate, but most calls to action should offer something of value that will delight and educate your lead.

5) Your CTA is hard to find.

Want to guarantee no one clicks on your CTA? Then use crowded pages, tiny CTA buttons and misplaced calls to action. If you have elements that compete for your customer’s attention, your CTA will get lost in the crowd. Make it big, bold and visually appealing.

6) You don’t align the CTA copy with the landing page copy.

It’s no good if your visitors click your CTAs, only to get confused at the landing page and leave your site. Make sure your CTA copy is aligned with your landing page copy so your customers don’t get thrown off and think they’ve gone to the wrong page. And it’ll reinforce the message of benefit.

7) Your CTAs are inaccessible.

Web accessibility is increasingly becoming an important issue. Many web users have vision, hearing or mobility impairments and rely on screen readers or other technology to access the internet. To assist these users, make sure your calls to action are accessible. Include alt text that identifies the CTA as a link, and includes the CTA text. Don’t use Flash or animations.

Next Steps

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