… plus simple, proven strategies to fix a bad CTA so you can skyrocket conversions and have sales humming 24/7.
“Why aren’t I making sales?”
“Why isn’t my calendar filling up?”
“Why isn’t my website converting?”
Have you ever thought (or asked) these same questions about your website?
There’s a few reasons why these frustrating outcomes could be happening… but there’s one specific problem we see ALL the time and can safely bet is the culprit.
Your Call-To-Action (or CTA).
When people scroll past your call-to-action button, it means you’ve failed to clearly ask them to do what you want them to do! But don’t panic, a confusing, misleading, or flat-out bad CTA isn’t a fatal mistake.
With a few changes, you can improve your call-to-actions and have more people engaging with your site whether you’re chasing more sign-ups, downloads, or purchases.
To supercharge your conversions, here’s what you need to know.
Why a bad CTA is a conversion killer
Think about it like this…
If you want someone to marry you, you propose the question – “will you marry me?”.
If you don’t ask the question, you don’t get engaged, and you don’t get married.
If you want a raise at work, you meet with your boss and ask for one.
If you don’t ask, then you often don’t get the raise.
If your car breaks down on the side of the road, you call the tow truck and ask them for help.
If you didn’t, you’d be learning how to make fire with sticks pretty quickly.
If you want your barista to make you a latte… okay, okay, you get the point.
This fundamental ‘ask to receive’ rule applies in all of your marketing (but in an even more critical, important, life-altering way).
If you want someone to do something – book a call, buy a product, download a lead magnet – you need to ASK them to do that.
These calls to action in your marketing are the key ingredient that turns leads and viewers into loyal, paying customers. But before we show you how to craft an effective CTA and have people clicking until their fingers hurt, let’s explore some of the most common CTA mistakes.
The CTA mistakes too many websites make (you might be doing the same…)
You want your website visitors to do SOMETHING, right?
Well so does every other business.
But you’d be shocked at how many websites we come across with CTA’s that are hidden, missable, uncompelling… or just not there at all!
Whether you feel like your products/services will sell themselves (hint: they won’t), or that it’s too pushy/salesy to tell people what to do on your website (hint: it’s not), the result is the same – no incentive for potential customers to take action.
If you’ve managed to avoid these common pitfalls and have included CTAs (go you!), you’re still not out of the woods. Here are some of the top CTA mistakes we’ve seen from business owners who come to us for help.
Fair Warning: You might spot a few of your own mistakes on this list, but read on for practical tips to write stronger, more compelling CTAs
✘ Your CTA language is weaker than wet paper
Vague language makes it kinda, sorta, almost seem like you want your customers to take action.
Be direct and firm to inspire people to smash the CTA button!
The more specific your CTA is, the higher the chance someone will press it. People want to know exactly what will happen if they click, so give it to them straight.
- ‘Subscribe Now’
- ‘Reserve Your Seat’
- ‘Claim Your Free Copy’
One of the worst mistakes you can make is to use passive language like “Click Here” (yawn🥱). If you’re being passive, don’t be surprised when your site visitors become passive too.
✘ Your CTA is asking for too much, too soon
You want someone to buy your products and services, but being too eager can scare customers away.
Some CTAs (“Buy Now”) infer a greater commitment than others (“Shop Now”).
In the first example, you’re asking someone to spend money by clicking your CTA. In the second example, they’re only browsing your online store. Asking your potential customers to commit to spending time or money, can be scary or downright off-putting. That’s why the right CTA uses the correct level of commitment to draw people in.
As an action step, play around with verbs that encourage people to do something by including the benefits of taking action. Check out a few of the descriptive CTAs below – we guarantee you’ll like them more than “Buy Now”.
- Claim your 50% discount
- Start testing the app for free
- Shop the new collection today
- Join our loyalty program to earn rewards
- Sign up for our newsletter and never miss a sale again
✘ Your CTA is impossible to find
A good call-to-action should be easy to find as soon as a visitor lands on your page.
This means adding your CTA ‘above the fold’ (which is marketing speak for the content people see before they start scrolling).
If you make people go hunting for your call-to-action buttons, you make it easy for them to get frustrated, overwhelmed, and head back to Google to look for someone else.
Creating eye-catching and unmissable CTAs can be done in a range of ways, so compare yours against this checklist to make sure you’re getting it right:
- Have you added a CTA above the fold so people know what to do without a single scroll?
- Are your CTAs using colours that contrast with your site design for maximum visual appeal?
- Does your CTA use a large font that’s easy to read (especially on mobile phones) but not obnoxiously big?
- Have you included CTAs throughout the page that align with the user’s experience?
Get these right, and you’ll give yourself a better chance of converting more traffic into leads and paying customers.
Here’s the truth though, the mistakes on this list are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to boring, bad and boneheaded CTA mistakes that can leave tens of thousands of dollars on the table and kill the potential you have to make a real difference.
But it’s not all doom and gloom!
The good news is that a few simple tweaks is usually all it takes to supercharge your call-to-actions. From copy, to placement, to context, and even appearance and colour – ALL these factors have a say in the CTA’s success.
So let’s explore how you can start using your CTAs to capture attention and compel people to take the next step.
Are you ready to fix your under-performing CTAs?
So, how do you know if your CTA is moving and shaking, or holding your website back and causing those problems we mentioned at the top?
Here’s some questions to ask yourself:
- Are you quickly and clearly asking your website visitors to do what you want them to do?
- Is there any incentive for your audience to take action NOW versus in 12 months (or never)?
- Do your buttons showcase the BENEFITS of joining? Or do they just tell people to “sign up” “start here” or “buy now”?
- Are your CTA’s visible and clear – or do they require visitors to hunt them out themselves?
- Is your strongest CTA “above the fold” on your website (as in, you can see it as soon as you open the page
There is a lot to consider here, but tweaking even one of these things can be the difference between a browser being closed, and a flood of new leads, clients and conversions!
A weak CTA can destroy the potential of even the most brilliant website, sales page, or email by leaving prospects wondering what to do next.
Remember, writing engaging, click-worthy CTAs doesn’t have to mean reinventing the wheel. Follow the tips in this guide, and you can enjoy a significant improvement in your conversion rate and ROI in no time.
Are you ready to save time and trust your brand’s copy to a team of direct-response superstars with a track record of success? Book a strategy call below to chat with a Savvy Copy expert.
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