If you’ve been diligent and made it to this part of the tutorial, your website has started to receive a little traffic and you are beginning to see how visitors are finding you. Hopefully you are now in the habit of being in the habit of writing and are creating worthwhile content for your site.

Now it’s time to start looking at what we can do to convert a little more of that traffic:

  • fill out the contact form
  • purchase goods
  • contact you on social media
  • read your content
With this, we start to look at the Call to Action, aka CTA.

What is Call to Action / CTA?

Call to Action is the sometimes catchy little message that stick out on a web page requesting suggesting, demanding, begging, pleading, horsetrading, hoping, or politely asking the web visitor to perform a desired action. CTAs vary in size, shape & subtlety. Sometimes they’re as simple as a phone number in a header or as comprehensive as a landing page that sites in a fixed position on the side of the page, visible in the same location regardless of where on any web page a visitor is located. The CTA can be either text, button, image or a form. If it’s on a website, it’s eligible.

 

The question is: what makes it a CTA?

A dab of contrast

Before organizing all our redesigns or other tactics we’ll explore in a second, the first thing you should check is the visibility of your Call to Action. In most all cases, the CTA button should be the first thing that sticks out on a web page. It should attract your web visitors’ attention. To improve the chances of such a thing happening, designers implement a technique called, "contrast,” to make sure the CTA is readily apparent.

Example: Contact Us...well, to show the example

For example, on our site we have a "CONTACT” button in the header. When clicked it takes one to the footer where the "Ask us how to get a FREE! website, ” button in vibrant BakedFinn-adopted gold sticks out against the dark block background. This technique happens on every page. Even cooler, the fact we made our corporate site’s header a "fixed header” so it always stays at the top of the screen means the contact button is always seen, easy to find and easy to click.

What we need to test is putting that same kind of button up in the header with the same gold contrast for the contact button to see if we can increase conversions. Then we’ll test putting the website message in the header and have it link to what is called a "landing page,” where it will talk about the free website packages we offer.

What is a landing page?

A landing page is a page made to highlight a specific sale or offer, has traffic driven specifically to the page with the express purpose of informing visitors of the offer with simple, easy-to-perform actions that help accentuate the offer. We’ll touch on that more in an upcoming tutorial but for now, know that landing pages are used for marketing and advertising campaigns to test offers, pitches & messages to gauge effectiveness.

Example: ever visit an As Seen on TV Site?

Ever see a Billy Mays product commercial on TV? See the website in the commercial? Ever go to that website only to see his gregarious beard, the $19.99 + shipping & handling & processing and Order Now buttons that send one to an order form with a credit card section that makes it so easy that before you realize it you’ve ordered the product? Those product sites are landing pages albeit on the most abrasive edge of the technique’s approach. In fact, that whole Infomercial industry is becoming less abrasive as they focus more on brand quality...but that’s for another day...

Call to Action messages that work?

Many of the common ones include:
  • Order Now
  • Buy Now
  • Get One
  • Learn More
  • Contact Us
  • Call Now
  • Contact Us Today

Offer a taste for FREE!

Many of the more Call to Actions offer giving something away for free. For example:
  • FREE Estimate
  • Free Website
  • FREE Consultation
  • Buy 1, Get 1 FREE
  • Free Trial
While those convert more, make sure the offer is spelled out somewhere on the website note to self: update our packages page. Especially if you plan to do any PPC / CPC marketing in Google. They monitor for fraud and if they cannot readily find the offer details, they’ve been known to punish those web pages until they are made visible.

How to test the call to actions

The most common way to test a call to action - and the way we like to do it - is through what is called A/B Testing.

What is A/B Testing?

A/B Testing, also known as multivariate testing, is a method where each method gets the same amount of time on the site in as similar situations as possible to see which one converts better. The simple way to run an A/B test is to run the CTA with one message one day and the other message on the next. Weekly intervals.

The most effective way to run an A/B test is to do it in real time where the message alternates every page load or two. After three weeks or so, the results are measured. It’s what BakedFinn’s Bake & Finn did a lot at the agency where they met. It’s one of the main reasons they built BiziPorts.

Examples of CTAs


 

We threw a lot at you just now - especially for a 101 tutorial

It’s a lot to digest. If you have any questions, you’ve seen our CTA. You know we’re available. 

Next Step: Rinse, Lather, Repeat

What? You thought it was a one-time thing?