The Importance of the CTA
If you're unfamiliar with the world of website design, marketing, or maybe even acronyms, then you probably aren’t all too familiar with the term CTA. CTA stands for ‘call to action’ and believe it or not, you experience CTA’s every single day. They are in our magazines, newspaper articles, advertisements, commercials, and of course, our websites.
Like the name would suggest, a call to action, is a phrase that is going to make you do something, it’s calling you to make an action. When it comes to websites, this could be something as simple as a button. If you think you haven’t seen them, think again. Have you ever seen a button that says, “Click Here”, “Shop Now” or “Learn More”? It’s practically guaranteed the answer is yes and because it is, you have seen a call to action. But it can also be more than that. It can be the option to share the webpage, it can be a submission form or service/product discovery section.
Without a CTA, the average viewer, may not know what to do. It may seem simple, you are on a clothing website, you are obliviously there to shop. But without a CTA, it doesn’t make whatever you're promoting an urgent or important enough need to click through to. Assume the viewer doesn’t know what they want, you want to tell them what they want. They want to “Shop the Latest Spring Sale” or “Find the Best Orlando Hotels”. Believe it or not, viewers want a CTA. They came to your site and they want a reason to engage further and continue to click through.
But besides just having a CTA, it’s important that they are catchy. It doesn’t matter what you are selling or promoting, you can make the CTA compelling enough so that viewers can’t help but click through. It’s more than just coming up with “Shop Now”, you have to make that button sing. Give it some juice, but leave them wanting to find out what kind of juice it is, by making them click through. A content writer (and a good one at that) can help you come up with the best CTA for your site.
Besides the common button, a CTA could also be a ‘continue reading’ option. Many news and blog websites use this as a tool to get them to the bigger site. They use a snippet of the story to get people hooked and then a “continue reading” option to get them further into their site, where hopefully they see more things they like. A submission form may be another form of a call to action, by converting people who submit the form into new and continuous viewers. And then of course, in the world of today, social media reigns supreme. Most if not all websites have a “share” option, which allows the viewers to take the action of sharing a website page to their social media platforms. And in today’s world, that’s the best free promotion you could ask for.
All in all, don’t think of calls to action as just three words or CTA as three letters. Think of them as the closing argument to your website. It can be the make or break of your website, causing your viewers to make an action to bring them further into your website and therefore further into your overall business, or it can cause them to make the decision of clicking that tiny ‘x’ in the corner of their screens, which no one wants.