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Why use Call To Actions in web design?

A “call to action”,  also known as a CTA, Is a sentence or button that encourages the website visitor to take action. These will often be used at the end of an advert which has explained the features and benefits of the product or service and is used as a persuasive signal to perform an action such as sign up to a newsletter,  purchase a product or fill out a form.

Common Call to Actions

Email Newsletter

Email newsletters are sent out to inform your audience on the latest news, tips or updates about your products or company. They can be used for a variety of purposes and may be sent out weekly monthly or quarterly such as a hairdresser that has special offers.  may send out a weekly email with money off vouchers or products or services.

This encourages people to sign up in order to receive these vouchers but also increases the brand awareness of the hairdresser on a weekly basis so when the potential customer requires a haircut, they are front of mind.

Call to actions for an email newsletter will include a short form requesting their name and email with a button such as the following:

  • Sign Up
  • Join
  • Send me Specials Now!
  • Subscribe

Booking Websites

Websites that featured listings for hotels, flights, restaurants and holidays typically have a form with fields for the location, dates, number of people etc.  followed by a prominent search button.  This is a common term used for the call to action buttons of hotels.com, booking.com and Expedia.

Trainline.com use the term ‘Get times & tickets’  for their search button which allows their website visitor to understand that the website offers more than just train times. This has proved to be an effective call to action button for  increasing conversions for Trainline.com

  1. Search
  2. Get times & tickets

Online Education

Websites that offer premium learning content such as Lynda.com, Khan Academy and Udemy,  will usually have a prominent call to action button encouraging website visitors to sign up to a free trial or join their website to view their free content.

The free content can be extremely useful and encourages the website visitors to keep returning and learn more through their free content.  For a large majority, this will be as far as they go, but a significant percentage of these regular visitors will convert into premium subscribers. Common call-to-action buttons used to encourage visitors to sign up to the free subscription are:

  1. Subscribe
  2. Try for Free
  3. Join Us
  4. Sign up for Free
  5. Join Free for a Month
  6. Get Started
  7. Give it a try
  8. Claim your free trial

Google and Facebook Ads

Facebook and Google ads can have a major impact on sales and brand awareness. A call to action is usually used with these adverts to persuade people to click on the advert and read more about the services, get a quote or buy your products. Below are five commonly used to call to action buttons with different purposes but all have the same intent of bringing visitors to the website.

  1. Learn More
  2. Buy Now
  3. Apply Now
  4. Watch More
  5. Get Quote

Online App

The popular method used by online applications quick and easy signup for their free account is by allowing people to register using their Google or Facebook account.  Other social media accounts can often be used that these two, in particular, the two most common options because of the wide-scale use of them.  once people have registered with these accounts, they are often marketed to through their Facebook account or by Google display adverts to upgrade to the premium version of the application. Common applications that use this method is Spotify, Dropbox and YouTube.

  1. Log In With Google
  2. Continue with Facebook

Our UI and UX designers use call-to-action buttons and text throughout the website for a variety of purposes similar to those outlined above.

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About the Author

Barry Reynolds

Barry Reynolds is an experienced web designer, WordPress developer, certified Agile project manager and digital marketer.

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