Software Dev
Aug 3, 2023

Best Practices for Crafting a CTA

Josie Barton

Today, customers look for honesty and clarity. Crafting a CTA that has a successful conversion rate must be easy to find, have clear instruction, and urge customers to take action.

In this article, we’ll cover:

  1. What is a CTA?
  2. CTA best practices
  3. CTA common mistakes
  4. Social media CTAs

What is a CTA?

Learn about what a CTA is and how they are used to improve customer satisfaction and increase conversion rates.

A half pink and half blue table has join us spelled out in scrabble tiles with hearts and lollipops surrounding it
CTAs with the most successful conversion rates are engaging and interesting.

A CTA, or call to action, is an action visitors of a page take when interested or intrigued by that copy. Found in landing pages, blog posts, social media posts, and ads, the goal of CTAs is to interest your visitors to make an action: click, hover, read, etc. But the best CTAs are engaging, relevant to your visitors, and reach customer expectations.

Good CTAs use strong words accompanied by a description. For example, instead of saying “Join” try “Join the waitlist.” Strong CTA words include:

  • Access
  • Build
  • Grow
  • Free
  • Hurry
  • Need
  • Proven
  • Today
  • Subscribe
  • Join
  • Claim
  • Save
  • New
  • Stop

Best Practices for Crafting a CTA

Discover how to craft your ideal CTA to create a lasting effect on customers.

A person sits at a large white table and writes on a tablet while referring to a laptop with crafts and books in front of her.
Crafting a CTA is easier than you think. With the right goal in mind and a killer CTA button, you’ll be sure to get some attention.
  1. Focus on one specific goal

Urging visitors to sign up for an email list as well as asking them to follow your socials is busy. This reduces the chance that visitors will complete the first task: signing up for your email list. Once in the email list, you can craft another CTA to urge users to follow your socials. Test out a few different CTAs to find out which one has the best conversion rate.

  1. What’s in it for your audience?

Think about how you want your audience to feel. Make sure to craft your CTA with your customer in mind. What would they like to see? What would convince them to react to your CTA? What kind of response do I want to achieve? The answer is excitement and interest.

  1. Speak in your brand voice

First discovering what the voice of your brand is, then using that voice to reach your audience is important to the success of your CTA. The tone of your CTA should match the tone you would use to communicate with your audience. Understand the language that members of your audience use themselves, and find what words and phrases you can incorporate into your own CTAs.

  1. Make your CTA stand out

Place CTAs high on the page and remove distractions. Use colors that reflect your branding and make sure your CTA is easy to click on. Good CTAs include terms like “Send it my way!” “Yes, please!” and “Let me know more!”

Choosing a CTA button color

  • Yellow: Optimistic and useful
  • Red: Energy and urgency
  • Blue: Trust and security
  • Green: Wealth and relaxation
  • Orange: Aggression and urgency
  • Pink: Romance and youth
  • Black: Powerful and sleek
  • Purple: Soothing and calming

Most Common Mistakes When Crafting a CTA

The biggest mistakes companies make when crafting CTAs (and how to fix them).

A hand drops a piece of track in a garbage bin
Simple, correctable mistakes can occur anywhere throughout your CTA crafting journey. Make sure to keep these challenges in mind and avoid them at all costs.
  1. Too many CTAs

Designed to instruct visitors to perform a single, driven action, too many CTAs can cause confusion. Instead, use CTAs as a domino effect: Urge visitors to join your mailing list, then send out a greeting email urging them to follow your socials.

You should aim to have at least two types of visitors and craft your CTAs around those people. Hot prospects are quick and concise, so CTAs should be high on the page, colorful, and easy to understand, like “Join today.” Prospective customers who are further into their sales journey on your website would know more about your company, and therefore may be looking for a more personalized, specific CTA like “Take a free 30 day trial.”

  1. Poor placement

Make it easy for your visitors to discover your CTAs. Studies show that adding a prominent CTA button will increase conversion rate by 62%. Positioning your CTA above the fold–so your customers do not have to scroll to find it– is best. If you have two CTAs on a page, position one above the fold and one at the very bottom of the page to remain consistent and focused on your goal. For example, a CTA right here is not engaging and does not draw attention.

  1. Leaving out the benefits

The purpose of your CTA is to highlight the benefits your company can provide to your potential customers. A CTA that does not clearly cite the benefits you can offer to your customers means that you are not looking at your CTA from a customer perspective. Words like “free” and “earn” create an impulse to click.

  1. Provoking guilt

Have you ever turned down a CTA on a website by clicking a button that states something like “No, I don’t want to help out?” Guilting customers to interact with your page can leave them annoyed, uncomfortable, and uninterested. Customers look for honesty, clarity, and professionalism when interacting with a company, and a good rule of thumb for companies is the goal to evoke a positive emotion from your visitors.

Crafting a CTA for a Social Media Post

Acquire the knowledge to create a great CTA through a social media post, story, or shoutout with the customer perspective in mind.

A person scrolls through a social media app on their phone
Crafting a successful CTA on social media relies on your attention to the platform and its audiences.
  1. Create a sense of urgency

Without sounding pushy, you want your followers to see your CTA on a post as something they might miss. Basically, you want your customers to have FOMO about your product or service. When crafting this type of post, make sure to post your product or service ahead of time so your customers have a heads-up and time enough to make a purchase, subscribe, or perform an action.

  1. Use the voice of your brand

To make your CTAs clear and concise, it is important to remain consistent when crafting posts for your CTAs. For example, if a dog food company posted a CTA on their Instagram, they would want their voice to reflect their brand message, such as speaking to the dog behind the screen, or putting a speech bubble above a picture of a dog in your post demonstrating the action customers should perform.

  1. Customize CTAs for each platform

Different social media apps accumulate different groups of people and use different posting formats. Take advantage of these differences to reach your ideal audiences. For example, if crafting a CTA on Facebook, utilize streaming services to appeal to your followers. On the flip side, if posting on Twitter, a quick, concise message in a post will work best.

  1. Compare CTAs

Split testing is a technique companies use to create different versions of your content and compare the best tactics that work. Comparing multiple techniques will result in the best CTA for your customers and therefore, you and your business.

The Bottom Line

Crafting a successful CTA relies on your attention to your audience. By following these best practices and avoiding the common mistakes, you will grow your audience, and therefore your consumer base. The biggest tip when crafting a CTA: keep the perspective of your visitors in mind.