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Call to Action in SEO Strategy

Learn how a solid call to action affects SEO and conversion rate optimization

Saket Mittal
Call to Action for SEO Hero Image

Every time someone visits your website, they discover something new. Your organization profits more when customers find what they need quickly.

Identifying a resource or information on a website might be easier with appropriate signposts for the next steps. Visitors to your website can be guided to the next step, converted into leads, or even nudged into purchasing your product with calls to action.

This blog teaches you how to create compelling calls to action. Optimizing your website for SEO can improve the SERP rankings and your website's conversion rate by optimizing your calls to action.

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What is Call to Action (CTA)?

A call to action is a prompt to encourage a user to take a specific action. The activity can be anything from making a purchase, subscribing to a newsletter, filling out a form, or clicking a button to learn more about a product or service. CTAs can be found on websites, emails, advertisements, and social media posts.

Call to action is crucial in converting website visitors into customers or leads.

Without them, users may leave a website without engaging with it or taking meaningful action. Typically, CTAs stand out from the rest of the content on a page using bold colors, contrasting text, or visually striking graphics.

Creating a well-crafted CTA benefits your business in many ways:

1. Encourage users to take action that aligns with your business goals.

2. Easy access to the most critical content on your website, thus improving user experience.

3. A unique and compelling call to action can help a business stand out and create a memorable impression on users.

4. By consistently providing clear and helpful CTAs, businesses can increase customer loyalty.

5. Provide measurable results such as conversion, click-through, and engagement rates.

Call to Action (CTA) Psychology

When creating a call to action, it is necessary to consider the user’s psychology because it can significantly impact the effectiveness of the CTA.

Here are some user psychology factors you should remember while creating a CTA:

1. Human Mind Expects the Call to Action

The human mind is wired to respond to cues and prompts, especially when they come as a call to action. Call to action signals to your senses that you must take action and encourages us to engage.

2. Call to Action Excites Users’ Curiosity

Humans have an innate curiosity that drives them to explore and discover new things. CTAs can tap into this curiosity by offering something that piques users' interest or promises to reveal more information. This tantalizing effect creates an urgency to take action, as they want to take advantage of what the CTA offers.

3. Call to Action Strengthen Users Psychological Sense of Reward

Users who act on a CTA receive a reward that reinforces their behavior. This sense of accomplishment can trigger a response in their brain, creating a positive association with the brand or product. This psychological reward enhances the value of taking action on the CTA and encourages them to do so again.

Are CTAs only Buttons?

No, CTAs are not necessarily to be buttons only. Since CTAs are instructions to a website visitor to take a desired action, they can take different forms besides buttons. They come in different shapes: banners, pop-ups, sidebars, hyperlink text, or images.

It is common to think of CTAs as buttons because buttons are a clear and recognizable design element that users are accustomed to interacting with. Buttons stand out on a webpage and are easy to click or tap, making them a practical option for encouraging users to take action.

Additionally, many popular website builders and design tools offer pre-designed CTA buttons that are easy to customize and integrate into a website's design. Therefore, it is easy to associate CTAs with buttons.

While CTA buttons are the most popular, they are only sometimes the most effective. The effectiveness of a CTA depends on various factors, such as the context, the audience, the goal of the website or landing page, and the design.

Common Forms of CTA

1. Hyperlink Text CTAs

CTAs can be hyperlinked text that directs users to a specific page or action. It can be effective when placed within a blog post or email and prompt users to act without intruding.

Hyperlink Text Type CTAs
Hyperlink Text Type CTAs

In their analysis, HubSpot found that using anchor text CTAs increased their conversion rates by up to 121%. Up to 93% of the leads generated from the content on their blog came from anchor text CTAs.

2. Images and banners

CTAs can also be clickable images or banners, such as those found on website headers or within social media ads. These visual elements can be eye-catching and effectively lead users to action.

3. Popups:

While popups can sometimes be seen as intrusive, a well-designed popup CTA can grab users’ attention and direct them toward a specific action, including subscribing to a newsletter or completing a survey.

4. Social media icons

Social media share icons can act as CTAs by prompting users to follow or engage with a brand on social media platforms. They can effectively build a brand's online presence and increase customer engagement.

Social Media Icons Type CTAs
Social Media Icons Type CTAs

5. Forms

Forms are another effective way to design CTAs, as they prompt users to fill out information or sign up for a service. These can be placed on a website homepage or landing page to encourage users to take action and provide valuable information to the brand.

Forms Type CTAs
Forms Type CTAs

6. Voice Activated Call to Action (VACTA)

The call-to-action form allows users to interact with a website, application, or device through voice commands. VACTA utilizes voice recognition technology to respond to user input and perform actions such as purchasing, booking an appointment, or subscribing to a newsletter.

According to Statista, by 2027, the market volume is expected to reach over 309 million units, up from roughly 171 million in 2022.

Different Types of CTAs

Brands and marketers use CTAs to direct customers and prospects to take a specific action. The goal of a CTA is to create a sense of urgency for the user to take immediate action.

Broadly, CTAs can be categorized into Conversion CTAs and Engagement CTAs. Let us understand each.

Conversion CTA’s

Conversion CTAs (Call to Action) are specific buttons or links on a website or landing page that prompt visitors to take a particular action that leads to a conversion.

A conversion CTA aims to persuade a user to complete a desired action.

Conversion CTAs are the most crucial action buttons and are strategically placed at prominent positions on a website or landing page. These CTAs encourage users to act and move them down the sales funnel toward becoming customers or clients.

Some types of conversion CTAs are:

1. Sales CTA: These CTAs aim to drive sales by prompting users to purchase or learn more about a product or service. Examples include "Buy now" or "Order today."

2. Lead generation CTA: These CTAs drive users to fill out a form or provide their contact details to generate leads for the business. Examples include "Download our free guide" or "Contact us for a consultation."

3. Exit-intent CTA: These CTAs are triggered when a user is about to leave a website or abandon a page and are designed to retain the user's attention or re-engage them. Examples include "Don't leave yet, sign up for our newsletter" or "Get 10% off your purchase if you stay on this page."

4. Urgency-based CTA: These CTAs create a sense of urgency and encourage immediate action. Examples include "Limited time offer, buy now" or "Only a few spots left, register today."

Engagement Call to Actions

Engagement CTAs (Call-to-Actions) are prompts that encourage users to interact, participate, or engage with a brand or its content.

Engagement CTAs capture users' attention and encourage them to act.

Some desired outputs include leaving a comment, sharing a post, signing up for a newsletter, taking a survey, or joining an online community. Engagement CTAs are often used to build customer relationships, foster brand loyalty, and increase social media reach and engagement.

Since they are secondary and sparsely located on the website or less prominent, engaging CTA buttons may be smaller, less flashy, and less urgent than primary CTAs like "buy now" or "subscribe."

Some types of engagement CTAs include:

1. Subscription CTA: These CTAs encourage users to subscribe to a newsletter or mailing list, often in exchange for a free resource such as an e-book or white paper.

2. Social media CTA: These CTAs encourage users to follow, share or engage with a company's social media channels.

3. Event registration CTA: These CTAs encourage users to register for an event such as a webinar, conference, or workshop.

4. Feedback CTA: These CTAs prompt users to provide feedback or take a survey to improve the company's products or services. For example, "Take the survey and win a prize."

5. Referral CTA: These CTAs encourage users to refer friends or family to the company's products or services.

How to Decide the Best CTA for Your Business?

Deciding which call-to-action is best for your website depends on various factors like:

1. Align CTAs with Business Goals: Identify the primary objectives of your website, such as increasing sales, generating leads, building brand awareness, or promoting events. The CTA you choose should align with these goals.

2. Understand Your Target Audience: Research your target audience to understand their needs, preferences, and behaviors. A study by Hubspot highlights that personalized CTAs work 202% better than normal CTAs.

3. Analyze Your Website Pages: Evaluate the content and purpose of each page on your website to determine the appropriate CTA.

4. Consider the User Journey: Consider the path users take on your website and where a CTA would make the most sense. For example, if users typically read several blog posts before making a purchase, a CTA on a blog post may be more effective than one on a product page.

5. Test and Optimize: Once you have chosen a CTA, test its effectiveness through A/B testing and adjust as needed to optimize its performance.

Why is CTA Necessary for SEO Strategy?

Compelling and eye-catching CTAs are necessary for businesses because CTAs can indirectly impact a user's navigation experience and SEO. By incorporating a clear and persuasive CTA, you can increase the chances of conversions and ultimately improve your search engine rankings.

According to Google, user engagement metrics such as click-through and bounce rates affect search engine rankings. Therefore, a well-crafted CTA can improve engagement metrics, positively impacting your SEO performance.

When users land on a webpage, they want to know the exact steps to solve their problem or get the necessary information. CTAs provide a clear path to action, guiding users to the following grades on a website, increasing dwell time. If CTAs are present and clear, users may leave the website without taking action, resulting in a high bounce rate which negatively impacts your SEO.

Critical tips for optimizing your CTA include making it specific, visible, and action-oriented. Consider testing different variations of your CTA to see which one performs best. A strong CTA can help boost website engagement and search engine rankings, making it an essential part of any SEO strategy.

How to Effectively Create CTA for SEO?

Creating a compelling call to action for SEO is crucial to your online marketing campaign’s success. A CTA is a final prompt encouraging a visitor to take the desired action on your website, such as signing up for a newsletter, downloading a resource, or purchasing. Here are some tips on effectively creating CTAs that drive conversions:

1. Start the CTA with a Verb: Use a verb at the beginning of your CTA to convey an action. Verbs like "Visit," "Discover," "Download," or "Sign up" instruct visitors on what to do next. CTAs that begin with a verb typically have the highest click-through rate and generate the most conversions.

2. Create Urgency: To encourage visitors to act immediately, instill urgency in your CTA. You can do this by ending your CTA with "now" or "today" or showing a countdown timer next to it. Visitors may need to take action before the timer runs out to take advantage of the promoted deal or offer.

3. Design Bright Color CTAs: Design your CTA in a bright color to attract visitors' attention. Bright colors are attention-grabbing, and visitors will fixate their eyes on the colorful elements of your website, including the CTA. Hubspot says the conversion rate increases by 21% if you use bright-color CTAs. Use a contrasting color for the embedded text to make it easy to see and read.

4. CTAs Should Stand Out: Size matters when creating a CTA. Use a large oval- or rectangular-shaped CTA to grab visitors' attention and boost clicks and conversions. A small CTA can be overshadowed by other content on your website and difficult for visitors to select.

5. Surround with Whitespace: Increase your CTA's visibility by surrounding it with Whitespace. By surrounding your CTA with many whitespaces, visitors will focus on it rather than other visual elements on your website.

6. Place at the Top or Bottom: Placing your CTA at the top or bottom of your website can increase its visibility. A middle-of-the-page placement usually yields the poorest performance for CTAs. A top-of-the-page arrangement means all visitors will see your CTA when they initially load your website. Placing your CTA at the bottom of the page allows you to warm up visitors with sales copy that further entices them to take action.

Measuring and Tracking Your CTA Performance

Measuring and tracking your website call to action performance is essential for optimizing your website and improving your conversion rates. Whether you want to increase sign-ups, downloads, or purchases, you need a clear goal and a metric for tracking your success. You can measure and test your CTA performance by using the following methods.

A/B Testing your CTAs

A/B testing is a great way to compare two versions of your CTA to determine which one performs better. You can test different components of your CTA, including its wording, color, size, shape, placement, or design. To run a valid A/B test, split your traffic equally between the two versions and run the test for a sufficient period. Here are the steps to use A/B testing to test CTAs:

1. Determine the Goal: Defining your goal will help create a more compelling CTA.

2. Create Different Versions of the CTA: These versions should differ in wording, design, or placement. For example, you might test a red "Buy Now" button versus a green "Buy Now" button. Human behavior changes with color. Some color attracts a user to click on it, and some they may pass.

3. Split Your Traffic: With your two different CTAs in place, it's time to divide your website traffic into two groups randomly. One group will be directed to the control page with the original CTA, and the other will be directed to the variation page with the modified CTA.

4. Monitor the Results: During the testing period, track the performance of both versions. Keep an eye on metrics like click-through rates and conversion rates.

5. Analyze the Results: Determine which version of the CTA had the highest conversion and click-through rates. Also, consider other metrics that indicate which version of the CTA was more effective.

6. Implement the Result: Based on your analysis, choose the version of the CTA that performed the best and implement it on your website or landing page. However, remember that the winner might not always be the highest-converting version. It would be best to weigh the tradeoffs between higher conversion rates and metrics like user experience and engagement.

Optimizing CTA placement with Heatmaps

Heatmaps and eye-tracking can show you how your CTA attracts or repels your visitors’ attention and how you can improve its visibility and appeal. Heatmaps are visual representations of how people interact with your website. Eye tracking tracks eye movements to determine where people look, how long they look, and what they ignore.

Learn more about using Heatmaps for your website here.

Surveys and Feedback

Surveys and feedback effectively collect qualitative data from your visitors or customers. Ask them questions, get their opinions, and understand their motivations and objections. Use surveys and feedback to ask your visitors or customers what they think of your CTA, what made them click or not click, and what they expect or want from your offer.

Using these methods, you can accurately measure and test your CTA performance and adjust accordingly to increase your conversion rate.

Optimize Your CTAs for Higher Conversions

CTA can be a potent business tool to grow and connect with customers. It can help increase website traffic, generate leads, and increase overall sales. Taking the time to create thoughtful and practical CTAs can be an excellent investment in your long-term success. You can see tangible results that will help your business reach its goals by creating completing and compelling CTAs.

Adding CTA alone does not ensure you will generate higher leads. You need to check the performance of your CTA regularly.

If you are an enterprise with many pages, measuring the performance of all the pages becomes challenging. To automate this task, you need a trusted partner to check multiple page versions simultaneously.

Quattr, an SEO platform, can help you measure the performance of all your web pages simultaneously and provide you with recommendations. Quattr’s sandbox environment allows you to make changes to your web page and check the performance in real-time before deploying it on your web page.

Optimize Website CTA Performance with Quattr!

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Call to Action: FAQs

What is a CTA in content marketing?

A call to action (CTA) in content marketing is a message that encourages readers to take a specific action. It could be to sign up for a newsletter, take advantage of a discount, download a digital product, or click to view a webpage. CTAs should be clear and direct, bridging the information provided and the desired result.

How can I optimize my CTAs for mobile users?

When optimizing CTAs for mobile users, keep the design simple and prominent, use clear and concise language, place the CTA in a visible location, and ensure it's easy to tap. Use action verbs to create a sense of urgency and avoid using too many CTAs on one page. Test different CTAs to see which ones are most effective with your mobile audience.

How many CTAs should be used on a page?

The number of CTAs on a page depends on the page type. However, it is advisable to leave a page with only a few CTAs. Having one or two prominent and clear CTAs should be sufficient.

About The Author

Saket Mittal

Saket Mittal is a Marketing Analyst at Quattr and helps drive traffic to the website by improving user experience. He is a an expert Quattr platform user and takes charge in improving product experience and conversions. Saket writes about content marketing, website optimization, and expert tips on how to use Google Search Console for content SEO.

About Quattr

Quattr is an innovative and fast-growing venture-backed company based in Palo Alto, California USA. We are a Delaware corporation that has raised over $7M in venture capital. Quattr's AI-first platform evaluates like search engines to find opportunities across content, experience, and discoverability. A team of growth concierge analyze your data and recommends the top improvements to make for faster organic traffic growth. Growth-driven brands trust Quattr and are seeing sustained traffic growth.

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