How To Write An Effective Call To Action (CTA)

content marketing seo Sep 21, 2021

When potential customers visit your website, the goal is to provide a clear direction in your content to ensure they have a smooth, easy experience and know what actions to take. Action buttons allow visitors to interact with your website, and if they’re interested in your offer, the call to action (CTA) will encourage them to take the next step.

The CTA is the part of your content, website, or ad that prompts the reader to take some kind of action (subscribe, buy a product, download a resource, etc.). It can be a word, phrase, or sentence, and it’s usually placed in the form of a button in a prominent spot on your website.

Your CTA is your chance to motivate visitors to take real steps toward becoming a customer. Effective calls to action will be strong, powerful, and persuasive.


How To Create Effective CTAs:


1.  Use Action-Orientated Words

2.  Tell Your Audience Why They Should Take The Desired Action

3.  CTA Buttons Vs. Long Form CTA

4.  Customise Your CTA Buttons

5.  Use Long Form CTA

6.  Strategically Place Your CTA


1. Use Action-Oriented Words

Your CTA needs to be clear and concise. You want your audience to know exactly what you want them to do, which is why you should start your CTA with a strong action verb, like “start,” “shop,” “buy,” “join,” or “learn.” Also, think about  being firm and to the point. For instance, “Call Now” is a lot better than “Consider giving us a call.”

The best CTAs have between two to five words. The last thing you want to do is overwhelm your readers with a lot of unnecessary jargon that they couldn’t be bothered reading. Keeping your CTA concise is the ideal way to entice your prospect and encourage a click.


2. Tell Your Audience Why They Should Take The Desired Action

You want your audience to take a specific action, and the only way you are going to motivate them to do what you want is by letting them know how it will benefit them, not you. For instance, will it help them do their jobs better, save money, or perhaps lose weight?

When writing your CTA, choose a language that inspires enthusiasm or emotion. Beyond just stating what your business does, you want your readers to know exactly what it can do for them. Basically, think about your unique selling point (USP) and be sure to include it in your CTA.


3. CTA Buttons Vs. Long Form CTA

Most website visitors are genuinely interested in engaging with your brand and look for CTA buttons to learn more about it. These buttons make it easy for your audience to understand what action you want them to take next and also help create a better user experience.

Depending on where the visitors are on your website, there are a few different types of CTAs to consider. The two most important are CTA buttons and long form CTAs.


4. Customise Your CTA Buttons

CTA buttons can vary in size, shape, design, and placement. They can be customized according to the look and feel of your site. The biggest challenge with buttons is that they are very restrictive in terms of text length. The longest you can go is something like “Grab your free copy today.” Therefore, you need to use the text surrounding the CTA button to explain why visitors should click through. I’ve recently found this Crazy Egg article about the best CTA phrases and it certainly offers some inspiration about how to get started.


5. Long Form CTA

Long form CTAs involve using sentences to motivate visitors to take action. Typically, a long form CTA will appear at the end of a blog post or at the bottom of a landing page. Instead of being limited to using only a few words, you have a lot more freedom with text length. For example, “Sign up now and you will receive 20% off your first order.” In some instances, you may even include an offer like a discount code or free shipping.


6. Strategically Place Your CTA

Where you place your call to action is almost as important as the CTA itself. Ideally, you will have several types of CTAs located throughout your website, depending on where your potential customer is in the decision-making process.

The goal is for your CTA to be clicked, and for this to happen, you must place them in spots where visitors are most likely to take action. For instance, on a product or purchase page (where customers are already far down the sales funnel), a very prominent CTA can be introduced immediately, such as “buy now.”

However, on landing pages, where customers have not yet even begun the shopping or browsing process, CTAs asking prospects to sign up for newsletters is a better option.

These are referred to as above the fold and below the fold CTA placements. Above the fold is when CTAs are placed in a spot that can be seen without visitors having to scroll down the page. Below the fold are those CTAs that don’t appear to your visitors immediately when they open up on your landing page.

Aside from placement, the visual aspect of your CTA is also important. Here are a few basic design tricks to keep in mind:

  • Make it large and bold
  • Use bright colours, like red, orange, or yellow, to make it stand out (of course, choose wisely to ensure the colours fit your branding).
  • Use button shaped CTAs (rather than hyperlinks)



CTAs are one of the most important features of your website. If you don’t make it clear what action you want visitors to take, you risk losing them forever, but you will certainly miss out on some valuable opportunities of selling your product or building a relationship with a prospective customer. The right CTA displayed at the right moment can persuade a user to follow through and finalize a sale. Following the tips discussed above will help you look through your website and ensure you have what you need to take your business to the next level. If you are just considering setting up a website or in the process already, I recommend considering how you want to lead your readers through your entire website and what messages you want to convey on each page. Once you are clear on the messaging, you can come up with the right CTAs for each section.

Let us know if you need help with your CTAs. Our team is ready to help you with strategic suggestions, revisions or full content and CTA strategy for your brand.

Are you stuck coming up with the right content ideas? Check out this article to find inspiration for How to come up with content ideas for social media.

I've also created a post about How to create content for social media with high impact to help you navigate the best, easiest and fastest ways to create high-quality content for your brand.