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Which ‘Calls to Action’ Generate the Most Response?

December 18th 2018 | by David Hofstede

When we think about a call to action on a website, we usually associate that with a sentence or two that tries to convince a visitor to do something, followed by a link that initiates this action.


But what about the link itself?


The words or phrases that appear in that button should not be an after-thought; this is another opportunity to influence behavior. Why not take it seriously?


Different messages will appear to different customers, so there’s no one-size-fits-all answer to which call-to-action will generate the most responses on your website. But here are some ideas that might boost your results.

1. “Sign up” vs. “Sign up for Free”

If what you want customers to sign up for won’t cost them anything (such as blogs or promotional offers in their email box), reinforce that message as often as possible. People like free stuff.

2. “Subscribe” vs. “Join Free For One Month”

You might think the use of “Free” here favors the second option, but this one can go either way. “Subscribe” is more straightforward; “Join Free for One Month” suggests that if you continue beyond that first month there will be a charge involved. And a lot of companies just charge customers automatically at that time even if they don’t state a preference. Anyone who has been burned by that will not bite again.

3. “Start Saving Now” vs. “Give Us a Try”

The former may work better if the rest of your website content offers specific examples of how customers can save with your brand. “Give Us a Try” is more generic, but also friendlier than the more commonly used “Click Here.”

4. “Yes, I’m Interested vs. “I’m Not Interested”

This type of choice is utilized in an exit pop-up that represents a “put up or shut up” moment. “Yes, I’m Interested” should appear next to an offer that will entice someone on the fence to take a chance on your company. Those who opt for “I’m Not Interested” should then see a second pop-up asking why that’s the case, with 3-4 options to choose from. That way you still learn something from that engagement that might be helpful with other visitors.

5. “Create Your Account” vs. “Create My Account”

It’s the same call to action, but one company found that the “My” option performed 25% better. Will that be the case for you as well? Maybe – maybe not. An A-B test would deliver definitive results. You can also A-B test on the size, placement and the color of call-to-action buttons. You never know which variable will click.