A call to action (CTA) is the second most important element of a popup, after the headline. It tells a visitor what you want them to do and how to complete that action.
And so, it’s only logical, isn’t it?
The easiest way to boost popup conversions is by improving the CTA.
After all, if more people notice it, get intrigued by it, and follow the suggested action, the more subscribers your popup will generate, right?
It’s darn bloody hard to figure out how to improve it.
I mean, you could try the obvious, change colors or move the CTA around. But if this fails, you’re pretty much left with nothing.
Or are you?
You see, colors and placement aren’t the only ways to change a call to action.
And in this post, I’ll show you 5 super-easy, yet massively overlooked ways to test calls to actions to boost popups conversions.
Ready? Let’s do it then.
#1. Move the CTA Away from The Other Elements
Whitespace, an empty area around an object on a web page (or any other graphic element) has been causing a bit of stir among the design community.
Some consider it a waste of a precious real estate. Others, however, use it to make individual elements more prominent. And it’s the latter group that’s right.
Whitespace has a positive impact on a user experience, making elements more readable, and improving their visibility.
After all, let’s face it, you can’t expect visitors to find much on a page that looks like this, no?
Whitespace allows you to separate design elements, and create dynamics between them.
But hey, don’t just take my word for it. Here are some studies that proved its positive impact:
A study quoted by Dmitry Fadeyev of Smashing Magazine in this article found that using whitespace between paragraphs and margins on a page improved comprehension by almost 20%!
And another study quoted in the same source confirms that although whitespace might not affect the page’s performance, it does influence user satisfaction and experience.
And so, a quick and easy way to improve your call to actions and make them more prominent is by moving them away from other elements.
Create a whitespace around your CTA. Although on your design it might not be white but that doesn’t matter. The white in the name doesn’t suggest a specific color but lack of any other elements in that space.
Here’s an example of a popup with little whitespace around the CTA. Notice how other elements make it blend in the design, instead of standing out.
Now compare it with this example, in which the company surrounded the CTA with plenty of whitespace.
#2. Add Graphics or Special Effect to the Button
Your Call to Action is nothing else but a button you want users to click.
And so, the first objective, therefore, is to make more people notice it.
You could tackle this issue by enriching the button with a special effect or a visual.
You could animate it. Include an emoji. Or add a graphic.
Copyhackers, for instance, use a cartoon character to make the CTA more prominent.
And what you can’t see on the screenshot above, is the cartoon’s animation.
Seeing an unusual button and movement, immediately attracts a visitor attention, delivering the objective. The copy then takes over and entices a person to click.
#3. Focus on Positives in the Call to Action Copy
I’m sure you know this already:
Words have an incredible effect on our behavior.
But did you know that even a single negative word, can change your visitors’ mood for worse? Stress them out or make them feel anxious.
According to Andrew Newberg and Mark Robert Waldman’s book, Words Can Change Your Brain:
“A single word has the power to influence the expression of genes that regulate physical and emotional stress.”
The authors then explain that a single negative word can trigger our amygdala, the region of our brains that processes fear, into action.
And I’m sure you’ll agree; that’s the last reaction you want your visitors to have on your popup, right?
So, change your popup to focus on positives. Even if what you’re offering is a solution to a grave problem (negative), phrase it to make it feel more optimistic.
For example, use verbs like win, solve, get, increase, boost, etc. to denote a positive outcome.
#4. Add Power Words to Make Your Visitors Feel Safe
On top of affecting a person’s behavior, words can also connect with them emotionally.
They can get readers feel something. Be excited, almost bouncing off the walls with joy. Or drag them down into depression.
Writers refer to words that can achieve such effect as Power Words and use them quite often to guide a person’s emotions as they read the copy.
And so should you, if you want to ensure your visitors respond positively to your offer and click the button.
How to do it?
Use words that make them feel safe. After all, visitors need to trust you, and have confidence in you. They need to believe you.
And certain words can help you evoke those emotions. In this article Jon Morrow lists some of the most useful ones:
- Cancel Anytime
- No Obligation
- No Questions Asked
- No Risk
- No Strings Attached
- Try before You Buy
#5. Change the Person in the CTA
Here’s a funny fact:
Each of us would respond differently to a pronoun in the call to action.
You might notice and click a button that says “Download My eBook,” whereas I might only react to “Download Your eBook.”
Many conversion rate specialists researched this phenomenon. Here are some of the findings.
Tim Ash, the CEO of SiteTuners, a conversion rate optimization company reports that in one test conducted by Unbounce, changing the CTA to the first person achieved 90% increase in conversions.
Joanna Wiebe of CopyHackers, explains the reason for testing buttons in the first person:
“A great rule of thumb when writing a call to action is to make your button copy complete this sentence:
I want to ________________
That little trick is how we get buttons like Find Out How to Ride a Bike and Make Sense of My Finances Fast. It’s also how we avoid buttons like Register to Learn More … because no one wants to register to learn more.” (source)
So, as a final test, experiment with changing the person in your Call to Action to see if it has any effect on your audience.