What is a call to action?
A call to action (CTA) is a direction to the reader telling them what to do next. In sales, marketing and advertising it is usually an instruction such as ‘buy now’, ‘order today’, ‘subscribe’, ‘donate’, ‘sign up’, ‘join now’, ‘register’, ‘click here’, ‘add to basket’ and so on. On a website, this is often in the form of a button or hyperlink.
Why does a blog need a call to action?
Business blogs are usually used as a form of marketing to attract the attention of your target audience, build a relationship and eventually turn them into a customer or client. Having a call to action helps keep readers engaged for longer and moves them to the next stage of the process.
Your CTA might differ depending on where you have acquired the reader and whether they are a new or returning visitor to your blog, a potential customer, repeat customer or ongoing customer.
The purpose of your call to action could be to:
- Ask readers to follow your business on social media
- Subscribe readers to your blog
- Link to a product or services page
- Direct readers to related blog posts
- Encourage comments on your blog by posting a question
- Persuade readers to download a document/catalogue/brochure
- Get readers to make an enquiry or contact you
- Request readers’ email addresses
Try to make sure that your call to action relates to your blog post so that it is a logical step for your reader. You can use more than one CTA in a post to lead readers towards different actions.
This article from Hubspot covers different types of call to action in more detail.
Creating a stronger call to action
Top tips to make your CTA stronger:
- Use strong verbs; “buy now”, “order today”
- Offer something free: “download a free copy of our latest e-book”
- Use emotion; “book a holiday your family will love “
- Keep it simple, give one instruction rather than a choice
- Make your CTA stand out by using bold, coloured or large font or creating a clickable button
The purpose of a call to action is to get a reader to take that action. To check how effective your call to action is, you should measure your results. You can use Google Analytics to see exactly how many visitors you are getting to your blog post. You can then compare how many of those readers are taking the required action and work out how successful your call to action is.
Buy the book!
Our A-Z of Blogging is available as a book, packed full of extra tips and advice.