In the online world, everyone is focussed on a certain metric: website traffic. But what does traffic mean to your and your website?
Unless you’ve got ads running on your pages (which still take hundreds of thousands of hits to make any decent money from), your website traffic should not be the most important metric you measure.
You could spend hours and hundred of dollars to try gaining as much traffic as possible. But unless that traffic is taking action on your site, it’s all meaningless. Instead, focusing on your call to action could be the one thing that sees your website start working for you.
Take a step back, and ask yourself why you want traffic? What does 100, 1000 or 10,000 hits a day mean for your site?
A better question to ask is what you would like that traffic to do once it lands on your site. Whether you’re a blogger, business owner or web designer, hear this: what is more important than traffic, is conversions. Whether you have a blog, business or other site, there is a reason why you’d like to get traffic to your site. But it isn’t just for number’s sake. That traffic will mean something to you, and that something is actually what you should be focussing on.
What action do you want visitors to your site to take?
If you’re a web designer that creates websites for others, what is the one thing your clients would like their website to do? Maybe they want to prompt people to pick up the phone and call them for a quote. Maybe they want users to book online, buy a product or share their posts. Cracking this code is the one thing that will see your clients raving about your work. Because then you’ll be able to create a website that gets them results!
So, what is your ultimate goal for the users that land on your site? If there was one action you’d like someone to take, what would it be? This is known as a call to action.
Maybe you’d really like them to join your mailing list. Or buy a product. Or leave a review. Whichever action you’d like them to take, the user must know what action to take.
Figure out your current conversion rate
Firstly, let’s have a look at how well your site is currently converting. To figure out what percentage conversion rate you’re getting on your CTA, divide your conversions by the page views and times by 100. For example, if my page gets 1000 views a day, but only 10 people signup to my mailing list, 10/1000 x 100 = 1%. Just one percent of my traffic is converting!
Let me show you how traffic isn’t as important as your call to action. Maybe you only get 100 hits to your page per day. Wah! Considering the whole internet ocean, that’s small fish. But of those 100 users, 20 are signing up. That’s a conversion rate of 20%! That’s double the amount of signups than the first example and a great conversion rate. I’d rather have a 20% conversion rate with 100 users, over 1000 users where only 1% converts, any day.
Calls to action and conversion rates are a great sign of a functional website.
How do you create a successful call to action?
- Don’t confuse people. Have one clear call to action on the page only. If I ask people to view another page in a blog post, point them to the next post in the series at the bottom and then embed a form for them to signup to my mail list, what do you think they’ll do? Mostly, a user will be too confused to take any steps, leaving each call to action fruitless. Decide what you’d like your visitors to do the most, and stick with the one ask.
- Provide multiple opportunities for the user to respond. Short of spamming your visitors, sometimes it takes a few tries to convert. For example, having a mail list opt-in in the header, mid-blog post and at the end of post reinforces this action. Having multiple opportunities (of the one conversion method) greatly increases the conversion rate.
- Relate your call to action to the page’s content. What you would like your visitor to do must relate to the reason they’re viewing the page. Otherwise, its a cold-hard sell! Maybe you have a page with a best-ever chocolate chip cookies recipe. An example of a great call to action would be to sign up to the mail list to get five more irresistible chocolate cookie recipes! An example of a bad opt-in would be to put a sign-up to get my daily yoga workout plan. That’s a very basic example, but remember to tailor your CTA to what’s on your page. If you have a blog that involves cookie recipes and yoga workouts, that’s fine. Just make two seperate mail lists for these groups.
- Baby steps. Maybe your ultimate win would be for users to sign up and pay for your course at $499. A visitor that comes to read a blog post most likely isn’t going to fork out 500 bucks on first visit. Unless your content is suuuper ahmazing, that’s a big ask! And if you’ve done this, please contact me because I’d love to hear more. A better way to frame your CTA is to sign up for a freebie that maybe includes one stage of your course. Give them a taste of what you’d eventually love for them to participate in. Let them get to know you, hang around for awhile, and become a fan. If you continue to provide great value, they’re much more likely to eventually sign up for the whole course.
- Keep your language clear, concise and positive. The more brief you can be with your call to action, the simpler it will be for users to respond. You also want users to make an immediate decision; once they click off your site its not likely they’ll come back later just to subscribe/review/purchase. Communicate it clearly and think about using immediacy. Use words such as ‘now’, ‘today’, or ‘immediately’ to drive action.
Have you had a go at creating a call to action? Firstly figure out what action you want your site visitors to take, then create an action using the tips above!