The idea behind this week’s post is inspired by from an email from longtime client and family friend, David Gibson. David is a respected Brisbane-based Historian with a mind-blowing range of historical knowledge ranging from Brisbane City right through to early settlements on Norfolk Island. His website “Talking History with David Gibson” is his online presence and David’s strives to keep it up to date with fresh facts and information in the form of quizzes, vignettes and even tweets from his Twitter account.
David’s issue with his site arises from the fact that despite it being an excellent resource for historical information, people are not seeing the underlying reason for its existence. And that is to promote David as an expert in his field who is available for tours, historical research, key notes speeches and educational visits just to name a few of his services.
When David contacted me about driving more business through his site, the first item that I pointed out to him that there was no distinct Call to Action prompting his site visitors to ask for more information on his services. Plenty of information but no real promotion of his talents. As I said to David, a Call to Action can often determine the success or failure of a website. It is that important.
What is a Call to Action?
A Call to Action is a highly visible prompt that spurs the website visitor into further interaction with the business. It can take many forms: – a Click Me button, a newsletter sign-up, a Shopping Cart, a Free Quote enquiry form, these are just a few options that are available to the site operator. Anything that can generate that all important sales lead can be used as a Call to Action.
Why should I have a Call to Action?
This question can only be answered by you as the site owner. What is the whole purpose of the site? Is it there to boost or promote your business or organisation? Does the site play an important part in generating your source of income? Do you want it to push visitors towards other aspects of your business?
Maybe you just want more details about the site visitor to initiate further interaction with them.
If your site is designed to interact in any way, shape or form with its visitors, you need to have a distinct Call to Action.
Where should I put my Call to Action?
This question is fairly easy to answer – your Call to Action must be highly visible whenever a visitor comes to your site. This means that it needs to be seen straight away after the page loads, “above the fold” or visible without any scrolling. On David’s site, we have placed a large Call to Action at the top of the front page allowing instant access to David’s CV and contact information. On another site I have created, Roscoes Piazza, the ORDER NOW button is at the top of every single page so that people can order pizza online straight away with minimal fuss…
You must make the interaction between yourself and your potential customers as easy as possible. Despite their interest, most people will not search through your site looking for a way to get in touch with you. If they can’t see the Call to Action immediately or in the first 10 seconds (at most), you risk losing them to another business. And if that happens, your site loses its effectiveness as a marketing tool.
Take a quick look at your site and pretend to be a potential customer – Does your site have a Call to Action?