All Conversion Starts With The Click

How To Get The Click?

In a recent podcast on The Smart Passive Income SPI:054 The Click (It’s a great podcast, please give it a listen) Pat Flynn, talks about ‘The Click” and really goes into depth on the start of a conversion.

In Pat’s podcast episode he talks about a few key elements that contribute to conversion optimization, a topic that I am very passionate about.

In the cast Pat goes into:

  • How a click, even one that doesn’t seem to matter, becomes a “mini-commitment” and why that’s important.
  • The two levels of links and how to use them.
  • The best color to make your links.
  • Strategies behind the call to action, including when not to use them.
  • How to decide when to (and when not to) open links in new windows.

For as good as the episode was, and I did really enjoy it, there are a few elements I’d like to go deeper into and flesh out where Pat left off.

Thinking of a click as a “mini-commitment” is a very keen insight and the beginning of a conversation you are having with your reader. Each click sets up an expectation or a promise that the reader or “clicker” is engaging in with you.

The promise that the next page is going to be relevant to that promised in the link copy. Pat does do into describing the beginnings of a moment of orientation when someone clicks on a link and arrives on a new page. There is a bit of a reset that happens in the mind of the visitor that needs to be addressed in order to keep that promise and commitment with the click.

Your prospect has just committed and taken a step forward and this is a clear indication of engagement and potentially a micro conversion that leads up to a macro conversion or a sale. (There can be many micro conversions included in a macro conversion and if you optimize for each micro conversion or mini yes then your likelihood of increasing your macro conversions are greatly increased.)

You need to follow through on that promise by answering these 3 questions on your click through page, and this goes for internal links as well as links from media or PPC ads, the same concept applies.

3 Questions Every Page Must Answer

  1. Where am I?
  2. What can I do here?
  3. Why should I do it?

Each one of these could be an article in themselves so I’ll save that for a later post. I don’t want to get off track from The Click.

The Best Link or Button Color For Conversion

Whether it’s a micro conversion or a macro conversion it all starts with the click or call to action. That click can be as simple as an HTML text link or a button. Either way one thing marketers always stubble with is what color to make it (link or the button). Sometimes marketers are stuck in a corner and are forced to use a specific color link or button because of the design or branding guidelines of their site. Sadly those situations leave no room for testing and conversion optimization to find out what works.

In Pat’s cast he mentions red as being a stopping color and bad for links. This is not necessarily true. Red is traditionally a stop color and green a go color but I have seen tests where Red calls to action have out performed green. As far as color goes, it’s not really a case of you’ve got to test it, although you always should. The truth is real hit depends, but it depends on your site.

There Are Only 2 Factors When It Comes To Link/Button Color

  1. You want a contrasting color to your site’s color scheme. Red is fine as long as it contrasts the page.
  2. In the case of a button you want to have plenty of white space around the target.

If that’s all to complicated, for text links, just go with blue. LOL.

Here’s Why: The authority in usability testing Jacob Nielsen has publicly written the standard default blue is best for usability.

As always though you should test it but I would hope you’re designing larger tests than just simply link colors, because that won’t get you much conversion lift.

The Formula For The Perfect Call To Action Text

Is there a a perfect call to action?

Well yes actually but you’ve got to test it.

The perfect call to action text for my audience is not going to be the same for your audience. But there is a formula you can follow.

First off though, please don’t ever use the word “Submit” Your web visitors are not dominatrix mistresses, the word submit is just default programmer laziness that does not speak directly to your visitors reason for clicking.

Don’t believe me? Here’s some data to back it up.

The question you need to answer when writing persuasive call to action copy is, why should your visitors click? Use button copy that re-enforces the value of clicking.

Here’s the formula

Action Verb + Benefit Statement

Here’s an example:

Not This: Click Here
But This: Get Instant Access To…

Here are some action verbs to get you started.  Your benefit statement is going to be unique to your offer.

Action Verbs:

  • Learn
  • Get
  • Go
  • Find Out

Don’t be afraid of length. Make your benefit statement as long as it needs to be to get to the heart of what a prospect will get from your product. It’s OK to make it several words long. But there is one caveat, make it an emotional benefit not what they physically get.

Here’s an example of a benefit statement

Not This: a 12 part email course on conversion optimization
But This: more sales

See the difference?

The first tells you what you get. The second shows you what benefit you’ll get.

So here’s how it looks all together:

Get Instant Access To Higher Revenue

OK so I’ve added over 1,000 words to Pat’s 34 minutes about links and I think we can both go on for another 30 minutes each. You’re probably tired of reading about links.

Now it’s your turn.

Go test some benefit statements in your links and apply this new knowledge to what Pat teaches and if you think this can benefit anyone please share this post and leave a comment.

Learn More About Conversion Rate Optimization

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About Bobby Hewitt

Bobby Hewitt is the CEO and owner of Creative Thirst, the conversion rate optimization agency that specializes in turning more clicks into customers to increase leads, subscriptions and sales through A/B and multivariate split testing to improve clients’ conversion rates. Bobby has over ten years experience in web design and Internet marketing and holds a bachelors degree in Marketing from Rutgers University. He is also certified in Online Testing and Landing Page Optimization and holds a certificate in Web Analytics from The University of British Columbia. Bobby is also the recipient of the Jim Novo Award of Academic Excellence, an award given out yearly (starting in 2007) to the graduate with the highest grade average over all 4 courses of the UBC Award of Achievement in Web Analytics and is awarded by the Web Analytics Association and University of British Columbia Continuing Studies. He believes that improving conversion rates begins with an understanding of the social psychology of your users, based on personas and persuasive design.
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