10 Types of Calls-To-Action (CTAs) Examples, Types, Mistakes

CTA Types

How can you help a new visitor on your website find their way and buy something? How do you convince blog readers to purchase your products?

Call-to-action (CTA) buttons are the answer. These are CTAs that prompt users, whether they’re potential customers or buyers, to take action instead of just hanging around.

A never-ending list of features on a SaaS website, for instance, doesn’t mean much if users can’t easily sign up or ask for a demo. A well-written CTA can fix that.

“Action is the fundamental key to all success. For your email campaign to achieve success, it needs to contain a strong, straight-forward call-to-action.”EmailOut

In this article, we’ve listed the 10 most common types of CTAs and given real-world examples of how they’re used.

What is a CTA?

A call to action (CTA) is like a friendly instruction on a website telling you what to do. It’s usually a Call to Action or link that says something like “Sign Up” or “Buy Now.” This button or link is like a guide, prompting you to take a specific action.

In email messages, CTAs are often links that lead you to a webpage where you can do more things.

A call to action can take up different forms:

  • Text link
  • Button
  • Plain text with no link

“Buy Now” or “Download Now” are common direct calls to take action. However, a call to action could be longer, like “Sign up today so you never miss a post.”

The possibilities are endless.

A clear Call to Action (CTA) can help reduce decision overwhelm and give your content a clear goal. Even if it’s just a short phrase, people need direction on what to do next. Using CTAs that create a sense of urgency can boost conversions.

If your call to action encourages potential customers to stay on your site, then it has done its job. It’s worth mentioning that highlighting one CTA is the most common approach.

Unbounce found that 90% of people who visit your website read the headlines and the call-to-action text. They might not read everything in detail, but they quickly look over what’s at the top and see what you’re asking them to do. 

However, some marketers use both a main and a secondary call to action in their marketing efforts. Later, we’ll discuss some best practices in this area.

10 Most-Used Types Of CTAs With Examples

Based on the situation and where you’re sharing, brands and marketers can use different kinds of CTAs.

Here are the 10 main types:

#1. Lead Generation

Commands to get more leads aim to turn casual visitors or first-time readers into potential buyers. These are important for your website and a key way to get leads. You can use these commands whenever you expect a lot of new visitors.

For example, Sendinblue’s online courses have an “Enroll” button that takes people to a detailed breakdown of the course and an introduction to the teacher.

This button can also be put on the side of the page, at the end of blog posts, at the top of landing pages, or on banners that float. They need to be attention-grabbing and stand out from the rest of the words or pictures.

No matter how long the CTA (Call to Action) is, it should clearly tell customers what will happen when they click on it. A CTA such as “Get Started” or “Read More” may not have worked well in the situation mentioned above.

#2. Read More

A “Read More” button is made to attract users to see more content. It’s commonly used on blog home pages, with a sneak peek of a post. This lets people choose to read the whole post or keep scrolling.

The “read more” button lets you show extra content on one page. It also helps collect data more accurately because users need to click on each button to see a post.

You can also use this type of button at the end of blog posts to guide readers to the next one and keep them on your site longer.

#3. Lead Magnet CTAs

Gathering user info through forms on websites is a great way to get people interested in your products or services. It’s like a trade – users give their details, and in return, they get useful stuff like eBooks, guides, case studies, or reports.

These forms often pop up before you can download something from a website. To make it more appealing, don’t just use a boring ‘Submit’ button.

Instead, use CTAs that tell people exactly what they get, like ‘Get Your Free Guide’ or ‘Download Your Report.’ You can also add a form for updates and newsletters. Kinsta shows how:

Forms like these can also help identify potential customers. It shows that the person is genuinely interested in solving a particular problem. Some forms are detailed and ask for the user’s job and company name to identify them as a potential customer immediately.

According to Hubspot, personalized CTA’s perform 42% better than untargeted CTA’s.

For example, if a marketing manager from a big company fills out a form, you can send them more details about your marketing product. On the other hand, if a student fills out the same form, they aren’t a top-priority potential customer and shouldn’t be added to the sales process. Instead, you can send them emails about any marketing courses you have available.

#4. Social Sharing Buttons

Easy social network buttons at the bottom of your blog articles or landing pages can prompt people to share your content. These CTAs simplify the process for users to connect with your brand.

50% of all Americans who follow a brand on social media are dedicated to it. This means that growing your brand’s social shares, impressions, and followers can enhance your brand’s visibility and, possibly, income.

They just have to click a button to pass on the post to their colleagues or friends. Since many consumers value the opinions of influencers or everyday experts in their field, sharing on social media enhances your business.

Therefore, if user A enjoyed and shared your blog post, one of their followers is more likely to read it and interact with your company.

Also, you can add social sharing buttons and a counter that shows how many times the content has been shared on each platform in the sidebar. This helps confirm that the content is helpful.

#5. Newsletter Subscription

Email newsletters are a great way for companies to stay in touch with their customers by sharing info, deals, and insights. Marketers can also use them to get email leads and guide users through a drip campaign.

Even though it’s a type of lead magnet, convincing potential leads can be tricky. Many people already get a bunch of newsletters and aren’t excited to add one more.

So just having a “subscribe” button isn’t enough. Instead, give a brief explanation of why they should join – what they’ll get out of it. Glossier does this well:

Put email sign-up CTAs on landing pages, sidebars, product pages, and at the bottom of your website. Make them easy to see and even easier to join.

#6. Event registration

Use your website to share info about events happening online and offline. This helps spread the word, get people to sign up, and gather contact details.

You can add buttons or prompts for event sign-ups on landing pages, like the example from Salesforce below, and also on sidebars or next to blog posts.

This special prompt can also be used on the login page to boost ticket sales and placed around your website to inform potential customers or casual readers about it. The location and wording of your prompt are also decided by the event and the audience.

A general online seminar on effective marketing methods in 2024, for example, might be interesting to most of your website visitors (assuming your blog is about marketing), so it makes sense to include it throughout your website.

Conversely, a seminar on a very specific topic within marketing campaigns, like basic SEO, is only interesting to a subset of visitors. It is better to promote these events within blog posts about SEO so that you can connect with potential customers who are interested.

#7. Lead Nurturing

After getting a potential customer, you need to guide them until they buy something and become a paying customer. You can do this by adding prompts in your regular communication channels – emails are commonly used.

Nurturing a lead moves a potential customer from knowing about your product to seriously thinking about buying it, and it might even convince them to make the purchase. Let’s look at an example from Calm.

Anyone who has tried the free version of the app could become a customer for their paid plans. The “40% off” prompt is included in the app’s emails to guide potential customers, encourage them to click, and boost the chances of them making a purchase.

The best prompts to guide your leads depend on the situation and what you want to achieve. To increase sales, you could, for example, prompt customers to join a more detailed course, showcase product features, or offer special discounts.

#8. Free Trial/Demo

The “Try for free” or “See a demo” button is one of the most common CTAs that many people have seen. This is a no-risk button where customers can find out about your product’s advantages and uses without committing to anything or giving credit card information.

This button aims to convince users to buy your product and find out how valuable it really is. After a lead has tried the free version, you can suggest upgrading to the subscription plan by showing how it can improve their work processes even more.

Most SaaS providers use this kind of button. Here’s an example from HubSpot:

Sure, the trial or demo should be good enough to show people they need your service to be more active or efficient. When customers figure this out, they are likely to make a purchase.

#9. Related Content

Marketing experts know that the longer someone stays on your site, the higher the chance they’ll make a purchase. As a person moves from one blog post to another, they discover more about your product, its value, your company’s principles, and decide to buy.

That’s why prompts for related content are crucial. Customers are guided through different types of content to keep them on your site and move them closer to making a purchase. Relevant info prompts can be included in the content, like between sections of a blog post or in the sidebar with a straightforward link.

Kinsta improves the way it suggests other articles for you to read by adding a tool that lets you compare things. This is useful for finding more articles to read and for helping new visitors see how good Kinsta’s offerings are.

You’ll find this tool on the side of every blog post. When you pick a competitor and click “Compare,” you’ll go to another blog post that talks about both platforms and explains why Kinsta is better.

This doesn’t just make people stay on the site for longer, but it also highlights how great Kinsta is and helps users see why they should choose Kinsta over other options.

#10. Contact Sales

To close the deal after your efforts to attract and nurture potential customers, you require a page and a call-to-action (CTA) focused on sales. This CTA will guide customers to the “Contact Sales” page, where they can complete their purchase.

It’s not sufficient, though, to have a basic CTA like “contact our sales team today.” You need to use the content around the CTA to create urgency, show the impact or benefits of your product, and evoke FOMO (fear of missing out). This content should encourage the customer to purchase the product immediately.

Monday.com does this exceptionally well:

Did you see how the writing next to the form shows off social proof of how great their program is? The key is, it’s helped lots of businesses around the world, and it can help you too. So, why wait? Get in touch with their sales team right away.

Final Thoughts

The CTAs you use on your website depend on what you want your website to achieve. But, for various goals on any kind of website, you’ll use different CTAs.

1.) Turn visitors into potential leads.

2.) Check if leads are a good fit.

3.) Change potential customers into actual customers.

Make your CTAs noticeable. Make them catch attention. Offer something valuable. Your website will get more people to take action.

Christopher Smith
Author: Christopher Smith

SEO and linkbuilding expert. More than 7 years of work in the field of website search engine optimization, specialist in backlink promotion. Head of linkbuilding products at GREAT Guest Posts, a global linkbuilding platform. He regularly participates in SEO conferences and also hosts webinars dedicated to website optimization, working with various marketing tools, strategies and trends of backlink promotion.

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