A call to action (CTA) is a prompt on a website that tells the user to take some specified action. A call to action is typically written as a command or action phrase, such as ‘Sign Up’ or ‘Buy Now’ and generally takes the form of a button or hyperlink.
In digital marketing this can take the form of the text on a button (a CTA button) or a web link and in email campaigns CTAs are often links to a web page where the user can take further action.
Why Is A Call To Action Important?
The call to action is a key element on a webpage, acting as a signpost that lets the user know what to do next. Without a clear CTA, the user may not know the next steps to take to purchase a product or sign up for a newsletter and is likely to leave the site without accomplishing their task.
A call to action makes it clear to potential customers which action to take next and helps remove friction in moving the user down the sales funnel. There can also be multiple calls to action on a page if there are multiple desired actions for the user to take.
For example, if a reader lands on a blog article and there is no clear call to action at the bottom of the post, it is likely that the reader will leave the site without completing any other tasks. However, if there is a CTA at the bottom of the post asking them to read more articles or to sign-up for an e-mail newsletter, that can encourage them to continue interacting with the site.
Examples Of Calls To Action
A call to action can refer to any ask or request that you make of a user on the site, so a CTA can take many forms depending on the context. A call to action can be a closing statement in a blog post, a line in an email, or a CTA button on a website.
Here are some call to action examples you might typically see:
Read more articles, Sign-up for our newsletter, Support our sponsor, Share on social media, For a B2B company, call to action buttons could feature text such as:
Get started, Sign up, Free Trial, Contact Sales
An effective call to action clearly communicates what the user can expect when they click on a button or take the next action, which can improve click-through rate.
Whereas on an ecommerce site, the CTAs may be more commercially focused:
Add to cart, Checkout, Buy now, Add to wishlist
In each case, the CTAs on the page tell the user what action to take next to continue interacting with the site and moving further down the conversion funnel.
If you run a small business, chances are you are wondering if blogging is worth the time and effort. The short answer is a resounding YES! Blogging on a frequent basis is a relatively easy, inexpensive way to enhance your inbound marketing efforts, drive traffic to your site, and attract more perspective customers.If you run a small business, you may be wondering if blogging lives up to the hype. Here are some statistics you should see:
- 61% of US consumers have made a purchase based on a blog post. (Source)
- 37% of marketers find that blogs are the most important method of content marketing. (Source)
- Companies that blog enjoy 97% more inbound links than blogless competitors. (Source)
- Websites with blogs have 434% more indexed pages than websites without blogs. (Source)
- B2B businesses are more likely to blog than B2C businesses. (Source)
- 94% of those who share posts do it because they think it will be helpful to others. (Source)
- B2B companies with blogs get 67% more leads than those without. (Source)
The Case for Small Business Blogs
Here are some of the most important benefits of having a blog for your business:
Boost Search Engine Optimization
Search engines love to provide fresh, valuable content to searchers. What better way to provide frequent content than with blog posts. By blogging consistently, you give Google and other search engines new content to index and you create opportunities to plug in those all-important keywords to increase your visibility on search engine results pages (SERPS).As an added bonus, you will benefit from backlinks as other websites begin to link to the articles on your website. This adds more fuel to the SEO fire because search engines consider backlinks as an endorsement of the authority of your website.
Develop Relationships with Potential and Existing Customers
Blogging allows you to connect with your site visitors. This can be accomplished by asking your readers questions at the end of your posts to get the conversation going or by simply allowing comments and feedback. By reviewing and responding to readers’ comments, you can create a rapport with your audience, build trust, and gain valuable insight into what your customers are looking for.
Establish Your Business as an Industry Leader
No matter how small your business is, you can build trust and clout within your industry by providing valuable, expert information in your blog posts. Over time, you become a “go to” resource for helpful, informative content, which can ultimately lead to higher customer conversion rates. This is especially important for small businesses looking to gain credibility to compete with larger companies.
Connect People to Your Brand
Blog posting allows you to show a personal side of your business that perspective and current customers won’t see through outbound marketing techniques. Blogging gives others a sense of the corporate standards, vision, and personality of your company.
Provide Value for Your Readers
One of the biggest benefits of business blogging is the ability to provide value to visitors. Posts that help them solve problems or include tips to make something in their life easier or better are far more interesting to potential leads than in-your-face ads. Of course, your products or services will be part of the solutions you provide in your posts, but in a subtle, helpful way. By taking the time and energy to provide beneficial content for free, you are actually building loyalty among potential customers who will become more likely choose your company over your competitors when they are ready to make a purchase. You can even include testimonial-centered posts to nudge those considering a purchase to take that next step. If your blog posts are simply product promotions or service pitches, don’t bother blogging. Readers won’t be interested.
You can leverage your blog to get emails from interested leads by asking them to subscribe to your blog posts. Those emails can then be used for marketing purposes to increase touch points. Not only will they regularly see your blog posts, the door is now open for email marketing opportunities to promote your business, send special promotions, and more. The more often you can connect with a lead, the better the chance of converting them into customers.
Create Opportunities for Sharing
Every time you blog, you create an opportunity for your audience to share your blog with others. Whether they link to your blog post, tweet it, or email it to others, it’s free marketing and it further validates you as a credible business.From a practical standpoint, blogging just makes sense. With minimal effort and expense, you can build credibility, boost search engine rankings, increase website traffic, and foster relationships with potential and current customers. This is an opportunity no small business should pass up.
Are you interested in creating a blog for your business? We can help. Blue Wave Concepts offers a variety of web design solutions to meet your needs. No time to blog? No problem. Our copywriting and content creation team can work with you to create thoughtful, informative posts for your business blog.
Ok, it’s a big call but your website really is the most important element of your digital strategy. Yep, maybe even more important than your Instagram and Linkedin profiles. We could also argue that a website is one of the most important components to your business, full stop. It not only showcases important information about your products, your team and business story but is also where your potential clients get a real understanding of how you present your business to the world and, ultimately, make a decision to contact you (or not as the case may be).
While many companies have a web presence, many are incredibly outdated when it comes to communicating effectively with their prospects. Just as cars date, fashions change and house styles evolve, so do websites and our understanding of how best to communicate online. In fact it would be fair to say that websites and technology change at 10 times the pace of everything else around them. If your website is dated and you are using dated communication strategies then it’s highly likely that you are losing customers. Why? Because we trust web sites that are clearly being looked after and loved, more so than websites that look like they haven’t been touched or updated for weeks/months/years. As my Grandma used to say, “if you see dust you can’t trust.”
In this article, we shed light on the 7 clear signs you should look out for to determine if it is time to give your website a professional overhaul and a fresh coat of pixels.
1. It Is Not User-Friendly
88% of online customers are less likely to return to a site after a bad experience and its simple to understand why. It’s 2018 and your prospects are likely to have seen thousands of websites. They are used to fast load speed, intuitive navigations and sleek design that clearly communicates your business offering.
Most businesses have a large and diverse product/service range and want to communicate with ‘everyone’. It’s very easy to try and showcase ‘everything’ you do, which can be overwhelming for visitors and water down your core offering. If your website makes it tough for your user to discover content and a headache to understand your offerings, you have not only left a poor first impression, your prospect will likely bounce off your site never to return!
2. It looks dated/ordinary/crap
If your website is over 4 years old, you are likely lagging behind in design trends. Yes, 4 years is a long, long time in the web world and, when your website just keeps working, it’s easy to put a redesign on the back burner.
It’s worth considering our thoughts and the actions we take when we buy something from a physical store.
Store A has the lights on and the door open. The floor is clean, the shelves neatly stacked. The attendant is helpful and they stock a good range of associated products.
Store B has a single light on and the door is shut. We’re unsure of whether it’s open or closed. When we decide to go inside the shelves are nearly empty and we can’t find the store assistant.
The price and product warranty is the same from each store — but which one do we feel more comfortable buying from?
If you said Store B then I clearly don’t know what I’m talking about.
The wonderful world of the web has progressed and the fight to capture your prospect’s attention is only getting more intense! From hand-made illustrations and page motion animations to dynamic gradients and responsive logos, business websites need to be fresh, memorable and, if possible, aspirational. Despite what they tell you most purchasers/clients make emotional decisions as opposed to logical decisions so it’s important to be visually appealing.
An updated and modern design isn’t just for show, it is one of the key factors in your customer’s purchasing decision.
3. Your Website Is Not Mobile Responsive
It’s official, more users are browsing the internet with their mobile phones and tablets compared to desktop users.
Nothing might be more annoying than exploring a site where you will need to use your fingers to enlarge each page to read the text or having your thumb constantly clicking on the wrong link!
Having a mobile and tablet-friendly website is important in capturing and converting a huge chunk of traffic that visits your site on the go.
4. It Does Not Accurately Reflect Your Brand
Maybe you have been running your company for a few years and your business model and clientele have been refined.
Your brand values have changed but does it seem apparent on your current website?
Or perhaps your existing website has never really communicated your brand values and you’ve just ‘put up with it’.
Whether your audience has changed or your site never been ‘quite right’, it’s important for established businesses to have a presence online that aligns with the brand and, if applicable, aligns with their real world presence.
Your website has the potential to elevate your brand to a whole new level but you’ll only promote it and guide people towards it if:
a. It aligns with your brand
b. Clearly showcases the work you do
c. You’re proud of it
Starting in 2018 web users have become savvy. We’ve all been using the internet for 20 years (more or less) and we know when a business isn’t being authentic. Ensuring your website aligns with your brand and who you are is one of the most effective ways to demonstrate authenticity.
5. Not Aligned With Your Current Marketing Strategy
Your strategy five years ago might have been to get as many enquiries as possible through an onsite contact form. Today you are trying to build authority through blogging and email subscriptions. We can relate.
But is your website geared up for your change in approach?
Whether it is a dated content-management system (CMS) or poorly designed call-to-action areas, a lack of key website features will hinder your marketing efforts. You could ‘bolt on’ a plugin here and there but in all likelihood it will look and feel like a bolt on, and will likely not be the most effective approach.
If your strategy today is drastically different from when you started your business, it is only natural that your website evolves to align with your goals.
6. It Has Poor Conversions
The aim of your business website should be to help generate leads, enquiries or direct sales — depending on the nature of your business.
If your marketing activities are constant but you are seeing a decrease in your online sales or leads, it could be a sign that your website is not connecting with your audience.
Of course, if this is the case we recommend refreshing your website. However, a redesign shouldn’t happen until you understand why your existing site is no longer winning leads. This could come back to your calls to action or it could be that the site is not structured to maximise sales and conversions. Whatever the reason it pays to analyse the reasons.
Google Analytics offers some incredible insights, as does studying your competitive space to understand what your competitors are doing differently. Perhaps even altering calls to action and measuring the response (A/B testing) will help?
Ultimately a poor conversion rate is one of the clearest signs your site needs a refresh but, as with any web design project, it’s important to make some informed decisions before leaping in.
7. It Is Not listed on Google
For any business to succeed online and win leads it’s vital that future and existing clients can find them online. Imagine looking for a business that you know exists but being unable to find it. Amateurish right? Try the Yellow Pages 😉
The internet is constantly expanding and competition is ramping up at a rapid rate. If web users can’t discover your website how are new clients finding you? Word of mouth is great but the first thing people will do when they hear about your business is Google you.
Today’s web design platforms allow design agencies to integrate Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) into a new website, ensuring new sites get the best possible kick start on search engines. Discover why SEO is important to your business survival.
If your old site hasn’t been setup for SEO or uses outdated tech and strategies such as flash graphics, hidden text or just poor site architecture, Google will find it difficult to index and, consequently, it won’t understand where your site should be listed. These are problems that plague older websites and will prevent you from reaching your potential.
Of course, these are all factors that can affect poorly built new websites (lets talk, we can help) but are more prevalent on older platforms that haven’t received the love and care they need to stay relevant.
Having a modern, fresh, intutive website is key to online business success. While there isn’t a need to redesign your website every year, taking an objective look is crucial to understanding whether your current design is helping you hit your business goals.
At Blue Wave Concepts, LLC, we not only help clients build their web presence from scratch, we actively assist businesses with their existing web presence to update and refresh their current websites with modern and proven strategies that not only enhance their brand but also delivers real business results!
Drops us an email or call and let us begin your digital refresh today!
Drones are currently dominating the world of aerial photography and videography. Their ability to ascend hundreds of feet in the air, fly over areas inaccessible to foot traffic, and carry state of the art cameras makes them ideal for capturing breathtaking photos and videos. In fact, many of the shots that drones capture would be impossible to get any other way. From overviews of construction sites, to mapping of properties, to glimpses of real estate, to stunning pictures of special events, drones are redefining what it means to take photos and videos.
And, with the right equipment and the right web design company, you can take advantage of these unique and stunning images to redefine excellent web design. A small number of digital services companies, including us here at Distinct Consulting, are beginning to take drone footage and use it in our web designs. This footage adds a new level of excellence to almost any website. Here are just a few of the ways in which you can also use drone footage to help your web design excel in Rockleigh, New York.
Drone footage is attention-grabbing.
The most obvious advantage of drone footage is that it is simply breathtaking. A short video of a drone gliding over a forest, or a photo of a sunset from 100 feet up, emblazoned on your home page, is going to grab people’s attention. They immediately notice that your images are different from your competitors’. Your stunning aerial shots might make them wonder: If this company can get this kind of image for their website, what can they do for me? And, once you have their attention, you are more likely to keep it as you use the rest of your high quality web design to communicate the ways in which your business is the right choice for them.
Drone footage is beautiful.
Of course, something can be attention-grabbing, but not in an appealing way. You can get someone’s attention by putting a scary Halloween image up on your website too, but unless you are selling Halloween decorations, that type of image isn’t likely to earn you any business. Drone footage, however, isn’t just attention-grabbing. It is also beautiful. When done right, drones can be used to catch stunning natural images of trees, animals, sunsets, sunrises, even cityscapes, skylines, and other aerial views.
These images stand out because they capture surroundings in a new way. When you are trying to build an aesthetically pleasing website, drone footage can add layers of beauty and appeal that would be hard to find anywhere else. As soon as people land on your site, the beauty of your website will make them want to stay and learn more about your business.
Drone footage is customizable.
Another reason to use drone footage in your web design is because this type of footage is extremely customizable. If you use a digital services company that has their own drone, you have the opportunity to incorporate exactly the kind of footage you need for your company. You can tailor the material you get to your brand, your goals, your location, and your customers.
For example, say you run a wedding dress boutique. You might be able to capture drone footage of weddings in which the bride is wearing one of your products. Or, if you are a real estate company, you might be able to use drones to capture images and virtual tours of the properties you have on the market. When it comes to drone imagery, the sky is the limit regarding what type of footage you capture and use on your website.
Drone footage is informative.
Finally, drone footage can help your website excel because it is informative. You can use drone footage not only to impress and engage your visitors, but to educate them too. For example, you can use drones to highlight properties you have for sale. Customers can use this footage to learn more about the property they are thinking about visiting or buying. You can use drone footage to get shots of a construction site so people know how the project is coming along. You can use footage of special events to show people the good time they will have if they hire your event planning company. Regardless of what you want to teach your visitors, a drone can provide you with the footage you need to communicate your message.
Drone footage holds a lot of promise for websites. If you want to learn how drone footage might help your own web design, contact us for more info. We use our drone and our expertise to capture and use the right footage to create a stunning website for your company.
Many experts predicted that 2017-2018 and beyond would be the “age of video marketing on social media” in outdoor industry marketing and the data is showing that they were overwhelmingly correct. Some of the predictions include:
- Internet research authority Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers projects by the endo of 2017, video content will represent 74% of all Internet traffic.
- Online videos will account for more than 80% of all consumer internet traffic by 2020 (CISCO, 2016)
According to Entrepreneur, by 2019 80 percent of online content will be video.
- According to data from Syndacast, videos will be responsible for 74 percent of all internet traffic by 2017.
- Video has erupted onto the scene with brands and businesses creating more video than ever before – with no signs of slowing down.
Consumers are loving it, too! HubSpot, for example, found that 43% of people want to see more video content from marketers. And that 51.9% of marketing professionals worldwide name video as the type of content with the best ROI.
Hubspot and ReelSEO have conducted some research indicating:
- YouTube reaches more 18-49 year-olds than any broadcast or cable TV network.
- YouTube does all this with just mobile traffic! (The above stat doesn’t include desktop visits.)
- After watching a video, 64% of users are more likely to purchase a product online.
- Conversions may increase by as much as 80% with a video on a landing page.
- Visitors spend 88% more time on a website that includes video.
- The average consumer will view 47.4 minutes of online video per day this year, up 20% from 2016, with the largest gains globally (35%) occurring on mobile, where average viewing times will reach 28.8 minutes daily.
- By 2019 and beyond, online video could represent 31% of all digital display advertising globally, up from 28% in 2017 and 21% in 2012. In the US, social video ad spend is expected to double for the second year running in 2017 to reach more than $4 billion, accounting for one-third of US digital video and 20% of social media ad sales.
Web Designer vs Web Strategist – Your brand goes beyond just the individual item you create to market your business. You need someone on your side that understands all the factors that will affect the success of what’s being created to help drive sales. Most designers cannot do that. They can only create what you envision. What you envision and what your clients want may be two different things. Thus you need someone that can take it ALL in, both the owner and the client side of your brand, and craft the experience everyone wants. We’re the Web Strategist first then the Web Designer.