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Why Your Call to Action Isn’t Working

Jacob Brain


Websites can be used for a multitude of purposes, but at the end of the day you use calls-to-action (CTAs) for one reason: to make sales. The question then becomes: how do you turn website visitors into leads?

There are many different parts to this, such as email marketing, analytics, SEO, and more. That being said, the transition between visitor and lead often happens through the use of a call to action. You know that these are essential to your marketing funnel and you understand what they are, but getting them to actually work is another story. You want to aim for at least a 1% visitor-to-lead conversion rate, so if your conversion rate is less than that, read on – and if you’re already there, don’t worry. It can still be improved.

CTA Issue #1: Value vs. Cost

A lead is defined differently for different businesses, but at the very least it is getting a name and email of a visitor that has self-identified (through an ebook download, newsletter sign-up, etc.) as interested in your product. They key here is they gave you their contact information in return for something.

A website conversion is a transaction between you and website visitors.

As with any other transaction, there is an exchange of value. In this case, you value their contact information and they value your expertise. Whether this expertise is expressed through a tool, ebook, or blog is irrelevant.

The key is to offer something that they deem more valuable than the information you are asking for. If you are asking for an email, you can get away with offering a good blog article. If, however, you are asking for their companies revenue, number of employees, and their phone number, you will need to offer something of far more value. If you run an accounting agency, for example, you may want to offer something like an especially valuable retirement calculator that does something others don’t. As what you ask for increases, so must the value of your offering.

CTA Issue #2: Clarity

“Click Here for [insert company here]’s eBook.”

No, I won’t. And why would anyone? You need to make it abundantly clear what people will get in return for clicking on the CTA. People don’t want eBooks; they want solutions to their problem. Give website visitors an idea of what is in the eBook (in this example). Something like “Free eBook: 5 Reasons Your Employees Quit”. If I have had an employee quit out of the blue recently, you can bet I will be reading that eBook. Put this under a blog about employee satisfaction, and you are ready to go.

You won’t purchase something without knowing what it is, and your website visitors won’t give their information up for something unknown either.

Make your CTA clear, concise, and inviting. Make it so your visitors can’t help but click it!

CTA Issue #3: What Call to Action?

This should have probably been number one, but too many websites don’t have enough call to actions. Just having one on your homepage isn’t enough. Use a variety of different CTA types, and make sure you are converting as many visitors as possible. Put them at the end of blog pages, service pages, and anywhere else visitors may want more information on your solutions.

That being said, DON’T GO OVERBOARD. Yes, there is such a thing as too many CTAs. If you have 5 CTAs above the fold on a blog page, you went overboard. When it comes to CTAs, it is quality over quantity. On each page, visitors will be interested in something. Whatever this interest is, you can offer more information about it. This is where the CTA comes in.

Have an appropriate number of CTAs that offer valuable content and incite action.

Good Examples

Not sure where to start when making your call to actions? Take tips from the experts.

Here is a few call to actions that are especially good. Maybe you can use what has worked for them in your next CTA.

  1. Netflix

netflix call to action example

2) Manpacks

manpacks call to action


3) Square

square call to action


It can be difficult to create valuable content and get website visitors to convert with that content. Your market is online, so you can’t afford to let them slip through your fingers. How do you ensure you are capturing all the leads you can?

Partner with New North. We have the experience and expertise to turn your website into a lead converting machine.

Want more info? Learn about “The Expert Ecosystem” and use your expertise to build a profitable future for your company.

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