Calls to Action or CTAs are an essential part of a business blog. Without a next step you will never be able to convert your reader to a paying client. You will only be providing lots of free content but will never reap the benefits of using it to grow your business. You need to put your readers onto the first step of their journey to become a paying client.
But where should you put that Call to Action?
The myth of “it’s got to be above the fold”
According to general marketing knowledge, most experts will tell you to put your Call to Action buttons “above the fold”. The fold is that magical thing on your website that divides everything you see when you first come to a web page from the “stuff” below which you only see when you start scrolling. That advice still has its value, but times have changed, and the fold has become less important. This is because everyone looks at your website on different devices and the fold will be in different places depending on whether you look at the web page on a computer screen, a tablet or a smart phone. Different screen sizes as well as different resolutions change how much you can see of a website. In addition, people are used to scrolling down to see more information, so the fold is no longer the hard line it used to be.
For a blog post, you are usually giving people a call to action based on the content, so it doesn’t really make sense to put your CTA above the text.
For blogging, use one or a combination of the following positions for your calls to action.
At the end of the post
Probably the most popular positions for blog CTAs is at the end of the blog post. Your website visitors have read the content and are now ready for the next step. Whether that’s to comment, share the article or join your mailing list, the end of the post is a good place to invite them to take the next action.
Throughout the text
There are several WordPress plugins that will let you insert an attractive box that will invite people to tweet a quote from your article. I use “Better Click to Tweet” and it looks like this:Every blog post needs a relevant Call to Action. Click To Tweet
If you’re not on WordPress, check out relevant Click to Tweet options for your respective web platform.
Are you referring to another blog post or another page on your website with relevance to your current blog article? Simply link to the relevant URL (web address) right there in the text. You can make it stand out a bit more by using formatting (bold, colours, etc.) but keep it inline with the text. Adding “read more” or “click here” will add to the incentive to click through to the other page.
Should you put any calls to action in the sidebar?
Use your sidebar for Calls to Action that benefit the company but are not necessarily related to your blog content. This could be downloadable content (lead magnets) or maybe invitations to an event you’re hosting.
It’s true, popups can be annoying. If you’ve only just landed on a page and up pops a box that you have to interact with otherwise you can’t do anything else, not fun. But, and that’s a big but – popups are still considered highly effective. Their conversion rates are higher than many other forms of lead generation, so don’t dismiss popups outright.
You have to use them wisely though. Use popups that
- Appear after a set amount of time or
- Appear once the reader has done a certain amount of scrolling or
- Only appear once they’re ready to leave the page (exit popups) and
- Do not appear on every page they visit but only once; only whichever page they land first and only once per day
Your offering also needs to be really good. Offer your readers something irresistible for free and popups will serve you well. Again, this will refer to content that is not necessarily related to the particular blog post.
Over to you
My Call to Action for you is to share this article on LinkedIn if you have found it useful. You can use the LinkedIn sharing button on the left to do so.
Calls to Action are one of the many strategies I teach my clients when I train them in the art of blogging for business. If you would like to find out more, please visit my About page.