A reality check for your call-to-action

17Feb10

While riding in a taxi last week, I came across one of those newfangled credit card machines that has a digital signage screen built into it. Basically, it’s a small display with local news updates in one zone, and ads in the other zones, attached to a credit card reader. Aside from the video quality being absolutely terrible, the ad space puzzled me. I guess nobody has bought any ads, since it just said “Your ad here” during my entire taxi ride.

However, what really stood out to me was the call-to-action. One panel said “Your ad here”, as I mentioned above. The other panel said “Email” and then the address of a website. That doesn’t make any sense: if you want someone to visit your website, you should use words like “visit us” or “learn more”. If you ask them to email you, then provide an email address. And if you ask them to call you, make sure to follow that up with a phone number.

It’s not rocket science: just do a basic reality check to verify that your call-to-action makes sense. Otherwise, if you present potential customers with an incomplete or mismatched set of instructions, your conversion rates will suffer while they spend time trying to figure out what you’re asking them to do.



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