calls to action

15 crucial web design trends for 2016 & beyond

Lots of publishers reveal their annual web design trends at the end of the year.

I thought I’d be different and conduct a meta-study, bringing you what I consider to be the most cogent predictions from across the web.

Hopefully that means this is the only trends post you’ll need this year. So, put your feet up and read on, as we explore the larger trends, to the finer detail.

10 brilliant examples of calls to action

The concept behind a call to action is simple: you ask somebody to do something, whether it’s to buy a product or sign up to an email list, or even just to read a blog post. 

Essentially you are giving somebody a nudge in the right direction, like a 21st century version of the guy in the shop saying, ‘Are you ready to pay for that, sir?’

Do your calls to action grab users’ attention?

There are many factors that can influence the design of your call-to-action and it’s certainly a feature that benefits from extensive testing and tweaking.

An effective CTA should leave the shopper in no doubt about the next step they need to take to add an item to their basket, complete a purchase etc. 

To achieve this, they need to catch the user’s attention, and eyetracking is a great way to measure the effectiveness of different CTA designs. 

Thanks to Luke Hay, Research and UX Director at noporkpies, we have some useful tests on CTA design for you… 

Three case studies to help improve your email marketing conversion rates

Having recently published an article about why email isn’t dead, I thought it would be useful to roundup some case studies to help marketers inject some life into their own campaigns.

I’ve previously looked at how testing subject lines and segmentation can improve email marketing, but these three studies focus more on calls-to-action.

Hopefully they should provide some inspiration for marketers who are in the process of testing their own email messages.

For more information on this topic download the Econsultancy Email Marketing Census 2014 or check out our new Case Study Database

Sports Direct: check out those calls to action!

Sports Direct is brilliant. Ok, it had some problems last year as its reputation took a blow thanks to the retailer’s use of zero hour contracts, but on the sales front, it’s flying along.

New stores are opening, other sports retailers are being battered into submission and 2,000 staff members are to receive a cool £100k bonus after profits climbed by 40% to £200m last year.

With 12 languages and 10 currency options, the Sports Direct website should continue to aid the company’s growing profits.

The website has been praised in many quarters. It’s certainly easy to use and strongly conveys the brand’s identity.

Visiting the site I was struck by just how good its calls to action are, and how easy it is to get around (unlike their stores). I thought I’d round up a few of the best bits.

Enjoy them in all their enormous garish glory. I think they’re part of a growing lust for simplicity that is driving web design forward.

Seven tips for designing an effective ecommerce call-to-action

In ecommerce much of the focus is on the best ways to attract traffic and visitors, meaning that tactics for conversion rate optimisation are often neglected.

In fact our new Adobe Digital Marketing Optimisation Survey found that a majority of companies (53%) spend less than 5% of their total marketing budgets on optimisation activities, despite the fact that a small uplift in conversion rates can translate into thousands of dollars of extra revenue.

One relatively easy way of improving conversions is by making sure you have the best possible call-to-action (CTA). 

There’s no exact formula for the perfect ecommerce CTA, but there are some aspects that web designers should focus on tweaking and testing to make sure they’re maximising their conversion rate.

Add to basket buttons: examples and best practices

When a customer decides to add an item to their basket, what should an e-commerce site do? Should it allow them to continue shopping, send them straight to the shopping basket page, or provide the choice? 

This may depend on the type of website, but there is a balance to be struck between encouraging the customer to complete the purchase as quickly as possible, and making it easy to add extra items. 

I’ve been looking at several websites to look at button design, the language used on calls to action, and the transition between a customer adding items and the checkout process. 

E-commerce calls to action: 10 best practice tips

Call to action buttons need to jump out at the shopper and leave them in no doubt about the next step they need to take to make a purchase.

Visitors can have low attention spans, and an effective call to action which catches the customer’s eye can make it clear what the next step should be. 

There is no definitive answer on which buttons work best, so it is important to test different combinations of colour, button size, wording and placement to see what is most effective.

As a general rule though, if it doesn’t stand out clearly on the page, there is room for improvement.

Here are some tips on designing and displaying calls to action…

How Appliances Online improved its product pages

Appliances Online has been making some improvements to its product pages recently, and has let me in on the process and the results, which includes a 9.5% jump in sales. 

With the help of videos showing users interacting with the product pages, the retailer was able to both identify improvements, and check that they had the desired effect. 

Search calls to action: pros and cons

The use of search calls to action is becoming increasingly common in offline advertising. Big brands are using mediums such as press and TV in order to push people to search engines by asking them to search for specific keywords rather than visit a website or phone a dedicated number.

Like most marketing techniques there is an argument for and against adopting this approach, and Renault’s latest ‘Megane Experiment‘ campaign shows how brands can get it wrong. 

Landing pages: ten top tips

 If you want to do online marketing well, you
need to get the basics right, and few things are more important than writing
effective landing pages.