When I was masterminding at the Ritz recently, Chris Haycock of CliqTo told us how changing the text on a hotel website button increased clicks by 45% in the first ten days. He admits that more influences might be at play, and the long-term results are not yet known.
The original button just said:
Details & availability
The new button includes a calendar icon, and says:
Hotel details, map & prices
Read the full story on Chris’s website
A 45% increase in clickthroughs in 10 days is pretty impressive. But why is it happening?
You might already know that bold graphic buttons work better than text links. You might also be aware that some colours work better than others – the best is a colour that contrasts with your brand so it stands out (test it on your own site).
In this case, the colour and format is much the same.
It’s the call-to-action copy that makes the difference
It’s known that people are more likely to do what you want when you actually tell them what you want.
Traditionally, when you put a dotted line round a coupon, it’s been found that people are more likely to cut it out when it also includes an illustration of a little pair of scissors and/or the words: ‘Cut here’.
It’s also claimed that people are more likely to dial your phone number when you add the words: ‘Call today’ or ‘Call now’.
But there’s been a shift
When you order people about, these days, they are less likely to take action. You have to be more subtle, and grant them the power.
For example, ‘Continue’ and ‘Next’ buttons seem to work better than ‘Read more’. This is because instead of being a top-down instruction from your brand, it respects the reader and gives them the option of taking the next step.
Choose your worms carefully
It’s also important to vary your language depending on your audience.
For example, in UK e-commerce, the words ‘Add to basket’ are most common. In the rest of the world, it’s ‘Add to cart’.
There’s a great article about this here
I suspect more people click Chris’s button because instead of passively saying ‘Availability’ it says ‘Show availability’. ‘View availability’ might also work.
I think ‘Check availability’ would also be worth trying, because ‘checking’ is a little more active than simply ‘viewing’. It’s more assumptive – it assumes someone is further along the buying process. Rather than just viewing what dates might be available, they are checking whether the dates they want are available.
As with anything, you need to test and retest to find out what works best for you.
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