How to Create the Perfect Call to Action

We all know that display advertising has grown significantly in the past few years.  In fact, it’s difficult to find a site nowadays that isn’t ad enabled.  With that said, it’s a great time for online businesses to get in on the action!  In order to reap the benefits of the expected $24 billion in projected revenue from display ads this year, it’s crucial to find ways to make your ads stand out. 

At Poln, we’ve put together 10 tips for designing banner ads that drive sales, but let’s drill down further on this topic.  One of the ways to really draw users into your advertisements is to create the perfect call to action on your ads.  A call to action is so important because it makes your ad “clickable.”  CTA’s are typically in the form of a button.  This helps the CTA jump off of your advertisement.  

When generating new users to your page, enticing them to get there in the first place should be your top priority.  Here’s some simple steps that you should follow.

1.  Confidence

Being direct is key when thinking up a catchy call-to action.  Don’t beat around the bush.  Every ad you design should have a clear call-to-action.  “Shop Now,”  “Learn more,” “Sign-up,” “Download,” “Start Trial,” etc.  are perfect examples of this.  

2.  Think outside of the box

While the previous call to actions work great, think of creative ways you can branch out from the typical CTA buttons.  Leaving cliffhangers is a great way of doing this.  By example, “Click here to see our new line,” works as a CTA, but “Click here to see…” is an even more enticing line.  This leads us to our next point.

3.  Instill a sense of urgency

We can’t stress how important this one is.  If you’re looking to quickly generate new traffic to your site, instilling a sense of urgency is an absolute no-brainer.  A browser is much more likely to click on an ad that displays a call to action as  “Limited time only” than “Shop this month’s sale.”  In doing this, you’ll hold the consumer more accountable for their action, in turn, driving more traffic to your site.

4.  Don’t over think it

Simple is always the best approach.  As display ads are generally small on sites, you want to say as much as possible but in as few words as possible.  If you combine this with the rest of our ad best practices, you’ll be golden.

5.  Look for inspiration

Inspiration is all around, on billboards, in magazines, across the internet.  Look at what other companies are doing with their ads and think of ways that you can do it better.  Check out for this.  At Moat, you can search for ads from other companies to draw inspiration from.  

By following these easy steps, you’ll be on your way to creating effective marketing campaigns at every level of your business.