How to Write Call to Action Copy: 20 CTA Phrases to Get More Subscribers
By Kelly Forst February 15, 2021
Discover how you can increase subscriber growth by tweaking the copy in your call-to-action button.
When you created your sign up form, you probably spent the majority of your time writing the copy and fine-tuning the design.
But how much time did you spend thinking about your call to action (CTA) copy?
If you defaulted to using words like “submit” or “sign up” in your call to action copy, chances are it didn’t take much time at all. But that means you might be missing out on a big opportunity to convince even more people to sign up to your email list.
To help make the most of your sign up form and increase conversions, we compiled our 8 best practices for writing stand-out CTA copy.
Plus, see 20 unique call to action phrases that you can copy for your own button right now.
Best Practices for Writing Call to Action Copy
1. Be Compelling
“Submit” or “sign up” are so 2012. To really stand out and engage your site visitors, try using more compelling copy.
Check out this distinct and inviting CTA button that vocal coach, Felicia Ricci, used when she sold courses:
2. Keep Call to Action Copy Brief
If it takes long for prospective subscribers to read the copy on your CTA, it won’t bore your readers to tears… but it might bore them to the point where they’re no longer interested in signing up to your email list. Yes, your copy should be compelling, but it shouldn’t be as descriptive as a Charles Dickens novel.
So what’s the CTA copy comfort zone? Typically it’s two to five words. If you have a creative one-word CTA, testing different lengths will be key to understanding what works best for your audience.
Here’s another example from Daily Harvest, which not only includes an engaging CTA, but one that hints at the company’s bread and butter:
3. Use Action-Oriented Words in the Call to Action Phrase
Most CTA copy uses some sort of actionable word or phrase. Even “submit” gives readers a next step to take. But as you think of ways to get more creative with your forms, make sure it focuses on the action you want your readers to take.
Avoid phrasing your copy in a way that presents the incentive, such as “Here’s your whitepaper.” Instead, go for verbs like:
4. Clearly Explain What They’ll Receive
While your sign up form copy should already explain what people will receive in exchange for their personal information, consider repeating it in your call to action. Whether new subscribers are getting a free ebook, access to an email course, or a weekly newsletter, test out highlighting the benefit in your form button.
Check out how our Founder Tom Kulzer wrote the call to action on his personal site. Not only is the CTA unique and fun, it clearly articulates what a subscriber can expect to receive.
5. Try First-Person vs. Second-Person Call to Action Phrases
It’s natural for marketers to write to their audience in the second person, where the reader is addressed as “you” or “your.” This point of view is often used because it speaks to the individual as opposed to a mass audience. As a result, it feels more personal to the recipient. It also forces you to present the value of the action you want readers to take.
For example, this whole blog post is written in the second person perspective in order to encourage you to test new CTA copy and increase subscriber growth. And we often write our calls to action that way too.
In the form below from Running Shoes Guru, you’ll notice CTA button is written in the second-person perspective:
But it may also be worth testing out first-person language on your sign up form, too. It may help your visitors feel a sense of ownership of your offer.
Plant-Based Juniors, a blog about feeding children a plant-based diet, tried out first-person language on their guide’s landing page:
6. Create a Sense of Urgency in your CTA copy
We often encourage our readers to create a sense of urgency in their subject lines; and the same can also be said for the copy in your call-to-action button.
Adding words like “now” or “today” at the end of your copy are used to encourage people to take action.
7. Reference the Value of Your Incentive
If you’re offering an incentive in your form at an exclusive value, you might want to test mentioning it in your call-to-action copy as well.
Offering a free ebook or email course is a way to encourage people to subscribe to your email list. In the example below, you’ll notice that both the value and sense of urgency are presented in the CTA:
8. Evoke an emotion
Great marketing is all about tapping into emotion. You want your audience to feel a certain way, and your copy is the place to do it.
Fable & Folly Productions is all about community, and they want their website visitors to feel like they’re welcome. Check out their unique call to action copy in their sign up form below.
20 CTA Phrases to Try Right Now
Want to swap your current CTA with something a little more whimsical and out of the ordinary? Swap it with the call to action phrases below.
- Snag this offer now
- Don’t miss out
- Let’s go
- I want free _____
- Let’s do it
- Hop to it
- I’m ready to roll
- Send me the goods
- Get the discount now
- I’ll take it!
- I can’t wait any longer
- Join the tribe
- Yes, please!
- I’m in
- I’m here for it
- Try it risk-free
- Save my spot
- Get the tips
Which CTA Copy Change Will You Make?
With so many ideas to choose from, we encourage you to test different approaches.
We even have you covered if you’re looking for more tips on how to create killer CTAs for your sign up form.
Inspired to start tweaking your CTA? Give it a try and tell us about the results you saw!
Additional reporting by Monica Montesa.