Web Design Basics Design Principles Capture Your Visitors' Attention With an Interactive CTA

Capture Your Visitors' Attention With an Interactive CTA

What’s the one tool in your arsenal that pushes customers over the edge? It gives them that final shove, so to speak, to move forward and purchase a product, subscribe or share information. The answer is your call to action, or CTA.

Every signup and product purchase is likely because of your CTA — therefore, a prominent CTA is arguably one of the most important elements for any marketer or e-tailer.

It’s really important to guide your visitors and customers through a buying journey, and calls to action are the only way to do that effectively. From beginning to end, your CTA is there to move them along and facilitate the proper navigation for each customer.

Since your CTA is so important, how can you be sure it’s truly effective? Can you guarantee it’s living up to its full potential and generating as many leads and sales as it should be? Sadly, there’s no way to measure a CTA’s true potential, but you can definitely monitor customer activities and see whether or not yours is effective.

Why Your CTA Needs to Be Interactive

Traditionally, CTAs are static. That means they don’t do anything unique, and pretty much just sit there. The only way you can make them stand out is to use bright, contrasting colors that mesh well with your site design.

To really capture your audience’s attention, you can employ an interactive CTA. What makes it “interactive” or unique, you ask?

Instead of remaining static, an interactive CTA is reactive to your customers. This could include placing a search bar within your main header — as Property Management Inc. has done — or it could be as simple as using a moving GIF in place of a static image.

Have you ever seen a button that changes colors or displays visual effects until you move your cursor away? That’s an interactive call to action.

This style of CTA uses the age-old techniques you’re used to, but they also implement interactivity and attention-grabbing actions.

Interactive CTAs in the Real World

The best way to understand how a particular design element works is to see how it’s used in the real world. That’s why we’re going to take a look at some promising examples of brands using interactive calls to action to draw in their customers.

1. Panthera

Panthera is a nonprofit organization devoted to the protection of Earth’s 40 major wild cat species and their surrounding environments. Similar to PETA — though not quite as controversial — they are interested in the preservation of animals.

The company’s website serves as a cornerstone for their operations, bringing in new supporters who are interested in taking action. You’ll notice their CTA is bright, vibrant and yet completely minimal. The page shows the animals they’re trying to save, tells you how you can get involved and then presses you to action with a simple, but effective, “get started” button. Hover over it, and it turns a solid color as if urging you in an even stronger tone.

It’s an excellent use of interactivity to bring attention to the CTA and bolster its efficiency.

2. Solar Simplified

Going green — more specifically, converting to solar energy — has its benefits. But one question most people have is, how much money will they actually save by doing so? Is it worth the investment?

Solar Simplified has an interactive CTA that operates as a simple calculator. It urges you to enter some basic information, like your average monthly electric bill, and how much you want your solar system to cost. Then, it calculates a result for you and serves up a brand message along with it.

It works because it gives something to customers. They are more inclined to follow the interactive CTA, knowing they’re going to get something in return.

3. Zenni Optical

Another way to create interactive elements is to get your audience or customers involved. That’s exactly what Zenni Optical did for their promotional content. The CTA is wrapped neatly inside a fun and interactive quiz.

As you participate, the site serves up a variety of fun, popular memes that are strategically designed to introduce you to an optical frame. When you answer enough questions, the quiz will return a frame style that’s ideal for your tastes. It’s ingenious, really.

You may also notice Zenni has designed an embeddable version people can share on their own sites, blogs and more. This helps spread the brand’s influence, through a modern form of word-of-mouth marketing.

4. OkCupid

The popular dating site has an extremely effective interactive CTA that uses dropdown menus to start. You’re simply asked to state your gender and what gender you’re interested in, and then you have the opportunity to see some community examples.

In other words, you can see the kinds of men and women you will be able to interact with on the platform. The CTA is super-effective here because of its simplicity. Notice that even though it is interactive, there’s not much to it. Just choose a couple of options, click through and that’s it!


Adrienne Erin

Adrienne Erin is a freelance writer and designer who blogs at Design Roast. You can see more of her work by following @adrienneerin on Twitter.

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