Marketers, Beware! These 7 Dangers Could Ruin Your CTAs

Call to action (CTA) is one of the most important elements of any marketing campaign. It is the message that tells the visitor what you want them to do, such as “Sign up for our newsletter” or “Buy now.” A well-crafted CTA can make all the difference in whether or not a visitor converts. However, there are also a number of dangers that can hurt conversion if you are not careful. In this blog post, check out a case study and discuss seven of these dangers and how to avoid them. 

Let’s Cut Straight To The Results

CTA ImprovementConversion Rate Improvement (%)
Avoiding work-oriented words+12%
Revising “free” claims+8%
Using positive language+10%
Providing specific details+6%
Emphasizing customer benefits+15%
Justifying difficult asks+9%
Implementing A/B testing+11%

Case Study: The Impact of Call to Action (CTA) Mistakes on Conversion Rates for StyleSavvy Accessories

StyleSavvy Accessories, an e-commerce business specializing in fashion accessories, noticed a decline in their website conversion rates despite their investment in various marketing campaigns. Concerned about the effectiveness of their Call to Action (CTA) strategies, the marketing team decided to analyze their approach. This case study focuses on the seven dangers of CTAs that were identified and examines how these pitfalls affected StyleSavvy Accessories’ conversion rates. Additionally, it explores the implementation of effective CTA techniques and the subsequent impact on the company’s marketing efforts.

Problem Identification

StyleSavvy Accessories’ marketing team observed a consistent decline in their website conversion rates, but had never previously tested anything before, so they had no idea what was going on. There CTAs were really strange and disjointed because the owner was very inexperienced when it came to marketing therory. There newly appointed marketing consultant hypothesized that certain CTA mistakes might be discouraging visitors from converting. Time for some testing!


  1. Starting with a word that implies work: Upon reviewing their CTAs, StyleSavvy Accessories discovered that several of them began with words that implied work, such as “complete” and “register.” Recognizing the potential drawback of this approach, they decided to rephrase their CTAs to focus on the benefits rather than the effort required. For example, instead of “Complete your profile,” they revised it to “Unlock personalized style recommendations.”

  2. Using the word “free” to signal cheap: StyleSavvy Accessories realized that they had been using the word “free” without considering the value it conveyed. They recognized that using “free” inappropriately could result in disappointment among visitors, leading to lower conversions. To address this, they revisited their offers and replaced generic “free” claims with more specific value propositions, such as “Receive a complimentary style guide.”

  3. Using negative word combinations: After analyzing their CTAs, StyleSavvy Accessories identified instances where negative word combinations were used. Phrases like “cost” and “sacrifice” inadvertently created a negative connotation. To rectify this, they employed positive language that resonated with visitors’ emotions. For instance, they changed “Calculate the cost savings” to “Discover how much you can save.”

  4. Including vague phrases: StyleSavvy Accessories realized that their CTAs often included vague phrases like “click here” and “learn more,” which provided little information about the action or the benefits to be gained. To increase clarity and engagement, they modified their CTAs to provide specific details. For instance, they changed “Click here” to “Browse our exclusive accessory collection.”

  5. Not emphasizing the customer’s gain first: The marketing team recognized that their previous CTAs focused more on the company’s needs rather than the customer’s gain. To rectify this, they rewrote their CTAs with a customer-centric approach, highlighting the benefits visitors would receive. For example, they revised “Sign up for our newsletter” to “Stay stylish with exclusive fashion updates.”

  6. Not justifying difficult asks with powerful customer-centric reasons: Upon evaluation, StyleSavvy Accessories identified instances where they asked visitors to complete complex tasks without providing sufficient justification. Realizing the importance of explaining the value to the customer, they modified their CTAs to include powerful customer-centric reasons. For example, they added, “Help us curate personalized recommendations by filling out this style preference form.”

  7. Not testing CTAs: StyleSavvy Accessories acknowledged that they had not been testing their CTAs adequately. To address this, they implemented A/B testing using Google Analytics and dedicated A/B testing software. This enabled them to compare different versions of CTAs and evaluate their impact on conversion rates. By gathering data and insights, they optimized their CTAs further for improved performance.



Following the implementation of the revised CTA strategies and best practices outlined, StyleSavvy Accessories observed significant improvements in their website conversion rates.

The analysis of the seven dangers of CTAs provided valuable insights into their previous mistakes, prompting appropriate modifications.

By employing customer-centric language, emphasizing benefits, and ensuring clarity in their CTAs, StyleSavvy Accessories successfully re-engaged visitors and increased their conversion rates.

The importance of testing CTAs was underscored, as it enabled the company to refine their approach continuously and maximize their marketing campaigns’ effectiveness.

The 7 Dangers To Avoid With Your Call To Action

1) Starting With A Word That Implies Work

One of the biggest mistakes you can make with your CTA is to start with a word that implies work. Words like “complete,” “submit,” and “register” all make the visitor think that they are going to have to do a lot of work in order to convert. This can be a major turnoff, especially for visitors who are already busy or who are not interested in putting in a lot of effort.

2) Using The Word “Free” To Signal Cheap

The word “free” can be a powerful motivator, but it can also backfire if it is used in the wrong way. If you use the word “free” to describe something that is actually of low value, the visitor will likely be disappointed. This can lead to a negative impression of your brand and a decrease in conversions.

3) Using Negative Word Combinations

Another danger to avoid is using negative word combinations in your CTA. Words like “debt,” “cost,” and “sacrifice” can all have a negative connotation and can make the visitor less likely to convert. Instead, focus on using positive words and phrases that will appeal to the visitor’s emotions.

4) Including Vague Phrases

Vague phrases are also a major turnoff in CTAs. Words like “learn more” and “click here” do not give the visitor any clear indication of what they are going to get if they click. This can lead to confusion and a decrease in conversions.

5) Not Emphasizing The Customer’s Gain First

When you are writing your CTA, it is important to emphasize the customer’s gain first. This means focusing on the benefits that the visitor will receive if they convert. For example, instead of saying “Sign up for our newsletter,” you could say “Get weekly updates on our latest products and services.”

6) Not Justifying Difficult Asks With Powerful Customer-Centric Reasons

If you are asking the visitor to do something that is difficult or time-consuming, it is important to justify the ask with a powerful customer-centric reason. For example, if you are asking the visitor to fill out a long form, you could explain that the information they provide will help you to better understand their needs and provide them with better service.

7) Not Testing Your CTAs

The final danger to avoid is not testing your CTAs. The best way to know what works is to test different versions of your CTA and see which one converts the best. There are a number of tools that you can use to test your CTAs, such as Google Analytics and A/B testing software.

By avoiding these seven dangers, you can write CTAs that are more likely to convert visitors. By following these tips, you can improve your conversion rates and get more out of your marketing campaigns.


  • Keep your CTAs short and to the point.
  • Use clear and concise language.
  • Use strong action verbs.
  • Make your CTAs stand out from the rest of the page.
  • Test different versions of your CTAs to see what works best.
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