I have some good news. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel when it comes to writing copy on your website.
There are copywriting formulas, strategies and hacks that have already been proven to work – all you need to do is implement, tweak and test them until they’re effective for your target audience or market.
Today I wanted to get extremely specific about one copywriting formula I’ve actually touched on before in articles like The 8 Minute Beginner’s Guide to Creating a Call to Action and How button text could be killing conversions (and how to fix it) [VIDEO].
This copyrighting hack is a simple formula to help you write effective button text.
Remember, Call-to-Action (CTA) buttons have only one goal: to get your visitor to click.
This easy button text copywriting formula works for pretty much any button on your website, including (but not limited to):
- Book now buttons
- Email opt-in buttons
- Free trial sign-up buttons
- Download buttons
Most Button Text Doesn’t Work
The reason I wanted to write this article is because I still see buttons on websites that say “submit” or “opt-in” or “register“. Yawn.
It’s great when a CTA button doesn’t just tell you to ‘read more’. Loving @lonelyplanet‘s “Wander Wide-eyed” button. #copywriting #design
— Liana Bakar (@alternava) October 3, 2017
I don’t think there is a website visitor on the planet who cares about “registering”, “signing up”, or “submitting.” They care about getting a session booked, writing better, running faster, getting stronger and learning how to play the ukulele from scratch. (maybe the last one is just me).
Button Copywriting Formula
Ok, let’s jump into the copywriting formula. First I’ll give you the formula and then we’ll take a look at some MAJOR brands that are successfully using this copywriting formula that you probably didn’t even realize.
Here is the formula:
- First, put yourself in your ideal customer’s shoes. This is important. It’s about them.
- Then, complete the sentence: “I want to ____” filling in the blank from your ideal customer’s point of view.
Whatever you use to fill in the blank should be your button text (leave the “I want to” portion off).
I’ll wait while you bask in its simplicity. That’s literally all there is to it.
Button Copywriting Exercises
So, for example, if you own an a massage therapy business where your customers can book a session with you, your formula might read “I want to de-stress and unwind” so your booking button for a stress-relieving massage would literally say “De-stress and Unwind ” and when the user clicks it, they will be taken to your booking system.
You could implement different CTA buttons for each type of service you offer.
Here’s another example: let’s say you’re a writer and you’re offering a free PDF download to your visitors that helps them overcome writer’s block. Your formula might read “I want to start writing now” so your PDF download button text would read “Start Writing Now“.
Button Copywriting Examples
Let’s take a look at a few real world examples so you can see this in action and that it really does work.
The very first thing you see when you visit the Netflix website is their hero Call-to-Action (CTA) which includes a decently large read button that reads “Join Free for a Month.”
Let’s plug that into our formula: “I want to join free for a month.” Yep that works really well.
Netflix knows that one month free trial is their best way to get new subscribers and who can say no to a free month to test drive the service? (editors note: even though they got rid of a lot of great shows but paid $100m to keep “Friends” which is a good show but come on.)
Shopify is a popular online e-commerce platform. On their home page you’ll see the button pictured above. Let’s plug it into our formula to see how it works.
I want to start selling online.
I’d say it works pretty well and it evokes more emotion than simply “sign up” or “register”.
Waze is the world’s largest community-based traffic and navigation app. I use it quite a bit personally, actually.
At the time of this writing, they’ve recently launched their new carpooling feature so they’ve added a CTA to the top of their home page.
If we plug that CTA button text into our formula: “I want to start carpooling.” That example works surprisingly well too.
You can use this simple button copywriting formula to re-work any button on your website and it will always be a step in the right direction.
Don’t be afraid to test the different variations you come up with too. You might be surprised to find one variation works better than others with your audience.