Why You Need to Personalize Your CTAs or Risk Losing Out

Kevin Duong - August 28, 2019 - 0 comments

(Note: For even more useful content on calls to action (CTAs), check out our comprehensive guide: the ABCs of CTAs. You’ll learn the best practices for design and copy to create CTAs that will convert.)


What are personalized CTAs?

As its name implies, personalized CTAs have been specifically customized for the person viewing it. For instance, your visitors, leads and customers should all ideally see different CTAs when they’re on your website. As you’ll learn below, there are several other ways in which you can create personalized CTAs.

So why do you need to personalize your CTAs? 

If you’re not personalizing your CTAs, you risk losing out on potential conversions while upsetting current customers.

A HubSpot study of over 93,000 CTAs further reinforces this point. It revealed that personalized CTAs had a 42% higher viewed to submission rate compared to single, generic CTAs that were shown to everyone.

Given the substantial sample size and resounding result, it’s safe to say that you should use personalized CTAs. Luckily for you, we’ve identified the key areas where you could and should personalize your CTAs.

Ways you can personalize your CTAs

1) Sales Funnel Stages

To make our example easier to understand, we’ll use the traditional sales funnel since it’s a simple way to segment your audience.

(image via Captivate Designs)

It goes without saying that you should cater your communications depending on your target’s funnel stage. Correspondingly, this approach also applies to the CTAs you create for each stage, as it should match their interest level.

For instance, a software company displaying a “Learn More” CTA to first-time visitors would be an appropriate approach. Bombarding them with a CTA involving a purchase would probably be too strong and might put them off.

Then, for returning visitors and leads, they could show something stronger. Suitable CTAs here would include “Book a Demo” or “Try for Free” to match their increased interest level.

Conversely, customers that see a CTA that is clearly targeted towards new visitors might feel slighted. To conclude our software company example, they should fully utilize the information they have on the customer to create a truly personalized CTA. For instance, if the customer is a regular report user, they could create a CTA that says, “Check out your latest reports.” And they could place a “Welcome back, {{Customer’s First Name}}” above the CTA to add an even more personalized touch.

2) Different CTAs for Different Locations

This CTA personalization strategy has two approaches. One is for where your targeted user is currently, the other is for where they potentially plan to go.

For the first approach, a famous example of this is ratings website yelp:

Their geographic search parameters change automatically based on the user’s location. The prevalence of mobile devices makes location-specific CTAs a must since companies can create personalized CTAs that provide more relevant offers.

As for the second approach, it is something that travel-centric companies can use. For instance, if a person has been searching for “trips to Hawaii” repeatedly over a short time, a hotel company could capitalize on their browser’s cookie data. They could use this data to offer a laser-focused CTA such as “Discover Hotels in Hawaii.”

3) Mobile Optimization

There’s a decent chance that you’re reading this blog on your mobile device. A 58% chance to be exact. This is just one of the many illuminating insights from this study by Perficient Digital on the state of the mobile web.

(Chart via Perficient Digital)

With such a significant share of audiences viewing your website via mobile, it is vital that you optimize it to be mobile-friendly. This includes the CTA. Additionally, the same study also found that the mobile bounce rate is 50%. So keeping your visitors around long enough to even see your CTA is another challenge of its own.

Speaking of length, load times are one of the biggest turnoffs for mobile users. You’ve undoubtedly experienced the feeling. You’re on the go and need to look something up on your phone quickly. Every passing second feels like an eternity. To quantify this in terms that will make marketers take notice, Akamai found that a mere 0.1-second delay in website load time can negatively affect conversion rates by 7%!

One way to tackle this is to flip the standard design process. If you’re redesigning your desktop site into its mobile version, then you might be trying to compress too many intricate desktop elements. This could cripple your mobile website’s load times. Designing for your mobile site first will give you greater clarity on what makes the most sense for it to be mobile-friendly.

As for your your CTAs, you can make them mobile-friendly by ensuring that they’re accessible. This means that they’re large enough to be comfortably clicked, but not so large that they would look unusual. You don’t want to create friction and frustration for your visitors by having them need to pinch and zoom to click your CTA. Also, since the majority of people are right-handed, you ideally wouldn’t place your mobile CTA in the upper left corner. Something centred would be more suitable for everyone.

It’s worth pointing out that Akamai also found that only one in five users actually complete purchases on mobile. So even though the majority of traffic comes from mobile sources, the majority of conversions don’t. So you shouldn’t disregard desktop just yet!


The numbers show that if you’re not personalizing your CTAs, you’re missing out some conversions. However, with all the tips we’ve detailed above, you’ll be in good shape to start now or improve upon your current personalized CTAs.

Another thing you should keep in mind is your industry’s dynamics. Some are more mobile-heavy than others, while some are more desktop-driven. The study we mentioned above from Perficient Digital provides a lengthy list of mobile usage by industry. As always—always be testing!

P.S. If you want the ability to personalize your CTAs, sign up for happylane today. Our website personalization platform will enable you to create personalized CTAs for your visitors, leads, customers and any other audience segment. We also offer analytics to help you track the performance of your campaigns. Plus, our standard plan is free to use—so what are you waiting for?


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