Creating Effective Links
Adding a link to your email isn’t particularly difficult — but adding multiple and weighing what to link and where can be another story.
Link placement and calls to action can make or break the effectiveness of your message. Improving the return on your investment of time and resources can be a few strategic steps away.
Limit the number of links
Generally, limiting the number of links in your email to five or fewer will help optimize your message to drive users to specific content. Take a look at trendy email UX patterns, though, and you’ll notice far more than 5 URLs at work — social sharing alone can take up 3-5 of your precious links. The trick is to determine what is most important and give it a visual and hierarchical priority. If social links aren’t as important to you, make them subtle or remove them together.
Use engaging CTAs
“Click here” is an age-old go-to CTA — but it probably shouldn’t be. Not only is “click here” generally unclear about the type of content hidden behind it, but it’s also not a very engaging statement. Test alternatives such as “read more,” “get started” or “join us.” Sticking with exciting action verbs is an excellent way to spice up your CTAs with very little effort.
Avoid hiding CTAs in images
Always keep in mind that images don’t display right away in most email clients — leaving your user with a giant, blank message. When you trap your CTA and links in images, it becomes impossible for your user to read or click until they’ve downloaded images first. Our rule-of-thumb: always use a text link for your CTA. However, it’s fairly common for users to attempt to engage with images once they’re downloaded. For maximum effectiveness, make images clickable by linking them to the same location as your text link.
Be clear and honest
Quite possibly the most valuable link tip is to make sure that your CTA is clear. Use a color, bold typeface or other treatment to highlight the link against other text. While simplicity is key, your link should stand out from the content around it. Also, check that the linked text accurately describes what the user should expect to happen. For example, “read more about links on our blog” is an active call to action that clearly identifies the content on the linked page. It makes much more sense than something like “read more about links on our blog.”