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I'm redesigning the registration page for my website, and I'm wondering if anyone has come across any research relating to the affects of different wording and colors for the registration button?

How will "Sign Up" vs. "Register" affect conversions? Are certain colors more likely to convince a user to join?

As general background, the rest of the page is very neutral with whites, grays, and blacks.

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"Sign up" vs "Register" and so-forth: ux.stackexchange.com/questions/11936/… –  Vin Burgh Jan 30 '12 at 22:56
    
I Think the exact color of your button is really only relevant in the actual context of your app; the button should be noticeable but not ugly or excessively clashy with the scheme. You can't just pick red/yellow/ect and expect it to work. For a neutral scheme almost any color would jump out noticeably. I'd be more concerned with how you sell the call to action and word it. –  Ben Brocka Feb 1 '12 at 15:24
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4 Answers

The link posted by Vinny should give you some good inputs about what you to opt for with regards to using Register or sign up.For the second part of your question,what you are specifically asking is how should a call to action button be styled. Here are some good links on the subject

Call to Action Buttons: Examples and Best Practices

Call to action button examples

Call to action buttons - Does size matter

60 Effective Examples of Call to Action Buttons

The Button color A/B test- Red beats green

However once you have defined your layout I would recommend doing some A/B testing to see if your button placement and color is what brings you the best conversion as opposed to going by standards which might have worked for specific cases

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Could you summarize some key points from the links listed here? –  Matt Rockwell Feb 1 '12 at 14:44
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'Join in'

CTA copy works best when it doesn't just describe the process or function, but evokes the advantages or eventual result of that process too. If your app is a social platform, 'join' could do that well. If it's about community action, 'Get involved!' might work too. Of course, your CTA copy should still indicate that a sign up form is forthcoming, else you will frustrate your users and lose their trust.

If 'register' and 'sign up' are your only options? I have never performed an A/B test on registration link copy, but I've always been wary of 'sign up' as it's a little too close to 'sign in' for my liking, which I prefer to 'log in' as it's just a little less technical-sounding. That has usually left me with 'register', which I've never seen users have problems with. I don't think the two terms have any different in concept or tone - theoretically, registration evokes a more formal process, but on the internet they're such common terms for simply 'creating an account' that they've lost almost any other meaning.

As for colour, the typical advice is that humans are better at spotting reds, yellows and oranges than other hues. Yellow against black is particularly noticeable (in nature, lots of dangerous things have yellow-black stripes, which is why hornets don't look friendly) - and, as it happens, works quite well with a black and white colour scheme. Try out combinations with an A/B test, but I think yellow buttons on black would be your ideal solution.

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Both "register" and "Sign up" are bland and should be avoided in an actual call to action. Sign up is generally not preferred as it can be confused with "sign in". Note that "register" is still fine for a secondary command like when you're at a login screen and you don't have a login; register is the obvious thing to look for, so don't break those expectations.

KISS Metrics blog has several good resources on improving your conversion rates and Calls to Action, take this article Five Unique Calls to Action That Will Make You Click Twice. These calls to action all describe an action the user wants to take.

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Storeenvy.com sells the benefits for users and uses the friendly "Join Now" instead of the dull "Register". Don't remind users that they'll be filling out a dull form (but don't mislead them either).

Remember registering is just a step on the way to what the user wants to do. Don't tell me "Register," tell me "Get a free email account!"

More general conversion advice is in this article: 6 Easy-to-Get Insights That Can Boost Conversion Rates on Low-Performing Pages. If your CTA isn't performing well, consider making sure what users feel your page is about matches up with that it is about.

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In tandem with Ben's excellent answer and the resources he provided, you might be well served to try implementing some A/B tests on the page to compare two or three concepts directly against one another.

If you're unfamiliar with A/B testing, read more about it here.

Doing some of this can potentially result in large conversion lifts with seemingly insignificant changes. Check out WhichTestWon for a few examples of A/B tests and their results.

I'd recommend Optimizely as the go-to testing tool, but Google Website Optimizer would do the trick if you're trying to go the free route.

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