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Typical scenario, user signs up on a website, and must "confirm the email address" / "activate the account" etc. by clicking on a link in a registration email.

Before the email is sent, the user sees a message on the website which says:

You're Almost Done...

A verification email was sent to: {{email address}}.

Open this email and click the link to activate your account.

My question is, what wording is most appropriate/easy to understand/obvious for the call-to-action action link/button within that email? (When clicked, the account setup is done and the user is ready to go).

I've considered:

  • Click here to activate your account
  • Click here to complete your registration
  • Click here to confirm your email address
  • Click here to complete account setup

None of these feel right. I especially don't like 3 and 4, because they imply that more work is required.

I am going back and forth between 1 and 2, but again, they still don't seem quite right.

  • how about a better call to action like " click here to get started" or "click here to enjoy the product/shopping/services" not sure what the site does – Stanley VM Nov 16 '15 at 14:14
  • I thought about this, but I think it glosses over the fact that the user must click to activate the account. The phrases you mentioned seem more appropriate for a "welcome" email, once the account is already active. – GWR Nov 16 '15 at 14:36
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Use Option 1 "...to activate..." for consistency

This really feels like splitting hairs. I’m right behind you when it comes to fine tuning copy, but this is a scenario where the pressure is off.

For a lot of users, account activation is practically automated. The process looks something like:

  • Read alert “We sent you an email. You must…”
  • Go to email and locate.
  • Open, quickly parse for the obvious link, and click.

For those users who are unpracticed at account activation, the question is: How many of these users are going to become stuck and fail to complete the process, when after being told to check their email and click a link, they get there and the link says “Click here to complete…” as opposed to “Click here to activate…”? I’m going to go with the educated guess of ‘not many’.

If you really want to sweat this, you should test it out, because the old quote “one good test is worth a thousand expert opinions” holds true.

For now, I’d stick with option one, because it carries through the concept of activation. “We sent you an activation email…” and “to activate your account…” etc.

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It's always a pain to see registered users NOT activating their account. It's an age old problem! And you're right in asking this query. From my practical experience, I would suggest you to:

  1. Try sending 'text mails' especially when it comes to account activation/password reset. This is keeping the email delivery and open rate in mind.
  2. Avoid only giving the 'Click here..' hyperlink. Instead also give the complete link. If the link looks too long, find ways to shorten it by consulting the tech team. (Nope I'm not suggesting to use bitly like shorteners)
  3. 'Click here to complete your registration' sounds better. Jargons like 'activation', 'Double Opt-in' (for mails), etc. don't work especially if your target audience is not tech savvy.
  4. IMO many users signup but don't immediately check their mails for activation. It's always a tedious step for them. Hence the Registered : Activated ratio differs hugely. Try reminding the user first that he/she has recently tried to register and hence this 'activation' mail is sent.
  5. Carefully draft a plan to send activation reminders too. Sure you're gonna need them.
  6. Provide multiple ways to signup. Social accounts with 'email read permission' works best. In that case a verified social account holder might not require to confirm the email account.

Thanks.

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mockup

download bmml source – Wireframes created with Balsamiq Mockups

The button should state what will happen when it is pushed, from the perspective of the user.

Hopefully this will represent what they are thinking 'I want to activate my account'.

Make sure it is extremely obvious upon opening the email, since a high percentage of users will be on auto pilot, just looking for the most button-like element to click on.

See: http://uxmovement.com/content/why-your-links-should-never-say-click-here/

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