Calls-to-action (CTAs) | Frequently Asked Questions

Last updated: November 9, 2020

Applies to:

Marketing Hub  Professional, Enterprise
CMS Hub  Professional, Enterprise
Legacy Marketing Hub Basic
Find answers and general information quickly about calls-to-action (CTAs) in HubSpot.

If you are using an externally-hosted PDF, copy the PDF's URL from your file manager:

  • In your HubSpot account, navigate to Marketing > Files and Templates > Files.
  • Locate and click the name of your PDF.
  • In the File details pane, click Copy URL.

  • Navigate to your CTA tool. In your HubSpot account, navigate to Marketing > Lead Capture > CTAs.
  • Hover over a CTA and click the Actions dropdown menu, then select Edit.
  • In the slide-in panel, click Next > to access your CTA options.
  • On the Options screen, click the URL redirect type dropdown menu and select External website URL.
  • In the Enter URL field, paste in the PDF's URL.

  • Click Save, then click Finish.

Why is there no data for the CTA embedded on a WordPress page?

If you're using embedded CTAs on a WordPress site and no CTA data is appearing in HubSpot, you will want to compare the source code of your site with the embed code to make sure that the code was not altered by Wordpress. If the code has been significantly altered, try re-embedding the CTA. XHTML Wordpress themes will add <![CDATA[ ]]> tags around the Javascript, which should not affect whether the CTA tracks.

If WordPress is altering the embed code, you could use a third-party plugin to add the CTA to the page/post in the form of a shortcode. One plugin that allows users to insert CTA codes via a shortcode (therefore preserving the script tags) is Insert HTML Snippet. Another example of this kind of plugin is Shortcoder.

Why is my smart CTA not showing the right variation?

The contact may not meet the criteria of the contact list you've chosen in your smart CTA rule. Check that the contact meets the list criteria to ensure that they will see the right variation.

What are click tracking domains for CTAs?

A HubSpot CTA tracks clicks by directing visitors to an initial URL which associates the click to the CTA, before redirecting them to the final page. This initial URL is the click tracking URL. The URL you include when setting up the CTA is still the URL visitors will ultimately be redirected to, but the click tracking is tied to the URL of the page where the CTA is embedded. 

When a CTA is placed on an external page:

  • If you are using website pages in HubSpot, the click tracking URL's domain will be the primary website domain set in your domain manager.
  • If you are not using website pages, the click tracking URL's domain will be the primary landing page domain set in your domain manager.

Why don't my CTA clicks match the page views of my page?

Sometimes the information from the CTA tool doesn't match up with the view/click data from the landing pages tool. There are a few reasons why this might occur:

  • The landing page existed before the CTA was added (it would have more views than the CTA tool and therefore different CTR percentages).
  • The HubSpot tracking code is missing from the page or isn't firing properly.
  • The CTA embed code has been stripped of the necessary JavaScript tags that measure interactions.

Can I use an anchor ID in the URL link of a CTA?

Yes, you can use an anchor ID in the URL link of a CTA:

  • In your HubSpot account, navigate to Marketing > Lead Capture > CTAs.
  • Hover over a CTA and click the Actions dropdown menu, then select Edit. Or, in the upper right, click Create CTA.
  • In the slide-in panel, set up your CTA's design.
  • Click Next >.
  • On the Options screen, enter your link with the anchor ID included in the Enter URL field.
  • Click Save, then click Finish.

Please note: when using an anchor ID in the URL of a CTA, the page will reload before scrolling to the anchor. This is because CTA click tracking requires the page to load and redirect. If you would rather the page not reload, use an anchor link instead.

Why is the landing page URL so long after I click on a CTA?

After clicking on a CTA, the URL in the address bar looks like it has many more characters (letters, numbers, symbols) than your landing page URL normally contains. These extra characters are the tracking code applied to the URL only after clicking on a CTA button.

It looks something like this:


This is not the new permanent landing page URL, but it is necessary to append these parameters in order to register views, submissions, and clicks for the CTA. The _hssc, _hstc, and _hsfp parameters are used for cookie tracking.The hsCtaTracking parameter is specific to CTA tracking. Learn more about these tracking parameters.

Why is some of my CTA text appearing below the button?

HubSpot's CTA tool gives users two options when editing the size of a specific CTA: automatic and fixed. If a CTA is configured to use fixed dimensions the button's background will be sized to those dimensions. In cases where the text area contains text that exceeds those dimensions (either by length or size) the CTA background is unable to adjust to fit the text. You can avoid this by reducing the size of the text on the CTA or by removing the fixed dimensions.

Can I create a CTA outside of HubSpot?

While you can create CTA buttons outside of HubSpot's CTA tool, it is not recommended. The advantages of using HubSpot's CTA tool include access to analytics data, click data, form submissions data, A/B testing (Marketing Hub Professional and Enterprise only), and an embed code that keeps your existing CTAs up to date.

Can I put multiple CTAs on the same page?

Yes, there is no limit to the number of CTAs that can be used on a page.

Why is my CTA displaying twice on my HubSpot page?

This is caused by an additional anchor tag surrounding the CTA token within the source code. In order to resolve this issue, you will need to remove the anchor tag surrounding the CTA, leaving only the CTA token.

  • In your HubSpot account, navigate to website pages, landing pages, or blogs.
  • Locate the rich text module where the CTA is included and click into the module.
  • Click the embed icon embed to access the source code.
  • If the CTA token is wrapped in an anchor tag, remove the anchor tag so only the CTA token remains, as see below: