What Feels Clickable



It is a common part of user behavior on social media, to click the hyperlinks and thumbnail links within a social media post.

However, these social media posts themselves typically do not feel clickable. In other words, they might not look like, or contain a button or other design cue.

So what makes a post feel thumb-stopping?

What makes you want to click to learn more?

Most of all, how do these elements come together, especially through design?

I think this is a huge factor in social media impact, and one I am continuing to explore.

Clickable Elements

  • The overall message must be relevant and compelling
  • Consider a teaser or sense of mystery
  • Include a hyperlink in post copy, without cluttering the post
  • Break up post copy
  • Consider using emojis or unicode symbols in post copy
  • Accessibility features, such as alt text in both the post settings and post copy
  • Solid color
  • Contrast with the color of the social platform feed
  • Illustration
  • Rounded corners, buttons, cards
  • A simple image with only a few elements
  • Use image dimensions that are a bit different than usual, but still accepted on the platform (e.g., vertical images on Instagram)
  • Play with other platform interface nuances (e.g., transparent images, carousel posts)
  • Use Facebook Business Manager to create a Page post with a call-to-action button
  • Create templates that address all the factors above
  • Implement cohesive brand design across each touchpoint
  • Ensure that the post-click experience is seamless and great
  • Use tools outside the social media platforms to test images, before using them on social media
  • Use paid media to test and iterate what works

Additional Reading

5 Things That Make People Click On Content

How to make something look clickable

The Design of Everyday Things

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