Popup Opt-in Forms are the ad-like boxes that are separate from a website or blog, but appear when a user visits a site. These forms usually offer some sort of free gift in exchange for a reader’s emailing information. Most readers claim to dislike them, but marketers swear by them, and many will attest that Popup Opt-ins are still one of the best ways to increase email subscribers.
A good example of this would be powerhouse company Social Media Examiner, which grew its email list using Popup Opt-in Forms 234% back in 2012. “The popup has been absolutely instrumental in our success.”-Michael Stelzner, founder of Social Media Examiner.
Popups are powerful tools, but they can also be a double-edged sword if not done correctly. Before you decide if popups are right for you, consider these “do’s and don’ts” of using Popup Opt-in Forms:
Do experiment with titles, images, and placement: Commonly called A/B split testing, it’s a very good idea to experiment with several titles, free gifts and even images to see what evokes the best response. As far as placement, some marketers have reported that popup opt-ins work well at the end of every blog post, while others have great success with sidebar placement.
No Smoke-n-Mirrors Please: Make it clear what readers will “get” in the title of your opt in for greater conversions. Examples would be “Get my 8 tips to Better Sales Conversions” or “Get the 10 Secrets the Experts Know about Email Marketing.”
Offer an Escape Hatch: Give users the opportunity to decline and make it easy to do so. A simple “X” in the corner of your opt-in seems to work best, but the bottom line is that you need to give people the opportunity say “no,” yet be able to continue to enjoy your content.
Don’t show your popup too often: If you show it too often you could be perceived as a spammer and readers may leave, and not come back. Many popup opt-in plugins like Pippity allow users to schedule how often readers see your popups.
This is not the Spanish Inquisition: Don’t ask for too much information. Unless you plan on sending out something to your subscribers via snail mail (and mention it on the form), keep it simple and ask for name and email only.
Timing is everything: While researching this topic, I discovered the overall consensus with readers is that no one likes to be interrupted while reading a post or be hit with a popup as soon as they visit a website or blog. Scheduling your popup to appear toward the end of the post seemed to be a better alternative in the eyes of many readers.
At the end of the day, it’s not just about the success of the popup opt-in form, but the reputation behind it. Your success with popups may be based largely on the work you do on the front end of your business like building credibility and offering valued content regardless of your audience size.
How do you feel about popup opt-in forms?