Subscriber Acquisition Quick Win: Onsite Pop-Ups

Marketing databases naturally degrade about 25-30% every year, meaning if you don’t have a solid acquisition strategy in play, your marketing efforts are going to fall flat. It doesn’t matter how jaw-dropping or awe-inducing your campaigns are, if there’s no one to receive them, you’re losing money. One easy and effective way to increase acquisition is to deploy a sign up form on your website to capture email addresses from new subscribers and loyal customers alike.

WhatCounts’ Sign Up Form Builder allows users to quickly build pop-up forms that can be hosted either in the WhatCounts cloud or installed directly on your web page. When setting up a new sign up form on your site, there’s a couple of things you’ll want to consider.

1. Lightbox or Banner?

Think about the experience you want to create for a site visitor. While pop-ups are very noticeable as they take over the entire screen, some people can find them to be a nuisance. Based on what you know about your subscriber base, you can decide whether to create a lightbox or a banner. Generally, limiting a lightbox to the homepage and/or using a barter system, i.e. get X% off in exchange for an email address, is a great way to mitigate any ill-will from site visitors. If a customer or subscriber is busy browsing your site, it may be better to use a banner on subsequent pages and leave the full lightbox to the homepage.

2. Hosted in the Cloud or Self-Hosted?

While it might seem like hosting the javascript code on your site is the best way to go, if you ever want to update your form, you’ll actually have to update the associated forms and web pages on your website to reflect the changes. By hosting in the cloud, any updates you make to your form (if you’re using WhatCounts) will automatically appear.

3. Number of Calls-to-Action

In general giving subscribers too many options can be risky; however, think through what call-to-action(s) you want to include in your sign-up form. Perhaps, you only want to drive signups to your standard newsletter, no problem! But, maybe you want to give subscribers a choice between two versions of your newsletter. Using the sign up form builder, you can allow subscribers to self-select into multiple publications, ensuring you’re sending the most relevant content to your new subscribers. And only ask for data you’re going to use! If you aren’t using name, zip, and birthday for targeted campaigns, don’t ask the user to enter them—remember, you want to provide the lowest barrier to entry.

4. Who Will See this Pop-Up?

Depending on the content of the sign-up form, you may want to limit this to new site visitors rather than everyone who stops by. This will help you grow your subscriber list and keep you from potentially irritating your returning visitors. After all, if they’re a valued returning subscriber or customer, the last thing you want to do is make them feel like a stranger by asking them to re-subscribe.

5. Keep Out Pesky Spambots

Use a hidden captcha to prevent spambots from adding erroneous addresses to your subscriber list. While this seems like a small annoyance, these addresses could potentially hurt your reputation with ISPs and end up with you getting relegated to the spam folder.

The WhatCounts Sign Up Form Builder follows industry best practices and gives clients the ability to quickly create branded sign-up forms to increase engagement and acquisition on yoursite. Our support team put together this how-to article to show you just how easy it is to set up and deploy a sign up form with WhatCounts. As always, if you’re interested in learning more, just reach out—we’d be happy to help.

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