Should You Use A Pop-Up On Your Site?

Here's some snippets of conversations I hear on a regular basis when it comes to website pop-ups.

'Is it a good idea to have a pop-up on my site? I mean, they're just annoying people, right?'
'People just ignore pop-ups now. There's really no use.'

'I hate pop-ups, do I have to have them?'

I'm sure you've even been shopping on that drool-worthy website and had a beautiful little gift of 10% off your first purchase with them, for the simple exchange of your email address... Tempting, right??

Whether you love them, or hate them, the proof is in the pudding: Pop-ups WORK!

I know, I know... You're still thinking 'But I hate pop-ups, do I really need them?'.

Consider this for a moment:

99% of people who visit your website will not buy from you on their first visit. (1) Now this figure is likely based around product-based businesses, so for us service-based businesses, I guess we could say that 99% of people are unlikely to reach out and enquire about our services on their first visit.

Couple this with the fact, according to Salesforceit takes from 6 to 8 touch-points with your brand to generate a viable sales lead, we quickly start to understand that we need some sort of way to entice these almost-lost customers back to our website!

Product-based businesses will often offer you a limited-time discounts, in exchange for your email deets! But again, for us service-based entrepreneurs this means we need to create a free gift that our website visitors just can't say no to! One that is so incredibly valuable and speaks exactly to their needs!

So what we really need is just a newsletter opt-in box, right?

Well yes, but if we're really serious about building our lists, then we need something more than just a newsletter box. We need something that could increase our conversion rate anywhere from 150% to 1100% (2). Well that my dear lady is what your pop-up is for!

Whatever your current conversion rate is, I bet you would love it if it were converting 1100% more. Am I right?

So how can we make your pop-up less annoying, and more meaningful for your website traffic?

Offer Something Valuable

If you've participated in my Mailing List Makeover Challenge, then you'll know that I'm all about creating opt-in offerings that are superbly valuable to your potential tribe-members, and really showcase how valuable an asset you will be to them!

So if you're going to share a pop-up on your site, you want to first make sure that it's something your tribe will value. Secondly, you have to make sure it is valuable! I know these sound the same - but they're completely different concepts.

The first is about understanding your dreamiest clients needs, wants and desires and crafting something that speaks directly to those things. The second is about your mindset when you're creating your offering. I've heard it said that your opt-in gift should be equal to at least $200 value. But in reality, your opt-in gift needs to be, well, PRICELESS. 

Craft A Catchy Headline

I alluded to it above; simply putting 'sign up for updates and my weekly newsletter' isn't enough to really attract people in. Because if that's all you've got baby, they're going elsewhere!

Almost EVERY  site has a newsletter list - therefore you're not just in competition with the people in the same industry as you - you're in competition with everyone that lands in your ideal clients inbox.

So from the outset, you want to show your new subscriber, that you are going to epically impact their lives/business/health. The best way to do so? Create a headline that captures their attention and reflects your value!

Show Them What They're Getting

When designing any website, here at JuJu Creative Hub always come at things from the idea of making the content on your page as easy to absorb as possible. What this usually means is to visually represent your content and your message. (After all, they say a picture is worth a thousand words!!!)

Your pop-up should be no different! 

Show your website visitors how beautiful your opt-in gift is, by showing them a little preview. Not only does this allow them to absorb the information quicker - it also allows them to see a little bit of your content, knowing that you're not taking them for a ride and collecting their email address for something that just isn't worth it. (And let's be honest - we've all downloaded a few of those 'e-books'!).

Compelling Reasons For Signing Up

When done right, your opt-in offering helps solve a real problem that your future subscriber (and potential future client) is experiencing. But what they're really wanting to sign up for is the results they will experience as a result of downloading your opt-in gift!

Created a killer e-book? Let them know in your pop-up copy what reading that e-book will get them. Better health? A business road-map? Focus on the results, and you're bound to get them hitting 'Sign Me Up'!

A Killer Call To Action

Finally, we have the cherry on top - the call to action. Without a call to action, all of the above is useless! 

You've told them created something super valuable, caught their attention with your pop-up (and headline). You've shown them visually what they will be getting and the results they can expect as a benefit of joining your list. Now you've got to help them out, and direct them on what they need to do.

It seems very simple, but a Call To Action is the key to getting them to take action. Words like 'click here to gain access' or 'join now' compel your audience to take action now! Not in a week's time. NOW!

There's a bunch of resources on the web about designing your call to action. However, I want to leave you with one small, but very effective piece of advice.

Find words that engage your particular audience and then test different varieties of call to action. Test the colour, test the wording, test the positioning. Then use this information to decide on the best format for your audience.

Ok, so you've done all that, and they're STILL not interested in what your pop-ups got to offer! But, NOW WHAT?

Well, you want their eyes on your content asap, so you can get to convincing them just how awesome you really are! So make it easy for them to close the damn thing! 

Ensure that your pop-up is easy to close on both a mobile device as well as a desktop, in order to make it as easy as possible for those that need a little more convincing to check out your content first before signing up.

And if you're still not convinced, at least promise me that you'll try these alternatives:

  • Install an on-exit pop-up:
    Your pop-up will only show when your prospect is leaving your site - they were leaving anyway, so why not try and catch their attention one last time!
  • Utilise two-step lightbox pop-ups
    These are great for implementing when your blog content directly relates to your opt-in offering. The user clicks on what appears to be a hyperlink in your content, but instead of being taken to an external site or another page, a pop-up appears asking them for their email address and offering your amazing freebie! 
  • Add opt-in boxes to every post
    If you're really not convinced on advertising how awesome being on your exclusive list is to your potential tribe members, at least promise me that you'll include a signup form at the end of each post/page!  Please??? 
    If they've made it to the end of the page or your blog post, chances are the content intrigued them (and hopefully taught them a thing or two!). So encourage them to get a little more of that magic, and sign up to your list!

So in summary, here's my belief about pop-ups:

If you have something that you believe is valuable to your tribe, and can present it in an enticing way - then yes, by all means - go ahead, get that pop-up in front of your tribe.

But if you plan on just slapping on a generically designed pop-up, with words that are effectively BEGGING for people to sign up to your mailing list for 'updates and inspirations', then forget it! If you can't prove that what you're offering in your pop up is worthwhile and VALUABLE to your tribe members, than stop annoying everyone and get rid of the thing!