Subscriber Opt-in: You Can't Handle The Truth

Subscriber Opt-in: You Can't Handle The Truth



That’s what it sounds like when no one is subscribing to your website’s opt-in, pop-up request.

It’s a common problem and we’re going to tell you how to fix it in this episode of The Cause Café.

And, puh-lease, don't forget to grab the bonus material at the end of these Show Notes!

1) Control Your Ask

Don’t you find it so annoying to start reading an interesting story and a dumb subscription form pops up.

Always ask “after the feel good moment” and then ask again and again but not all on the same page.

In order to specify the perfect time when a pop-up should be triggered, first you need to take a look at your analytics to determine the average time spent on your website.

Best practices show that setting the timing to 60% of the average time spent on site can be an effective timing.

If this is beyond your current capacity then do what Unbounce suggests. Wait 60 seconds before allowing your opt-in pop-up or slide-in to appear.

If your visitors have spent 60 seconds browsing your website, they have already shown an adequate amount of engagement and presumably they understand the main message of your site – and 60 seconds isn’t so much time that you lose a lot of potential subscribers.

2) Relevant Requests Only Please

Don’t make the mistake of having subscription forms with messages that are unrelated to the content on the page.

Usually, this applies to websites on which content addresses multiple different topics. Many sites like this create a generic subscription CTA that appears on every page regardless of content.

While these unrelated offerings or CTAs might convert get some readers to sign up, it’s not the best strategy for attracting new subscribers.

3) Color Matters

Different colors are associated with different emotions, and these emotions can have a direct effect on how people behave.

Colors can also form a strong association with your brand.

Using a color scheme that isn’t consistent with your brand or complementary with itself can have a negative impact on the perception of your business.

This will drive users away from subscribing to your newsletter or emails. To help you out, here's a downloadable color | emotion chart that I use in brand discovery and alignment workshops. 

4) Exit Overlays

It’s a love-hate relationship. You may hate them but those pop-ups and slide-in opt-in forms really work.

In fact the best place to give website visitors a last chance to sign up is when they are ready to exit your website.

A friendly reminder, through exit offer technology, that they haven’t signed up yet increases opt-in by an additional 27%.

It’s called “exit offer technology" and it uses the science of behavioral targeting, personalization and content discovery to give your visitors the right offer at the right time, substantially increasing the odds that they’ll convert.

Picreel, among others, provide this type of technology.

Another tactic for another episode is the art of the CTA and social signups.

5) Use Your Opt-in for Segmentation

Let your site visitors select whether they are interested in volunteering, donating, or hosting a fundraising event.

Or you can also get the email address quickly and painlessly first, then direct your subscriber to a preferences page.

6) Test Your Opt-in

What happens if someone puts in an incomplete email or if they abandon the form? What do they see and what is the message?

And don’t forget to look at the form on a smart device to make certain that it is optimized for viewing.

Also, avoid the word “submit” where possible, it’s just as simple to use more descriptive and fun “Sign Me Up” or “Subscribe.”

7) Thank You

Thank or welcome subscribers immediately by reminding them what they will be receiving and why they are so amazing for joining your tribe.


That's it for today's episode. Thank you for tuning in!

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