Various overlapping online marketing pop-up ads.

Make Pop-Ups Work

Pop-ups are an effective tool for you business. They help turn site visitors into return visitors. But, if a little care isn’t taken you could be scaring away your site visitors. So, how can you use pop-ups effectively to your advantage?

The Bad

First let’s tackle the negatives. A badly timed pop-up could send your site visitor rushing for the back button. This will impact your SEO and your bounce rate. No one wants to be bombarded with an email address request while mid-sentence on the first line. This is a sure-fire way to send your visitor to your competitor. People guard their email address much more today than they did just a few years ago. It’s important to welcome them before asking for something so personal.

So, how can you do it correctly?

Think about the timing of your pop-up first and foremost. Most, if not all, pop-up plugins will allow to set parameters for when they should appear. There are 4 ways you can trigger your pop-up.

Time. Give your reader time to read some content and decide if they like your website and what you offer.

Scroll. Give your reader time to scroll down the page a bit. You can start with triggering your pop-up after scrolling 50% of the page. If you’re content is longer, you could aim for 25%. This gives the reader time to get to know you.

On-click. Set your pop-up based on a click action. That could be a specific CTA button or link, even a link to another page.

Page-based. Using a page-based trigger could mean either the user has landed on a specific page or has clicked through a certain number of pages. I would suggest using a short time delay along with this trigger.

Three more considerations for your pop-up

Once you have your time figured out, there are three more things to consider.

Placement. Where your pop-up appears and how it appears can make a difference. Personally, I’m not a fan of full page pop-ups. They can be quite startling while reading. Alternative to that, consider a modal that darkens the screen and places your pop-up in the center. Your pop-up can slide in from any edge of the screen or fade in.

Frequency. Don’t annoy your reader. Use cookies and limit the number of times your pop-up shows per session. It doesn’t need to appear on every page. Once or twice per session is appropriate.

Exit Intent. This one can be annoying so use with care. An exit intent pop-up displays when your visitors takes action to leave your website. These can be effective in winning a customer back with sale item, but a general purpose I wouldn’t find them useful at all.

Take a moment and look over your pop-up from your visitors viewpoint. Make some tweaks and see what happens. If you don’t have a pop-up in place, let’s do it!

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