How to Craft Irresistible Discount Promo Popups (+ 9 Inspiring Examples)

How to Craft Irresistible Discount Promo Popups (+ 9 Inspiring Examples)
Charlene Boutin Charlene Boutin Oct 6, 2022 —  12 min read

Popups may get a bad rap, but when they’re used right, they can be an ecommerce brand’s best friend.

If it weren’t for popups, you’d be leaving plenty of sales on the table… especially when you’re running discount promotions.

Discount popups keep your website visitors focused on your ongoing promotion and help reduce bounce rates 👇

However, not all popups are created equal. A few tweaks can make the difference between popups that flop and popups that flood your business with new customers.

If you want to know how to create effective popups, keep reading! First, we’ll talk about the best ways to craft and promote a discount offer. Then we’ll show you inspiring discount promo popup examples to learn from.

Feel free to jump to the section you want to read first:

How do you promote a discount on your online store?

Running frequent promotions and discounts is one of the most effective ways to incite customers to buy from your online store, including but not limited to:

  • Social media posts
  • Email newsletter
  • Paid ads
  • Influencer collaborations
  • Showcasing your promotion in the text and images of your home page

While all these tactics work to promote your discount, they won’t necessarily catch everyone’s eye. That’s why popups are so effective.

Unlike email promotions or static text and images on your website, popups can actively engage your customers. For example, visitors must engage with modal popups to keep shopping. And slide-in popups create motion on the screen, which grabs the attention of passive visitors 👇

That doesn’t mean other promotional methods don’t work. A well-rounded ecommerce strategy should include a blend of approaches to promote discounts. But promo popups can’t be ignored.

When should you offer a discount to your visitors?

There are no hard rules about when to offer discounts to your visitors. However, there are several moments you can take advantage of to show your promo popups. Here are some examples:

  • During holidays, new seasons, or sale events such as Black Friday
  • Upon someone’s first visit to your website
  • When visitors show intent to exit your store
  • During flash sales (basically, any time you feel like it!)
  • After repeat purchases
  • When you’re clearing out old stock

Notice that some of these moments depend on a customer’s actions. Dynamic promos are an effective way to adapt to what your visitors do on your website and how they interact with your brand. They allow you to create a tailored experience for every unique customer.

How to write a high-converting discount offer

Want to increase conversion rates for your discount promo popups? Here are 7 strategies to try out today.

1. Take inspiration from your customers

Have you ever heard of VOC (voice-of-customer) data? VOC is a type of research that businesses employ to understand their customers better. It’s called “voice of customer” because its goal is to find out what customers’ inner voice sounds like.

What are the thoughts going through their minds when they consider a new purchase?

What exact words do they use to describe their experience with products like yours?

With VOC, you can match the copy in your popups with the conversation that’s already happening in your customers’ heads. This makes the copy resonate with your ideal customer, which can increase your conversion rates.

Let’s take a look at the customer reviews below as an example.

Using voice-of-customer data from reviews to craft better sales copy

Do any words stick out to you? Language like the following could be effective in popup copy:

  • Color and material are perfection
  • Customer service is outstanding
  • Beautiful clothing
  • The most beautiful fabric
  • Feminine with just the right fit
  • So flattering that I want it in every color
  • The details are exquisite

You could spend weeks — if not months — coming up with the ideal language as you try to guess how your customers talk about your products. Or, you could spend a few hours going through customer reviews and sending out surveys. The latter will be much more accurate.

2. Write a benefit-driven call-to-action button

A call to action is the section of your popup that — you guessed it — calls your customer to action. Usually, it will be a button or a link.

Although CTA buttons look simple enough, you shouldn’t pick your CTA words at random. Yes, you can still generate conversions with simple words like “Apply”, “Sign up”, or “Subscribe”. But these words don’t express anything more.

Instead, consider using action-driven and benefit-driven copy on your popups’ CTA buttons. Take a look at an example from Goodfood below:

Goodfood uses actionable CTA on their discount promo popup

Instead of writing “Spin the wheel”, the copywriter for this popup decided on “Try my luck”. Those words suggest the benefit of getting lucky with the wheel, and they also pack more personality.

So how can you choose the right words? This is a great segue into the third tip…

3. Use power words

Power words take your copy from “meh” to “wow”, especially for short form copy like popups. They compel your visitors to take action.

How do they work? Power words trigger an emotional response from people, whether that’s positive or negative. You can categorize them into 7 types:

  1. Fear
  2. Encouragement
  3. Lust
  4. Anger
  5. Greed
  6. Safety
  7. Forbidden

Here are just a few examples of power words you’ve probably used without realizing it:

  • Mind-blowing
  • Fierce
  • Stunning
  • Vanquish
  • Heavenly
  • Toxic
  • Plunge
  • Behind the scenes
  • Guilt-free
  • Whopping
  • Soaring

Smartblogger has already compiled one of the most comprehensive lists of power words used by marketers, so make sure to bookmark it for later reference.

There are several ways you can use power words, which will ultimately depend on how you prefer to work. For instance, you can look through power words to let them inspire the copy for your popup. Conversely, you can write a draft of your popup copy and sprinkle in power words during your first round of edits.

4. Call out your visitor with “you” and “your”

What better way to engage your visitors than to call them out directly? Make website users part of the conversation by including words like “you” and “your” into your popups.

It’s easier to illustrate this concept through an example:

Click and Grow discount promo popup with an email form

Instead of telling visitors they can get $10 off a smart garden, Click and Grow specifies it’s YOUR smart garden. By reading this phrase, visitors can start imagining what it would be like to own one of these smart gardens.

Matched with the image on this popup, visitors have everything they need to visualize what life would be like if they unlocked their discount and purchased this product.

5. Appeal to the senses

Power words aren’t the only way to elicit a reaction from your customers. You can also write copy that appeals to one or more of the five senses:

taste, touch, hearing, smell, and sight.

By invoking the senses through your popup copy, you can trigger your customers’ imagination. It’ll be easier for them to imagine themselves experiencing your product.

For instance, use descriptive words to describe what the fabric feels like on the skin if you sell clothing items. Who wouldn’t want to wrap themselves in buttery soft fabric, or light a candle that’s sweet, nutty, and reminiscent of brown sugar?

Below is an example of how you can use taste to wake up the senses. Although this isn’t a popup, Barnana’s simple, four-word headline packs a punch.

Barnana appeals to senses in their home page headline

Epic crunch, wild style.

Not only do these words communicate the flavor, they also let readers feel the tactile sensation of the crunch.

If you’ve put some effort in your product description, you may already have a source of inspiration to dig into.

6. Promote exclusivity

People like to belong. Even better, they like to belong somewhere exclusive.

If you have a list-building offer that allows people to opt in, you have an opportunity to tap into the itch for exclusivity.

Let your potential subscribers know what’s in it for them if they join — and what they could be missing out on.

Below, you can see how Obakki uses the language of “insider” and “exclusive access” to convert new visitors:

Obakki promotes exclusivity by inviting visitors to their email list in exchange for a discount

The more specific you can be about the benefits of that exclusivity, the better. For instance, what type of promotions do you send to your list only? Are there any limited-edition products you’ll launch to your email list first?

7. Play around with popup types

This last one isn’t a copy tip, but it’s important nonetheless — don’t be afraid to switch up your website popup type and format. You don’t have to rely only on the traditional modal popup.

Below is what a slide-in popup looks like:

Healthy bud uses a slide-in discount promo popup to build their email list

Although there are several variations and styles, the main 5 popup types we recommend include:

  • Modal
  • Slide-in
  • Sidebar
  • Bottom bar
  • Fullscreen overlay

Read this blog post to find out performance statistics of different popup types

9 Discount promo popup examples to learn from

Want to learn by example? We’ve found 9 inspiring promo popups that can teach you a lot about how to handle promos on your own ecommerce site.

1. Offer a welcome discount in exchange for an email address

People who land on your website for the first time need a reason to stay instead of bouncing away. And while your products on their own may sway interested visitors, you can also offer a welcome discount in exchange for an email address.

Not only do new visitors get a chance to grab a promotion, but you get to grow your email list and retain this visitor in your brand’s world.

You can run these popup promos as evergreen, but you can also play with different offers and see what converts best.

Below is an amazing example of a welcome promo popup from Shroom Spoon:

Shroom Spoon uses a discount promo popup to grow their email list

The flowery “welcome” headline is inviting and friendly and the subhead even says “Happy to have you”. From this popup alone, we can get a feel of this person’s brand.

Why does this work? This welcome promo treats visitors like people instead of just “leads”.

On the other hand, the CTA button could be improved. Instead of using the generic “sign up” text, consider trying a more specific action CTA such as “Join the club” or “Grab 10$ Off”.

2. Display eye-catching coupon boxes

Everyone likes coupons! But you don’t have to rely on modal popups to display them — and you don’t always have to turn coupons into an opt-in tool. For instance, you can allow customers to copy and paste a code directly into their cart.

For instance, take a look at this slide-in popup:

The GIF is fun, and it compels the excitement from getting a deal – while the copy is concise and specific. Because it requires action from visitors (copying and pasting the code at checkout), it doesn’t distract people with fluff copy or other embellishments.

Notice how the dotted lines make it obvious that this is a coupon code. Using visual language in this way helps people understand what your discount promo is all about, even from the corner of their eye.

3. Offer automatic discounts

Sometimes you can make it easier than ever for visitors to access a discount… but you may still want them to engage with your website. For this purpose, you can use automatic discounts.

For example, this offer from The Jordaan Collection pops up after a visitor spends 5 seconds on a product page. If visitors click “Great”, it automatically applies a 5-euro discount directly to the cart — no code needed.

Automated discount promo popup from the Jordaan store

So why show this popup instead of just applying the discount across the entire store by default? While I can’t read this brand owner’s mind, here are a few reasons this could be useful.

The popup doesn’t just let people know there’s a discount, but it also requires them to confirm they know about it. Anyone who clicks “Great” is now 100% aware that they can take advantage of the discount promo.

A promo that’s activated by default without the interaction of visitors could easily be missed.

4. Promote a discount for a specific product

While discount promo popups are a powerful tool for general promotions, you can also use them to give discounts on specific products.

Why would you promote certain products instead of letting visitors purchase what they want with their promo code? If you have products with better margins, you may want to encourage more visitors to purchase them.

However, promoting specific products is a great way to upsell and cross-sell in a curated and relevant way.

Let’s look at this example from Nary Resort. This promo pops up when a customer adds certain tops (that go well with these shorts) to the cart. The promo doesn’t trigger unless a visitor adds these specific tops.

Cross-sell and discount promo popup on the Nary Resort website

Because the shorts go well with the tops, it makes sense to add them to the cart as well to create a cute outfit — especially when you’re getting a good deal for it.

While you could give deals for any products, consider dynamic deals like this to increase the chances of your visitors taking up your offers.

5. Launch a limited-time sitewide sale promo

On the opposite spectrum, you can also launch a discount promo across your entire website. In this case, you can implement scarcity and urgency into your copy to encourage visitors to take action now.

Below, you can see how NION Beauty promotes its Memorial Day sale with a 20% off discount across its entire site.

NION beauty sitewide sale promo popup

In the copy, they specify how long the promotion lasts. But they also add benefit-driven copy to entice visitors to shop:

“Get perfect skin for summer”

Visitors who see this know that not only will they save money, but they’ll improve their skin.

6. Show a discount promo offer on exit intent

Did you know that you can trigger popups when visitors show intent to click away from your website? This is called exit-intent popups, and they are a useful way to retain bouncing visitors and add them to your email list.

Below is a popup from Kanzen Skincare that appears when a visitor is leaving the store:

Kanzen Skincare uses a fullscreen discount promo popup on exit intent

Kanzen Skincare shared that the conversion rate for this popup is 3.23% which means that over 3% of abandoning visitors become email subscribers.

Here’s what you can learn from this high-converting promo popup:

  • Have fun with your headline: “Okay! Hold Up! Wait A Minute… You win!” sounds fun and conversational. It certainly grabs your attention.
  • Write unique CTA buttons: Instead of using a generic button like “sign up” or “submit”, Kanzen Skincare uses “Show me the money!”. Not only is it fun, but it remains specific.
  • Add social proof: “100% of people asked said they liked the way KANZEN made their skin feel.” By adding this sentence on their popup, this brand creates legitimacy and trust.

7. Prevent cart abandonment with a discount offer

Cart abandonment is one of the phenomena that will cost you the most sales online. For instance, did you know that the average cart abandonment rate is 84.27%?

That’s a big chunk of your sales, gone just like that.

While cart abandonment email sequences can help you retrieve some of these lost shoppers, you can also use discount promo popups to decrease your cart abandonment rate.

On OMI Jewelry’s website, this promo pops up in the shopping cart if a customer is about to abandon the products they’ve added to their cart:

OMI Jewelry uses an exit-intent discount promo popup to prevent cart abandonment

In this example, the brand offers a set dollar amount for their discount. But you can play around with other promotions to show visitors who are trying to abandon their carts, such as:

  • Free shipping coupons (if there isn’t already free shipping available)
  • Percentage off their entire order
  • A free item to add to their order

The best tactic to choose depends on why people are abandoning their carts in the first place. Consider using an exit-intent survey to gather data about your bouncing visitors and make a more informed choice.

8. Show last-minute discount offers to prevent store abandonment

You don’t have to wait until your shoppers make it to their cart to show them last-minute discounts. Instead of showing this type of popup exclusively at checkout, you can implement a popup that triggers on any page when visitors have items in their cart.

Turkish Souq shows how you can do this. Their offer will pop up anywhere in their store if a customer has products in the cart but starts heading towards the exit.

Turkish Souq popup

How well does this work?

This particular popup has a clickthrough rate of 15,5%, which means 15,5% of abandoning customers go back to the cart to reconsider their purchase. While not all 15.5% of clickers may complete their order, it’s still a considerable number of people!

9. Use a BOGO sale promo

Buy One Get One promos are an effective method to encourage customers to purchase multiple products. For example, Caffeine Melts displays this popup if a customer has at least one item in the cart:

BOGO sale promo popup example

Customers get encouraged to join the list to get a BOGO code and get a product for free!

BOGO popup promos can help you increase your average order value. If you’re generating traffic from paid ads, a higher average order value is especially important to liquidate your ad spend or even make a profit.

Launch your own discount promo popups

Now you know the best practices to use to launch your own discount promo popups — and you’ve seen enough examples to inspire your first iterations. But even if you get inspired, it can be challenging to create popups from scratch.

Luckily, you don’t have to start from scratch when you create popups with Getsitecontrol. You can choose from a vast library of stunning templates and get started in minutes. Try it for free today!

Charlene Boutin is a freelance content writer & email marketing strategist for hire specializing in helping Ecommerce and SaaS businesses increase conversions by growing authentic relationships with their audience. She loves helping business owners tell their unique stories to capture the hearts of more customers.

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