Boost subscriptions with an eye-catching email opt-in form

Boost subscriptions with an eye-catching email opt-in form
Nina De la Cruz
Nina De la Cruz 6 min read
💥 Join 5K subscribers

Want to grow your email list? That’s easy when you have the right tools at hand.

First, you need to add an email opt-in form to your website (we’ll show you how to do it in a second). Step number two will be to connect it to your email marketing software. And finally, the most exciting part is fine-tuning the form appearance to optimize sign-up rates.

Does it sound like something you were looking for?

From this post, you’ll learn how to create an email opt-in form for your website using the Getsitecontrol form builder. We’ll also share a few tips on how to boost the number of sign-ups using easy design and copy hacks.

A proper email opt-in form can bring a 2x increase in daily email subscriptions within the first weeks.

The opt-in form may look like a slide-in, a fullscreen or a modal popup appearing in the center of a page, a sticky bar, or a panel. It all depends on your list building strategy and how attention-grabbing you want the form to be.

You’ll also be able to set up exactly when and where the form should appear — thus ensuring your website visitors see it at the right moment.

Here is how to create a basic email opt-in form in less than 5 minutes

  1. Login to your Getsitecontrol account.

  2. Click +Create widget and choose Collect emails from the dropdown list.

  3. Choose a webpage position for your opt-in form: classic modal popup, fullscreen popup, slide-in, bar, or panel. Then select one of the available widget templates and click Continue →.

  4. On the Content tab, add convincing copy and a clear call to action. Here you can also choose what should happen when your site visitor clicks the widget button or the widget background.

  5. If you’d like to change the look of the template, you can do it on the Appearance tab: change the colors of the widget and, if necessary, its size and paddings. Check out the extensive picture gallery, import images from the web, or upload your own.

Choosing images from an extensive picture gallery in the Getsitecontrol admin dashboard

  1. Click Save & close to save the changes. When you are ready to publish the widget, activate it.

Once you’ve finished with these steps, the email opt-in form will instantly appear on your website ready to collect subscriptions. Next we’ll show you what other tweaks you can apply to make it even more efficient.

Choose what happens after submission

On the Content tab, you can not only edit the widget’s copy, but also choose what happens after someone clicks the button on your form. Here are your options:

  • automatically close the widget upon button click,
  • display a second page with a “Thank You!” message,
  • redirect new subscribers to another URL,
  • launch another widget.

For example, if you’re offering a free ebook in exchange for an email address, you can make use of a second page. Once website visitors fill out the form, display submission confirmation and let them know they can find an email with the ebook file in their inbox.

Integrate your opt-in form with email marketing software

Getsitecontrol brings a smooth integration with 25+ most popular email marketing apps including MailChimp, Constant Contact, Aweber, and others. If you have the website up and running, you should connect the software right away, so that every new subscriber would go directly to your mailing list.

You can connect your Getsitecontrol account to the chosen email marketing software on the Integrations tab.

Set up on-page behavior triggers and targeting

Now that you have a fully-functioning email opt-in form on a website, you may want to fine-tune targeting settings and on-page behavior triggers. Both can be found in the Targeting dashboard tab.

You can choose to display the subscription form only to certain segments of your audience based on their location, language, browser, and other parameters. Say, you may need to show your widget to people from certain countries, or to those coming from selected websites, or to those viewing your site from specific devices.

It’s also possible to define when exactly the form appears on the page: instantly, after a visitor scrolls down, after they spend a certain amount of time on a webpage or on the website. You can also target idle visitors or those who are trying to leave your site.

Opt-in form: best practices you should have in mind

By now, you should have a clear idea of how to create an email opt-in form and adjust it to your goals. As promised, below we’ll briefly overview some of the best opt-in form practices that might be helpful.

Add incentives (lead magnets)

Here is the deal. Most people aren’t too excited to receive brand newsletters these days because their inboxes are already cluttered. That’s why you need to come up with an enticement and provide some value (a.k.a. a lead magnet) in exchange for an email address if you want to grow your list faster.

Think of your marketing persona and their pain points to understand what your lead magnet should be.

Any content that brings value to your audience will make a good lead magnet. Ebooks, cheat sheets, discounts are just the most common examples.

You can also create custom lead magnets based on the pages where you’re planning to offer them. For example, if you have a blog with multiple sections, you can create unique lead magnets for each section.

Customize signup forms for different pages

Imagine, you’re reading a blog post about vegetarian recipes and an email subscription form pops up. Which one will be more enticing?

  • The one offering “Best 30-minute recipes” or
  • The one offering “Best vegetarian 30-minute recipes”?

Most likely, the latter.

Naturally, people are more inclined to subscribe to the information they are interested in. In other words, you have more chances to convert a visitor by offering something similar to what they are already consuming on your website.

In Getsitecontrol, to display selected opt-in forms on selected pages, you’ll just need to specify the page URL on the Targeting tab.

Get creative (and straightforward) with the copy

And while we’re on the subject of making opt-in forms more convincing, let’s establish that your copy matters a lot. One of the best opt-in form practices is being specific about what you deliver.

Here are three tips:

  1. Specify what they are signing up for
    Compare “Subscribe to our newsletter” and “Subscribe to receive our most popular articles roundups weekly”.
  2. Use social proof if it’s relevant
    Compare “Become our subscriber” and “Join 10K blogging enthusiasts who have already subscribed”
  3. Avoid boring CTAs placed on the button
    Compare “Subscribe” to “I’m in!”, “Sign me up”, “Join” or “Let’s do it!”.

Experiment with exit-intent popups

Exit-intent opt-in popups are your last chance to convert a visitor who was about to leave without subscribing, and you better not miss it. The best practice for an email opt-in here is definitely offering something in exchange for a subscription.

Think about it. If someone didn’t subscribe while browsing your website, chances are, they weren’t too enticed. So, showing a plain “Subscribe to our newsletter” opt-in form at the exit might not be too effective either. Instead, offer an incentive that might change their mind and convince them to sign up.

A/B test the opt-in form

Split tests work wonders. They allow you to eliminate the guesswork and find out exactly which copy, creative, offer, and CTA combination delivers the highest conversion rate.

In Getsitecontrol, you can clone widgets in one click and can create as many versions of the same opt-in form as you want to further A/B test their performance on the website.

Remember that you should only have one variable during the experiment to get reliable results. After some time, you’ll be able to see which form performs better and use this knowledge to optimize conversions.

This one is important. And not only because of the GDPR-related concerns but also because it demonstrates your responsible approach to list building.

Adding a consent checkbox in Getsitecontrol is simple. You can do it on the Content tab where you can also specify the consent message and make the checkbox required.

This is what it will look like:

And by the way, if you were looking for an easy way to add a cookie consent message to your website, Getsitecontrol can help you with that too. When creating a new widget, instead of choosing the Collect emails option, simply choose the Notify visitors one to add a neat floating bar or a slide-in displaying your policy.

Tips for your marketing strategy