Increase conversions by showing popups after a time delay

Increase conversions by showing popups after a time delay
Nina De la Cruz
Nina De la Cruz 5 min read

Website popups are controversial creatures. Some believe they are a great tool to engage visitors, while others claim them to be intrusive and distracting.

Our opinion? It's never about the popups — but rather about the way you use them on your website. So, if you want to display your call to action on a popup without looking intrusive, use time-delayed popups – like this one 👇


Using the time-delay trigger, you can invite visitors to sign up, promote coupons, display surveys or any other calls to action.

Below, we’ll talk about how to create time-delayed popups in Getsitecontrol and feature 5 common examples of delayed popups you can add to your website.

How do delayed popups work?

Delayed popups are displayed after visitors spend a certain amount of time on your webpage.

But just how long should the delay be? That’s a good question.

If you choose to show your popup too soon, it may interrupt visitors’ experience on the page.

However, if the delay is too long, they may leave before even seeing the popup, and you’ll end up losing potential engagements.

There is no one-size-fits-all approach here: the best timing for two different sites might be different as well.

And because no one knows your site better than you do, you’ll have to make a data-based decision here. Some website statistics may come in handy 👇

1. Take note of the average time people spend on your website

Your Google Analytics reports will show you how long visitors usually stay on your website and specific pages. Based on this information, you’ll be able to estimate the right moment to show the popup.

2. Run an A/B test

Once you’ve found out the average visit time, you still may have several variants of timing. To figure out which one works for your audience, you can test popups with different delay settings using A/B testing.

How to set up a timed popup in Getsitecontrol

Now that you know the idea behind delayed popups, let us show you how to create one in Getsitecontrol. Below is a step-by-step guide that will work for you regardless of the website platform you’re using.

Step 1. Select a template

After you log in to your Getsitecontrol dashboard, hit the Create popup button and proceed to the Template gallery.

Getsitecontrol popup gallery broken down by use cases

In the gallery, you’ll find dozens of templates designed with the most common use cases in mind. Select a use case that matches your goal, find a popup to your taste, and follow the instructions to add it to your dashboard.

Step 2. Adjust copy and appearance

If you need to edit the copy and adjust the design of your popup, you can do it right on the first screen. Just click on the element you want to edit and proceed with the changes.

How to customize a popup in Getsitecontrol

Keep in mind that the timing will work just the same on mobile. To see how the popup will look on mobile devices, use the mobile preview button at the bottom of the screen.

Step 3. Set up the timing

To set up the time delay, go to the Targeting tab to select the moment when your popup will appear. Find Start to display the widget and remove the default ‘at once’ option. Then hit + Add condition and select ‘Time on page’ or ‘Time on site’ and enter how long the delay should be, in seconds.

How to set a time-delay trigger for a popup

Click Save & close in the top right corner to save the popup. When you are ready to publish it on your website, activate your popup and it will go live at once.

5 Time-delayed popup examples

Below, we’ve featured 5 common time-delayed popups you can use on your website, whether you’re running an ecommerce store or a blog.

Delayed subscription form

A signup form that slides in after a delay is a classic example of a delayed popup. Popups of this type work especially well in blogs: the visitors who have already spent a while reading your content are way more likely to subscribe than those who have just landed on a page.

All you need to do is to find out the average time your readers spend reading blog articles and estimate the best moment to show the form.

Coupon promotion

If you’re selling products or services on your website, you know that converting first-time visitors is crucial, yet rather challenging. Many stores use coupon marketing to accomplish this goal. However, you don’t want to offer a discount before giving your visitor a chance to get familiar with your website. And that’s where time-delay popups come in handy.

As a rule of thumb, you may want to wait 3-5 seconds before displaying an offer like this one. You can also use an exit-intent trigger as an alternative in case a visitor starts heading to exit too early.

Call-to-action popup

If you’re running a promo or a flash sale, it’s always a good idea to place a site-wide announcement bar to make sure every visitor is aware of it. However, if you want to create a more prominent call to action, you can display a pop-up reminder to emphasize the urgency.

Whether you have a dedicated landing page for your promo or you want to drive visitors to a product category page, you’ll be able to assign the desired URL to the button on the popup.

Timed survey

The tricky part about website surveys is that if you ask the wrong people, you’ll have skewed statistics. That’s why the best practice is to approach those who have already interacted with your website or spent enough time browsing to assume they have an intention to make a purchase.

Depending on the nature of the survey you’re conducting, you may want to display it site-wide or on selected pages only. For example, if you’re running a product-related survey, remember to use the Targeting tab settings and include product page URLs only.

Delayed contact form

Delayed popups can be useful for communication encouragement too. For instance, if a visitor is remaining inactive on your website for too long, you can display a popup like this one 👇

In this example, you can show it on with a delay of 10-20 seconds or a period of inactivity.

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