Run exit intent polls on your website

Business benefits

Identify sources of friction on the site via real-time feedback from real users who haven’t purchased or signed up yet.

Copy and fill out the poll brief template. Identify the pages you want to target and the users you want to include.

Think about the data that you want to get out of your poll:

  • Use analytics to help you figure out the best approach. You might want to target pages with the biggest drop-off or gather general explorative insights from across the site. A general rule is to avoid checkout pages to avoid interfering with the last steps of the purchase funnel – unless you think there’s a high chance of checkout being an issue, or you’re specifically focusing on checkout.
  • Target pages that are part of the main purchase funnel. In ecommerce, these are the homepage, category page, product page, and cart. In SaaS or lead generation, it might be the homepage, main paid traffic landing pages, product pages, and pricing page.

Write questions that will elicit the information you’re looking for and the type of data you need.

  • Yes/no questions can give you the most answers in the least time, since they appear to be quick and easy to answer. However, they are closed questions and therefore limited in the insights they can generate.
  • Scales and ratings questions can be effective if you’re mainly interested in quantitative data.
  • Implicit questions are passive and broader. These types of questions can be useful when your research goal is more specific, like if you want to understand if your messaging resonates with users. However, implicit questions can also be used for more exploratory research.

Example questions:

  • What’s the purpose of your visit today?
  • Were you able to find the information you were looking for?
    This can identify missing information on the site—best asked on product pages.
  • Is there anything holding you back from completing a purchase?
    This helps you further identify any friction.
  • Do you have any questions you haven’t been able to find answers to? Y/N If yes, allow the user to expand on their outstanding questions.
  • Were you able to complete your tasks on this website today? If the answer is no, allow the user to expand on the reason why.

Design your poll using the design and branding guidelines of your website.

You want to achieve a balance between the poll being visually prominent while still looking like a trustworthy part of the website.

Set up the poll in your chosen tool.

  • On desktop, trigger the poll on exit intent (when the visitor is about to abandon the page) – their cursor is moving up towards the top of the page.
  • On mobile, use the time delay option. Base the delay on the average time on site/page from analytics. You want to give users enough time to browse, but not miss the opportunity to show them the poll before they leave. Leave more time than the average at first and see what the response rate is and whether people are saying that they haven’t had a chance to look around yet. You can always adjust it.
  • Only show the poll only once, even if users don’t respond.
  • If you’re asking the same question across multiple pages, it’s better to target multiple pages under the same poll so that people don’t see the same question popping up on each page they visit even if they have previously answered.
  • You can use other triggers if the purpose of your poll is different, e.g. an intent poll aims to understand the purpose or trigger for a user’s visit. The trigger for this poll would be after a few seconds on the website.

Launch the poll and monitor responses to identify any opportunities to optimize the setup.

Aim for approximately 200-300 elaborative responses. This will give you around 95% confidence that the answer strength of the signal is valid within ~5-10% of what is reported.

Download the results and import them into a copy of the exit poll results template.

If you used qualitative questions, sort the answers into themes.

  1. Starting with the Desktop coding sheet, go through the answers you received and add themes along the top row. For example, Integration question, Pricing issue, Can’t create account.
  2. Add one point to a column for each answer that fits in that theme. For example, Does the platform integrate with Salesforce? would fit in the Integration question theme. An answer can fit into more than one theme.
  3. Repeat this with the Mobile coding and Desktop and mobile coding sheets.
  4. Check that your results are displaying correctly in the Summary tab.

Create slides that summarize the questions you asked, the coded data, commentary and some qualitative quotes. Use these for reporting back to stakeholders.

Thanks for the awesome playbook.
Can you tell me please why you choose avg. time on page instead of scroll percentage on a page as a trigger?
Also, avg. time on page may not include exits compared to avg. session duration in case this is a Landing Page.

@emma Do you have some insight to offer Sergej?

@ux.simply My assumption would be that if you can pinpoint a specific scroll point at which people usually leave the page, you probably don’t need an exit survey – you need to look at the content around that scroll point!

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