Use pop-ups to build an email list

Business Benefits

Capture emails for future campaigns.


Set up your onsite pop-up either by using apps like SleekNote and Privy or directly through your email marketing platform.

If your email marketing platform offers integrated pop-ups, use this feature. For example: Klaviyo, Mailchimp, Dotdigital, Hubspot.

Set your pop-up to be triggered after 10-20 seconds on your chosen webpage.

Alternatively you can set up an exit intent pop-up that displays when a user tries to exit your website. It’s recommended to start with a time triggered or scroll triggered pop-up. Your pop-up provider or email marketing platform will automatically optimize these pop-ups for mobile display. If using both pop-up types you should ideally have different creatives and offers for each.

Create your messaging and images that will include what the users get in return for providing their email address.

Discounts, free content, or competitions are excellent ways to encourage users to sign-up with a pop-up. For example, offers like “10% off your first purchase” or “Sign up now to hear from us and get this free piece of content” are good sign-up drivers. Make it clear that when they sign up, their offer or free piece of content will be emailed to them. This ensures they provide a valid email address and that they open the email. This will help with future deliverability.

Send all contacts who sign up, a follow-up email encouraging them to purchase or use the discount code given within 48 hours of signup.

You can automate this process by setting up a pop-up or welcome flow; your email provider will have templates for both these flows that you can simply populate with your content. Go to the Flow or automated dashboard of your email application for further details. Ideally set up a flow for all new onsite signups, either reminding them of their discount or following-up on the piece of content they download. This should be done within 1 week of signup.

Anybody who signs up to receive email marketing via pop-up should be treated like a hot lead or a customer who is likely to purchase. The first week after signup is the most likely time for the user to convert to a customer. It is recommended they enter a welcome or pop-up flow.

Monitor and test your onsite pop-ups and experiment with discount percentages, different types of content, imagery and copy.

Do this by selecting the create A/B split test option in your pop-up app. Change one element per variant, imagery used, discount offered, and pop-up type, for a month, then compare the results at the end of the month and implement the winning variant. You should aim to have at least 3 variations of a pop-up with different layouts, offers, and copy running for the first few weeks to find out what will be most effective.

Update the pop-ups every time you launch a new product service or a feature.

Pop-ups are an excellent way to not only build your email list but to highlight important, engaging information.