10 Insane Popup Hacks that Could Fasten Your Email List Building Process

Posted by Akshy Anbu on 11 July, 2019 in email marketing   |  11 min read

On reading the topic, don’t skip to the conclusion that “email list building” is a walk in the park process.

These three words (which could be a game-changer for your business) requires you to put in a huge amount of time to devise email list building ideas and carry them out strategically.

All good. But why popups for email list building when there’s a whole lot of other options?

Well, if you’ve been reading our blog posts lately, you would be knowing the answer to this and you would have even known how to how to build your email list using popups.

Popups are an incredibly useful tool when it comes to collecting email addresses.

Okay, let’s not get there now!

We’ve got something else to discuss.

Before starting off with the main theme of the post, here’s a little reinforcement on what you believe.

Why Email List Building is Important for Your Business Growth?

Instead of coming up with a bulletin list, we thought a short scenario would do!

Think of this!

You are launching a product or a service or you are about to host a huge webinar.

You’d be definitely needing some audience on the other end. And to let people know, you have to reach out to them.

You cannot be opting for social media ads, google ads and all other paid mediums because they would cost you a fortune. Even if you are willing to spend, the end results would be quite unsure. Because you’ll be showing your ads to a huge group of audience who may or may not be interested in what you are showing
(Let’s also not forget here that email marketing is by far the best and cost-efficient method to reach out directly to your target audience)!

Well, If you want to reach out to a very specific group of people who’d be greatly interested to know about your business, you need to have a set of targeted audience and their email ids. Because emails can directly reach the inbox of your targeted audience.

So, you end up letting people know about your future events and also receive a huge reciprocation!

That’s success! Done and dusted!

Hope you now see why growing your list is important for your business.

An Email List is not just a bunch of names and email ids. Technically speaking, it is! But there’s more a huge email list and a large audience base could actually be doing to your business (like what happened above).

10 Popup Hacks to Fasten Email List Building

Let’s not speak anymore and get directly to the point!

1. Purpose-Driven Call-to-Action Button

This is one thing most of the marketers fail to fix. Having a clear call-to-action button on your popup makes the entire email list building process easy for you and your visitor.

All your visitor has to do is just type in their email id and click the call-to-action button.

For this to happen, your call-to-action button should fall in line with the below-mentioned guidelines:

  • It should have the right number of words in it (somewhere between 1 - 3 words would do fine).
  • The text in your call-to-action button should be catchy enough (try “shoot me up” instead of “sign up”).
  • The call-to-action button should be contrasty enough so that it is clearly visible.
  • The button should not be too lengthy nor too short. Just the right size that suits the entire popup template.
  • It should be within the reach area. Once your visitor types the email-id, he/she should not be starting off a search campaign.

Look at this example

Keep Your Designs at Bay

Image Source: UseProof

That’s what we are talking about (except for the text in the button)!

The call-to-action button is clean, purpose-driven, contrast enough and just the right size.

2. Keep Your Designs at Bay

Your popup (the one you’ve created for growing your email list) should be able to do two things.

  1. It should be able to blend into the theme of your website.
  2. It should be able to catch the attention of the visitor.

Often, brands design popups by putting in maximum efforts at the design part. The goal here is to build an email list not to create fancy templates!
When you concentrate too much on the design part, chances are high that your visitor might get distracted and your popup ultimately fails to do its purpose.

If you are aware, 70% of the visitors who visit your website, never tend to come back. Which means that every visitor’s email id you fail to collect, you lose them forever (unless some miracle happens and they come back).

So, make sure the design of your popup is minimal. Don’t add too many colors, multiple images and every geometrical shape that’s in existence.

Keep Your Designs at Bay

That’s a fine example of how a popup should look!

Enough space on the top to let your visitors know what the popup is about.

An image by the side, a call-to-action below and a minimal design layout … Perfect!

3. Show a Popup at the End of the Page

Someone who reaches the end of your blog post or scrolled halfway through means that he/she is interested in what you’ve got. This creates an ideal situation for you to carry out your email list building process.

All you have to do is show a popup at the end of the page offering the visitor something relevant to the page he/she is in. Chances are high that he/she might drop their email id.

Something like this would work out…

Show a Popup at the End of the Page

4. Create Separate Popups for Mobiles and Desktops

Why because there are more than 77% of people in the world who have a smartphone with them. Which also means most of them are prone to search what they are looking for in their mobile devices.

You should be taking this as well into consideration when you are building your email list using popups.

Because mobile users have a smaller display screen and limited touch options.

Popups that you create for desktops (though responsive) might not deliver the same optimal results when compared to a popup that is being exclusively created for mobile campaigns.

And when you design a popup for mobile users, double-check whether your template design looks attractive on the screens.

Here are a few examples of mobile popups

Mobile Optin1
Mobile Optin2
Kitchen Mobile Optin3

Image Source: OptinMonster

5. Retarget Your Visitors

Don’t expect people to sign the very first time they visit your website. Maybe he/she needs more time to join your email list. Patience is the key when it comes to email list building (and strategies of course).

Try retargeting your visitors with the same or different kinds of popups when they re-enter your website. And also make sure that you don’t start showing popups to visitors on a frequent basis (this would eventually make you look spammy).

Schedule popups on regular time intervals (maybe after a fortnight or a month) and segment visitors based on criteria.

6. Feedback Popups

Feedback Popups prove to be immensely helpful when you want to build your email list fast. On a recent survey, it was found that out of 1000 people, 760 of them were happy to give their feedback about their user experience (including their email id).

You are making your visitor feel special by asking him/her what they feel about your website or anything else for that matter. And you get two things done here,

  1. You’ll build a huge mailing list very soon.
  2. You get to identify flaws that pose a possible threat to your visitor’s user experience.

That’s an additional one!

Here’s an example of a feedback popup,

Feedback Popups

Image Source: Convertplug

With a feedback popup like this, most of the visitors would love to go the extra mile and tell you what they want to, which in turn helps you build your list!

7. Don’t Make it Too Texty

The attention span of your users is very less. It’s just a blink of an eye before your visitor decides to close your popup (maybe even your website due to your not-so-good popup). It is highly recommended that your popup shoots your visitor the message directly instead of telling them long-forgotten stories. Here’s an example of how a popup should not be,

Don’t Make it Too Texty

Image Source: GrowRevenue

Apparently, the popup here is asking visitors to subscribe to their newsletter. Would you ….. be signing up if similar popups appear on your screen?

The rest is for you to understand!

8. Give Visitors One More Chance to Subscribe

Let’s assume a scenario.

Your visitor has just entered your website and there’s an entry popup appearing right in front of the screen.

Your visitor closes it immediately (without knowing).

And later continues to browse your website and is quite impressed with what you’ve put up.

But since he/she is unable to see a popup now and they leave the website once their purpose of visit has been met.

You are actually losing a visitor who has every chance to be your next customer.

This is why you should be giving your visitors one more chance.

But make sure that the second time your popup comes up, it’s not occupying too much of the screen. What if your visitor has closed it on purpose and this is not actually your day?

A slight peek on the screen would do. And to do this, you might find

  • Slide Bar Opt-in Forms
  • Slide Ins
  • Floating Bars useful.

Because it’s all about how hard you try to collect emails without sabotaging the user experience.

9. Ask for Email Address and Nothing More

If you could recall, the purpose here is to build an email list, not collecting personal biodata of your website visitors.

It’s highly agreed that knowing your visitor in-depth could help you send more personalized emails . But here, a progressive approach would be more suitable. Because when you push your visitors by asking them too much, they tend to drift away.

So, it’s wise if your popups ask only for email id’s (and name if it’s needed) and nothing more than that!

10. Add a Tinge of Humor

While this isn’t actually a mighty hack, it sure does workout when you want to build an email list.

Try adding a bit of humor or sarcasm into your popup (go with humor most of the time). Whilst there are a lot of popups that are almost like one or the other, visitors will definitely be intrigued by something different. Here, look at this example,

Add a Tinge of Humor

Now, we all know that John Wick isn’t going to come after you if you don’t sign up. But it was definitely worth taking a moment to see what the popup has to say. Agree?

And it’s easy to create popups like this nowadays!

In fact, there are already WordPress popup plugins in the market that allows you to create meme popups !
(If you haven’t started using a popup plugin yet, you should consider taking a look at the best wordpress popup plugins in the market).


A lot of marketers have been trying to find out the best way to build an email list.

But, by this time, you should have known that there’s no best way when it comes to email list building.

It’s all about how much effort you put in and how strategically you think to build your email list.

The above-mentioned email list building techniques will not only help you build an email list fast but also see significant growth in your business.

And remember, you won’t be seeing any improvement if you try them out one by one. Try different combinations of the hacks and see how effectively they work out for you. Eventually, you’ll end up creating a sophisticated email list building strategy for your business.

Until then, keep pushing it forward while we’ll also look for more hacks that could be of use to you!

Great Day and Happy Email List Building!

Author Bio
Akshy Anbu
Akshy Anbu
Akshy is a Content & Growth Marketer who loves to peddle dreams across the globe. And he specializes in the eCommerce Sector. His blogs are mainly focused on the E-commerce sector, Content Marketing, Growth Marketing and Growth Hacking Techniques. When not glued to his notebook, Akshy loves to watch movies, cook, read and explore the wilderness all by himself!

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