Building your email list should be a top priority for all marketers.

With Facebook continuing to limit how many people see your posts and Twitter click-through rates declining, email is becoming an increasingly important channel for marketers.

There are a number of different ways you can build your email list, but none more effective than through your website.

In this post, we wanted to share with you a couple of different ways you can use your website to build your list, as well as a few tools that can help you make it happen.

Popups & Slide-ins

Popups & slide-ins are separate boxes that either pop up or slide in somewhere on your website to collect people’s email addresses.

They are undoubtedly the most effective method of building your email list.

When popular SEO blog Backlinko added an exit-intent popup (a popup that only shows when people go to leave your site), they doubled their email subscribe rate overnight. They calculated that this little change made them an extra $82,125 in just 1 year.

The key is balancing the results you’ll get from popups with the negative effect they have on the user experience on your site. While we have our own opinions on this balance, it’s really up to each and every business to work out how far they are willing to go here.

Once you’ve decided that, you can use the following tools to implement popups and slide-ins on your website:

Sleeknote

Sleeknote

is a great tool for adding popups & slide-ins to your website. Their visual popup builder is one of the best around, and makes it really easy to create a customised design that suits your brand.

Sleeknote also has some great targeting abilities that let you determine where and when your popup or slide-in appears. It works with any website and includes built-in analytics along with Google Analytics integration for more advanced analysis. They recently launched A/B testing as well, which makes it easy to optimize your popup or slide-in for best results.

Sleeknote integrates directly with Campaign Monitor, so you can simply pick what list you want to add your subscribers to and they’ll automatically be added. It’s on the more expensive side with plans starting at $69 per month, but worth it if you’re serious about building your email list.

List Builder by SumoMe.

List Builder

is a free tool for adding popups to your website, and is part of the broader SumoMe set of tools.

It’s super easy to get started and allows you to do basic customisation of the popup, including text, font and colours.

While the free version works great, if you’re willing to pay a little extra then the paid version also features A/B testing and advanced targeting rules that enable you to create different popups for different people (like those coming from Twitter for instance).

List Builder integrates directly with Campaign Monitor, so you can simply pick what list you want to add your subscribers to and they’ll automatically be added.

Pippity

Pippity

is a WordPress plugin that enables you to add popups to your WordPress-based website.

It has a number of advanced customisation options that allow you to change almost everything about the popup, including text, fonts, colors, layout, background images and more.

Pippity also includes a number of highly-advanced options for controlling the behaviour of the popup. You can determine the time or number of pageviews before it appears, show only on certain pages, show only to people from specific sources like social networks or search engines, or show only as visitors exit your site. You can also create powerful filters that combine all these different elements to ensure your popup only shows to the right people and doesn’t sacrifice the user experience of your website.

Pippity integrates directly with Campaign Monitor so any new subscribers you capture can be added to your list and you can easily send them autoresponders, newsletter & campaigns. Pippity is offered as a one-time purchase rather than a recurring monthly subscription and starts at $49.

Opt-in Popup by Elegant Themes

Opt-in Popup

is part of the Bloom plugin from Elegant Themes. It’s exclusive to WordPress and enables you to add popups to your website.

It comes pre-loaded with a range of templates that you can choose from, and then you can customise colours, text and fonts from there.

It has all the basic targeting functionality, as well as some advanced options we haven’t seen anywhere else, like only showing when a visitor reaches the end of a post or after they’ve left a comment.

It integrates directly with Campaign Monitor, so you can simply pick what list you want to add your subscribers to and they’ll automatically be added. The plugin is available as part of a subscription to Elegant Themes (which also includes WordPress themes and other plugins), and will cost you around $89 per year.

Optin Monster

Optin Monster

is one of the most powerful options when it comes to creating popups and slide-ins on your website.

It comes pre-loaded with a number of different themes you can customise, or you can use their intuitive builder to design your popup or slide-in from scratch with Custom HTML and CSS.

Optin Monster also has advanced targeting features, enabling you to show your popup whenever and wherever you choose. You can also add various animations to your popups & slide-ins that grab people’s attention and increase conversions.

Optin Monster integrates directly with Campaign Monitor so your subscribers are automatically added to your chosen list. Prices for Optin Monster start at $9 per month for the basic version and go to up $29 per month for the premium version with all the features.

Header Bars

If you’re looking for something that’s still super effective but perhaps a little less intrusive, then header bars may be the way to go.

Header bars are small bars that sit at the top of your website. As users scroll down the page, they often remain ‘stuck’ to the top of the browser window to ensure they are always in sight.

Buffer, the social media scheduling app that runs a popular blog, uses both a Header Bar and Slide-in on their blog to capture email addresses. The header bar accounts for around 33.5% of their 1000+ new subscribers each week, just a little behind the slide-in which accounts for 36.7% of new subscribers.

If you think a header bar might be the right choice for your site, you can use the following tools to implement popups and slide-ins on your website:

Hello Bar

Hello Bar

is a tool for adding scrolling header bars to your website. It works with any website regardless of the content management system behind it and is highly customizable, with the admin interface allowing you to change the text, colours & placement of the bar. It even has advanced targeting options so you can only show the bar to certain visitors.

Hello Bar integrates directly with Campaign Monitor, so when a person subscribes through the bar they are automatically added to your chosen email list.

Hello Bar is free for websites with less than 25,000 views per month (though it will show a small logo in the top left corner), or if you want some of the advanced functionality like A/B testing, targeting and no branding then paid plans start at $15 per month.

Smart Bar by SumoMe

Smart Bar

is another tool for adding scrolling header bars to your website, and is part of the broader SumoMe set of tools.

It’s free to use and works on any website regardless of the technology behind it. The bar is optimised for display on mobile devices as well as desktop, but has limited customisation options.

Smart Bar integrates directly with Campaign Monitor, so when a person subscribes through the bar they are automatically added to your chosen email list.

Smart Bar is free to use, though it will show a small logo SumoMe logo in the top left corner of the bar when it’s live on your site.

Widgets & In-Page Options

Opt-In Widget by Bloom

Opt-in Widget

is a tool that makes it easy to add a beautifully-designed subscribe box to the sidebar of your WordPress-based website.

It comes pre-loaded with a range of templates that you can choose from, and then you can customise colours, text and fonts from there.

It integrates directly with Campaign Monitor, so you can simply pick what list you want to add your subscribers to and they’ll automatically be added. The plugin is available as part of a subscription to Elegant Themes (which also includes WordPress themes and other plugins), and will cost you around $89 per year.

PlugMatter

PlugMatter

is a tool that allows you to add a Feature Box to your WordPress-based website to capture email addresses from site visitors.

The tool is highly customisable and can be tweaked to match the design and branding of your website. It also includes advanced targeting functionality so you can show different content on different pages of your site or to different types of visitors, such as returning users or visitors from different sources.

It also includes A/B testing functionality so you can split test different creative or copy and maximise your subscribe rates.

Plugmatter integrates directly with Campaign Monitor so any email addresses captured are automatically added to your email list.

Plugmatter is sold as a one-time purchase and starts at $37 for a single-site licence. It also includes a 30-day money-back guarantee if you are unhappy with it.

Inline Opt-In Forms by Bloom

Inline Opt-In Forms

is another tool in the Bloom suite that enables you to add a pre-designed subscribe form wherever you’d like on your site.

You design the subscribe form using Bloom’s built-in templates and editing functionality, and then insert a special piece of code wherever you need the form to appear, such as in blog posts, on pages, etc.

Inline opt-in forms integrate directly with Campaign Monitor and allow you to easily pick what list you want to add your subscribers to and they’ll automatically be added. Like the rest of the tools in the Bloom suite, the plugin is available as part of a subscription to Elegant Themes and will cost you around $89 per year.

Contact Forms

All of the above options make it easy for you to add new, dedicated email subscribe forms to your website that people can use to opt-in to your emails.

But what about the existing forms on your website? Forms like quote requests, demo requests and even generic contact forms are a great way to build your email list.

You need to be careful with permission and make sure there is a specific tickbox in the form that allows people to manually opt-in to your emails, but beyond that it’s pretty straight forward.

Here are a few tools that can help you:

Leadin

If you’re using WordPress and already have various contact forms set up on your site, then Leadin is an awesome WordPress plugin that can add some extra functionality to those forms.

Leadin tracks the actions of visitors to your website & sends you a detailed report on the person’s activity once they complete a form. The reports include details like where they came from, what pages of your site they visited and more. It even queries social media networks and other databases to include extra information about the person, such as their Twitter and Linkedin profiles and company information.

It then pushes all this information over to your Campaign Monitor account via a simple integration, meaning you can have all the leads & contacts from your website automatically added to your chosen list.

Leadin is completely free to use, but only works on WordPress for the time being.

Gravity Forms

If your website runs on WordPress and you don’t yet have a series of forms set up, then Gravity Forms is worth checking out. It’s one of the most advanced WordPress form builders on the market and integrates with Campaign Monitor so that new leads & contacts are automatically added to your chosen list.

Gravity Forms is sold on a yearly licence system and starts at $99 per year for the version that includes integration with Campaign Monitor.

In conclusion

Your website is a great place to focus your email list building efforts, and the tools above make it easy to design, build and implement beautiful email subscribe forms that get results.

So check out the marketing sites of some of the tools above to learn more about them, and start adding some well-designed subscribe forms to your website today!

Your turn: What other tools do you use to capture email addresses from your website? We’d love for you to share your preferred tools in the comments below!

  • Mogens Moller

    Hi Aaron

    Great blog post!

    Thanks a lot for featuring Sleeknote and for the kind words about our popup builder. It makes me and the team extremely proud!

    I hope you’re happy with the Sleeknote slide-in box here on your blog.

    All the best
    Mogens Moller
    CEO, Sleeknote.com

  • Travis Wilkinson

    Thank you for mentioning options that aren’t as intrusive as a popup/modal window that takes over the site experience!

  • Aaron Beashel

    Hey Travis

    I believe the site experience is an important factor in choosing the tools you use to capture email addresses, so glad to hear you feel the same!

    Aaron

  • Rob

    Hi Aaron. Great post. Could you recommend what option you think would work best for our website located at https://www.fullsubmission.com

    Thanks Aaron.

  • Destination360

    The issue I have with Sleeknote is 319/mo for 300.000 pageviews? For a small piece to the big picture is a big yearly cost.

  • Emil Kristensen

    Hey, it’s not 300.000 pageviews but 300.000 sessions a month. There is a big difference.

  • Destination360

    Thanks for clarifying. Opted for another solution

  • Shawn Kelshaw

    This is the worst UX approach I’ve seen in a long time and it should be classified as a form of Dark UI. Imagine if I meet a person through some casual encounter in the grocery store and a pleasant conversation erupts… I suddenly jolt the flow with “may I have your email address”… r u kidding me? Don’t do this. Stop the madness. If you have to resort to these measures, you must have no confidence in your business proposition or content. Disgusting tactics.

  • Shawn Kelshaw

    And to be clear, I’m referring to the approach of a full screen modal window that hijacks the users attention and focus completely for the sole reason of collecting an email address.. why should I give you my email address? What have you done for me lately? You don’t even respect me enough to offer me a value proposition?? Sidebars, etc are relatively non-evasive if used appropriately. I bounce every time I come across this approach… I don’t care what site it is…

  • Shawn Kelshaw
  • Chase Hughes

    We are working to more effectively capture leads on our website, http://www.business-plans.com, does anyone have ideas as to which option is more effective than the other?

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