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The Do’s an Don’ts of Pop-Ups for Ecommerce

Pop-ups are one of the most famous and controversial marketing strategies of the internet age. On one hand, they can be irritating and drive customers away when used improperly. But when you use them right, pop-ups can be one of the most effective ways to give customers a specific call to action. 

There are some tips and tricks that can help you use pop-ups on your website the right way. Read on to discover the dos and don’ts of pop-up advertising.

Choose Your Timing

When you get ready to create a pop-up for your website, the first thing you need to consider is the timing. It’s easy to assume that your pop-up should appear as soon as a visitor enters your site. But those first few moments are precious to your sales funnel, and you want to make sure your pop-up appears at a time when it will provide real benefit for your viewer. 

Consider having a pop-up only show up when a visitor gets ready to close your site without a purchase. If they navigate to a product page, you might give them a few seconds to check things out before letting them know about a discount they could take advantage of. Some pop-ups may work best right at the beginning of the user experience, but not all of them will. 

Provide Clear Value

The single most important thing you need to do if you want to have successful pop-ups is to provide clear value with the content there. In general, customers are skeptical of pop-ups, largely thanks to the guerilla advertising tactics popular in the late nineties and early aughts. But if you include the right content in a pop-up, it could create a more positive experience for your site visitors.

You should always keep your customers’ needs at the forefront of your mind when designing pop-ups. Maybe your pop-up gives them a chance to save money or offers them a free resource in exchange for an email address. If your customer isn’t getting measurable value out of the pop-up, it’s only going to be an annoyance. 

Write a Clear CTA

By nature, pop-ups are short and sweet; you’ll have one to two sentences to get your message across and convince your customer to take action. Pop-ups are meant to be a brief offer or piece of information that can lead your customers to more detailed pages. So you need to make sure you use clear, actionable language in your pop-up and include a specific call to action

If your pop-up is letting customers know about a discount opportunity or sale, include a large button labeled “Shop now!” If you’re trying to get their email address, a “Sign up here” CTA might be appropriate. Keep it short, give it a sense of urgency, and make sure your customers never leave wondering, “Well what am I supposed to do next?”

Keep It Simple 

On the subject of keeping things simple, it can be tempting to cram a lot of information into one pop-up. Once you have your customer’s attention, you want to get as much data from them as possible. It’s easy to wind up with a pop-up that has six fields the customer needs to fill in before they can move on.

But these overloaded pop-ups overwhelm customers and drive them away from your site. Try to keep things limited to three fields or fewer – name and email address should be the main focus. Once you have that data, you can work on collecting other information from this customer down the road. 

Get Visual 

We’ve all heard the old saying, “A picture’s worth a thousand words,” and when it comes to ecommerce, a picture could be worth a thousand dollars. People respond far more to content that includes a visual element than they do to text-only content. In fact, social media posts that include a picture receive 650 percent more engagement than their text-only counterparts. 

Make sure you choose a compelling picture for any pop-ups you put on your site. This may include a great product picture, a picture of your team or facilities, or the cover design for a free resource guide customers can get. The image you choose needs to fit with your branding, meet any copyright requirements, and be beautiful enough to draw a viewer’s attention. 

Don’t Be Intrusive

When people say they hate pop-ups, it’s primarily because they view them as intrusive. People want to go about their web browsing experience without having to fight with annoying windows covering up the things they really want to see every two seconds. Too many intrusive pop-ups and your customers will start closing your site out of sheer frustration and disgust.

Instead, keep your pop-ups subtler and more out of the way. Yes, they should still be well-designed enough to catch a reader’s attention, but they shouldn’t block their entire view of the screen. And if you do use larger pop-ups, never stack more than one on top of each other so the customer has to fight to get back to what they were originally looking at.

Make It Easy to Close 

You also need to make sure all of your pop-ups have a clear “close” button that’s easy for customers to access. Yes, we all hope that customers will be swayed by our amazing marketing and follow the CTA on the pop-up. But you can’t hold customers hostage until they take the action you want.

Hiding close buttons or making them hard to spot will only irritate your customers into leaving your site. Include a large X button in a contrasting color on the top left or right of the pop-up screen. Yes, you might lose that particular marketing effort, but you’ll be much more likely to retain a customer. 

Learn to Use Pop-Ups Well

Pop-ups get a bad rap, but they can be one of the best ways to get important information across to your customers. You need to make sure your pop-ups are providing value for your customers and that they don’t detract from their experience. Keep things simple, make them visually interesting, and give your customers the chance to close the window if they aren’t interested.

If you’d like to learn more about how to use pop-ups well, check out the rest of our site at Popup Domination. We can help you convert more visitors into customers and subscribers. Sign up today and discover the world-famous pop-up software that pioneered an industry.

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