Malek Bergeron

Malek Bergeron, June 12 2020

The Dark-Side of Your Website Conversion Funnel: Pop-ups

You hate them... or you hate them. Pop-ups have a bad rep for being intrusive, your UX team’s worst nightmare, the most annoying thing in the world, and worst of all something that can drive traffic away from your website. However, despite all of its downsides and its bad reputation, I strongly believe pop-ups should still remain an essential component of every website conversion funnel! Its simple, they convert and what marketer doesn't like conversions. From e-commerce to B2B and even SaaS marketing funnels, pop-ups will help move your customers through each step of your websites funnel and resulting in our favorite thing: conversions. Here is the WHAT and the HOW of pop-ups.

Make sure to make it to the HOW where I share the 3 easiest methods I’ve used to drastically improve my pop-ups conversion rates.

The What – What is a pop-up and what can they do?

Simply put, a pop-up is a graphical user interface that can be programmed to appear (pop-up) when visitors are on your website. These interfaces can act as a form, offer deals, direct visitors to another part of your website and much more. More importantly, when used properly, pop-ups can help navigate your visitors through your website’s conversion funnel and offer them new content/offers to keep them engaged.

Here are examples of the 4 most commonly used pop-up formats that you can expect to see when surfing the web (pop-up examples from OptinMonster):

1. Traditional Pop-up


2. Floating Bar

3. Slide-in

4. Full-screen

The last aspect and most important aspect of every pop-up are the rules. These determine when a pop-up will appear and for who. If done correctly through rules you can offer your visitors very personalized experiences that cater to their needs. Common rules you can expect to see are appear after X pages have been viewed, time on the page is X,  scroll depth is X, on exit intent and much much more. If interested in learning more about rules, I recommend checking out OptinMonster’s list of 30 rules with descriptions.

The How – How can these 3 easy methods maximize your pop-ups conversion rate?

1.       When possible use pop-ups that appear in the center of the screen:

Although less intrusive, slide-ins and floating bars are often ignored. If you want to maximize conversions on a certain pop-up, make it a traditional center of the screen pop-up. In the past, I converted 2 slide-ins promoting two gated assets into traditional pop-ups. Conversion rates went from 0% for both (the slide-ins had over 1000 impressions and still had 0 conversions) to 10.35% and 13.76%. Many who have tested both will agree that traditional pop-ups convert the best. With that said, it is important to not over-do pop-ups as this can drive customers away and sometimes a less intrusive slide-in may be best despite lower conversion rates.

2.       Use a countdown feature whenever possible: 

I can’t stress this enough because it is so simple to do. Whether you are using pop-ups to promote a live webinar/event, a product launch, or an offer/sale throw in a countdown! Simply by adding a countdown to a live webinar registration pop-up I was able to instantly increase the conversion rate by 200%.

3.       Make your pop-up stand out: 

Ok so maybe this isn’t as straightforward and easy as the other two, but I had to throw this one in there because this will ensure you get the best results possible. Your site visitors are likely all being bombarded with hundreds of pop-ups and ads wherever they go. As a result, many will not take the time to look at your pop-up unless if you can catch their attention by standing out. Merriam Webster does a great job at standing out with their newsletter pop-up above. By following the stand out rule, I was able to increase a newsletter subscription pop-up’s conversion rate from 1.11% to 4.33% simply by making it stand out. Don’t believe me? Head over to my contact page and ask me what I did.

Wrapping Up

Despite the bad rep pop-ups get, they work! If used properly and not overdone, pop-ups will help drive customers through your website conversion funnel and will increase your conversions. So now that I’ve shared some of my secrets, why not share yours. Send me a message on my contact page letting me know what you do to boost your pop-ups’ conversion rates and I’ll share a few more with you.

Go on… send me a message.

Written by

Malek Bergeron

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