Ilma from MailerLite

Ilma4 min readTips & ResourcesAugust 22, 2017

Examples of successful email popups and why they work

Examples of successful email popups and why they work


Last week we released new Popup Form types. I decided to check how our customers use them, which popups convert better than others, and why.

On average the conversion rate for a popup is 1-2%. This means that if your popup tagline has a generic text like this: “Subscribe to our newsletter and be the first to get news to your inbox”, you can expect to have a conversion not higher than 2%.

Add some creativity and you can aim for much higher conversion.

#1. Remember rule WIIFM or What’s In It For Me?

You need an email to start talking about your service or product, but “What is in it for your audience?”. Why should they care about your newsletter? Give them a reason to sign up.

Say exactly what the readers will get if they join the list. Entice them:

Join our newsletter to receive current teaching information, as well as FREEBIES available ONLY to Subscribers.

A lead magnet or freebie is the best way to increase conversions:

email popups - what's in it for me

You may even create different lead magnets or freebies for different pages. Just choose a specific website where you want a popup to be shown.

I’ve written a blog post “5 books that changed our business”. In the comments, readers recommended lots of books that helped them grow business. So I decided to make a landing page with the whole list and offer it as a lead magnet. We got 6.5% conversion from the popup:

email popups example

#2. Be as precise as you can

Instead of saying “Wanna travel cheaper?”: offer a 5% discount. Instead of saying “get more articles“: offer the best content you have and send it after registration. This will double the conversion rate.

email popups example #2

Another example: if you have an e-commerce website, offer free shipping, or discount for the first order. That can give you 10-20% conversion or even more (depending on your proposition).

email popups example #3

#3. Use social proof

MailerLite’s popup had 4% conversion rate with the text:

Join 350,000 other business owners & marketers to get weekly email marketing tips on how to grow your business.

email popups example social proof

#4. No “Subscribe” button

The best popups don’t talk about a newsletter or subscribing. They talk about the value that the readers are going to get when they sign up.

This why it’s better to change the “Subscribe” button to more appealing text like, “Join the VIP Club”, “Become a Pro” or “I’ll subscribe, but is there wine?” (49% conversion rate, can you believe it?)

email popups subscribe button

#5. Get the frequent website visitors

Timing. You can choose to wait x seconds before showing a popup, show when user scrolls to x%, or show before closing the page.

I used to show our popups before closing the page, but I changed that now. The biggest conversions are if you wait 5-10 seconds before showing the popup.

Frequency. At MailerLite the default setting for showing the popup again after someone subscribed is 30 days. It means that the same popup won’t be shown for 30 days to the same person. But the best examples have a frequency of 7, 3 or even 1 day(s). If someone constantly visits your website, then you know they are engaged and might want to join the list, right?

email popups timing

One more thing…

Giving an email address is a sign that someone wants to start a relationship with you. After setting up popups, don’t forget to create a welcome email or even a welcome series. Here are some ideas on how to keep the conversation going.