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How to Optimize the Newsletter Subscribe Process

optimize newsletter sign-up

There is really only one basic prerequisite for email marketing: a database of contacts who have subscribed to your newsletter. It sounds simple enough, but how do you get these email addresses in the first place? Acquiring new subscribers can be a major challenge. First, you need to make website visitors and other potential subscribers aware of your newsletter. You then need to convince them to provide their email address. Finally, they need to confirm their registration via double opt-in.

It’s not easy to win new subscribers. However, with a good strategy and the right newsletter sign-up form, it can be done. We take a look at how you can optimize the sign-up process in order to get as many new subscribers as possible.

How can I integrate my sign-up form?

Newsletter registration forms tend to be placed in the website header and footer. Such static forms don’t particularly stand out, but they are better than a simple link. The sign-up form should be placed somewhere that is clearly visible and frequently used. Find out where your website’s activity is highest with the help of click heatmaps.

A great way to grab the user’s attention is with a pop-up on your website. Pop-up forms are often considered the most effective solution for getting more subscribers. But be careful; obtrusive pop-ups can quickly become annoying for the user. Under no circumstances should content be completely hidden – this can even lead to a loss of visibility in Google. Instead, consider the relevance of the pop-up. For example, pop-ups should only open once the user has been on the page for a little while, or when they want to leave the site. This way, they already have some information and may be more open to the idea of subscribing to your newsletter in order to receive more content.

A good opportunity to turn interested visitors into subscribers is a blog. If someone is reading your blog, they are already showing an interest in your content. It is also likely that they want to stay up-to-date. Place your sign-up form in the sidebar and under individual blog posts. If the user leaves a comment on your blog, this is also a good time to ask if they want to subscribe to your newsletter.

If you run an online shop, you should definitely make first-time visitors aware of your newsletter. By pointing out exclusive discounts for newsletter subscribers, you will not only gain new addresses, but also drive more purchases. To do this, integrate the registration form as a pop-up on the start page, and offer newsletter registration as part of the checkout process.

Social media is another great channel for winning new email contacts. Your fans and followers are already interested in your brand, so it makes sense to turn them into subscribers. Use your social media profiles to announce when your next newsletter is going out, for example. Find out how to integrate a sign-up form directly into your Facebook page here.

How should I design my form?

Let your subscribers know what they can expect

The more you give away during the registration process, the better your potential subscribers can assess the situation. This transparency makes the user more willing to leave their email address, so make it clear exactly what happens once the user signs up:

  • Which newsletter will they receive?
  • What kind of content does it contain?
  • How often is the newsletter sent?
  • What happens to the data provided by the user?
  • How can the user unsubscribe from your newsletter?

Clearly label the sign-up form

You want your visitors to subscribe to your newsletter. The user, meanwhile, is interested in getting specific benefits. For example, being the first to read your blog posts or getting 10% discount on their first order. Thus, very few will be convinced by a dry “subscribe to our newsletter”. Instead, you need to label the sign-up button in a way that highlights the advantages for the user.

Be frugal in terms of data

In principle, you can request as much data as you want on the registration form. Gathering lots of information does have its advantages – the more data you have, the more targeted your emails can be. However, having to fill out too much data quickly becomes tiresome for the user. It is best to make only the email address field mandatory; all other details should be optional.

Ask the user what they want

There is an easy way to get the data necessary for newsletter segmentation. Simply ask the recipients themselves and let them choose. For example, you can allow your subscribers to choose which of your newsletters they would like to receive when they sign up. It can also be effective to highlight that the more information provided, the better the newsletter can be tailored to the user. The prospect of receiving more relevant newsletters may encourage the subscriber to voluntarily provide more data.

Give a gift

Another way to increase newsletter sign-ups: provide an incentive. If possible, offer freebies and content that is exclusively for your newsletter subscribers. For ecommerce shops, for example, this could be a discount voucher for the first order or a birthday gift. Other options include ebooks and whitepapers in return for subscribing to the newsletter.

Double opt-in process

Before adding someone to your address book and sending your newsletter, it’s crucial to make sure you have their express permission to do so. This can be obtained via the double opt-in (DOI) process. Once the user enters their email address on your sign-up form, they will receive a confirmation email. This contains a link that the recipient must click in order to confirm their consent. You can then add them to your mailing list.

DOI confirmation email: What do I need to include?

When designing the confirmation email, please note that, at the time of sending, you do not yet have the user’s permission to send promotional emails. So, make sure that this email doesn’t contain any promotional elements – be it in the subject line, the actual email content or in the footer. It is best to refer to the confirmation link only.

Create a newsletter subscribe form with Newsletter2Go

  1. Create DOI email
    Create a new double opt-in email with a confirmation link. Insert the desired text and edit the subject line and sender details.
  2. Create registration form
    Create a new sign-up form via your account menu. Specify which DOI email should be used for this particular form.
  3. Insert your own logo / images
    Upload your logo or any other images to your media library (in your Newsletter2Go account) and insert them into your registration form. You can also specify the colors of the form.
  4. Determine the form fields
    Select the data fields that the user will need to fill in. In addition to email address, you can choose from a range of different user attributes, and even create new ones. This includes things like first name, surname, gender, place of residence or specific characteristics such as shoe size or favorite color.
  5. Select the address books to which new subscribers should be added
    Specify the address book to which recipients should be added by default. If you wish, you can offer a choice of several address books in the registration form so that the user can subscribe to several newsletters at the same time.
  6. Generate form code
    Generate the code for your registration form. Both an embed code and a pop-up code are generated automatically – you don’t need any coding skills!
  7. Embed form code
    Embed your form anywhere on your website. All recipients who subscribe to your newsletter will now be automatically transferred to your Newsletter2Go account.

About the Author

Emily Stevens

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