If you are aiming to use email marketing effectively, then one of your primary focuses should always be to increase your subscribers.
There are a myriad of ways to optimise your site for email subscription, but practical advice can be hard to come by.
Here are 3 practical approaches you can use for inspiration to increase the subscribe rate for your blog, eCommerce store or Internet product.
1. Personalize Your Calls-To-Action Based On Customers’ On-Site Actions
Using behavior data to adjust what your customers see is a sure-fire way to increase your conversion rate.
There are a lot of places you can use behavior data to improve conversion rates. A good place to start is your call-to-action. In the example below, Vero adjusted the calls-to-action on their email marketing blog to reflect the content of individual posts, rather than using something generic.
By referencing the content that the customer has just read, Vero has increased its subscribe rate virtually overnight.
This is a great place to start as it’s not fancy to implement. Simply specify specific calls-to-action based on the individual post content; this can be done with a number of plug-ins on most popular blogging platforms and could easily be appropriated to online stores and other settings.
If you’re looking for other easy optimisations, treating first-time customers a little differently is a great way to emphasise the reasons your customers should subscribe.
First-time customers to Vero see a specific call-to-action in the sidebar that guides them to a dedicated landing page (we’ll talk more about those below). This specific call-to-action takes gives Vero a chance to really sell its email marketing list and the reasons for subscribing.
First-time users are a distinct group of customers, and in many instances, you can be a little more forward in asking these visitors to subscribe. By targeting first-time visitors alone, you are able to ensure that regular readers don’t see distracting elements that they might have seen before.
Another great way to use customers’ behavior to drive action is to ask them questions. You might be surprised to learn that tools like Qualaroo are genuinely effective and allow you to collect a surprising amount of customer feedback.
Vero uses a simple survey to learn more about the visitor at hand. Using multiple choice questions makes it easy for customers to answer and gives Vero the power to re-direct customers based on their answers.
One particularly valuable tip when using surveys to increase your subscribe rate is to direct customers that identify as first-time readers to a subscribe form. Qualaroo has this functionality built in as part of their “Nudge” feature set.
What can you ask your customers to learn more about them and convert them to regular readers?
2. Re-Purpose Valuable Content As Free Offers
If you do any form of content marketing, you will have a cache of valuable content you’ve used in the past. Thanks to Google Analytics and other analytics providers, it is relatively easy to understand which content is performing well.
Once you know which eBooks, blog posts, slideshows, webinars or other content is your best, you should use this to your advantage and re-purpose this content into something you can offer your customers in return for their joining your email marketing list.
Vero implemented some content gates that require users to subscribe in order to read its best case studies.
This tactic alone increased subscribers by 30% over four weeks.
Once you’ve pulled together pages on your site to offer your best content in exchange for your readers’ email addresses, you should consider “advertising” these pieces of content within your own site structure.
Vero has implemented display ad-style images that direct readers to the most effective content:
This technique gives you the power to maximise the effectiveness of your featured content.
3. Use A Dedicated Landing Page
When it comes to collecting emails, dedicated landing pages are extremely powerful.
Dedicated landing pages will regularly convert at a rate of 35-50%, as they give you a chance to sell the reasons your readers or customers should subscribe to receive emails from you.
These landing pages don’t have to be sexy. Take the example from Vero below:
AWeber has experimented heavily with its blog’s dedicated landing page and have found it a major driver of its content marketing strategy.
Similarly, Patrick McKenzie, an online small business owner, documents the effectiveness of dedicated landing pages for collecting email addresses as part of his course on lifecycle email marketing. In particular, he points out the success of WPEngine’s educational email course collection page.
The tricks to an effective dedicated landing page are:
- Keep it simple. Focus on answering your customers’ questions and providing them with genuine reasons to subscribe to your newsletter. No one wants to subscribe for more emails they won’t read. Sell it!
- Use a clean and clear subscribe form that your customers are drawn to. As with all calls-to-action, use big buttons and clear copy, and avoid static, unactionable text like “Submit” on your forms.
- Treat it like the home page of your website. Run split tests over this page and track every conversion so you can get your numbers as high as possible (it’s not unreasonable to aim for over 40%).
Over To You
So there you have it — a few practical things you can implement on your website to increase your conversions virtually overnight.
The most important step before implementing any of these ideas is to ensure you are tracking your conversions when it comes to subscriptions. Understand your benchmark so that you know how far you’ve come.
Momentum is what you’re after: get some runs on the board and keep implementing little tricks until you too have increased your subscribe rate by over 100%.
What other tips have you tried to increase your conversions? Let us know in the comments!
Opinions expressed in the article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Marketing Land.