Having a professional WordPress website created
Written by Finn Ruijter, 24 April 2020

Increase interaction on your website? Use pop-ups

A visitor who views your website for a few seconds and then clicks away is of little use to you. Ideally, you get to know that visitor and build a relationship with them. But how do you get people to give you a chance? In this blog post, we look at how you can use pop-ups to increase visitor interaction with your website.

What are pop-ups?

First, let’s define pop-ups. We don’t mean those irritating little browser windows that open out of nowhere. Those are so 2005. No, these days there are plenty of ways to make a pop-up part of the customer journey itself.

Often a pop-up is a frame that partially covers the visited Web page. The web page may or may not be darkened and the pop-up demands all attention.

A pop-up serves to build a relationship with the visitor. It may include a welcome message, offer a download in exchange for the visitor’s e-mail address, or provide a discount.

When visitors, due to certain news items or developments, for example, use your website for one specific action, a pop-up can serve to highlight important information.

What types of pop-ups are there?

Pop-ups come in all shapes and sizes, but they have one thing in common: they want to grab the visitor’s attention. As you will see below, there are very discreet options, as well as very conspicuous pop-ups. What works best for your website is a matter of experience and testing.

  • Lightbox
    You’ve come across them countless times, those pop-ups that cover the article you just spent half a minute reading. After all, having a visitor stick around on a site for a while indicates that this user is interested in the content. With such a lightbox, you can offer the visitor a lead magnet, possibly combined with a subscription to your newsletter. You can also use a lightbox to gain more social media followers or highlight a product.

  • Notification bar
    Also sometimes called an opt-in bar, this is a less intrusive form of a pop-up. Across the full screen width, a narrow strip slides a bit over the page you are viewing; often at the top. Inviting text and an irresistible button make it easy for visitors to view your offer.

  • Chat window
    Often in the lower right corner of the screen. In this window, a chatbot welcomes the visitor and invites him or her to ask questions. Once the visitor types in something, this message reaches one of your contributors and a dialogue can take place. This is an excellent opportunity to make a good and lasting impression with a potential client.

  • Exit pop-up
    A very different kind of pop-up is an exit pop-up. Your visitors’ mouse movements are then tracked, and once the mouse moves to the cross to close the tab, a pop-up appears. On a sales page, you can use such a pop-up to offer a discount, and on a “regular” content page, you can use such a pop-up to offer a download with more in-depth information.

  • Self-activated pop-up
    You can also use a pop-up to provide additional information about a topic, such as product specifications or details. Amazon is good at this; hover your mouse over a product photo and you get a pop-up showing the image in larger size. You also get a pop-up when there is a product video.

Reasons to use pop-ups

Pop-ups have a worse image than they deserve. After all, a well-designed pop-up with a relevant message can add a lot of value for visitors in a hurry. This is how you make a good first impression, which can be the beginning of a lasting customer relationship. For the following reasons, pop-ups really can’t be missing from your marketing mix.

  • Lead generation
    A sign-up form for your newsletter in the sidebar or at the bottom of blog posts is easy to ignore, but a pop-up is something everyone sees. If the offer arrives at the right time and matches what your target audience is looking for, you will measurably increase your sales with such a pop-up.
  • Building a relationship with your visitors
    To really make an impact on your visitors, build a personal connection with them. This can be done through your branding, by telling a unique story, but of course also by connecting with your visitors. The chat window we mentioned earlier is an example of a pop-up that makes that possible.

  • Lowering your bounce rate
    The bounce rate is the number of visitors who close your page without having clicked on anything. These come in many forms: people who click away after two seconds probably don’t fall into your target audience, but visitors who read a blog post from top to bottom and then are gone, you really wouldn’t want to lose sight of them. With a pop-up, you can still get the e-mail address of these visitors.

  • Increase your search engine rankings
    The bounce rate is one of the factors Google looks at when calculating your ranking in the search engine. A high bounce rate, especially combined with a short visit duration, may indicate that the content your page does not properly match the search term the user typed in. A pop-up with an attractive offer can turn a bounce into a long-term visit. And that, in turn, rewards Google.

  • Inform or alert
    A pop-up is also a good way to present an important message to your visitors. During the corona crisis, many companies chose to put a slide-in or pop-up on the site with information about their changed services.

How do I get pop-ups on our WordPress website?

As an organization, you are constantly optimizing. You want to streamline business processes, provide your employees with the ideal environment to be productive and also do everything you can to increase the number of leads. In that regard, it is important to experiment with marketing tools like the pop-up.

But experimenting takes up your precious time and can be risky. In fact, there are all kinds of pop-up plug-ins available for WordPress, but which one is best for your website? And do you want to use a plug-in at all, when you know that every plug-in makes your website a little slower?

Best practices for pop-ups

We mentioned it earlier: pop-ups are not popular with all marketers. That’s because, surfing the Internet, we often encounter pop-ups that don’t exactly add value. It is abundantly clear that they want something from you and that is a turn-off. But by adhering to the following best practices as web administrators, your pop-ups will have the greatest chance of success.

  1. The right timing
    If you want to target the slightly more interested visitors with your pop-up, wait a few seconds before showing the pop-up. A guideline is about 20-60 seconds. This way the visitor gets to see first what he or she was looking for -your content- and you prevent this user from getting stressed by too many stimuli.

  3. A beautiful design
    One of the irritations of visitors when it comes to pop-ups is that they have an unattractive design and look like spam or even errormessages. With a great design, you will see your conversion rate increase dramatically. Which design works best is something you discover with A/B testing. In general, a well-integrated design with high contrast and some degree of social proof seems to work well.

  5. Add an image
    Pop-ups with an image score much better than text-only pop-ups. This appears to be true even in letter-hungry niches like science. An image also allows you to direct the reader’s attention, such as by having a person look at or point to the headline above the content.

Outsource your pop-ups

2manydots creates custom converting websites. And yes, that includes tests with pop-ups. We take the worry off your hands and only work with solutions that fit your needs and requirements.

By having the pop-ups integrated, you can stay focused on your daily marketing tasks. We test different designs, content and timing to achieve the highest conversion rate. That includes periodic reporting and a call where we map out the route together.