Are eCommerce Popups Worth It?

What is a Popup? If you’ve been using the internet for a while, there’s a good chance you already know what a popup is, but…
  • Jill Govier
  • Graphic Designer
  • May 27, 2016 Estimated reading time: 3 minutes


What is a Popup?

If you’ve been using the internet for a while, there’s a good chance you already know what a popup is, but I’ll sum it up for those who may not know. A popup is a small window that literally “pops up” when you first land on a website. These popups could be asking you to sign up for a newsletter or redirect you to a sale. The majority of them are used to to capture email addresses. Below you’ll see some popup examples if you need a visual.

Popups are used to grab the viewer’s attention. Sometimes popups aggravate the viewer even though there’s proof that they boost conversion rates and are extremely effective when done right. Popups always had a bad reputations due to the interruptions they cause. Just think of the obnoxious popups you’d see in the late 90s and early 2000s.

How can I implement a popup without annoying my customers?

Make the popup small. Popups don’t need to be big. It ruins the shopping experience flow, and a large popup can be overwhelming. You can still get your point across with a small popup. Customers don’t want to feel engulfed or trapped by a large popup.

Think about the timing. Timing is crucial when it comes to popups. Popups can’t show up too soon or too late. Waiting 60 seconds is a good enough to let your customers browse for a bit.

Keep the design consistent. It’s sort of a no-brainer to have your popup match your brand and style of your eCommerce site. Customers may think it’s spam when a popup does not match the rest of your site. Keep in mind; a well-designed popup is trusted more than poorly designed popups.

Use a clear call-to-action. The call-to-action needs to be prominent in order for the viewer to see it right away. It needs to be short and straight to the point. What copy you use is important as well.

Don’t trap your viewers. You may be confused by this statement, but I simply mean make sure your customers can exit your popup. The ‘x’ or the word, ‘Close’ needs to be in the corner of your popup. Something that at least indicates they can opt out. It doesn’t have to be large – just noticeable enough so customers don’t feel trapped. —>

Popup Examples

Farmhouse Pottery

Mod Cloth

Ethan Allen

Pull & Bear

River Island

Do popups actually work?

With all the gruff that popups get, they surprisingly work. Take Aweber’s study for example. The craft site they tested on had two locations where a customer could enter their email address: the popup and the sidebar. The popup drove 1,375% more subscribers than the sidebar form. That’s pretty incredible. Another successful example is how a blogger increased his subscribers on his website with a popup. On an average he’d be receiving 40 subscribers a day. After implementing a popup, he sees over 350 subscribers a day! You can read more about it here.

Popups may be annoying, but they definitely show results.

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