Popup's - Love them, hate them, but use them

Truth is, they work!

Popups are one of those things that none of us particularly like, however we are all experiencing them every time we jump on the internet and look at a page.  Maybe it’s a full page cookie acceptance that gets us hot under the collar or the ones that throw the latest offers in your face full screen when you open a page…...Truth is, it does not have to be like that! If the Popup is well designed and actually serves a purpose, then most likely your user experience will be improved when you interact with them – and then they actually work! Even better if they are specifically targeted towards you as a customer and that seems to be the crux of any annoyance. In this age of automation and targeted marketing there is absolutely no excuse for badly targeted, poorly messaged general popup.


And here is the popup dilemma, how to make use of their undoubted effectiveness without turning people off or making them click away from your page.


Using popups with knowledge of why someone came to your website and what they are looking for is the key.  Our Marketing Automation system will only set a popup when our pre-set custom conditions are met.  We have popups programmed in our system.  They are only triggered when pre-set conditions are met.

  • Do we know who they are?  Why send a Sign-up for our email message if they are already on our mailing list?  Target known contacts differently (Contact Segmentation) to the anonymous surfer who you know nothing about.
  • Where did they come from?  If we know the referring URL that sent them to our site, we could send a very specific popup messages based on that alone.
  • Wait until they have scrolled x% down the page or been there for 15 seconds…..Give them a chance to read your content before hitting them with a further message.
  • Exit Intent - if they are reaching for the close page button, give yourself another chance to get their interest, deploy the popup.

Pop ups - Good Practice

When you make a landing page for your website, you will have a planning process; Appearance, styling, content, message, CTA……. Just because a popup is so small it does not mean that it should not go through the same planning process.  Think of them as a mini-landing page.


#Content is still king - Good copy matters and you have very few in a popup to consider. Work hard on this one.

#Start small - Asking for something simple like just an email address to join your newsletter circulation to begin.

#Stand out Make it look good; colours, shape, image, format.

#Don’t keep showing the same one Don’t keep repeating the same message.  Once per session max.  Once every couple of days is better.

#Don’t repeat on completed tasks If they have signed up for the page subject, no more popups there for them.

#Great Images work best- Just like on a landing page, images matter.  No stock images and only one image.

#Be clear what they will get - A newsletter, eBook, Tips, White paper, discount voucher. Always have a clear way to close the popup too.

#Personalise it - Start with something you know about them, it may just be the referring URL or the page they landed on but it’s a start

# Be imaginative with your calls to action  - Avoid "More".  Try using; Show me how, Sign me up, Let’s get started - try to inject action and urgency in the CTA.

#Test it - Then test it again….. and again. Test that the popup conditions are always satisfied, make sure it looks good on all devices - especially mobile.  

#Your First Popup - Try using popups for the first on your worst performing page(s).  After all, what have you got to lose?

Targeting Options

 The popups that most users dislike are the full page ones that take over the screen or where it’s hard to find the close button.  But they don’t have to be that way.  

  • Most websites now have a bottom of page popup for “we use cookies” messaging and acceptance (or not).   Simple and unobtrusive.  You should use a more prominent variation of this at the bottom of all pages for your email marketing list signup
  • Offer side slide in and out popup with Tool Tips or eBook downloads on the page subject
  • Maybe one that pops when you hold your cursor over a target like an image
  • For something really important, the big full size screen blocker may be the right way to go but be careful.  Do some A/B testing to see if it actually works.
  • When targeting contacts, you already have in your marketing database, just like in email marketing, segmentation is the key to deliver on-target popup messaging.


In 2020 there is no need to be shy of using popups.  Major B2B and B2C big name brands all use them, because they work.  Using our marketing automation platform, you can develop your own popups without the need to engage the web developer.  Turn them on and off as you need.  Refine them for maximum engagement and look for an increase in your prospects activity when the popup is turned on with the use of automated reporting.  Want to know more, then take action today


Many of the things we have set out here are basic to most email marketing systems.  However, if yours cannot achieve some of the points discussed, please feel free to contact us to find out how we can make your email marketing better you achieve them.

Copyright 2017- 2024  Lead Intuition all rights reserved | Registered in England Company No 10861904

Privacy Policy