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How to Deliver a Lead Magnet or Optin Freebie Easily

How to deliver a lead magnet or optin freebies easily #deliverleadmagnet #sendfreebieOne of the most asked questions by bloggers who started their email list is how to deliver a lead magnet or opt-in freebie to their new email subscribers.

Whether you are offering a free ebook, PDF guide, cheat sheet, printables, templates – offering lead magnets or opt-in freebies is a great way to grow your email subscribers faster.

However, figuring out how to tie your free download to your opt-in form can be confusing.

You don’t want your lead magnets to be like others which fail to deliver the promise to new subscribers.

You can jump through hoops trying to figure out how to actually send that free PDF guide to your new subscribers…

Or

You can read this post and learn how to do it quickly!

So, in today’s post, I’m going to walk you through the whole process from creating your opt-in form, hosting your file along with the tools you can use to deliver your lead magnet.

Sounds good? OK let’s get started!

Related: If you haven’t started your email list yet, check out the following guide:

How to Start an Email List for Free Right Now

 

How to deliver a lead magnet/optin freebie

So how does a lead magnet delivery works?

Depending on how many opt-in offers you have, there are many ways to do this. Each has its own pros and cons.

The two solutions I’m going to share below are pretty straightforward.

In addition, I’ve also included a bonus delivery method because, why not? 🙂

To deliver a lead magnet, the basic idea is to include a download link in the email you send to your new subscribers immediately after they signed up.

The key is to automate the process so that you’ll only have to set it up once and let your email marketing provider do the hard work.

I am going to use MailerLite as an example here.

If you’re starting out, I recommend using MailerLite because their automation feature is free (unlike some other email service providers that will charge an extra for this feature).

Either way, the processes should be quite similar whether you are using MailChimp, ConvertKit, GetResponse, ActiveCampaign or other.

 

Where to host your lead magnet file?

MailerLite doesn’t offer file hosting so you’ll have to upload your file to your website via FTP or WordPress Media Library.

To upload your file in WordPress, just go to Media > Library > Add New.

hosting lead magnet file

The downside of using the built-in WordPress Media Library is that each time you update and re-upload the file, the URL will change according to the current date.

While there’s a way to fix that,  it’s just adding an unnecessary step into the process.

You can avoid this by uploading the file via FTP to a folder on your server.

Alternatively, you can use Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive or other online cloud storage.

If you use Google Drive, just upload the file as usual and get the shareable link to include in your delivery email.

share file link google drive

Just make sure the “anyone with the link can view” option is set to prevent anyone with an access get editing privileges.

 

Method #1: Email the freebie after the new subscriber opt-in

This method sends an email containing the download link (not as an attachment) to your new subscribers.

Method #1 entails the followings:

  1. Creating an opt-in form – offer a lead magnet/free stuff for joining your email list.
  2. Creating an automation workflow – triggers your autoresponder to send out an automatic email when a subscriber joins your email list.
  3. Create your autoresponder email  – which contains a link or button to download the freebie.

This method is ideal if you:

  • have got only one lead magnet to deliver.
  • want to deliver lead magnet via email and not from a download page
  • want to create multiple lead magnets/opt-in freebies for different blog posts/categories.
  • have a single opt-in. Single opt-in adds the subscriber’s email into the list immediately. While double opt-in requires the subscribers to confirm their email address. You can learn more about the differences between a single opt-in vs. double opt-in here.

How to enable/disable double opt-in in MailerLite

You can use Method #1 with both single opt-in or double opt-in.

At the moment, I am using Method #1 with double opt-in enabled for all my lead magnet deliveries.

In order to enable double opt-in, login to your MailerLite account and select “Subscribe settings” from the menu on the right:

enable or disable double opt-in

 

You can choose ON/OFF for your double opt-in. In addition, you can also edit your Confirmation Email, along with the Confirmation Thank You page.

Keep in mind that you can also use your own thank you page by directing new subscribers to a landing page (that is your lead magnets/freebies download page) in your blog.

We are going to implement the landing page option in Method #2.

For now, here’s a step-by-step guide on how to implement Method #1.

1. Create an opt-in form

Please refer to my start an email list post to create an opt-in form. Pay attention to step #3 where I show how to create an opt-in form with MailerLite.

Once you’ve added your lead capture form, come back here and continue to the next step below.

I’ll wait 🙂

2. Create an automation workflow

MailerLite automation workflow allows you to create a series of emails.

For this example though, we just need to create one email. This is an autoresponder email which is sent automatically when a new subscriber joins your list.

Here’s how to do it:

Login to MailerLite, then click Automation > Create a new workflow

autoresponder automation

On the next page:

  1. Name your workflow – for this example, I called mine “Lead Magnet Delivery”
  2. Set the Trigger – select “When subscriber joins a group”

setup workflow trigger

Two new options will appear after you selected a trigger.

  1. Select an existing group or create a new one.
  2. Check this box if you want to resend the email for subscribers who rejoin the same group in the future.
  3. Click Save.

email automation setup

 

Next, we will add the first step to the automation workflow.

To do so, click on the + button then click the Email icon.

email autoresponder workflow

 

The next page involves the following steps:

  1. Write a subject line – you can include personalization and emojis if appropriate
  2. Add sender details
  3. Design the whole email
  4. Check this box if you want to enable link tracking with Google Analytics. I always enable this for tracking purpose.

autoresponder email details

 

To write the email content, click the “Design email” email (in step 3 above) and you can start creating your autoresponder email.

3. Create your autoresponder email

The final step is to create your autoresponder email.

Here’s how one of my lead magnet delivery emails looks like.

lead magnet freebies email example

Keep it brief and to the point – after all, they opted in to enjoy your offer right way.

Give an indication that more updates are coming their way.

I’d recommend sending out your actual welcome email the next day. This will allow you to connect and build a relationship with new subscribers.

This is crucial to get them to familiarize with you which might increase future email open-rates.

For now, make sure the automation workflow is ON.

email automation

That’s it, you are done!

Test the process by signing up using a secondary email (you can always unsubscribe later).

Or you can ask a friend to go through the signup process and ask for their opinion.

With this method, you can send a different email for each lead magnet that you offer.

You just have to set up a different workflow that sends out a unique email depending on which lead magnet they signed up for.

 

Method #2: Direct the new subscriber to a download page

For this method, you’ll have to create a download page for your blog.

Like in method #1, you must upload the file to your website or to an online cloud storage.

  • Create an opt-in form – offer a lead magnet/free stuff for joining your email list.
  • Turn on double opt-in
  • Send the confirmed subscriber to your download page or download the opt-in incentive immediately

This is a good option if you:

  • have more than one resources to offer, then creating a static download page/resource library/vault is the way to go.
  • want to encourage further engagement (like share your other content or invite others to subscribe)
  • only offer one freebie and want it to start downloading right after they click the confirmation link

Let’s go through the steps in detail.

1. Create an opt-in form

You can refer to my start an email list post to help create your opt-in form. Pay attention to step #3 where I show how to create one with MailerLite.

Once you’ve added your lead capture form, come back here and continue to the next step below.

2. Turn on double opt-in

Please refer to the previous section above: How to enable/disable double opt-in in MailerLite.

When a double opt-in is enabled, the subscriber will get a confirmation email containing a link or button to confirm his/her email address.

In MailerLite, you can design your confirmation email via your Profile > Subscribe settings > Confirmation email

optin confirmation email example

 

Few things to keep in mind when designing your confirmation email:

  • Keep it simple – you don’t want to distract the user with unnecessary text or graphical elements.
  • Make it obvious – use a large, descriptive text for your call-to-action button or link
  • Remind them that they won’t get the freebie/lead magnet if they don’t confirm their email address.
  • Use your brand design – if you use a certain colour for your brand, use it. You can also place your logo in the header.

When you click on the confirmation link or button, you will be directed to the Confirmation Thank You page which we will design next.

Still with me? 🙂

3. Send subscribers to your download page or download the lead magnet immediately

For this third step, you can either send the new subscriber to your download page or initiate the download to start automatically after they clicked the confirmation link.

The easiest way to deliver your lead magnet is by including the download link in the Confirmation Thank You page. This page is hosted on MailerLite server so you don’t have to create one manually.

To do this, click on the Confirmation Thank You page then Edit Content.

download link subscription confirmation

If you want more control or customize the download page further, you can create a new page in WordPress and send your new subscribers to it.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Add a new page to your blog
    create landing page
    You can try making this page attractive or add more elements to encourage further engagement.You can easily create an engaging and good-looking landing page using tools like Thrive Architect.Thrive Architect is a drag-and-drop landing page editor that comes with 270 beautifully designed templates. It’s the tool that I use to create my own landing pages.Here are some example templates that you can customize to match your blog:
    thrive architect landing pageThere are tons of other features that can help you to quickly build professional looking homepage and landing pages fast and convert visitors into customers or email subscribers.
  2. Take note of the page URL and then enter it into the “Or use your own landing page” text box and then click Save.
    use your own landing page

What if you don’t want to create a landing page and want the freebie to start downloading immediately after the subscriber clicked the confirmation link?

Easy, just replace your landing page URL with your download link.

However, I would only suggest using this direct download method if you’re offering only one lead magnet, like a catch-all freebie type.

That’s it, you are done!

 

How to password protect your download page

If you are offering valuable resources/files in your download page, you may want to password protect your download page. This ensures only your subscribers have exclusive access to your lead magnets and opt-in freebies.

Using a simple password that is easy for your subscribers to remember should be good enough. Include it in your welcome or confirmation email.

To password protect your lead magnet download page in WordPress:

  1. Edit the page you want to password protect
  2. Under the Publish section in the top left corner, click the Edit link next to the Visibility setting.
  3. Select Password protected and enter your password.

password protect wordpress page

 

Bonus Method: Automatically send download links/pdf to new subscribers right from your WordPress interface

How do you send a PDF or any other file automatically to your new subscribers without creating autoresponder email at your email service provider?

The answer: by using the Asset Delivery feature in Thrive Leads.

Thrive Leads is a WordPress plugin that helps you create beautiful and compelling opt-in forms that will convert better than the average forms.

It’s the one I use to design all my opt-in forms at Sabahan.com.

The Asset Delivery feature in Thrive Leads allows you to associate one or more downloadable files with any opt-in forms you create in Thrive Leads.

This method is ideal:

  • If you want a quick and easy way to set up lead magnet delivery right from within your WordPress admin interface.
  • You don’t want to set up a separate list or a separate autoresponder email at your email service provider.
  • If you offer content upgrades – content upgrades are opt-in offers specific to a single blog post.
  • If you don’t want to set up a new group, new automation etc for each offer.
  • You want to free up your email delivery service and only use it to send out your actual newsletters.

To learn how the Asset Delivery works, you can watch the following video:

You can read more about Thrive Leads Asset Delivery here.

 

Conclusion

There you have it!

That’s how to deliver a lead magnet or opt-in freebie.

Now it’s time to take action.

Start transforming your opt-in freebie ideas into reality.

Learn how to create a lead magnet then use the tools I’ve talked about to deliver them and keep your subscribers engaged.

If there’s anything that I’ve missed or unclear in the article, please let me know in the comments.

Thanks for reading!

18

7 Powerful Strategies That Will Increase Your Email Subscribers Fast

Learn how you can increase your email subscribers with this list building strategies #increaseemailsubscribers #listbuilding #emaillistWant to increase your email subscribers fast? You’ve come to the right place!

Your email list is probably the most valuable asset you’ll ever have as a blogger.

Your website could shut down, traffic from Google and the social media channels could disappear, but as long as you have your mailing list, you’re still in business.

Since having an email list is so important, you would want more email subscribers. Having more people in your email list is a surefire way to grow your business faster.

In order to get more subscribers, your opt-in forms and offers have to be very good.

A good opt-in form will help you get more leads without needing more traffic.

So in today’s post, you’ll learn how to increase your email subscribers by creating highly persuasive opt-in forms without needing any more traffic.

If you’re up for it, you can turn these list building strategies into a 7-day challenge. Let’s see how many you can implement on your own website.

Let’s dive right in!

Related: How to Start an Email List for Free Right Now

 

#1: Increase Your Email Subscribers With a Benefit-Driven Opt-in Forms

When creating your opt-in form to collect email addresses, ask yourself this question:

Why would anyone subscribe to my email list?

If your answer is so that they could get the latest updates from you, that’s not enough.

Nobody wants to subscribe to another email newsletter without getting an immediate benefit. People want it now, not sometimes in the future which may or may not arrive.

So you’ll need to bribe your visitors into giving their email address by offering them something called a lead magnet or an optin freebie.

Your freebie can be a

  • Free ebook
  • Checklist
  • PDF guide
  • Cheatsheet
  • Graphic template
  • Email course
  • and so on.

These are incentives that solve a particular problem your readers are facing.

Next, you can reframe your offer by changing from “Subscribe to Email Newsletter” or “Sign-up for the latest updates” to something that is benefit driven.

For example, identify the feature of your freebie and then add “This will help to…“.

Here’s an example of an unoptimized lead capture form:

bad optin form example

 

Here’s a benefit-driven example:

Benefit driven email subscription form

 

As you can see, spelling out the benefit the visitor will get from subscribing makes the opt-in or lead capture form immediately more persuasive.

In this case, your visitors will learn how to optimize their blog and improve their rankings fast.

Here are some key points to keep in mind when designing your opt-in forms:

  • Make your copy benefit-driven by spelling out the immediate benefits the visitors will get.
  • Consider using the word free (or add a price tag) in your offer.
  • Consider adding a specific image of the freebies/lead magnet. Adding a professional looking image increases the perceived value of your offer.
  • Avoid using a generic text for your submit button such as  “Subscribe” or “Sign up”. Use a call-to-action text like “Let’s Go!”,  “Download Now” or “SEND IT TO ME!”.
  • Try to relieve concerns over being scammed or harassed. You can include something like “We hate spam. Unsubscribe anytime”.
  • The less information you ask for the better. This improves your email signups. You can ask for the email and perhaps the first name for personalization. So instead of “Hi”, you can greet your subscriber with “Hi Jim”.
  • Consider creating a dedicated landing page  for your opt-in form – you can send people who ask about how to get more cool stuff from you. You can also link to this landing page if you are doing guest blogging.

 

#2: Create Targeted Offers for Specific Blog Posts/Categories

You can improve your sign-up rates further by offering a specific opt-in offer.

Running more than one offer on your website makes it possible to appeal to different segments of visitors.

This will result in improved conversion rates more than what a typical, single “catch-all” offer can achieve. It also enables you to create segmented email lists.

This is powerful as you will be able to send highly targeted messages to exactly the right people. When you know exactly what your readers are interested in, you’ll make more money from your email list.

You can do this by offering a special freebie for:

  • Specific blog posts – you can see an example on my SEO Tips and Tricks post where I offer a SEO checklist that’s only available from that post.
  • Each category – this is also something that I’m planning to do here at Sabahan.com.

But what if you don’t have an opt-in offer available? You can adjust your message to target that specific audience instead.

For example, if you have a category for email marketing and you want to place an opt-in form in that category page, instead of just using the following:

how not to gain subscribers

 

Adjust the message to target the particular audience who visit the email marketing category. Drive home what’s in store for people when they opt-in.

Email marketing tips

Notice, I’ve also replaced the generic “Subscribe” button to a better CTA “Yes Please!”

 

#3: Create a Lightbox Popup

A lightbox opt-in forms (sometimes also called pop-ups) are usually shown on page load or when the user is about to exit the page.

lightbox popup

Sometimes they are seen as intrusive and can be annoying. But it has been shown time and time again that they simply work.

Currently, I am using Thrive Leads which helps me create my lightbox. Thrive Leads comes with a huge selection of ready-made opt-in form templates so you don’t have to design yours from scratch.

Check it out and take advantage of the one-time, non-recurring fee of only $67  and see it for yourself (it also comes with a 30 day money back guarantee).

Instead of using the normal lightbox, I’m using the Scroll Mat (sometimes called the Welcome Mat), an enhanced version of the normal lightbox.

A Scroll Mat turns any page to a full-screen opt-in form that’s displayed immediately on page load when a visitors arrives on your site.

scroll mat / welcome mat

Thrive Themes has found that showing the lightbox instantly on page load is more effective at converting visitors into new subscribers.

It’s even more effective than a lightbox that was triggered by exit intent. The basic idea of exit intent is that you make an opt-in lightbox appears the moment a visitor shows that they’re about to leave as demonstrated below.

Exit intent demo

For me initially, I was a bit apprehensive as I don’t want to annoy my visitors with pop ups but my results have also shown it’s one of my best converting opt-in forms.

popup conversion

This is an ongoing experiment and I believe I can improve the conversion rates further by using a more specific offer and by showcasing a more exciting picture.

I only show the popup once for every 7 days so as not to annoy my visitors. And it will only be shown when the visitors land on a blog post or a category page. So it’s not the first thing they’ll see when they land on my homepage or blog index.

You can watch the video below to learn how Thrive Leads works.

If you are starting out, I recommend pairing Thrive Leads with MailerLite.

There are three reasons why Scroll Mats convert well:

  • It fills the screen – getting the visitors full attention
  • triggers on page load.
  • requires an immediate response – yes or no?

To improve your conversation rates, you can try implementing the recommendations in point #1 above.

 

#4: Run A/B Split Tests to Improve Conversion Rates

Here’s the thing though, don’t simply use popups, scroll/welcome mats or any other opt-in form types simple because I or some other bloggers use them.

Instead, you should run your own test to see what works best on your site!

So this is where the A/B split testing comes in.

A split test or A/B test is a test that you can run to compare two different versions of an opt-in form to find out which one gets you the most signups.

Don’t worry, A/B testing is not rocket science. In fact, it’s pretty easy to implement if you’re using the right tool.

Why is running an A/B split testing important?

Because it will help you get more leads on autopilot with the same amount of traffic.

For example, if your blog gets 100 visitors per day and only 1% of them opted-in, that’s one new subscriber per day.

Using an A/B testing, you can improve your conversion rates and possibly get 2, 3, 4 emails or more per day with the same number of visitors.

Fortunately, this is very easy to do if you are using Thrive Leads.  It’s the opt-in form designer that I am currently using and I will use it as an example.

AB split testing

You would want to create a variation of your opt-in forms and start an A/B split test to find out which one converts better.

You can start by testing the big elements first such as:

  • Opt-in form types – lightbox popup vs scroll mat?
  • Create different offers – find out which offer resonates more with your visitors. Or make it smaller or simpler vs long and comprehensive.
  • Framing of the offer – test the title, subhead, and text copy. Add/remove bullet points, paragraphs of text.
  • Opt-in form designs – test different freebie image, the colour of the submit button, opt-in form layout, minimal vs detailed template etc.
  • Rinse and repeat – continue testing and tweaking to improve your conversion rates.

The reason why you’d want to test the big elements first is that it can be difficult to get a statistically significant result.

If you’re just testing something small such as the text on your submit button “Get It Now” vs “Download Now”, you would need tons of traffic for the test result to be significant which can take a very long time complete.

That said, you can test the smaller elements later once you’ve found a winning opt-in form and the button copy is a good one to start testing on.

Testing different offers is one of the most powerful ways to increase your opt-in conversion but creating different offers can be time-consuming.

Instead, what you can do is find ways to re-frame your existing offer, and modify the offer to match the frame more closely.

For example, if you offer a SEO checklist, you can advertise it in several ways:

  1. Learn how to double your search engine rankings in 90 days
  2. SEO case study: How I improved my blog SEO and drive massive traffic from Google
  3. Your SEO Checklist: 7 steps to optimizing your website
  4. Do-it-yourself SEO strategies and save money
  5. Beginner’s guide to SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

 

#5: Implement a Two-Steps Opt-In Form

One good A/B test you can conduct is to test a 1-step opt-in form vs a 2-step opt-in form.

A 1-step opt in form is just your normal form with the name/email textbox, while the later appears as a link, a button or graphic which launches the actual opt-in form when clicked.

Here’s an example of a two-step opt-in form:

two-step opt-in form

Two-step opt-in forms are powerful because they use the power of micro commitments.

The idea is that, if you’ve already made a commitment to something, you’re more likely to follow that path of action and are less likely to change your mind about it.

So when you click on the text link or button, it shows that you do want to get the thing that was advertised. That click is the micro commitment which will drive you to complete the process such as fill out an opt-in form when presented with one.

You can use Thrive Leads or any other email signup form designer to create these two-steps opt-in forms.

 

#6: Add an Opt-In Form to Your About page

Do you know that the About page is one the most visited pages on any website?

People love to get to know the person or company behind the website to learn more about what they have to offer.

It’s a go-to page for new visitors who are curious to know more about you and your business.

So this is the perfect opportunity for you to get in touch with your visitors by adding your opt-in form to your About page.

To improve your conversion rate, here are a few suggestions:

  • Use a different wording than what you normally use throughout your blog.
  • Create a different design entirely
  • Use a 2-step opt-in form
  • Place those people on a specific list – because these are people who are very interested in what you have to offer
  • Add two opt-in forms in two location – one right after the opening paragraphs, and another one at the end of the page (for those who read the whole page).

Here’s how my 2-step opt-in form looks like in my About page.

about page email subscription form

If you don’t have an about page yet, you should create one. Check out the following post to get started:

How to Design & Write The Best About Page For Your Blog

 

#7: Make Your Freebie/Opt-In Offer Graphic Pop

Instead of having an opt-in form filled with text, you should also include an image that represents the opt-in incentive.

If you offer a free ebook, have an ebook cover graphic to visually represent your offer. If you offer a pdf checklist, take a screenshot and make it looks good.

 

opt in offer graphic

 

A visually appealing image can increase the perceived value of your offer, makes the benefit more tangible and increases your conversion rates.

You can go to places like Fiverr to get this done cheaply for as low as $5.

Additionally, you can purchase some good looking ready-made templates which you can customize from Creative Market.

If you are the DIY type, you can give Canva or PicMonkey a try.

 

Conclusion

There you have it, 7 ways to increase your email subscribers fast.

You can turn this into a 7 days email list building challenge if you are up for it!

In addition to social media marketing, your list building should remain a priority in your content marketing effort.

If there’s one thing I should mention before I end this article – don’t be shy about advertising your opt-in offer.

Make it obvious for your visitors they’ll get something highly valuable if they opt-in for your offer.

If you are too subtle, fewer people will see your email subscription forms and you may miss out on potential visitors who may become subscribers.

How to increase subscribers to newsletter? There’s need to be a balance.

If you are too aggressive, you may annoy your visitors who don’t opt-in.

Either way, you should run an A/B testing to see what works for your own website.

Now it’s your turn.

Which of the email marketing strategies above have your implemented or are planning to implement in your email list building effort?

I’d love to hear your experience in the comments below!

12

How to Start an Email List for Free Right Now

How to start an email list for free right now. #emaillists #emailmarketing #mailinglist #startemaillist #emaillistbuildingMy biggest mistake when I started blogging in 2006 was not starting my own email list!

Had I took the plunge, imagine how many email subscribers I would have today, hundreds of thousands maybe?

If you’re reading this, I’m sure you’re already aware of the importance of why you should have your own email list.

So I won’t bore you with the why part (well for most bloggers, it’s where the money is).

Unfortunately creating a mailing list for your website from scratch can be overwhelming and expensive.

But those aren’t entirely true.

The good news?

Starting your own mailing list doesn’t have to be complicated or costly.

So in today’s post, I’m going to show you how to start an email list for free.

And this whole process should take you less than 20 minutes!

Ready? Let’s dive in!

Related:  7 Powerful Strategies That Will Increase Your Email Subscribers Fast

 

How to start an email list for free (fast)

There are quite a few email service providers that you can use, but all email marketing services aren’t created equal.

For me, I knew growing an email list could take time.

I didn’t want to spend money on something that would cost me a monthly fee, yet generate little to no income, at least during the first few months.

Bootstrapping is the name of the game here 🙂

Now you may be asking, why can’t you just send email for free from your Gmail account?

Here’s why:

  • Gmail email makes you look unprofessional
  • Gmail limits the number of emails you can send a day
  • Gmail is good for one-to-one interaction but not for mass emailing your subscribers
  • You can’t track who opened or clicked your email
  • Your emails are more likely to be blocked by the majority of email providers
  • Managing your subscribes/unsubscribes can be a nightmare

Next, I’ll describe the exact steps how to build an email list for marketing. These involve:

  1. Signing up with an email service provider.
  2. Creating an opt-in form to collect emails
  3. Placing an opt-in form on your website
  4. Done (sort of)

 

#1: Sign up with an email service provider

I recommend using MailerLite.

It’s forever free to use if you have fewer than 1000 subscribers.

Unlike some other email service providers, it doesn’t limit the number of emails you can send per month.

Most importantly, you have an unrestricted access to their autoresponder service which allow you to automatically deliver your opt-in freebies/lead magnets after a user sign up.

In comparison, some other email service provides will only let you send one autoresponder email. You’ll have to upgrade your plan if you want to setup more.

Basically, the free tier of MailerLite gives you full access to all their paid features including autoresponder, automation, segmentation, tracking, tagging system – the whole enchilada.

start mailing list from scratch

As your subscribers grow past 1000 people, you can upgrade to a paid plan. Their plans are among the cheapest email marketing software out there too.

Go ahead sign up with MailerLite now.

I should mention that you will need your own domain name to use MailerLite.

Here are a few steps that you need to do during the sign-up process:

sign up for email service provider

Getting your account approved

After creating your MailerLite account, you need to have your account validated by completing these 2 steps:

Complete your profile

Fill in your blog/company information. MailerLite will use this info during the approval process. So make sure your blog is in good shape to improve your chances.

mailerLite profile

Verify your website domain

Your website verification consists of two steps. First, you need to enter your website URL:

website domain verification

The second step is entering your email address.

You must use the same email domain as your website domain, i.e. [email protected] Don’t enter a free email address from Gmail, Outlook, Yahoo etc. here.

Wait for account approval

Once you’ve completed the 2 steps above, MailerLite will start reviewing your account.

Mailerlite account approval

This usually takes from 15 minutes to 4 hours, but sometimes it may take up to a day. They will send you an email notification after the review is completed.

Also whenever you decide to upgrade your plan, you’ll have to go through the approval process again.

 

#2: Create an opt-in form to collect emails

MailerLite comes with tools to help you design an opt-in form. This will likely be your main method of collecting new mailing list subscribers.

Here’s how you do it.

Create a new group

First, you need to create a new group to save your subscribers in. Click Subscribers > Groups > Create new group

Create an email group

For demonstration purpose, I named my group Demo Group.

Mailinglist group

Once created, your group will appear in the Groups list.

Next, to create a new opt-in form, click Forms > Embedded Forms > Create Embedded Form

Create opt in form

Below, I named my form “Demo Group Form #1

.Form name

 

Next, you’ll need to associate the form with a group or groups. Here I selected the Demo Group I created earlier.

Select group

Click “Save and continue” and on the next page, you can edit and format your optin form.

Few things to keep in mind when designing your opt-in form:

  • The less information you ask for the better. This improves your conversion rate.
  • Ask for an email address and perhaps the first name so that you can personalize your emails. So instead of “Hi”, you can greet your subscriber with “Hi June”.

The default MailerLite optin box only asks for the user’s email address. To add the name text box, click on the email textbox edit icon, then click on the “Add new field” button.

Add name field

Play around with the form design and settings. Don’t worry if you make a mistake because you can always edit, delete and recreate the form.

When you are done, click on the Done Editing button.

newsletter design

You can watch the video below for an overview of MailerLite embedded form.

 

#3: Place opt-in form on your website

And now’s the fun part!

There are two ways you can embed the form into your blog; manually or by using a WordPress plugin.

I am going to show you how to do both.

When you are done designing your form, you’ll find the following code snippets under your Form Settings tab.

Form settings

opt-in html code

#1: Manual Integration

For the manual embed, you will need to copy the first code snippet once into your website header.

Most WordPress themes should have an option where you can paste the first code snippet into the header.

For Thrive Themes which I’m using, I can paste the code via the Analytics/Scripts section. Yours may be different.

Header code

Then, for the form body itself, you can paste it anywhere you want it to appear. It can be on your sidebar, within a post or at the end of a post.

To show it within your post, activate Text mode then paste the code into the text editor.

wordpress text editor

Below is how it looks like in my post.

opt-in form preview

That’s it!

You’ve now successfully created your first email opt-in and people can start signing up for your email newsletter.

#2: WordPress plugin integration

If you are using WordPress, you can install the plugin for MailerLite. To do so, click your Profile image > Integration > WordPress

Follow the instructions to complete the steps.

Mailerlite wordpress plugin

 

How to send your first newsletter

Adding subscribers

Now that you know how to start an email newsletter, you can start sending your first email newsletter!

But wait.. how can you send newsletters if you haven’t got any subscribers?

Good question!

I suggest you test the sign-up process by signing up using a secondary email address to see if everything was set up properly.

Alternatively, if you have an existing subscribers list, you can import it or manually enter them to MailerLite.

Here’s how to do it:

Click on the Subscribers tab > Add subscribers

Add subscribers

Then choose one of the ways to upload your list, either with CSV, Excel or manually entering emails one by one.

Create your first campaign

In MailerLite, the emails that you create are called campaigns.

To create your first campaign, click Campaigns > Create your first Email

Create email campaign

On the next page, you will see 4 campaign types. But for demonstration purpose, we are going to create Regular Campaign.

Create regular campaign

Enter your campaign’s subject title. You can use emoji to grab attention, though I’d recommend you use it sparingly and test if positive results are produced.

Another thing to consider is adding personalization to engage more with your subscribers.

Fill in the rest of the details. Then click NEXT: Content.

Check out the following video on how to Quick Start your campaign and how to use the drag and drop editor when designing your email.

Once you’re done, click Done Editing.

Edit email campaign

 

Send your first campaign

Once you’ve designed your campaign. It’s time to send it out.

On the next screen, you should be able to select the subscribers you want to send the emails to.

Select the Group or Groups, then click the NEXT: Review and confirm button.

Select campaign recepients

On the next page, you may want to send a test email to yourself to check how the email will look like for your subscribers.

Send test email

Sometimes the test email ends up in spam folder because of the additional word Test added in the subject field. Don’t worry, this does not happen with the regular campaigns.

Click the NEXT: Schedule button below.

Schedule email campaign

Select the Send now option, then click the Send button.

Sending email campaign

Success!

 

How to customize your confirmation page

The confirmation page is where the subscriber is directed to once they clicked the confirmation link in the email.

Confirmation email sample

MailerLite provides a default confirmation page which is hosted on their server.

While this works fine, the design is rather uninspiring and basic.

Confirmation page

So, you might want to customize your confirmation page:

  • If you want to track your email signups
  • To improve engagement. Perhaps you want the new subscriber to follow you on Twitter
  • Provide a download link to freebie/lead magnet as promised earlier

To specify a different confirmation page, just change the URL of the landing page to one of your own.

Click your Profile picture > Subscribe settings > Confirmation Thank You page

Subscribe settings

You can create the page as you normally would when creating a page in WordPress. Here’s how mine looks like at the moment.

Confirmation page

The design will definitely be changed in the future as I run experiments to my improve engagements.

For further reading, you may want to read my article below. Pay attention to the section where I talk about customizing your thank you page.

How to Grow Your Email List Using Google Analytics Goals Tracking

 

How to design beautiful & high converting opt-in forms

Here’s the thing though – the default MailerLite opt-in form looks rather uninspiring!

While it gets the job done, people won’t be signing up in droves anytime soon.

Of course, you can make your opt-in form more beautiful and compelling but the MailerLite form design and options leave much to be desired.

To help you create a beautiful and high converting opt-in form, I recommend using Thrive Leads. It’s not free but it’s well worth the price.

You can see it in action here at Sabahan.com as I use it to design all my opt-in forms.

If you are serious about building your email list faster, having versatile and professional looking opt-in forms are crucial.

And Thrive Leads will help you achieve that goal.

After you sign-up, you’ll have access to Thrive University. It’s a free online marketing course you can take at your own pace.

You can learn how to:

  • Design persuasive and beautiful opt-in forms
  • Grow your mailing list faster
  • Create irresistible opt-in offer, a.k.a freebies/lead magnet
  • Implement the next generation email list building tactics
  • Implement advanced strategies in email marketing
  • And more…

Build email list course

 

If you ask me, the email marketing courses worth far more than the price of Thrive Leads itself.

You can access them all for free with the purchase of Thrive Leads (only a small portion of the courses are Thrive member exclusive).

 

Entice people to sign up by offering freebies/opt-in offers

People don’t sign up to mailing lists for no reason. They will only give you their email address if they can get something of value in return.

People don't sign up to mailing lists for no reason. They will only give you their email address if they can get something of value in return.Click To Tweet

Gone are the days where you can just paste your opt-in form in your sidebar, and that’s enough to get people into your list.

Today the Internet is a busier and a noisier place. You need to stand out from the crowd to get noticed.

Providing great content is a good start as it may be enough of an incentive for some people to register their email to get updates.

Unfortunately, soon you’ll find your conversion rate is still low.

Most of your visitors would leave after they get what they wanted and may never return.

So how can you get more people to sign up?

By offering what we call a lead magnet or optin freebie. These are incentives that solve a particular problem your audience is facing.

Related: How to Deliver a Lead Magnet or Optin Freebie Easily

These opt-in offers/lead magnets can be in the form of:

  • PDF guide
  • Checklist
  • Free ebook
  • Cheatsheet
  • Spreadsheet
  • Video or email course
  • And so on…

Here’s one of my own opt-in freebies to give you an example.

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GET INSTANT ACCESS TO

61+ Curated Facebook Groups List That are Perfect for Bloggers!

What you will get:

  • Instant access to the full list via Google Sheet
  • Frequent updates to include new groups
  • High-quality groups you can join now
  • check
    Amplify your reach by getting in front of more people
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    It's FREE!

Please enter your first name and email below to get an instant access. Don't worry, your email is safe. I hate spam too!

Your lead magnets don’t have to be complicated though. In fact, you should start with something simple which offers a quick fix to a problem.

So how do you create an effective lead magnet that converts regular visitors into email subscribers?

That’s a big and interesting topic on its own and deserves a dedicated post.

Stephen from AspiringBloggers.com has shared some opt-in freebies ideas  to help you grow your subscribers list.

You can also learn some email marketing strategies from  Thrive University.

When you register, you can get access to more than 20 different guides, video courses, training webinar recordings and interactive content to help you build your online business.

Best of all it’s totally free to join!

The catch? While most of the guides can be implemented regardless of the tools you are using to design and build your blog, some guides are specific to the Thrive Themes plugins.

It’s free anyway, you got nothing to lose but more email marketing knowledge to gain. If it’s good enough to help me get started, it should be useful to you too!

Register with the free Thrive University now.

 

Where should you place your opt-in form?

When it comes to placing your opt-in or signup forms, the more location you placed them the better.

Here at Sabahan.com, I have opt-in forms at the following locations:

After each blog post

So far this location hasn’t converted as well as I hoped for. I suspect this is due to the fact that there are so many blogs placing their forms at the same location resulting in “opt-in form blindness”.

Blog footer

The hero image sign up form

A hero image is a large, featured image prominently displayed on the homepage.

Hero image conversion

It’s one of the first elements a visitor see when they visit your site.

A hero image tells what your site is about and how you can use it to show you have a solution to the visitor’s problem.

It’s an ideal place to add your opt-in form to directly influence the behaviour of a visitor as they go through your site.

But why do I use a button which introduces an extra step instead of an actual opt-in form?

Well, people have discovered that asking the visitors to click on a button or link before showing them the opt-in form can improve your conversion rates.

I found that to be true for Sabahan.com. Currently it’s my best performing opt-in form.

 

Inside specific posts

I haven’t created many of these yet. But I think if you have a highly targeted and compelling opt-in offer, this location can CONVERT LIKE CRAZY.

Optin within blog post

The ribbon bar at the top

This ribbon is a horizontal bar that appears after the reader scrolled to 70% of my article.

Why 70%?

Because I only want to show it to readers who are actually interested in my content.

This improves my conversion rates tremendously and I get good sign-ups from mobile users.

ribbon button optin

The scroll mat (or welcome mat)

Scroll mat turns any page into a full-screen signup form that’s displayed immediately on page load. It rolls down to welcome visitors to your website when they land on a specific page.

I was a bit reluctant to implement this at first for concern that it may affect the users’ experience. However if authority sites like Problogger.com find such ‘popup’ acceptable, the least I could do is test it on my blog.

Scroll mat

In any case, I’m limiting the scroll mat to only appear once a week. So far it is one of my best performing opt-in forms.

On the sidebar

The ‘obligatory’ signup form widget on my sidebar. For best result, I recommend placing this at the very top of your sidebar before any other widgets.

Sidebar optin form

On my About page

A call to action button on my About Page. I got a few signups here.

About page opt-in form

There are many other locations you can experiment with in addition to the above. Each placement will perform differently depending on your site design, niche and audience.

The only way to find out which one performs the best is to test out the various locations as you go along.

For that purpose, I’m using Thrive Leads to track my email sign up conversion rates.

Thrive Leads helps me find out which opt-in forms/content perform the best over time. I can even conduct an A/B testing to automatically increase my conversion rate.

Email signups conversion rate report

I know there are tons and tons of things I can do to improve my conversion rates. I’ll be glad to share my finding in my future posts, so stay tuned.

 

How to track which traffic source brings you the most signups

By default, MailerLite tracks who has opened your email newsletters or clicked on links.

However, if you want to track where your new subscribers came from then you’ll need to use Google Analytics.

I’ve dedicated an entire post to teach you how to use Google Analytics to track your email signups.

Check it out here: How to Grow Your Email List Using Google Analytics Goals Tracking

 

Conclusion

There you have it!

That’s how to start an email list for free from scratch.

Email lists offer the best form of communication with your audience.

Even though social media marketing often gets the spotlight, having access to your audience email addresses is still the most valuable digital marketing channel for your blog.

Not content marketing, nor influencer marketing.

Now it’s your turn.

Have you started your mailing list yet? Now that you know how to create an email subscription list, are you going to start one soon?

Please share your story in the comments.

Thanks for reading!

4

How to Grow Your Email List Using Google Analytics Goals Tracking

How to Grow Your Email List Using Google Analytics Goals Tracking. #emailmarketing #emailmarketingtips #emailtips #emailoptinideasSo you added the email capture form on your blog.

(If you haven’t, you really need to consider starting your own mailing list.)

Now what?

You can sit back and hope for a massive emails pile-up of which would rarely happen.

Or

You can find out which traffic sources bring you the most email subscribers. Then focus your effort to attract more of such traffic to help you grow your email list even faster.

In this post, I am going to give you a step-by-step guide on how to track your email signups using Google Analytics goals.

While this post is useful for any website owner, the examples given assumed you are using WordPress.

 

Why You Should Track Email Signups Conversion

Tracking your mailing list sign-ups right from the start is important to measure your email marketing success.

It allows you to find out which online marketing strategies are bringing the best ROI (return on investment) for your effort.

You can then ramp up your effort for the particular strategies to drive even more subscribers.

As you gather more data, you can run tests to improve your email sign-up conversion rates even further.

For example, you can find out the exact pages or articles that are most effective in getting new subscribers and then create more similar articles.

You can also track which signup forms convert the best.

Optimal Opt-In Forms Locations

Here at Sabahan.com, I have opt-in forms in the following locations:

  • The post footer at the end of every blog post.
  • The ribbon at the top which appears after the reader scrolled to 70% of the article.
  • Scroll mat which turns any page into a full-screen opt-in form that’s displayed immediately on page load.
  • The ‘obligatory’ opt-in widget on my sidebar.
  • A call to action button on my About Page.

Sabahan.com shows fewer opt-in forms on mobile devices so as not to distract the user-experience.

My results show Scroll Mat converts the best.

Pro tip: If you want to include your signup forms on the sidebar, place them at the very top to improve visibility and sign-up rates. This is the most common location for an email signup form.

The more places you put the email signup forms on your blog, the better chance you’ll have in converting your visitors into subscribers.

Now, while you can use Google Analytics to track the conversion rates of each opt-in form location, I am currently using Thrive Leads to do that for me because it’s easier.

Besides giving me the ability to design beautiful and conversion optimized opt-in forms quickly, it has a built-in reporting feature showing me how each form is performing.

opt-in form performance reporting

I know the conversion rates could be higher. Improving them is a continuous process. In fact I have a few ideas queuing up waiting to be implemented. So in my future posts, I’ll show you how I implement them to improve my conversion rates!

If this sounds too complicated, I learned all these from the FREE Thrive University courses. They have been instrumental in helping me to be up and running faster that I could have been if I were to do it alone. Go ahead check it out.

Alternatively, if you haven’t designed your own opt-in form yet, you can sign up with Sumo. Their free plan allows you to collect up to 200 subscribers.

When designing your opt-in forms, there’ll be an option to connect them with your email marketing service provider.

 

How to Track Your Mailing List Sign-Ups

This guide is based on using double confirmation opt-in to track email signups using Google Analytics goals.

Unlike single-opt-in which adds people immediately into the mailing list, a double opt-in requires the people entering their email address to click on a confirmation link in an email.

Later in the article, I’ll discuss the pros and cons of each method and why you would prefer using one method over the other.

Adding Google Analytics onto Your Blog

First thing first. You need to add Google Analytics to your blog.

The steps include:

  1. Signing up for a Google Analytics account.
  2. Getting your tracking code
  3. Adding the code onto all of the pages on your blog using a WordPress plugin.

You can find a detailed instruction to help you with the setup here.

There are plenty of plugins you can use to add the tracking code to your blog.

Some themes may even have the option built-in and therefore installing a Google Analytics plugin isn’t necessary.

If you want the ability to access your analytics data right from your WordPress admin dashboard, you can consider installing Google Analytics Dashboard WP (GADWP).

Setting Up Your Welcome Email Autoresponder

An autoresponder is an email service that sends an email or a sequence of emails to the subscribers automatically.

It’s like having a personal assistant that never gets tired and never have to take the weekend off. It’s always there to guide and welcome your new subscribers.

As you can imagine, you can use it to create a great experience when welcoming and integrating your new subscribers into your tribe.

There are many mailing list providers offering autoresponder services. I am currently using MailerLite. It’s free to use if you have fewer than 1000 subscribers.

Setting up the perfect autoresponder sequence emails involve lots of things.

The email sequence can be a blogging course that gets sent every day for a week or to drum up interest to drive sales to your product or service for a couple of days before the final hard sell.

I will get down to the nitty-gritty of how to set up an autoresponder in my future posts.

For now, you probably just want a simple welcome email that goes out once your subscribers confirm the subscription.

Sending the right message in a welcome email is crucial. It sets the stage whether new subscribes will open and engage with your future emails or ignore them.

It’s the first friendly engagement between you and your subscribers and it’s your chance to earn their trust and tell them what to expect in future emails.

Most people use it to send out freebies, PDF, templates or whatever opt-in incentives promised earlier in exchange for their email address.

Here’s how my welcome email autoresponder looks in MailerLite:

Welcome email autoresponder

 

Setup Related Pages to Track Your Email Conversion Goals

Once you set up your autoresponder email, the next step is to create a Thank You and a Confirmation page on your blog.

Your goal is to lead people to your Thank You page. Their final destination is your Confirmation page. When they land there, you have achieved your final conversion goal.

If you are using a single opt-in method, your goal completes when the subscribers land on your Thank You page. However, we are using the double opt-in method which involves some extra steps.

The process would typically involve the followings:

  1. Opt-in form – visitor sign-up on your blog
  2. Thank You page – visitor gets redirected to the Thank You page.
  3. Confirmation email  – your autoresponder sends the confirmation email to the visitor.
  4. Confirmation page – visitor confirms their address and is directed to the Confirmation page.
  5. Welcome email – your autoresponder sends the Welcome email

You can see the process in action if you click the button below and sign up with my email newsletter  🙂

Yes Please!

Creating Your Thank You Page

The subscribers will be forwarded to the Thank You page after they submit the opt-in form.

This page can be a simple Thank You for Subscribing page, or a page that lets the subscriber know that they need to confirm their email address.

Avoid using the default confirmation page provided by your email service provider. A customized confirmation page will work better. But it must include clear instructions on how to finish the opt-in process.

If you are offering an opt-in incentive or freebies, avoid offering them on this page because the subscribers will just download it and will ignore your confirmation email.

I set up mine to be as distraction-free as possible as I want to focus the subscriber’s attention to take the next step which is to click the confirmation link in the incoming email.

I also reminded the subscriber to check their bulk or spam folder if they do not see the message in their inbox.

Here’s how my Thank You page looks like (although it’s asking for a confirmation):

email thank you page

The design may change in the future as I find more ways to optimize it.

You know you’ll need to improve this page if you are getting terrible confirmation rates.

You can expect to see 20-30% of people do not finish the opt-in process, that’s the average in the industry (I know that’s pretty high).

But anything more than that, you may be doing something wrong.

Keep in mind that most people are probably viewing the page on mobile so keeping it simple to get your message across is important.

Here’s how my confirmation email looks like:

Confirmation email example

When designing your opt-in forms, there’ll be an option to connect them to your Thank You page.

For Thrive Leads, you can find the setting under Connect with service > Post Opt-In Action:

Post opt-in destination

Creating Your Confirmation Page

The Confirmation page is where the subscriber is directed to once they clicked the confirmation link in the email.

All the email service providers like MailChimp, MailerLite, GetResponse etc provides a default confirmation page which is hosted on their server.

Don’t rely on those as the standard confirmation page is very basic!

I highly recommend you create your own confirmation page so that you can track your email signup conversion and customize the page for extra engagement.

Next, you should tell your email service provider to use your page instead of theirs.

For MailerLite, this setting is located at Subscribe settings > Confirmation Thank You page.

Customize your confirmation page

This is the page where you can give access to the opt-in incentives promised earlier if you have them. Or you can include those in the welcome email.

Enhancing Your Confirmation Page

Since the visitor has confirmed the subscription, you can experiment with many things here to encourage engagement or drive more traffic to your blog.

For example, you can ask your new subscriber to tell all of their friends about your blog.

How?

By signing up for a free GoViral account. The idea with GoViral is you can offer additional cool goodies to your new subscribers in exchange for sharing your site with their friends.

Once you signed up, just follow the prompts in GoViral to create your “Share this to get the freebie” page.

Here’s an example on how it’s done:

goviral confirmation page

Here’s my current Confirmation page. It’s pretty minimal. The content may change in the future though.

Confirmation page

Hiding Your Thank You & Confirmation Page

Now that you’ve created your Thank You and Confirmation pages, you need to ensure that nobody can stumble upon them accidentally as this will mess up with your goal tracking statistics.

To hide your pages, you need to:

  1. Hide them from the search engines.
  2. Hide them from your blog search result.

To hide your Thank You & Confirmation page from the search engine, you can install SEO plugins like Yoast SEO.

On the page you want to hide, scroll down to the Yoast SEO section. Click on the Advanced icon and then select No from the drop-down option.

how to hide thank you page

Do this to both your Thank You and Confirmation page.

Next, you’d want to hide those pages from your blog internal search.

You can install the Search Exclude plugin to help you with this. All you have to do to exclude the pages is check the “Exclude from Search Results” check box on the right of your editor.

exclude thank you page from internal blog search

If you provide access to your opt-in incentives in your Confirmation page, you’ll need to make sure the URL is not easy to guess. Otherwise, people will be able to download your incentives without signing up just by guessing your confirmation page URL.

 

How to Track Email Signups Using Google Analytics Goals

I choose two separate goals for my email list signups tracking because I want to see how many people actually confirm their email address after submitting the opt-in form.

If I have 10 signups per day, but none of them confirms, my actual conversion rate won’t be accurate.

Setting up your goal tracking with Google Analytics is actually pretty straightforward as you’ll see next.

  1. In Google Analytics, click Admin on the left panel, then the Goals menu.
    track email signups using google analytics goals
  2. Click on the “+NEW GOAL” button.
    Setup new goal
  3. Add a name for your conversion goal and for the Type, select Destination and click Continue. This will be your first conversion goal which will be achieved when visitors land on your Thank You page.
    Google Analytics Goal description
  4. Under “Destination“, select “Begin with” from the drop-down menu. Then add the URL for your Thank You page. Make sure to include the forward slash at the beginning and omit your domain name. For example, if it’s https://domain.com/thankyou, then just enter /thankyou.
    Goal details
  5. Repeat the steps again for your Confirmation page. Here’s how my goals look like currently.
    Track mailing list signups

That’s it! You are now ready to track email signups using Google Analytics goals.

Just give Google Analytics a few days and a few sign-ups to start getting your data.

 

How to Find Which Traffic Sources Convert the Best

Once you’ve received several newsletter sign-ups, you can start finding which traffic sources bring you the most subscribers or which blog posts convinced the visitors to give out their email address.

Login to your Google Analytics account, then go to Acquisition > All Traffic > Channels
Traffic acquisition channels

It appears that at the time of writing, I get the most email subscribers from referral traffic (visitors arriving from other websites), followed by traffic from the social media.

If you want to find out which social networks convert the best, click on the Social link as shown above.

In the Social section, you can see all the users coming from the social networks.

It’s not a surprise I get most of my email subscribers from Facebook since I got more traffic from them at the moment. However, the email signup conversion rates from Quora traffic is more than double than that of Facebook.

Best social media traffic for emails

This tells me I should continue my focus to attract Quora traffic if I want more email subscribers.

On a side note, you can learn how to use Quora to drive traffic to your blog here.

To see which traffic source as a whole (domain) refer visitors who convert into email subscribers, look under Acquisition > All Traffic > Referrals.

referral traffic email conversion

To find out which of your blog post and content leads to the most conversions, look under:

Conversions > Goals > Reverse Goal Path

To separate the goal from all other goals, select your Email Signups goal under the Goal Option drop-down menu.

Best converting blog post content

This will show the steps (up to 3 levels) your visitors take before they sign up to your mailing list.

You can use this information to find out which blog posts lead to the most subscribers. If you have multiple landing pages (squeeze pages), you can find out which ones produce the best conversions.

 

Single Opt-In vs. Double Opt-In: Which One Is Better?

The difference between single opt-in vs. double opt-in is that double opt-in requires the subscribers to confirm their email address before they can join the mailing list.

Single opt-in adds the subscriber’s email into the email list immediately after they submit the opt-in form. No confirmation is necessary.

Each method has its own pros and cons.

Double Opt-In Advantages

  • People can’t sign-up using fake email addresses as a confirmation is required.
  • You have a more engaged list because people on the list really wanted to join in.
  • Your subscribers are less likely to report your emails as spam.
  • Improve your sender reputation and email deliverability.
  • Your subscribers number is more accurate as it represents interested people.
  • It ensures you have a quality mailing list.

Double Opt-In Disadvantages

  • Some people won’t complete the signup process (expect 20% or more unconfirmed signups!)
  • Some subscribers may forget to click the confirmation link.
  • Sending a lot of email in a short space of time can turn off new subscribers.
  • Slower list growth.

Single Opt-In Advantages

  • Signing-up is effortless
  • Simpler to set up for the marketer.
  • No unconfirmed subscribers problem.
  • Faster list growth

Single Opt-In Disadvantages

  • Deliverability rates may be lower
  • Higher risk of being reported as spam
  • Mistyped email addresses, malicious and bots signups can end up on your list
  • People entering fake emails just to grab your opt-in incentives.
  • Your sender reputation may suffer
  • Costly to maintain your list if it’s full of non-working emails (since email service providers usually charged by subscribers count)
  • Legal compliance issues in some countries.

So which one should you use?

A study conducted by GetResponse says while single opt-in appears to be better from the start, double opt-in is the better choice long-term.

They found the single opt-in conversion rate is worse than that of the double opt-in. Double opt-in emails also get higher click-through rates.

Single opt-in vs. double opt-in

That said, the best method will depend on your situation. You’ll have to test it for yourself to decide which method will work best for you.

Some people claim single opt-in can work well too. You just need to send the right welcome message and actively clear out inactive/invalid subscribers in your email list.

As for me, I’m currently experimenting with the double-opt in for Sabahan.com mailing list.

 

Conclusion

Armed with this information, you can now start to track email signups using Google Analytics goals to improve your email marketing ROI.

By focusing your effort on attracting only the right kind of traffic or creating the right content, you’ll be working more efficiently which will grow your email subscribers count even faster.

Now it’s your turn.

If you are already using Google Analytics goal to track email signups in your blog, what traffic or content that lead the most sign ups for you?

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