My name is Stuart Walker & like yourself I’m a regular follower of Matts blog. I love his in-depth posts and tutorials and most of all his honesty.
As collecting email subscribers is the single most important thing an online marketer or blogger can do you need to make sure you get as many of your visitors onto your list as possible.
Without going into too much detail as it’s a whole other post in it’s self (see Matt’s email marketing tutorial) your email list is the backbone of your online business and will help your business grow at a rate not possible without one.
The 2.98% opt in rate isn’t terrible. But it’s not great either.
The average in the blogging industry is anything between 2% to 4% (Source: http://blog.leadpages.net/opt-in-box-list-building-tips-techniques-strategies/)
Over 5% is considered really good and for the few bloggers who can convert over 10% that’s considered exceptional.
And with Matt being a seasoned marketer, with a blog filled with some of the best quality internet marketing content on the net, you’d expect more people to join his list, right?
Because after all “if people like your content they will opt in” apparently. I see this commonly repeated as ‘good’ advice on forums and blogs.
And it’s similar to what one of my visitors told me when I was frustrated with my own low opt in rate and decided to aggressively start collecting my visitors emails instead…
Sadly good content and a few of the standard opt in methods simply is NOT enough anymore as I found out and Matt has found out.
People are blind to them and do NOT opt in so easily. You need to give them a VERY compelling reason to do so and give them multiple opportunities to do it.
When I took a more proactive stance to collecting emails earlier in the year I’ve seen my blog opt in rate rise from just 2.91% back in January to 9.24% in September.
And I’ve not even finished optimizing everything yet – I fully expect to exceed the 10% mark soon.
So when I noticed Matt was only getting a 2.98% opt in rate I decided to write this post and give him some advice on what was working for me.
Then he could put it into action if he wanted and see if he could produce similar results.
What You Will Learn From Stuart Walker
- How to skyrocket your blogs email subscriber rate and get it way beyond the average.
- The plugins you need to turn your blog into an list building machine.
- How to get masses of eager subscribers by offering instant benefit driven lead magnets.
- Why ugly optin boxes work much better than pretty ones that fit in with your blogs design.
- The hot new opt in method that’s resulting in a 785% increase in conversions.
- Whether Matt will rise to the challenge & use these methods to increase his opt in rate.
What’s Working Now For Building Your Blogs Mailing List…
When looking at Matt’s blog and comparing it to my own there are 7 main things I noticed he wasn’t doing that I was in terms of collecting emails.
These are all things that I’ve implemented over the last 6-7 months since collecting emails has became my main focus and have contributed to my high opt in rate.
- Offer a lead magnet that solves one of your audiences major problems and gives them instant gratification
- Only ask for the details you really need when getting them to opt in – name isn’t necessary
- Make your optin boxes unmissable and even ugly so they stand out.
- Make use of in-content optin boxes that stop your most engaged readers mid-post
- The use of content upgrades on popular posts – this hot new trick has seen conversion increases of up to 785% on some blogs
- Add a headline box to ALL your blogs pages as it’s the first thing visitors see
- Use ‘two-step optin technology’ aka LeadBoxes or OptinLinks as these on average are increasing sign ups by 30-40% for bloggers.
Offer A Lead Magnet That Solves A Major Problem & Gives Instant Gratification
If you want to skyrocket your email conversion rate and rapidly increase your subscribers you’re going to have to offer something better than every other generic blogger does.
You need to solve a very specific problem your user has and do it instantly giving them immediate gratification.
The often used “Subscribe for updates” just isn’t effective anymore…or “Get my latest posts” in Matts case.
Matthew Woodward Edit: This currently converts at 1.9% based on 451,733 views and 8,637 optins.
Sure his posts are incredible but we can just come to the blog to get his posts or subscribe to an RSS feed.
So why bother giving away our email address just for ‘boring’ (note: I don’t think Matts posts are boring but it doesn’t sound exciting, does it?) blog post updates.
“Provide something of value in exchange for their email subscription”
– Zac Johnson (ZacJohnson.com)”
On the exit pop up things are better but still not perfect.
It’s more specific in that Matt asks if you want more traffic, ranking and money but again it’s not clear whether you’ll get them instantly and chances are that is unlikely.
People want something that solves their most pressing problem and solves it NOW.
Matthew Woodward Edit: I’m also split testing this against another popup which you can see below. The popup above converts at 0.79% while the one below converts at 0.82%.
You need something much more enticing and it must be delivered immediately and solve a specific problem they have.
Not a vague promise of ‘more traffic’, ‘higher rankings’ and ‘more money’.
How much more traffic and when will it come?
What you need is a problem solving ‘lead magnet’.
“Have a compelling, SPECIFIC lead magnet that promises immediate gratification. ‘Subscribe to my Newsletter’ doesn’t cut it”
Ryan Deiss (DigitalMarketer.com)
Something they sign up for and get benefit from straight away.
So instant downloads work much better than mini courses delivered over several days or weeks.
Those take too long to digest and there’s no instant problem solved or immediate gratification.
Examples Of Excellent Lead Magnets
For example Ryan Deiss and the Digital Marketer team generated 28,507 subscribers in 45 days when they switched to offering an instantly downloadable swipe file.
Their visitors could start putting this into action immediately to get more clicks from social media (Source: http://www.digitalmarketer.com/lead-magnet-ideas-funnel/).
I personally offer my audience a list of 1781 untapped niche markets in exchange for their email address.
I know the bulk of my audience want to find a niche so I give them instant (the ‘instantly’ bit is very important) access to over 1700 of them.
This not only solves their major problem. It goes above and beyond and they can instantly consume the list and find their niche.
The “Say goodbye to boring niche research forever” part shows them they can eliminate a major headache in their life too – no one likes doing boring stuff especially when they find it difficult
It doesn’t have to be lengthy or overly complex. It can be a simple report, a checklist, a cheat sheet, an ebook or in my case a simple excel sheet.
But at the same time not just any old free giveaway like some PLR ebook or something you didn’t spend any time thinking about – it must solve a major problem they have and solve it right now.
I know Matt already gives away his How To Build A Top 100 Blog Tutorial away in PDF format to Facebook leads (Soruce: https://www.matthewwoodward.co.uk/blogging/how-to-start-blog-and-make-money/) .
This is the an example of a lead magnet.
It’s very specific in that it shows you how to build a top 100 blog and you get it immediately to start using – no vague promise of “join my list and I’ll send you some stuff over the next few weeks that help you build a better blog”.
The Argument Against Lead Magnets
There is an argument against lead magnets.
The argument is that if you give away something for free you’ll get lots of subscribers who just want the freebie and aren’t interested in anything else you offer.
Which is why when sending cold traffic to a squeeze page offering a free bribe is a terrible incentive to get an opt in as you end up with a list full of people who don’t know you and don’t care – they just wanted a freebie.
But with a blog it’s not the same as generally people have landed on your blog and consumed your content before noticing the free lead magnet.
And even if they haven’t consumed any content first if you instantly solve a major problem they have you can bet they are going to open your follow up emails and come visit your blog again.
“Ever wonder why Neil Patel and ViperChill have so many email signups? Yes, they have epic content. Yes, their mail forms (sidebar, popups, incontextual, end of post etc..) do look awesome. But the main reason is because they actually offer something.” – Charles Floate (GodofSEO.co)
You can minimize this further by making it very clear they get the immediate gratification AND will receive follow up emails.
See how my benefit driven headline reads “Instantly discover 1781 untapped niche markets WHEN YOU JOIN THE NICHE HACKS TRIBE”.
It’s made very clear that to get the instant problem solving solution you are “joining the tribe” or the “mailing list” in other words.
Note: As a marketer it’s important you test everything. So measure your email open and unsubscribe rates before and after implementing these changes to see what affect it has.
How Matt Could Implement This
Matt could try the following benefit driven headlines that offer immediate solutions and instant gratification…
- “Instantly discover how to build your own top 100 blog with an award winning blogger when you join the mailing list”
- “Do You Need Higher Rankings & More Traffic? Then Sign Up Now To Instantly Receive My Top 5 SEO Hacks And Watch Your Rankings & Traffic Grow Overnight”
- “Say Goodbye To Being Outranked Forever. Instantly Discover How To Outrank Your Competitors, Get More Traffic, And Make More Affiliate Commissions When You Join The Mailing List”
They are far more specific and immediate than “Get my latest posts” and “Do you need more traffic?”
I think by now you get the point.
You have to offer something specific.
It has to be available the second they enter their email.
It has to solve one of their major problems almost immediately or at least something can go and put straight into action.
Now go create your own lead magnet that offers instant gratification to your audience and watch your list grow.
Hopefully Matt will implement this tactic too and see his opt in rates increase closer to his 5% target.
The next point will help increase optins a little but nothing major though every conversion increase counts…
Ask For Less And Get More
I noticed that on the sidebar Matt was asking for name and email address to sign up.
Neil Patel at Quicksprout.com found that removing just 1 field can result in a 26% increase in sign ups (Source: http://www.quicksprout.com/2013/09/09/7-simple-ab-tests-that-can-increase-conversions-by-10-or-more/)
People are busy, they are sceptical about giving too much information away to random internet websites, and many like to stay anonymous.
Some marketers argue that collecting names allows you to be more personal but many people will enter fake names anyway.
You’re more likely to say “hey buddy” than “hey friends name” when talking to a good friend anyway – and your subscribers should see you as someone they can connect with.
“Reduce the number of fields that are required to opt in. Even just having only the one field for the email address rather than requiring the name as well, can have a dramatic increase in your subscribers number”
– Aaron Aguis (LouderOnline.com.au)
There are other ways to be personal without using names which if used too often can make your sound like some creepy car salesman trying to be overly personal anyway.
And the last time I received an email from Matt he opened with “hey guys” so what’s the point in collecting names if you’re not going to use them anyway Matt?
It’s not a major point as you only seem to be using it on your sidebar but every little conversion boost helps you get towards your 5% target.
The next point however is much more important….
Make Your Optin Boxes Ugly & Unmissable
If you want people to sign up they have to be able to see your optin boxes.
It’s easy to miss Matt’s sidebar opt in as it blends in with the rest of the side bar.
Matthew Woodward Edit: This currently converts at 1.9% based on 451,733 views and 8,637 subscribers.
Make your optin boxes stand out so people cannot miss them.
I use ugly green and orange optin boxes that you’d have to be blind to miss.
This forces people to pay attention to them and increases your chance of collecting an email.
Sure they look ugly, but is your goal to win design awards or grow your list?
If you answered anything other than grow your list you’ve got your priorities all wrong.
Since making my side in boxes ugly and unmissable I’ve saw side bar opt ins increase from just 1.6% to 2.3%
Matt himself found that by changing the colour of a button CTR improved by 20% (Source: https://www.matthewwoodward.co.uk/conversion/how-to-improve-ctr/)
So don’t think that simple changes to the colour of your opt in box won’t make much difference.
Not only can it make them stand out more but certain colours DO perform better than others and can increase your conversion rate.
Try it Matt, I think you could easily see a similar increase in conversion rate as I did by making that sidebar stand out.
But just to throw a spanner in the works here, James Shramko found that by making his optin box blend in with his website conversions increased by 55% (Source: http://blog.leadpages.net/color-split-test-landing-page/)
It’s a reminder that you should really test everything for yourself to be sure – something I know you will definitely do Matt. ;)
This will give your conversion rate a nice boost but nothing compared to the next point…
Engage Your Perfect Subscribers With In Content Opt Ins
Who better to get on your list than people who are really engaged with your content?
These are the perfect subscribers.
But even these people can get distracted and might not make it to the end of the post where the standard ‘below content’ opt in is to be found or see the side bar form.
Yet I hardly see anyone, other than myself, doing this and they work really well for me.
Matthew Woodward Edit: I have in content opt ins on a lot of posts, you can look the about page for the most extreme example. On the about page they convert at 5.9% but only 1.4% in normal posts. Here is a ‘live’ example-
Want more great tutorials like this? Just enter your email and click “Sign Me Up!”
When I first started using these I wanted to keep them simple and unobtrusive so as not to ‘annoy’ my audience.
These converted at just 0.5% as you can see below…
Then I decided to make them ‘pop out’ a little and see what the result would be.
This is what they look like now, big, ugly, unmissable green things like the one below that take up half the page and are plastered in the middle of the content ….
I have different ones for different post topics ranging from niche ideas to blogging to affiliate marketing.
The highest converting one converts at a cool 29.06%
And no major effect in bounce rate has been noted since these were added.
Below is time spent on page and bounce rate back in February before these optin boxes were added, 00:02:38 is the average time on page and 64.14% is the average bounce rate…
And here’s my stats for last month below. Time on page has actually slightly improves and although bounce rate has gone up it’s not by a significant amount – the emails collected more than make up for it.
This goes back to the previous point – beautiful is not always better.
Bigger and uglier can cause higher conversion rates so don’t be afraid to make your site look ugly, after all collecting emails is what matters not design.
Matt will know that as an affiliate marketer it’s not always the good looking sites that convert the best.
How Matt Could Implement This…
There’s a few different ways you could implement this Matt.
You could create a few different incentives / optin boxes for the main topics on your site – SEO, affiliate marketing, traffic or whatever.
And use them on any relevant posts.
You don’t necessarily need to create brand new content but instead bundle some content together from your blog into a ‘package’
For example I took all my blogging posts and turned them into PDFs and gave it away as a ‘bloggers toolbox’ and the same for the affiliate marketing posts too.
“Give users access to extra content (ebook, PDFs, images etc) in return for their email”
– Matthew Barby (FindMyBlogWay.com)
I re-used my 1791 niches list and bundles that together with some PDFs of other posts and guides and made that a “niche marketers toolbox”.
Or you could simply offer your PDF version of the post that you give away using SocialLocker.
These could really help push you to (and probably above) your 5% target.
Or even better……use the hot new optin methods that’s getting some bloggers up to a 785% increase in opt ins that I’m about to talk about below….
The Hot New Opt In Method That’s Responsible For Up To 785% Increase In Conversions
You might have noticed this recently.
Instead of bloggers offering generic opt ins across the whole blog. Many are now offering post specific ‘content upgrades’ that compliment the post you are reading.
I first noticed this way back March in this post (Source: http://nichehacks.com/increase-email-list/) when I talked about how Vero were using custom post giveaways and had increased sign ups by 150% in just 4 weeks.
Now everyone is doing it including Brian Dean who’s seen up to a 785% increase in conversions since utilizing content upgrades (http://backlinko.com/increase-conversions) such as checklists and addition tips.
The idea behind it is simple – offer your user something extra in exchange for their email address.
The content upgrade doesn’t need to anything lengthy or special it can take the form of a checklist, PDF copy of the post, cheat sheet, or additional information, and ideally should not take too long to create.
“I decided to see if giving away a post-specific resource would increase conversions on my blog post: Google’s 200 Ranking Factors: The Complete List. The result? A 785% increase in conversions (compared to the previous month)” – Brian Dean, Backlinko.com
It makes so much sense.
Someone who’s reading a post about 34 Ways To Increase Your Blogs Email Address is more likely to enter their email to receive an extra 10 ways or a printable checklist related to the post than they are to get a generic offer like 1781 niches.
Matthew already does this in a sense. He offers PDF copies if you unlock them via his SocialLocker but instead he gets social shares rather then emails.
Which would you rather?
Again if the answer was anything other than ’emails’ your priorities are wrong.
There are multiple ways to add content upgrade to single posts – through entry pop ups, exit pop ups, and in content pop ups.
And exit pop ups are really working well right now.
Gives your users 3 chances to get the content upgrade and makes it unlikely they’ll miss it – this will skyrocket anyone’s conversion rate.
“My number one tip, although you may not like it is exit popup. On exit ask for their email… it is really effective and that is how most of the popular bloggers are building their list these days” – Neil Patel
How To Find Your Most Trafficked Pages
You can find your high traffic pages using Google Analytics.
Google Analytics > Site Content > All Pages
For now I’ve focused on adding content upgrades to my highest trafficked pages to test the results – and the results have been fantastic!
One of the most popular ‘content upgrades’ so far has been this simple checklist (Source: http://nichehacks.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/31-Ways-To-Promote-A-Blog-Post-Check-List-PDF.pdf)
If you’re wondering how I made that checklist?
I typed it up in word then paid an illustrator on Fiverr $25 to turn it into something nice looking with my logo and site colours, simple!
I was able to use this as a content upgrade on several different about blogging where it converts at anywhere from 2.29% up to 50%.
So far I haven’t spent much time on my content upgrades.
I’ve turned list posts into printable checklists or excel sheets.
I’ve offered PDF versions of posts.
And bonus ‘case studies’ that were nothing more than a collection of links to other resources on the topic in a PDF file.
All of this was content that was either already on the blog or could easily be made or outsourced.
If you add this even to your top 10 pages you’ll see a huge boost in sign up. Add it to ALL your content and your sign ups will soar through the roof.
5% target? You’ll probably double it!
How Matt Could Implement This…
Matt even if you just switched to offering the PDF version of your posts in exchange for an email instead of a social share you could smash your 5% opt in rate out the park I’m sure.
But go custom content upgrades and you could probably double it.
Some examples of what you could offer….
Post: How To Build And Rank A Spam Site (https://www.matthewwoodward.co.uk/tutorials/build-rank-spam-site-beat-google-updates) –
Content Upgrade: A printable checklist your audience could use to make sure they are doing everything needed to rank.
Post: How I Built A Top 100 Blog In 12 Months (https://www.matthewwoodward.co.uk/blogging/how-to-start-blog-and-make-money/)
Content Upgrade: A simple PDF version people could print off and refer to or some additional blogging tips.
Post: Getting Started With Email Marketing (https://www.matthewwoodward.co.uk/blogging/email/email-marketing-part-3/)
Content Upgrade: 25 Tips To Increase Email Open Rates
Post: How To Create And Launch A Highly Profitable Product (https://www.matthewwoodward.co.uk/work/ideas/create-a-product/)
Content Upgrade: A printable checklist for product launches.
None of these are difficult to create and wouldn’t take much additional time yet they are very valuable to your readers who would hand over their email address in exchange for them.
Especially ahead of a generic offer like “Want more traffic, rankings and money?” for example or a one size fits all lead magnet like a free ebook on a subject not related to the post.
I’m eager to see your results with this one Matt.
Matthew Woodward Edit: I offer content upgrades on some posts via a social locker, specifically 3 parts of my tiered link building series. Social share conversion rate is 9.58% for part 2, 5.13% for part 3 & 7.23% for part 5.
The next method is one which many bloggers have found crazy results with.
Mines haven’t been quite so incredible but good none the less…
Add A Headline Feature Box For A 51.7% Opt In Increase
You’ll have seen headline boxes on popular sites like SocialTriggers.com
And John Morrows BoostBlogTraffic.com
They are the first thing your visitors see after landing on your site.
And if you give your visitors a benefit driven reason to enter their email you can instantly add a new subscriber to your list.
DIY Themes saw a 51.7% increase in opt ins when they added the headline box. (Source: http://diythemes.com/thesis/feature-box-conversions/)
And Tung Tran of CloudLiving.com found his converted at 7%.
“Use the feature box by Derek Halpern…it converts at 7% on my blog” – Tung Tran, CloudLiving.com
So this is worth doing.
How To Add A Headline Box…
This box comes as part of any theme from DIYThemes or the Generate Genesis Theme but most other themes do not have it as standard.
However even with DIYThemes and Genesis Generate they only display on the home page and not everyone lands on the home page.
Luckily there is a plugin called Plugmatter which easily allows you to add your own headline box to any theme
And it displays on ALL pages if you want it to. You can even choose to have different boxes for different pages – great for a content upgrade style opt in.
It can also be split tested allowing you to find which version converts best.
And not only that but other cool features like only showing after a certain number of visits, disappearing after a certain number of visits if your audience don’t opt in and even changing to a new box.
I’m only just scratching the surface with this plugin so far.
It’s a simple 1 click install then adding a line of code to your sites header (their instructions are super easy to follow)
My Results With Headline Boxes…
And so I added it to my blog. Check out my feature box on NicheHacks…
Yet another benefit driven, instant gratification, problem solving reason for my visitors to enter their email.
And they do.
It’s been on the site for around 1 month now and collected a total of 565 additional visitors.
So far the best converting box converts at 1.14%.
Not quite the 7% conversion rate Tung Tang gets but I won’t say no to an additional 565 subscribers a month and neither should you.
With more work I can probably double the opt in rate at least.
Get a headline box on your blog now if you haven’t already.
How Matt Could Implement This…
I believe if Matt enables it on his site he can easily match my 1.14% opt in rate or exceed it by offering an irresistible lead magnet solving one of your major problems.
Similar to what I talked about earlier in the post, it could be his How To Build A Top 100 Blog guide or an ‘SEO Hack’ for higher rankings and traffic.
Something you can instantly consume and start putting into action within 5 minutes of entering your email.
So what do you say Matt, will you give it a try?
If not you definitely have to give the next method a shot…
Two Step Optin Technology Can Increase Sign Ups By 30-40%
John Chow reported how bloggers using ‘Lead Boxes’ by LeadPages are seeing 30-40% optin increases on their blog (Source: http://www.johnchow.com/how-to-use-leadboxes-to-boost-your-conversions/)
So what exactly is 2 step optin technology?
Lead Boxes is an example of ‘two step optin technology’ in that the opt in box is hidden until your visitor clicks on a piece of text, image or a button and then it pops up right there on the page asking for their email.
You’ll no doubt have encountered it yourself already.
And why does this work so well?
You might be wondering why this makes any difference from the standard opt in?
It’s a psychological thing.
In most cases people don’t really want to put their email in so when the opt in box is right there up front they often choose to ignore it.
When it’s hidden until a click is made there’s a higher chance of them then opting in.
They’ve already made the small effort to click it so from there on it’s easy enough to enter their email.
You might be surprised it works so effectively but it does work.
“On average, LeadPages users are boosting their conversion by 30% to 40% with LeadBoxes”
– John Chow, JohnChow.com
A cheaper alternative to Lead Boxes
Now here’s the kicker, Leadpages with the Lead Boxes option costs $67 per month which might be out of your budget.
You get a lot more features than just the Lead Boxes tool but it’s still a considerable monthly fee if you’re new to list building or your list isn’t making much money yet.
The good news is there’s a much cheaper alternative, which I myself use (I don’t have any use for the other LeadPages features), called OptinLinks.
It’s a WordPress plugin with a one off payment of just $47 and it works exactly the same as the Lead Boxes feature.
So there’s no excuse for not implementing this on your blog.
My Results From Using Two Step Technology
You can see this plugin in action on every single one of my posts – like this one for example (source: http://nichehacks.com/1109-profitable-niche-markets/ )
At the top of each post usually after the first paragraph I add a little yellow box offering a lead magnet with a call to action (again the 1781 niches list)
When clicked this ugly little optin box pop up…
I mean look at it. It’s terrible. I’ve literally spent no time on making it look appealing.
So you’d think this wouldn’t convert, right?
These ugly little opt in boxes are converting at up to 39.90%.
I am confident I could increase this in 2 different ways.
- Make the opt in box and the button text clearer
- Offer a custom content upgrade relevant to the post as I’m doing with the other optin boxes on some posts.
I simply haven’t got round to it yet.
Yet still I’m seeing conversions of up to 39.90%
Two step optin technology works and works fantastically.
Combined with the yellow box it’s unmissable and people just aren’t expecting to be asked to opt in when they click that link.
If I got rid of the yellow box and didn’t use 2 step technology just having a big opt in form right at the top of the page it wouldn’t be nearly as effective.
How Matt Could Use This
Matt, as far as I can see you aren’t using this at all on the blog. It’s time to.
We talked earlier about offering custom content upgrades on your most popular posts.
Well combine the custom content upgrades with the 2 step technology and watch your conversions soar.
And don’t forget the yellow box.
It’s something Brian Dean put me on to and it works like crazy (Source: http://backlinko.com/increase-conversions) for getting your visitors attention.
You already offer PDF versions of your posts so even without any additional work you could put this into action easily.
If you stepped it up a notch and offer exclusive content, checklists, additional tips or cheat sheets that 5% opt in target you set will be met in no time.
That concludes the 7 methods I’m using to skyrocket my email subscriber list that Matt is not but now you need to know how to put these into action….
Tools Needed To Add These Optin Methods To Your Blog
Now you know what’s working to skyrocket your subscriber rate you need to know what tools you can use to do it.
Sadly there’s no 1 tool that can do everything. Trust me I’ve looked.
You’ll need 4 different tools to implement every change I’ve talked about in this post.
- OptinMonster (
- OptinLinks or LeadPages
OptinSkin is for the in content boxes.
Lead Pages has far more features than OptinLinks but it’s also a significant investment at $67 per month compared to OptinLinks one off fee of $47. MW Edit: Learn how I use LeadPages in my how to advertise on Facebook tutorial.
PlugMatter is needed for the headline bar. I haven’t seen any other plugins that offer this feature.
Add all these tools to your blog and take the actions laid out in this tutorial and watch your blog turn into an email grabbing machine.
Wrapping Things Up
Collecting emails is one of the single most important thing you can do as a blogger or online marketer.
Your email list is one of the few things that can never be taken away from you no matter what happens.
Your Facebook followers can be wiped out with a Facebook ban.
Search engine traffic can be taken away from you with a simple algorithm update.
Other traffic sources can dry up.
But even if your autoresponder goes out of business you still own that email list and as long as you have a backup (always backup!) you can simply move your list to a new company.
It’s the life blood of your business and will ramp up your traffic and sales 10x faster than if you didn’t have one.
Not to mention the relationship it allows you to build with your subscribers.
There’s probably not a single successful online business that doesn’t have one and even if there is they’d be 100x more successful if they started one.
Implement each of the 7 steps outlined in the post….
- Offer instant gratification lead magnets
- Only ask for details needed – email is usually all you need
- Make your opt in forms unmissable (and even ugly)
- Use in content opt ins that your readers can’t miss
- Add content upgrades to your most popular posts
- Make use of the headline feature box
- Implement 2 step opt in technology for higher conversions
And you are guaranteed to send your conversion rate through the roof.
As we talked about earlier 2% to 4% is considered the average optin rate for blogs.
So if you aren’t hitting the 4% mark yet you could definitely benefit from doing ALL of the above.
If you’re above the 4% mark but aren’t using all of the 7 steps implement them immediately and watch your conversion rate go from average to exceptional.
I’m currently converting visitors into subscribers at 9.24% based on last months traffic up from just 2.91% back in February before I started to put these 7 steps into action.
Matt’s currently converting at 2.98% and wants to get up to 5% and I believe if he puts the steps laid out in this post into action he’ll reach that (and exceed it) very quickly.
So all there is now to do is for YOU and Matt to go out and try them on your blog and report back with the findings.
Why not leave a comment below and tell us what your blog currently converts at as well as what methods you’re using that are working well for you…
Handing Over To Matt
Hey guys Matthew here – how was that for a guest post and a half?
Stuart Walker originally sent me some advice via email and I invited him to transform it into a full blown guest post and boy has he hit it out of the park.
Over the coming weeks I’m going to follow all of his advice step by step making the changes he recommends.
Once I have collected enough data I will publish all of the results so you can see exactly what impact the advice Stuart Walker provided has had on conversion rate for the blog.
I’ll also add my own comment to each of the points and I’ll explain why I made the conscious decision not to offer a lead magnet even though I knew it would damage conversion rate.
My Current Aweber Stats
In the image below you can see my current email optin conversion stats-
Let me explain what each of those means-
- About – This is from my About page
- EndPost – The form you see at the end of posts
- InVideo – The optin form you see popup in videos sometimes
- IncomeReport* – Inline optin forms in income reports
- Inpost* – Inline optin forms in posts
- Sidebar – The optin form at the top of the sidebar
- SidebarStick – The red optin form that follows you down the page
- Site_Registration – When someone joins the forum
The only stats that might be slightly off are the IncomeReport and Inpost ones as there are some posts where I forgot to place the tracking pixel, but they are on the majority which still gives a huge dataset.
The other stats we can look at come from OptinMonster which powers the popup, footer bar and slide in corner area which I know looks ugly – but that was the point.
I’m currently running split tests across each of those areas but will be revising my entire strategy based on the advice of Stuart Walker.
I’m very excited to see how this turns out and it has been on my to do list for a while now. I have to thank Stuart Walker (visit his blog) for giving me the kick and also thank Syed Balkhi from WPBeginner.com for offering some sage advice at Affiliate Summit in August.
If you look at the email marketing strategy I use you will see I have a powerful email autoresponder funnel setup, so even if I take the optin conversion rate from 2.98% to just 4% – the impact of that would be huge.
I’m guessing I will be buying Stuart Walker more than a few steak dinners in the near future.
Here goes nothing =D
Stuart Walker blogs at NicheHacks.com where he regularly reveals untapped affiliate niches and insider niche ‘hacks’. If you liked this post you’ll love 31 ways to promote blog posts and 34 ways to increase your blogs email subscribers.