Pop-ups are quite possibly the most annoying marketing trick in digital media today. They sound good in theory, but your users hate them, and they have a huge negative impact on your brand. Here are 5 reasons you should stop using them on your blog today, and a classy alternative you can use instead.
1. Your readers find them annoying.
Deep down, we all know it. So why subject your readers and potential subscribers to this? Pop-ups that appear in the middle of the screen (which most do!) are found to be the most annoying. In a recent pop-up study, 100% of users found pop-ups of all kind to be irritating. So what now, you ask? Keep reading for a better alternative.
2. They’re being ignored.
You’re spending all your time and energy learning the technology (or paying money for someone else) to set them up on your blog and not even half your audience is seeing them. Research shows that 50% of users close pop-ups before they even load, and 35% of users ignore them altogether. Which leads us to the next point…
3. You’re losing readers.
Readers coming to your website are looking to get the particular information they searched for. If they’re reading your article and suddenly your pop-up blocks the window, they’re likely to leave and go elsewhere for the information. Are you really willing to risk the relationship with your audience for a temporary spike in opt-ins?
4. It ruins your sites functionality.
The most important aspect of a great site is how easy it is to find what you want. 76% of users say easily being able to find what they want is the most important design factor of a website. Since unsolicited pop-ups make it harder to find the desired information, they are detrimental to your sites functionality. This is especially true on mobile, since pop-ups aren’t designed for use on small screens. And more recently, Google has started to punish sites who use mobile pop-ups.
5. There’s another (better!) way to get readers to subscribe.
Instead of interrupting your readers by asking them to subscribe to your newsletter, embed your call to action at the very top or bottom of your website. There’s no chance an engaged reader will miss it, and if they truly find your information valuable, they’ll sign up. If the pop-up information isn’t worth being on your homepage to begin with, then you shouldn’t be advertising it at all. You can also add your opt-in to the end of blog posts, in your email signature, on it’s own page, and in your RSS feed. Below is an example of how HubSpot places their opt-in at the end of each of their related blog posts.
Do you use pop-ups on your blog? Why or why not?
Dr. Jon Dodd and Robert Stevens. Bunnyfoot Insight: The Efficacy of Pop-ups and the Resulting Effect on Brands. 2003.
John Davier. Google to Punish Pop-ups on Mobile. 2016.
Emma Siemasko. Go Pop-up-less: Why You Don’t Need Pop-ups On Your Website. Grasshopper.com. 2014.
Lisa M. Butler. 7 Spots for Your Opt-ins (instead of pop-ups!). Elembee.com. Date N/A.