Optimising your signup forms and getting started with email automations Published November 28, 2018 Personalisation, welcome messages and sending your emails at the most opportune time for engagement has never been more important. Especially in an overcrowded and noisy marketplace, where first impressions and continued engagement is the key to success. In this blog, we’re going to explain how optimising your email signup forms can boost the growth of your lists. We’ll also look at why automations are integral to the success of your customer lifecycle strategy. And we’ll show you how easy these are to set up using our own marketing automation platform. Email Signup Forms Growing your email list and continuing to engage with your subscribers post-GDPR is a priority for most marketers, (just check out our 30 Email Marketing Statistics to Shape Your Strategy in 2018 to see why). Here are some easy ways to optimise your signup forms and increase conversion rates. Give your forms visibility One of the simplest ways to increase the conversion rate of your forms is to increase its visibility on your website. We discovered that 87% of brands put the sign up form below the fold. By adding your email signup form to the bottom of your website, you will be losing a high percentage of potential signups as your visitors will never see it. We recommend placing your form above the fold so it’s visible as soon as a visitor lands on your site. Don’t go overboard on the fields Signing up to receive your amazing emails shouldn’t be a chore. So make sure you’re keeping your signup process as quick and seamless as possible. Don’t be too eager to capture all of your subscribers details in one go. This can be achieved in your Preference Centre or throughout the customer lifecycle. The aim is to make the initial signup process as quick and seamless as possible. Limiting the number of fields on your form to three can ensure around a 25% conversion rate. Making a phone number field mandatory can increase abandon rates. If you plan to use this field, make it optional. This is always something you can collect later. After all, it’s better to be able to contact them by another medium such as email, then not at all. Colour plays a huge role It may not be something you’ve previously considered but your sign up CTA button plays a key role in capturing your potential subscribers’ attention. A lot of brands use the colour of their logo for their form button to make the subscriber feel connected to the brand, however results can vary widely. We recommend experimenting and testing variations to see the colour that influences the highest conversions for your brand. Try A/B testing colours that contrast with the rest of your website to make them stand out to see if this makes a difference. Should you use a Captcha? Captchas are little tests that sit on your signup forms that help tell humans and spam bots apart. And there’s a lot of debate around whether these improve sign up form conversions or hinder them. On one side, it can help reduce the amount of spam signups you receive. Spam signs ups can massively impact your overall email results including your deliverability. But others argue that it damages form conversion rates. Website visitors get frustrated and fed up with having to copy text from unclear images in order to complete their intended action. If this is something that you feel could be impacting your form conversions, experiment and see what happens when you remove the Captcha. You may find that the level of spam is minimal compared to the amount of new sign ups you gain. It’s all about the social proof Adding social proof to your forms is a surefire way to increase conversion rates. 77% of consumers say that word of mouth from family, friends or peers is the most persuasive way to get information about new products. This applies to new email subscribers. Check out how we use social proof on our own email signup form. Give it a go and track the conversion percentage with and without the social proof. See if there’s a noticeable difference. Sell the benefits of signing up You need to let your subscribers know what to expect and why they should sign up. In our Pure360 example we simply invite our visitors to ‘Become an email marketing expert’. This lets them know that our content is focused on helping expand their knowledge and manages their expectations. Consider the impact of the sign up form if we didn’t use this small sentence. Once they have signed up it’s important to thank them. This is also a great chance to build your relationship by introducing your brand and finding out more about them. Include a direct link to your preference centre to gain further data from your subscriber and let them choose which types of content they would like to receive. This creates a more personalised experience and will help you achieve higher engagement rates. How to add webforms from Pure360 It’s quick and easy to add a webform from PureCampaign to your website. It’s just a case of adding the form code to the position that best works for you (remember above the fold). You also have the ability to edit the form code so you can optimise your form as we’ve spoken about already. For a full rundown on how to add a form from PureCampaign to your website check out our: Signup Forms How To. The benefits of email automation So you’ve got your sign up forms optimised and your subscribers are flooding in. We already mentioned the important next stage is to welcome them. The point here is to ensure you keep an ongoing and relevant dialogue going with them throughout their customer lifecycle. This is where email automation plays a crucial part. Automated emails allows you to automatically send campaigns and keep that dialogue going with every single one of your subscribers. To do this manually, on such a large scale and so frequently, would be impossible. The other significant benefits of email automation include: Improving customer experience Increasing scale and scope of campaigns Boosting ROI on staff costs Empowering your team to improve results Increasing average order value Recovering lost revenue Increasing customer lifetime value Testing your way to increased revenue Predicting and shaping behaviour Creating space for strategic thinking For a detailed breakdown of the above benefits, read our blog: 10 Benefits of Marketing Automation. Welcome messages We’ve told you it’s important to send a welcome message to your new subscriber. And that’s because a welcome email generates high open rates – between 50-60%. And welcome emails are 50% – 86% more effective than email newsletters. Despite these benefits, only 58% of brands send welcome emails to their newly subscribed users. If you’re looking for some inspiration, check out these great examples in our blog 11 Examples of Effective Welcome Emails. PureCampaign has the ability to quickly set up your sign-up welcome automations so you can take full advantage of the ROI welcome emails generate. Here is a tutorial on how to create your sign-up automations within PureCampaign. Date based automations Datebased automations are the ideal way to optimise your customers’ lifecycle journey. We’ve seen above how email automation can add value, but trying to get started can feel overwhelming. Here are some examples on where you can get started based on your customer’s actions: They first join your mailing list (the golden welcome message) Renewal reminders Their birthday A countdown i.e. to Black Friday, Christmas, new product release Follow up after a purchase to ask for a review The end of a promotion Find out how PureCampaign, our marketing automation solution, creates date-based email automations in our set up guide. Or you can check out our video here. Takeaways Making your email sign up visible is the key to increasing your email lists. Make the sign up process simple and continue to experiment with what works best. Your email list is the lifeblood of successful marketing. So don’t just settle ‘ok’. Keep optimising and reviewing to find out what works best for your brand. Finally, email automations are often overlooked, however they deliver a great ROI. Not just because they drive subscriber engagement, but the lack of manual work increases productivity and opens new (and essential) touchpoints with your customers throughout their journey. If you want to know more about creating optimised sign up forms or email automations within PureCampaign, contact us here.