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7 Website Pop-up Mistakes to Need to Stop Making…

For years, B2B marketers have used website pop-ups to drive lead generation and generate sales opportunities. Their proven marketing success is the only reason we still encourage their use – but with caution.

When used wrongly, website pop-ups can increase your website bounce rate and reduce conversions. It’s no secret that many people visiting your site will inherently not like website pop-ups.

Oftentimes, they take up the entire screen before you even have the chance to view the website content.

In some frustrating cases, it’s impossible to figure out how to close them with no cancel icon insight.
Here’s a great video from Neil Patel discussing if website pop-ups still work?

(Hint: The answer is yes, sort of).

To ensure that you don’t drive your audience away before you even get the chance to make a connection, here are 7 website pop-up mistakes you must avoid.

7 Website Pop-up Mistakes to Avoid

1. Hair-trigger website pop-ups

Timing is very important for the effectiveness of a website pop-up. If it appears immediately a user enters your website, then it becomes nothing more than a distraction

At that point, your visitor has no idea what you’re ‘selling’, or if they’ll even be interested in giving you their information.


You haven’t provided any value yet.

On the other hand, website pop-ups that appear too late might decrease conversion rates if the user bounces too quickly.

For the best results, you will need to test your website to learn how users interact with it. Determine how much time an average visitor will need to understand your content.

This can be calculated easily by studying your Google Analytics dashboard.

Some marketers believe that pop-up triggers should be set for 30 seconds. They reason that if a user spends up to 30 seconds on a website, it means they have found something they consider relevant.

This advice should be a baseline though; it might take you a while to figure the delay length that works best with your target audience.

2. Unnecessary information

Pop-ups aren’t one-size-fits-all.

Every website (using pop-ups) should have varied content for different users who are taking different actions.

For example, a user who is about to abandon their cart and exit your e-commerce store does not need a free e-book.

However, a pop-up offering them a discount or free shipping can get them to stay.

You have to communicate the right message to get the conversion success you need.

3. Lengthy content

Your pop-ups must read like a punchline.

Regardless of how well-designed a website pop-up looks, if the content is too long, no one will read it.

Your target audience has a short attention span. They’re consuming tons of content every day. You will either hold their attention within a few seconds or not at all.

If you have a pop-up to collect email addresses for your newsletter, the first line should contain the major benefit – it must answer the question “Why should I sign up for your newsletter?”

4. Asking for too much

You have to make the process so easy that interested visitors won’t even hesitate. One major mistake that B2B marketers often make with pop-ups is the insane amount of fields they require.

To be honest, at first, all you need is an email address na and, if you feel so inclined, the first name.

We all understand the benefits of having enough information such as first name, age, and so on. It allows you to send more personalized and user-customized content.

However, your website visitors don’t know that. And if this is their first interaction with you, then they probably don’t feel comfortable with giving out that information.

With a one-step process, you can remove a heavy amount of doubt and reluctance.

After a user signs up, you can then encourage them to provide additional details to be leveraged for personalized content, by funneling them to additional forms, such as persona-based email cadences using marketing automation.

If they’re genuinely interested in what you’re about, then they won’t mind taking that extra step.

5. Repeated pop-ups

Considering the amount of effort and resources invested to create high-value pop-ups, you might feel tempted to keep them in the face of your visitors.

However, doing this will only cause them to feel annoyed or distracted. Keep in mind that your website visitors have a choice. Your offer might be great, but it’s still up to them to take it. Your pop-up should appear to a visitor just once per visit (if that much).

If you have other offers, such as free eBooks or white papers, you would like to share, switch it up by using a header or slide-in banners.

6. Offering poor value

Website visitors aren’t dumb; they know that giving you their contact details allows you to send as many promotional emails and newsletters as you choose to.

If you want to encourage them to let go of that information, you must be willing to offer something high-value that they need. Before you start writing an e-book or putting together a free report, study your audience to know what they consider valuable.

Because it doesn’t matter how great you think the offer is, if they don’t think the same, they won’t convert.

Also, if you already have special offers on your website, try to create something different for your pop-ups. If they didn’t see the need while browsing through your website, chances are your pop-up won’t make a difference.

For the best results, keep your high-value offers free, or at ridiculously low prices using discounts, buy-one-get-one-free packages, and so on.

7. Poorly designed pop-ups

For your pop-up to catch the attention of your audience, it must be appealing. Not many people will put in the effort to read something that doesn’t even look good. Avoid using too much text, clunky fonts, and mismatched colors.

Your pop-up design should also blend with the design and layout of the website. It should look like another layer of your website, not a separately designed page.

Extra tip…

Pop-ups with selective optimization

It can get frustrating to have your entire webpage covered with a pop-up, and no visible ‘Cancel’, ‘Exit’, or X icon. This usually happens when a pop-up isn’t tested properly.

Before launching any pop-up, you should test-run it on all desktop and mobile devices to ensure that it is optimized for all users. When a pop-up isn’t well optimized, it may quickly skyrocket your bounce rate.

Website visitors appreciate pop-ups that support good UX and provide high value. By avoiding the mistakes shared, you can create good pop-ups to facilitate your conversion goals.