OptinMonster is a WordPress plugin that makes it easy to create popup forms that can increase your conversion rate. Because there are a number of opt-in plugins out there, you may be left wondering if there’s really a need for yet another to add to the list. But OptinMonster is gaining traction in a world where site visitors are regularly responding to popup opt-in windows.
OptinMonster was just released in October 2013, so it’s still relatively new. Even so, it shouldn’t be underestimated despite its relative youth. It has already seen some fixes, updates, and a number of changes in its short life that make it better now than it was when we first got our hands on it for a review. If updates continue on this same course, we can safely assume this plugin is destined for opt-in greatness.
For those who are already familiar with this plugin, two new opt-in areas have been added: sidebar and after post. Additionally, the creators are currently working on a Canvas add-on, which will allow users to create any type of Lightbox popup rather than just those that are email-based.
While the templates are still not as easy as the creators would like for them to be, work is being done to change this. Future plans include adding more skins along with the development of a mobile opt-in type. Developers can also hook into the added API, enabling them to customize to their heart’s content.
Installing the OptinMoster WordPress Plugin is simple. Review the following steps as a brief refresher course:
The Popup Myth
All of this talk of popup opt-in forms might cause you to raise your eyebrows. Browsers come with popup blockers, people install popup blockers, and popups are generally something people would like to avoid, right?
Although people tend to hate popups, the statistics regarding their effectiveness don’t lie. In fact, these opt-in forms are highly effective lead generation tools because an interesting looking popup can convince a person to drop their email address in the email field in a heartbeat. In one case study conducted by OptinMonster, the plugin increased the number of email subscribers by 600%. In the study, the website went from 70 to 80 subscribers per day to up to 470 per day.
So while people hate popups, they love them at the same time. It is this love/hate relationship that is leading to OptinMonster’s success. With the latest changes and future improvements that are in the works, this lead generation tool will become even more effective.
The above is an example of the popup window used in the Case Study Theme. The popup boxes can contain as many or as few graphics as you like, custom colors, and size variations.
Unique OptinMonster Features
There are three separate pricing plans and which pricing plan is chosen will determine the features that are included. Some of the features include:
- The creation of unlimited forms that can be used on different areas of the site.
- Analytics reporting is built-in to see which form is converting the best. This and A/B testing can work hand-in hand.
- Certain forms can be shown on specific pages in page level targeting
- There are different optin types and design options, depending on the price plan
- The “exit intent” technology that is integrated into the premium package detects when a user is going to leave your site to then launch a popup window that can convince them to stay or come back. OptinMonster maintains that 70% of people who abandon the site never come back.
When looking at setup, it is rather simple. This is where some of the new features come into play. It is actually rather surprising how easy this plugin is to set up, as the core features are included in a single plugin file. There are also some optional extras included in that file. The extras have to do with the different opt-in types available and the exit intent functionality.
Once installed, a new menu item is added to the side menu in the WordPress dashboard. This will make the plugin easily accessible.
To create a new optin form, you will simply click the “create new optin” button. From there, you will click the optin type.
Choosing “Lightbox” is where you will be able to be very creative in the creation of popups. This is an area that’s been improved so you can create an optin that’s more specific to your site’s needs. It should be noted that not all of these types are available at all of the price points. The basic package only features the lightbox option. There are additional optin types in development, such as in-content forms and sidebar widgets.
The footer bar is exactly as it sounds, as it is a bar in the footer that prompts for an email address. Background colors, a title and tagline, and fonts can be chosen for this. The same can also be chosen for the slide in, which is typically located at the bottom right of the page. The slide in can be opened and closed by the user. It isn’t a popup or auto slide since it requires activation by the user.
You will also find that the settings are labeled quite well and there are descriptions for each one. This is more or less like having a guide within setup so you don’t have to leave your screen in order to look up how to do something.
Seamless Integration with Email Marketing Programs
There are also a number of email marketing programs that the plugin seamlessly integrates with. They include MailChimp, AWeber, Infusionsoft, and iContact. There are approximately eight programs that OptinMonster works straight out of the box with.
If one of these supported email newsletter services is currently being used, all you have to do is choose your email newsletter provider from a drop down menu and then authenticate your account. The number of newsletter providers in the drop down is always subject to change, but it probably will grow over time.
Themes and Customization
There are four main themes that are used for the Lightbox optin form. There is the Balance Theme, the Cast Study Theme, the Bullseye Theme, and the Clean Slate Theme.
When you open the Design Customizer, you can customize the Title and Tagline, Bullet List, Optin Image, Optin Submit Text, and Email Field Text. Colors, fonts, and alignment can be modified in each section. You may also highlight different words by making them bold. The customizer is rather simple and makes use of the WordPress Interface, which is familiar to WordPress users, of course.
While OptinMonster says the entire setup process can be completed in a single minute, it’s best to spend more time on it to make the campaign highly effective. Supporting graphics and the appropriate text will make a considerable difference, so be sure to give it some thought.
OptinMonster is young, but its creators are listening to its users by implementing changes early in the game. Although it is strong now, it will become an even stronger optin plugin over time. With more developments on the horizon like sidebar and after post integration, developers will be given more flexibility to create Lightbox popups, footer bars, and slide ins that will generate more leads to convert.
Are you currently using the OptinMonster plugin? We’d love to hear what you think of it and its latest updates.