The popular consensus on popups is that they are annoying and pesky interruptions in your browsing/shopping experience. Then why do some of the most famous eCommerce websites use them? Surely, it seems counterintuitive that eCommerce websites want to barge in when users are going about their shopping and force them to look for the elusive X button. There is a very good reason why they work though and make good sense for a webstore when implemented right. In this post we look at the benefits of popups for your online store and how to get creative with popups to maximize conversions on your eCommerce website.

But first, a little background into why popups work. The goal of a popup is to display a very strong call-to-action (CTA). The CTA might be an announcement or flash sale you want to draw attention to. But one of the main uses of a popup is usually to collect email addresses. For example, one test showed that popups led to 1375% more email captures versus a conventional opt-in form. Email addresses are virtually the goldmine for eCommerce websites because email converts better than all other channels.

Types of popups
There are many different ways to implement and design popups based on the stage of user journey and visitor actions. For instance, a time-based popup will show the content after a fixed amount of time. This strategy works well if you set it to 60 seconds or 120 seconds because you only showing it to visitors who have been engaged for a while you’re your website. Content-based popups will be displayed on specified pages of your website. Scroll-based are the ones that popup when the user has scrolled a specific percentage of way down the webpage. One of the more intelligent variety is the exit intent popup that gauges the user’s intention to leave the website based on cursor movements and pops up when the visitor is about to exit.

Leveraging Popups to Increase Conversion and Sales

1) Use a welcome offer: One of the most tried, tested and successful techniques is to offer the shopper a joining discount in exchange of their email address. New visitors seldom buy on the first visit, but with the email address and phone number you have the opportunity to bring them back again with newsletters, social interactions and seasonal offers.

Aesthetics of the popup play an important role. So be sure to design a beautiful popup that gently requests them to submit their email/social profiles in exchange for some cool discounts and rewards.

2) Popups that create a sense of urgency and scarcity: Urgency and scarcity are proven eCommerce techniques to fuel conversion and boost sales. Use popups to hustle the checkout process by giving customers a sense of urgency. Design time-limited popup offers (possibly with a time ticker or other visuals) to push shoppers into taking action right away if they don’t want to lose attractive offers.

3) Upsell and cross-sell with popups: Amazon is a well-known example of how upselling and cross selling can boost your revenue. Both tactics push shoppers to buy more than they had originally intended to. Popups can help eCommerce stores to display add-ons/complementary items for the shopper, increasing the boosting sales and trigger purchases. Offer good bargains for the upsell /cross-sell products to give your customers an added incentive to ‘complete the look’ or ‘book the look’.

4) Contest and giveaways: Everybody loves a freebie and it is one of the most cost-effective ways to generate some buzz and excitement around your merchandise. From caption contests to guess the prize, there is a lot of creativity that you can exercise with contest/giveaway popups. However, please remember to make it easy for customers to enter the giveaway. Don’t confuse them and limit the steps to a maximum of 2 user actions.

5) Push notifications popup: Push notifications are one of the smartest new moves for webstores to reach more users even when they are not active on Internet. By egging the users to opt-in for receiving website alerts and notifications you are tapping into a captive user-base that is more likely to convert and shop.  How do push notifications work? As soon as new visitors arrive on your webstore, an opt-in popup box is activated. If the visitor selects “Allow”, he/she is added to your subscriber list.

To conclude:

While a popup is not something the customer always looks forward to, you can use popups to your advantage by designing them well, timing their activation and writing concise and sharp copy for your popup content. Ready to start building your email list and boost your conversion rates? Magento Connect has great extensions that help you design the kind of popups you want for your webstore. Hire Magento Developers in India to optimize your webstore and boost sales by implementing this and similar techniques. Do you have any other ideas on using the eCommerce web estate to maximize revenue? Do let us know in the comments section below.

Author's Bio: 

Kaushal Shah manages digital marketing communications for the enterprise technology services provided by Rishabh Software. She has a background in all things eCommerce, technology, Magento and she likes to blog about the recent trends and buzz in digital media. This article looks at some of the reasons and ways in which popups work for an eCommerce store.