Case Study: 4 Steps to increase email list sign ups by 671%

Building a subscribers list for your email marketing campaigns are one of the greater goals of this industry, much due to it’s amazing engagement and productivity rates. After all, these are people that have already found your content valuable enough to hand you their email address in hope for more.

But converting stone cold traffic into engaged subscribers are no joke at all. So today I will show you the exact techniques we used to Increase email list sign ups by 671%.


Better still, I will show you how we did this despite having:

 A very limited budget

 A mere handful of followers

– No experience what so ever

With an average of about 150 daily visitors, these 3 steps helped us increase email list sign ups by 671%, and more than tripled affiliate conversions from our email marketing campaign.

Here’s the exact 4 step process we followed to boost email signups by 671%:


Step 1: Create Your Most Epic Content… And Give it Away

Until then I had been mainly focusing on producing great content for publishing on the blog, to get a base of good content out there, encourage visitors to stay longer on the site, benefit as much as possible from SEO etc. etc.

My optins was just present… with no real appeal or purpose at all.

But great content alone will only get you so far, and as my time were limited, I put the blog on hold for a sec and spent all my time and effort on creating my best and most awesome content ever!

Then I gave it away. To everyone. For nothing but a teeny tiny email address…

You probably think I’m crazy now. I’ve invested lots and lots of precious time and effort on creating this literary masterpiece, and suddenly I’m giving it away basically for free..? You see, here’s the thing:


Not only can you reach out to a large audience with important updates, new content, special offers etc. whenever you want, but the people you are reaching out to have already shown interest in what you have provided them before, leaving them way more likely to be interested in what you have to offer in the future.

And all it takes is that teeny tiny email address…

So you believe people are more likely to share their email address with you if they believe they will get something truly amazing in return, basically for free?

Of course they are, cause who doesn’t digg free stuff right?


But What Sort of Epic Content Should I Make?

Your epic content can be basically anything that your readers and target audience will find enticing.

Whether it’s an ebook, a daily course, infographic, webinar, exclusive tools/resources etc. just make sure that your special offer are truly valuable to your audience, and that it isn’t just good enough to lure people into subscribing in the first place, it must also be good enough to keep them subscribed and hunger for more.

So I smacked together my best tips and tricks, some facts to back it up, and a few personal insights, and made my most comprehensive guide ever on how anyone can start an online business and make a living of it.

Then I uploaded the guide to my Aweber autoresponder:

And promoted it in my optins.

Not only does this add some enticement into signing up for your list, but these 8 automatic emails that I’m sending out have until this date generated more than 70% of my overall affiliate conversions.

In fact, this 5000 word course alone have been more than 300% as profitable as all my blog content (30+ articles) combined!

It seems all the time and effort that went into writing this amazing course, that I’m giving away for nothing but a teeny tiny email address, weren’t a waste after all..?

So now I had the engagement part sorted, but yet, I wasn’t impressed by the amount of subscribers that actually signed up for my list in the first place, so I moved on to step 2.


Step 2: Make Your Optins Sparkle!

As I said, at this point my optins were just present, with no appeal what so ever.

So I thought to myself “Perhaps it would attract more subscribers if my optins didn’t look like they were designed by a color-blind 90 year old”. So I picked up a pen and did some serious brainstorming.

(paper curling and pencils cracking.)

You see, no matter how good your content are and how awesome your offer might be, a bad design has the power to ruin it completely. You want to make your optins sparkle, to entice readers into signing up because they can’t resist the power of your delicious optin form.

When designing my optins I had 3 big criterias:

  1. It must be simple
  2. It must be convincing
  3. It must be sexy!

So I did some brainstorming and mocked up some drafts:.


Which with my insane ‘paint’ skills evolved into this (left) and eventually this (right):

. .

(Note: Due to my complete incompetence in coding, I hired a guy called Robin Saha to set it up for me. He did a really good job and I still use him when I need something or when I mess up stuff and need a quick fix-up.)

As long as your message is clear and concise, design is really just all about personal preferance.

After redesigning my optins, I took things a bit further and proceeded on to step 3…


Step 3: Add More Optins

You want to make sure that wherever your readers are at your site, the road to signing up for your list are never far away. But you don’t want to be so pushy that it annoys them and works against it’s purpose.

I started by adding optins to the most profiled places on my site:

#1 Homepage

Your homepage are usually the first place people visit and should easily tell them who you are, what you do, and where to go for more, so it’s quite obvious that your homepage needs an optin form.

I’ve seen many sites brag about their homepage optin having the best conversion rate of them all, but I’ve currently replaced mine with something truly awesome (coming back to that).


#2 Top of Sidebar

The top of the sidebar are one of the most profiled places on any website, and the perfect place to add a beautiful optin. If you don’t have an optin at the top of your sidebar, you’re losing out on valuable subscribers! And yes, even placing it slightly down the sidebar will reduce it’s effect.


#3 ‘About’ Page

If you check out your Google Analytics stats, you will most likely find that your ‘about’ page are one of your most popular pages. That’s cause people wants to know more about the guy behind the awesomeness they’ve read.

This is a great place to harvest valuable subscribers, so throw in an optin form (or 3) and see what happens. I bet you won’t be disappointed.


#4 After Posts

Think about it for a second. When someone happen to come across your content and reads the entire thing, clearly they love your work, right?

So right before the reader starts thinking “hmm, what other website should I visit next?”, hand them an offer to sign up for more awesome stuff right after the post ends. If the reader do in fact love your work, this is the place it will feel most natural for them to sign up for more.


#5 Footer

Same thing here. If the reader makes it to the bottom of your site, it’s clear that they like what they’re reading and engage with your content.

The bottom of your site is basically a dead-end, so redirect your readers before they vanish and let them know where to go for more valuable stuff.


Step 4: Install SumoMe

While on the topic of adding optins to your site, this plugin is definitely worth a tribute.

SumoMe is simply an app service with free tools to grow your email list and website engagement. This includes tools like pop-ups, share buttons, content analytics etc. but for now I’ll focus on the ones affecting email signups.

Pop-up Form

Oh yes the dreaded pop-up optin. Although infamous for being insanely annoying, you must never underestimate the pop-up optin. It’s in fact a GREAT way to grab emails, especially with the exit-intent function.

The exit-intent function makes the form pop up whenever a visitor is about to leave your site. It converts fantastically, and as far as I know, SumoMe is the only plugin that offer this feature for free.

The free SumoMe pop-up is clean, simple, effective and customizable, and if that ain’t enough for you, there’s also a super-customizable pro version available that’s way cheaper than any competitor’s.


Header Toolbar

The header toolbar is a small box that follows the top of your screen as you scroll around a site.

As it follows your screen, it will be displayed constantly making easier to catch potential subscribers right at the second they stop to think “Hey, this content is amazing, where do I sign up for more?”.


Slide in Pop-up

The slide in pop-up is my big favourite. As the name applies, it simply slides into the screen when the reader passes a certain percentage down your site. It’s simple and discreet, and as it pops up at a point where the reader is already engaged in your content, it converts nicely.


Welcome Mat

Remember I said I replaced my homepage optin with true awesomeness? This is what I was talking about!

The SumoMe Welcome Mat app displays a full-screen call to action whenever someone land on your site. It might not be the most discreet optin form, but it’s super effective and converts like crazy (13% last week)!

It truly has the power to turn any page into your highest converting one.

And as I said before, to increase email list sign ups aren’t even the only thing SumoMe is good for. The app offers a variety of great tools to help you optimize your website, boost social media engagement, increase traffic and get a better understanding of how visitors behave on your site.

For more information about SumoMe’s tools, head over to


Following these exact steps we managed to boost our email signups by 671%!

Try it yourself, play around with different forms and settings to see what works best for you, and of course feel free to leave a comment below and let us know how and what is working for you.

If you haven’t yet started focusing on email marketing, you definitely have to check out my post: A Beginner’s guide to email marketing: 7 Steps to jump start your campaigns