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7 Popup Strategies to Boost Sales on Your E-commerce Site

Hey there! Are you looking to increase sales on your e-commerce site?

Popups can be a powerful tool to turn website visitors into paying customers. But with so many types of popups out there, it can be tricky to know which ones to use and how to use them effectively.


In this post, we'll take a look at 7 proven popup strategies that can help boost conversions and sales for your online store. I'll explain how each type of popup works along with tips and real-world examples to help you implement them on your site.


Let's dive in!



1. Exit-Intent Popups

Exit-intent popups are one of the most popular types of popups for e-commerce sites. As the name suggests, these popups appear when a visitor is about to leave your site.


They help capture potential customers who may have been interested in buying but were going to abandon your site for whatever reason.


For example, let's say someone searched for a blue backpack on Google. They landed on your backpack product page but didn't end up adding it to their cart before moving to navigate away from your site. An exit popup can give you one last chance to offer them a discount or highlight benefits to complete the purchase.


Some best practices for exit-intent popups include:

  • Offering a time-limited discount code or shipping deal to create urgency. For example, "Take 20% off your purchase if you order in the next 15 minutes with code FLASH20".

  • Keeping the popup simple and unobtrusive. Avoid crowded designs.

  • Only showing it to visitors who have been on your site for a certain amount of time, such as 30 seconds. This prevents it from being too annoying.

Outdoor apparel company Backcountry uses exit-intent popups effectively. When you go to navigate away, a popup appears with a 15% off coupon code, free shipping offer, and urgently counting-down timer to incite action.


2. Scroll-Based Popups

Scroll-based popups appear after a visitor has scrolled down a certain length of your product or category pages.


The goal is to capture people who have shown interest by taking the time to scroll through your content, but who haven't yet made a purchase.


You can use the popup to provide a coupon or highlight a value proposition to motivate them to add to cart.


Some tips for implementing scroll-based popups successfully:

  • Set the scroll depth trigger appropriately. Too early and visitors won't have fully engaged with the page yet. Too late and they may have already left. Use tools like Microsoft clarity to analyze scroll depth of the page.

  • Make sure the popup doesn't obscure important content when it appears. Position it thoughtfully. Use tools like Prooftiles to show non interactive popups.

  • Allow a grace period before the popup appears again for repeat appearances as they continue scrolling.

Thrift bookseller ThriftBooks uses scroll-based popups to offer free shipping or discounts on qualifying purchases to incentivize bigger cart sizes.


3. Time-Delay Popups

Time-delay popups wait a set duration after a page loads before appearing, such as 10-30 seconds. This allows the visitor to briefly scan the page before being presented with an offer.


These work well to capture add-to-carts from people who might have just been researching or browsing your site initially. But after seeing the popup, they may be persuaded to make an impulse purchase.


Some recommendations for time-delay popups:

  • Test delay durations between 10-45 seconds to find the sweet spot for your audience and purchase cycle.

  • Make the popup disappear automatically after another few seconds so it doesn’t feel interrupting.

  • Showing them on landing pages after coming from a product listing can boost conversions.

Animals supply retailer Chewy uses time-delay popups on certain category pages like dog food. A popup promoting their autoship subscription service appears about 15 seconds after landing.


4. Visitor Segment Popups

These popups target different messages or offers depending on attributes of each visitor.


For instance, you can show different popups to:

  • New vs. returning visitors. Offer a discount code to hook new visitors, or loyalty points for returning ones.

  • Website referrers. Tailor the message for traffic coming from Google, social, email, etc.

Personalization makes your popups feel more relevant and less spammy. Just be careful not to get too creepy by revealing you know too much!


Outdoors retailer REI uses popups with personalized product recommendations based on browsing behavior, along with offers for REI members vs non-members.


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6. Cart Abandonment Email Popups

Did you know the average cart abandonment rate in e-commerce is almost 70%?

Losing out on all those potential customers can significantly hurt your revenue. That's where cart abandonment email popups come in handy.


These popups appear when someone tries to leave your checkout process before completing their purchase. They prompt the user to input their email address to be sent a unique discount code or reminder to complete checkout.


For example, fitness apparel company Gymshark shows a popup when you click off their checkout page. It offers 10% off if you enter your email to be notified to finish checking out later.


Some tips to increase effectiveness:

  • Offer an irresistible coupon code or discount to incentivize entering their email.

  • Make the email followup sequence as personalized as possible based on their cart contents.

  • Send the reminder email within just a few hours while intent is still fresh.

7. Site Retargeting Popups

Retargeting popups help you continuously engage visitors even after they’ve left your website by targeting them with ads on third party platforms like social media or Google.


For example, if someone browsed shirts on your site but didn’t buy, you can show them popup ads for that shirt around the web to keep your brand top of mind.


Some best practices for retargeting popups:

  • Make the popups visually match your website branding so its easily recognizable.

  • Tailor the product you’re promoting based on their browsing history. Don’t randomly blast ads.

  • Keep frequency capping in mind to avoid annoying visitors with constant repeats of the same ad.

  • Use lightbox popups so the ad stands out clearly. Avoid banner blindness.

Apparel etailer Everlane retargets site visitors with tailored product recommendations. For example, if you viewed dresses, their retargeting display ads promote specific dresses you looked at.


Get Started with Popups to Boost Conversions!

As you can see, there are lots of creative popup strategies you can try to connect with potential customers and increase sales for your e-commerce business.


The keys are providing genuine value in your offers, thoughtful targeting and personalization, and unobtrusive, non-disruptive placement.


Test out a few of these popup types, and pay close attention to your conversion data. Double down on what proves most effective for your unique audience. Just don't go overboard!


What types of popups have you tried on your e-commerce site? I'd love to hear how they worked out for you in the comments!


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