What Should Your List Building Signup Page Look Like?

by admin on January 2, 2010

 Hey Partner,

 So, what should your list building signup page look like?

There is a lot of room for creativity with this.  There is no one “magic page” that will work in every target market.  Although there are some that work like magic.  However, there are some general rules of thumb that have been tried and tested for years that seem to work very well. 

First, simple is better than complex.  Make the page simple with just a 2-field signup box for name and email address.  Stick with one major theme or message.  If you have several benefits to what you’re offering or how you can help prospects, rank them in order of value (according to what your prospects want) and either list them in a simple list or only highlight one benefit. 

Avoid long ad copy that will take readers longer than a glance or a few seconds to read.  Your only goal is to get names and emails—you can use long copy to explain everything on your sales promotions later. 

Create curiosity, but don’t satisfy it quite (yet).  To really get a solid conversion rate for signups, you want to promise a benefit to the reader, but deliberately be a bit vague.  It’s not an easy balance—too vague and readers will be confused and not sign up, too much info and readers may not read the whole page or assume they know what you’re going to give them so they don’t sign up. 

If you can get them curious though, you will get far more signups because the tradeoff is worth it.  The prospect is thinking, “Wow.  It sounds like this could be what I need, but I’m not sure.  Well, I better sign up because after all, it doesn’t cost me anything and it may not help—but if it can help me I don’t want to miss out.”  Just make sure it is something of value to them.

Give people a sense they might miss out if they don’t sign up, and that can help your signup rate quite a bit.  Be careful to be tasteful, though—if you come across as threatening you will turn people off.

Keep it clean.  Keep it simple. Layout and visual appeal to the eye are important in signup pages.  If your page is too cluttered it becomes distracting and fewer people will read it.  Avoid fonts that are difficult to read—Tahoma, Times New Roman, Georgia, Arial, and similar fonts work well.  Use fonts with serifs (those little hooks and lines at the tops and bottoms of letters) for any paragraph text (non-headlines).  Serifs help the eyes flow with the page and read easily. 

If possible, put the signup box high enough on the page that it is visible when the page loads.  If readers need to scroll down to sign up, that will hurt your signup rate.  That is called “keeping it above the fold”.   This is important.

More on this in the next post.

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