5 popup mistakes not to make on your ecommerce site

Jonathan Roque

Jonathan Roque

Popups get a bad rep for being the absolute worst interrupters when you’re on a website. Flashy, unable to exit out easily, show up before you can even finish reading and can be deceptive with their call to action button. Simply put, there are tons of mistakes we have seen when it comes to popups.

Despite the negative, we believe popups can be a powerful marketing tool when used correctly and can ultimately guide users to upsell products. Shopify predicts the global ecommerce market is expected to total $4.89 trillion in 2021. Shopify merchants can certainly take a piece of that revenue, with effective tools such as popups. The most effective popup builds an audience, cross-sell products and boosts conversions.

Here are five popup mistakes (we have seen come up again and again) not to make on your ecommerce site.

Mistake #1: Not a strong enough CTA
Not having a strong enough call to action leads to gaps in the customer’s journey to checkout. A popup is wasted if it has a call to action that leads a customer nowhere, or overall does not fit into your goal of what the popup is intended for. A call to action that has no value or does not pull in readers, will have customers lose interest and overall ignore your campaign.

Call to actions are necessary throughout your website to inform your customers on next steps and actions to take. Whether it’s a “buy now” button or a “learn more” click, a strong call to action is needed on your popup to make a seamless transition between pages and accomplish the goal you intend.


Mistake #2: Not designed well for mobile
A common mistake seen in ecommerce sites are popups not designed for a mobile experience. Popups displaying too large on mobile devices are a common mistake and of course, lead to abandoned checkout carts. Another mistake that contributes to bad popups is if the ecommerce site is not hosted by platforms that have a responsive design.

Mobile commerce is part of the normal shopping experience, with three out of four shoppers saying they buy from their smartphone. Mobile commerce sales are expected to top 3.56 trillion dollars this year alone. Simply put, not designing for mobile can cost you sales.


Mistake #3: Bad timing
Nothing is more annoying than scrolling on a product page or reading a blog, when a popup interrupts your reading. Bad timing kills the experience and turns off the reader to leave your website. On the other end, a popup that shows up too often interrupts the experience while a popup that shows up too late can cause you to lose the opportunity to capture users. Timing is part art and part skill when it comes to popups.

Try A/B testing with different popup methods and different types of popups for your customers. From full-screen popups to a floating box popup - each one can be customized to your audience.  Do not neglect your website analytics to view the average time a customer is on each page you add a popup and be sure to check in on your bounce rate. The bounce rate will also be a good indicator of where to optimize your popup content.


Mistake #4: Too many input fields
Time is valuable for everyone, whether it’s someone browsing your ecommerce store or someone intending to purchase from you. Having too many input fields and requesting too much information can turn off customers as well to quickly leave your website or not follow through with your popup campaign.

Like with timing, find the right balance in asking the right information based on each page and where your customer is at. Make your popups simple, with one message and one purpose to avoid website exits and to not overwhelm your customer.


Mistake #5: Irrelevant popups
Irrelevant popups are counterproductive to your other marketing strategies such as SEO and social media to get new visitors to your website. Popups are all about having the right message displayed to the right audience at the right time. You find this through A/B testing, looking at your website analytics, and overall testing messages through different campaigns.

You cant communicate the same message to different people. Early-stage visitors will receive something different from more advanced-stage visitors. Display your popup content on relevant pages. For example, you will push out messages for users who already have items in their cart differently than if users are reading a blog or have reached the bottom of your website. All the messages will be different.

These five mistakes are easily fixable and can be one less road block in reaching new customers. While popups can be the worst interrupters when you’re on a website, popups can also be a powerful marketing tool when used correctly.

To learn more about how to make popups the correct way and explore more ideas on certain campaigns, visit us at Easypop and try the app free for 7 days.