Results for:

The Power of Allowing Users to Opt-In

WhichTestWon's Analysis: (Click back to see versions A & B)

– Case Study –

Modell’s Sporting Goods, America’s oldest retailer of sporting goods, athletic footwear, active apparel and fan gear, was looking for news ways to increase their mobile email submission rates. Having run an entrance email capture experience, Modell’s teamed up with behavioral marketing partner BounceX to identify additional email capture opportunities for those users who did not submit on entrance to the website.

The test ran for 1 month, splitting traffic 80/20, where the majority of traffic saw the test variation and the control group received 20% of the total traffic, at 99% confidence.

Creating an additional, persistent opt-in opportunity for users who don’t submit to the entrance email capture experience would increase email submissions for users who change their mind and want to opt-in later in their journey.

Winner: Version A

  • 24.16% Conversion Rate Lift
  • 18,000+ additional emails captured


You’re standing in a bar with your friends. A guy walks up and introduces himself. He seems nice enough. But before you have the opportunity to actually get to know him, he asks for your number.

Hmm. . . now he just seems a little creepy. It’s too much too soon, and even though you’re interested enough to get to know him better, you’re not quite ready to exchange personal info just yet.

Consumers have similar experiences with brands every day. Just think about the number of times you’ve navigated over to a new brand, and you’re immediately asked for your email address. Even if they are offering you a discount — you just need a minute to familiarize yourself first.

That said, for many brands, that entrance email capture experience often drives high submission rates. But what about the close rates? Or, more importantly, what about the people who don’t submit initially, but are interested once they’ve had the opportunity to look around?

Modell’s tackled these questions with their proof-of-concept test, determining the consequence of allowing users to change their mind and providing them with the real-estate to opt in at a later point in their journey.

In fact, the test results were so strongly in favor of adding that additional real estate for users to opt in, particularly with regards to the conversion rate lift, they begged the question of why this might be the case. Is it simply the matter of users changing their mind after spending more time onsite? Or, is there more to it than that?

Let’s take another look at the experience users receive on their mobile device:

By creating additional, persistent real-estate for users to choose to provide their email address, Modell’s suddenly targeted the most high-intent segment of their traffic.

How’s that? Think back to my original example. The guy walked up to the girl and asked for her number — she denied him, not because she was uninterested but because she wasn’t ready. So, imagine that the guy, picking up on her queues, backs off a bit, switches to a conversation through which she’s able to get to know him better and even come to like him. If all goes well, it wouldn’t be surprising if she even offered her number by the end of the conversation.

Likewise, by providing users the option to actively opt-in at any point throughout the journey, Modell’s gave users the opportunity to get to know them, find the products they like, make the decision to purchase, and then opt to submit their email address — after all, that’s when the 10% off discount makes the most sense.

The lesson from this week’s test? Just because users don’t submit right away doesn’t mean they’re uninterested in what you’re offering. Try giving them the opportunity to make the decision on their own terms, when they’re ready, and you might just see some seriously impactful results.

Actionable Takeaways:

Don’t give up – Just because your traffic isn’t ready to submit or convert right away doesn’t mean they’re not into you. Give them the chance to get to know your brand, and keep the dialogue open.

Make it easy – Particularly on mobile, where real-estate is lacking, make sure users know where and how to opt-in when they’re ready. Don’t forget the fact that while mobile traffic continue to increase, mobile conversion rates remain low. Add ‘em to your email list, to ensure you can bring ‘em back to convert on desktop.

Take note of the news – In a world where Google is discouraging brands from using entrance interstitials in an effort to improve user experience, keep on the lookout for new ways to capture the attention and email address of your valuable traffic.

Why do you think the additional email capture experience drove such a lift in conversion rate?

Let us know by tweeting @BEHAVEdotorg.

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Winning Version


Reader Guesses:

Which Test Won?

  • Version A
  • Version B
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