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How to Publish a Sign up Form on Your Website

Jul 12, 2008
There are so many seemingly "small" details to setting up the perfect online presence for your business, but the problem is that all these "small" details are big enough to sink you if done improperly. One of the major points that many business people, or even advertising experts, don't but enough thought into is how to set up their sign up form on their website.

If you offer any type of a product or service, you definitely want to build a sign in (also known as an "opt in") form on your website. The only problem is deciding on the best way to do it. Many will swear by the "pop up" method, where a small box pops up asking for information whenever someone goes to your website. I'm not a big fan of this method for three reasons:

1. Pop ups are annoying no matter how they're done, so you may turn off a lot of potential customers right from the start.
2. Even if they do sign up, if the box keeps coming back every time the log in, it becomes annoying, if not down right aggravating.
3. It looks like an amateurish hard sell.

The next most common mistake is a person goes too soft on the sale, having their sign up form on another page, connected by a simple underlined link that blends right into the rest of the page. The problems with this are obvious. An interested customer might just pass by without clicking. A lot of people want something as easy as possible and won't click through to a sign up page.

The other obvious drawback is that the site of a large sign up page could turn people off even if they were interested customers. When you get so much advertising coming at you 24/7, even the ads on services and products you're interested in can become annoying, if not straight out aggravating.

So what's the best solution? Keeping in mind that the majority of people who "read" online actually scan the pages, you want your opt in form to be near the beginning and easy to see, but not so annoying or garish as to turn away potential customers. One excellent solution to getting maximum sign ups with minimal annoyance or frustration, then an early side bar is a great way to go.

By having an open opt in form on the top left of the page, you have an obvious box where anyone interested can sign in with their name and e-mail, but it's not so obnoxious to chase away any potential customers. This is a great option, and works for the majority of website users since it's easy to opt in, but not annoying like a recurring pop up. When you add a sign-up form, the best place for it is on the left, near the very top.

Remember the way customers read a web page: they scan the top from left to right to the bottom of the screen, and usually if you can't offer something by then, the web surfer moves on. By having good information early on and an easy opt in, you are far more likely to grow that all critical e-mail list and be on the way to having your business generating leads at full steam.
About the Author
We're so sure that you're going to love aweber sign-up tools, you can try it for free. The only risk is not taking action today, and letting more of your website visitors leave without registering for your email updates. Start creating loyal customers today!

Thomas Boston is principal of marketfromyouroffice.com.
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