Email remains one of the most powerful marketing tools in our toolkit. Still, it is only effective if we have a way to collect a list of email addresses. Savvy marketers are always looking for touchpoints to capture email addresses that can generate leads, build relationships, make sales, and stay connected with existing customers. Still, the eCommerce world is littered with an endless line of businesses looking to capture these email addresses. So how can you cut through the clutter and encourage people to give you that critical piece of personal information?

A quick note: Before starting an email collection campaign, be sure to check out all the latest laws and regulations in your country and state. Also, if you use an email service, be sure to understand their policies to keep from getting your account limited or blocked.

Who Should Collect Email Addresses and When?


Some eCommerce business owners still don't make much of an effort to collect email addresses. Sometimes it is about not knowing the best way to go about it. However, other times it is because they don't have a plan to use them. So, other than confirming orders, sending invoices, and providing shipping information, you may not see a need for capturing email addresses. Well, maybe you don't right now, but you should still be collecting them for the moment you are ready.

An up-to-date email list is a valuable commodity, especially if these are addresses of people who have already shown some level of interest in your products or services. There are a lot of strategies for how you can leverage this list to grow your business. Still, you can't get started until you have a good list to work with.

Email Collection Ideas

Getting started collecting email addresses can be pretty straightforward. Savvy marketers have been at this a while and have developed quite a few different approaches. Of course, you don't need to use all of them. In fact, some will work better than others, depending on your business. Still, it is a good idea to use as many approaches as possible. Every potential customer is different, and while one process will get a quick sign-up from one person, it may take another method to get an address from someone else.

A Key to Email List Building: Make it Easy

Have you ever decided that you wanted to sign up for a newsletter or special offer only to find out that you need to provide way more information than your email address? Now, there may be situations where you want to use this touchpoint to collect as much information as possible. Just make sure you think it through. Is the reward of getting all that information worth the risk that someone may abandon the sign-up process when they see it requires more than they are willing to give? In some cases, you may be happy just getting the address. Still, maybe you would like a customer name for personalization. Whatever you do, just make it as easy as possible.

Create FOMO – Collect Email List

FOMO (fear of missing out) is a powerful marketing tool that you can leverage for email list building. Think about your customers and what things they might really want to know about before it's too late. For example, maybe email recipients are the first to hear about special sales or promotions. If you sell especially in-demand items, you could reward recipients with announcements about the latest product drops. Just be sure to avoid the bait and switch. Make certain you are really keeping your recipients from missing out.

FOMO popup

Contests for Email Capture

If you ask for something, most people want something in return. Even if they don't assign much value to their email address, not everyone will give you something for nothing. Figure out what product, service, or discount you are willing to give away and let people register for a chance to win in exchange for an email address. You can either run this as a limited campaign in a push to get more addresses or design it with regular drawings for prizes.

email list building popup

Offer a Discount

One of the easiest ways to collect email addresses is to offer a discount, which works exceptionally well with new customers. By collecting their email before they check out, you will still have a way to reach out to them if they don't finish their purchase. This method is a great place to use a Personizely widget. You can target the widget to show up for new visitors and put a countdown timer on it to encourage them to do it right away.

discount popup

Collect Email Addresses for Free Shipping

Discounts are great, but who doesn't love free shipping? A carefully worded Personizely widget at just the right time can be an offer too good to pass up. You can even put a time limit on how soon they can use the offer to be sure they complete their purchase that day.

Sometimes You Just Need to Ask

There are many strategies to convince site visitors to sign up for your email newsletter. Still, sometimes you just need to ask. In some cases, the best route is the simplest and sometimes that just comes down to the right timing. Personizely widgets can handle multiple steps and triggers. That means you can deliver that invitation to subscribe at a moment that might be most receptive. When you do, make it easy to say, “yes.” Many eCommerce sites have found great success by replacing the “subscribe” button with a big “Yes! Sign me up!” button.

Create Useful Content

There are lots of ways to make it worthwhile for people to hand over their email addresses. One way is to offer content that they would find useful. Depending on what your eCommerce store offers, you may be able to create unique content that your customers will want. For example, if you sell bicycles, you might provide an in-depth buyer's guide sent via email.


The Best Email Collection Comes at the Right Moment

With Personizely, you have control over which visitors see what content and at what moment. For email collection, timing is everything. Going back to our previous example, you might consider an exit-intent widget. That way, if someone is shopping on your site but is about to move on, you can give them the chance to continue the relationship by receiving your guide. Now you have a way to stay in contact with a customer that might have clicked away forever. Even better, by sending them content they can use, you can establish your site as an authority on the topic.

Use the Right Words and Design

It is easy to get caught up in the "what, when, and how" of your email collecting process and forget about the small details that make all the difference. First of all, your copy needs to inspire people to do what you ask. "Please subscribe to our email list" is probably not going to do it. You need to give people a reason – show them the benefits!

email newsletter popup



If you are offering free shipping when they sign up, lead with that. Also, think about design. An attractive, well-laid-out form is going to get more responses than something without good design. Fortunately, with Personizely, you don't need to be a graphic designer to make things look good. The drag and drop builder helps you create attractive and functional widgets in minutes.

Leverage Social Media

Your website isn't the only place where you can collect email addresses. For example, if you are promoting your eCommerce store through social media sites like Facebook, be sure to include a sign-up link there as well. But again, you will really need to consider what you are providing in return for peoples' email addresses to get them to sign up.

Ask for Help with Email Collection

If you treat your customers well, provide valuable email content, and don't overwhelm them with too many messages, some of them will be more than willing to help you spread the word. Here is how this works. First, in the emails that you send out to your list, include a line like, "Consider sharing this with friends, colleagues, and family members who may find it useful." If you do this, also make sure that readers can easily find a link to subscribe on their own. Then, if the forwarded email gets read and the recipient likes your content, they subscribe, and you can add another address to your list.

Get Started with Your Email List Building Today

Sign up for a free no-obligation trial of Personizely today. It has all the tools you need to ask the right visitors at the right time in the right way. While you are at it, see how Personizely can help you personalize your website for your visitors and add features to drive conversions and increase sales.