This new type of popup forces users to interact with it before they can return to the parent window. You may use this popup to show an announcement, video, login dialog box, or an email opt-in form.
Most people searching for “wordpress popup plugin” are looking for popup opt-in forms. If that’s what you’re looking for, then you’re on the right page. For content popups, like image and video gallery popups without email opt-in forms, check out WordPress lightbox plugins.
More Popup Plugins
While the three above will probably meet the needs of most people, it won’t hurt to check out what else is out there. You may find something you like better (sorted by order of recommendation):
MBP Subscribers Magnet is at the top of this list for a reason. It’s not just a popup plugin, it offers a lot of different features to help marketers build an email list — like slideup footer bar, sidebar opt-in form widget and more. When I reviewed it for this popup section, I only focused on its popup powers.
WordPress Popup Scheduler is the only completely free popup plugin. It is downloadable from WordPress.org. There are a few major disappointments in this plugin, but it can be a great choice if you don’t mind some of its limitations.
WP Super Popup this is a great, yet obscure, plugin. It has a rich set of features, like delayed popups, slideup footer opt-in bar, live preview, and more.
OptinPop differentiates itself by offering the ability to split test popup content. It allows you to specify different popup versions to test which one converts best.
FasterIM Opt-In is built specifically for internet marketers. Because of its focused purpose, it is supposedly easy to set up. But you may find yourself having to tweak its HTML and CSS to get to work properly.
MBP Unblockable Popup is made by the same people who created the Subscribers Magnet, but this plugin only does popups. It has a free version and a paid version. The free version has an attribution link, while the paid version doesn’t. To learn about the features of this plugin, check out the full review
The Pop Over has some interesting features like showing popups to search engine visitors only or show popup to traffic from a certain referring site only. But the plugin is limited in other respects.
Digital Flow Popup is originally a popup script for standalone sites — not WordPress. But some features have been ported in the form of a WordPress plugin. Unfortunately, some stuff was broken along the way. It may still be useful for some marketers.
Simple Popup doesn’t fall under the popup definition I mentioned earlier. This plugin will only display popups associated with links. When a visitor clicks on the link, the popup will show. That’s it.
Popup Best Practices
In deciding which popup plugins are best, I have considered some popup best practices and whether the plugins help marketers follow these best practices. These are the best practices I have considered in evaluating the plugins:
Display the popup at the right time — not the first time.
Readers need some time to trust you with their contact info. Do not blast them with your popup before you’ve gained their trust. Set your popup to delay for 60 seconds. Or set it to only display at the 3rd pageview. This gives them time to review your content.
When a visitor refuses to opt-in by clicking the close button or has already opted-in, do not keep showing the popup at every pageview. Make sure your popup plugin remembers who opted-in and who doesn’t want to opt-in. Honor your readers preferences.
Set your popup location and content strategically.
Some pages on your website will be talking about products and services. These pages are very relevant to your buyer-audience. Other pages on your site will be more heart-to-heart. These help you connect with your readers at a personal level. Which one of these two pages is suitable for a popup? You know the answer. So, make sure that you only show popups where appropriate. Not all pages on your site will benefit from popups.
Don’t look cheap.
If you’re going to force your readers to stop what they’re doing and look at your popup, at least put some effort in making the popup interesting and presentable. Don’t force your readers to stare at plain rectangular box with bright red, yellow, and blue dotted borders. This might induce a seizure in some cases.