How to build email list from scratch in 2022 FREE!

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Building an email list is the best way to sell, whether physical or digital products, see how to go about it from nothing in 2022.

To attract new customers costs five times more than keeping an existing one. So, maintaining the relationship with existing customers is an essential strategy. One way to do this is to build an email list from scratch.

Knowing how to build an email list is a lasting solution that significantly increases revenue and sustained growth. Electronic mail has become one of, if not the most potent strategy/tool for yielding massive results in a business-to-consumer relationship.

Research conducted by Infusionsoft shows that word-of-mouth marketing (WOM) earns 62% vote, making it the most effective marketing tool but can’t always be controlled. Meanwhile, email marketing is the 2nd most effective tool that helps small businesses grow.

What is an Email List?

An email list is a compiled list of email addresses and other data such as name, location, and gender. You can gather this data from customers, website visitors, and more.

With a well-curated email list, you can reach out to new prospects and keep the existing customers in the loop for new products and services, discounts, or industry news. One important thing to do is ensure that you’re always on your customer’s mind, as this also provides successful marketing.

Because the internet is full of businesses that sell the same products and services, you must constantly connect to your existing customers daily or weekly, giving updates on new developments in store and a newsletter to engage them with your brand, which is very crucial.

Research from Forrester and OpenMoves shows that “nearly a third of purchases from repeat customers is initiated by email.” Also, never forget to focus on specific demographics based on past purchases.

Getting your customers’ or clients’ email is not a difficult task, and this is what list building is; the process of getting your customer’s email address or an online user that visits your website.

As I mentioned earlier, you should do it to grow your subscriber’s list or database for future transactions with both prospective and existing clients. Email list building is an essential strategy for any online marketer. According to statistics, 59% of consumers testify that marketing emails influence their purchase decisions.

It helps retain customers, and over 80% of business professionals attest to this. An engaging email list is the best asset a business can have because it’s a media you have complete control over.

The benefit of owned media is that it’s not subject to any changes in the algorithm. It shapes your brand’s approach; it has more reach than any paid media or ads and is far more cost-effective.

When building your email list, you don’t create a lead capture form today and expect thousands of subscribers all at once. It doesn’t happen like that. It seems complex to some sellers because it requires strategy (very importantly) and patience in being consistent with creating mail messages that engage and also convert.

How to Build an E-mail List from Scratch

Related article: How I Earn $1000 A Day Online – My 7 Streams of income for 2022.

What is Email List Building?

Email List Building is the process of getting visitors, customers, and other business patrons’ email addresses. You can do this through social media accounts, in-store signup sheets, websites, etc.

Importance of Email List Building

“For a dollar spent on email marketing, the average expected return is $42,” this statement is according to Litmus’ 2019 State of Email Survey.

Comparing email marketing to other channels like PPC advert (Pay per click) regarding return on investment, what you get is $2 for every $1 spent. Email marketing has the highest ROI, making it an important and the best strategy.

No matter how big your business is, prospects on your email list are vital to the success of your marketing campaigns. Easy tracking performance par like click-through rate, conversion rate, or email open rate all give vital info to the marketers on what they are doing right and where there is a need for adjustment.

For instance, by estimating the click-through rate or open-to-click, a marketer can be sure what the audience wants from the content they are giving out.

Email subjects like ‘Free shipping’ or ‘30% off’ give more comprehension regarding the type of value proposition that resounds best with your audience.

How to build an email list from scratch in 2022

1. Use Embedded Sign Up Forms

Sign-up forms are the most convenient way to get email subscribers. Position the form on pages with high traffic and visible areas like the sidebars, headers, splash pages, footers.

Embedded forms are not intrusive, i.e., it’s like a soft reminder for customers not to forget the option to sign up, and that’s it. However, you should use it with more proactive and dynamic strategies.

How to Build an E-mail List from Scratch

2. Deploy Pop-ups and Overlays

According to studies, pop-ups have a conversion rate of 3.9% on average, with the top 10% converting at around 9.8%. But, you must also be mindful of how you use the pop-ups, though the stats are mouth-watering.

Also, it would be better if you went through Google interstitial ads guidelines. If not, it’s a significant risk that attracts a penalty. With Google’s guidelines, you know how to use pop-ups correctly.

Let’s look at standard pop-ups and overlays used in e-commerce businesses that grow their email list.

  • Welcome Pop-ups
    Use this specifically for new visitors to your site. Welcome Pop-ups greet them (visitors) within the first 15 seconds of them landing on the page. Most importantly, a strong call-to-action is needed for a welcome pop-up to avoid any derangement. Best practices include giving a discount sales notification. Welcome pop-ups should be very simple to decrease the intrusion level. It always features a single field where you can enter your email address. It won’t convert when it is too complicated or have too many fields. Timing is also essential. Find a specific time to the page you’re applying the pop-up on. With Google Analytics, you can find the average time a user spends on that page to know the best time to implement a welcome pop-up.
  • Exit Intent Pop-up
    According to conversion sciences, ‘exit-intent pop-ups can save 10-15% of potentially lost visitors with a well-crafted exit intent pop-up. The intent technology monitors the user’s interaction with a website page. It can also tell when someone is about to leave the site. The assumption is that exit intent pop-up decreases the number of exits from the page by drawing the user’s attention, giving them a genuine reason to stay a bit longer on the page and submit their email address. Although it depends on their niche, discounts and offers work well, there are also other strategies aside from discounts and offers. For instance, a financial service provider could list out what they stand to gain if chosen as the user’s choice. A travel agency can display picture proof of how they have been booked for countless trips in the last 48hrs. There are many other ways to entice shoppers to stay back, aside from promos and discounts.
  • Promotional Pop-up
    This pop-up is active throughout the user or visitor’s stay on the website. It makes use of exclusive offers and discounts. Unlike the welcome pop-up that only appears when you first land on the site, or the exit intent pop-up that captures the user’s attention when leaving the site, the promotional pop-up is active all through the user’s stay on the site. In creating a highly converting promotional pop-up, relevancy is needed. How? You need to first understand what stage of the buyer’s journey your user is in currently. After that, the pop-up should match their interest and push them further. Here is an example: an online user visits your website and clicks on the men’s wear category. At this point, you know his intent already, but not at the consideration level yet. Now, display your promotional pop-up that gives a 40% discount on men’s clothing, but only for those who subscribe. Be careful not to suddenly display pop-ups like, ‘when you buy 3, you get one free…’ No. When the visitor now clicks on a subcategory, say, men’s trousers, and he is sampling different products, comparing one with another, then you can display the BOGO deals. If they push further to add items to the cart but are yet to subscribe to your email list to qualify for the 40% discount, at this point, you can display the ‘subscribe and get free shipping pop-ups.’ The essence of this example is to show how pop-ups play on people’s emotions, how willing they are to give their details in exchange for something unique, and to take advantage of a discount deal.

How to Build an E-mail List from Scratch

3. Introduce Gamification

List building involves implementing an interactive factor-like game-playing to engage them while adding a lead capture form. Examples are surveys, quizzes, spin to win (wheel of fortune), scratch cards, or pop-ups.
Gamification gives exclusive offers, from 10-50% discounts to these shoppers. It also provides freebies that they can only claim after submitting their email details. The advantage of gamification is how it appeals to consumer psychology. Consumers are motivated to see attainable prizes. This strategy also looks attractive to some visitors who feel they are getting a lot for nothing, so they take the step to claim their prizes.

4. Create Squeeze Page

A squeeze page is an uncommon term. It might be new to your ears, yet the meaning is in the name itself. A squeeze page is assigned to a lead capture landing page.

The essence of this is to get information from a visitor by limiting their access to content or offer they so much desire, ensuring they spill out their information before gaining access to the content or offer.

In other words, the content or offer is placed behind the lead capture form. The rate at which users or customers exit your site will be very high. That’s fine. The reason for this is to get their information; so, as long as it’s highly converting, there is no need to bother about other things.

Except you are willing to give them the option of browsing other pages, you can include links to these pages.

5. Invite To Sign Up

One approach that works well for the growth of your mailing list is the use of various notifications. Notifications are overlays on a landing page, statistically fixed into product pages or sliders on page headers.

  • Notification Before Sale
    Pre-sale notification is a good strategy for e-commerce list building. It uses convenience and puts marketing psychology tactics like exclusivity feeling, scarcity, or urgency to work. This type of notification is a comfortable but helpful tool. It reminds busy customers who might be interested in shopping your sale but don’t have the luxury of time to start refreshing the page in anticipation. For comfortability’s sake, these customers will be more than willing to give out their information to avoid missing any deals. Also, more compelling is that feeling of exclusivity, like, “I’m the first to know about this.’ This works on many customers, and they quickly divulge their information because of that special feeling it gives them. Though they might not even buy anything later on, with the thought of being ‘the first to know about this,’ they will take advantage. This tool is a potent one that works effectively In this era.
  • New Products Notification
    Another approach is giving your customers exclusive access to new stocks, products, or collections by inviting them. If the product you are selling is one on hot demand, they won’t hesitate to know if they are now available or new arrivals.
  • Back-in-Stock Notification
    This notification is used to get the information of customers who wants to purchase but can’t because the product they seek is not available at the moment. Aside from being another powerful tool, this provides valuable information for marketers and product managers. With this, they can easily recognize and take note of the demand level across all products. Let’s assume a large audience has submitted email addresses to get notified when a particular product becomes available. Retailers will also plan to take advantage and sell a similar product. Good use of this information will increase revenue and retain customers.

How to Build an E-mail List from Scratch


The steps on building an email list from scratch also include offering content upgrades and having opt-in fields at checkout.

Plus, employing social media marketing strategies is a way you can help to build an email list. You can create Sign Up buttons on your social media accounts, do giveaways, set up contests, and the like.

Do not buy email lists. Nurture your lead and make them know they’re more than just a number. Always engage your customers on a personal level and you will reap rewards in no time. 

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