Ever seen one of these boxes on a website and wondered a) why people have them and b) how you can get one yourself?
Well then today’s your lucky day because I’m going to talk about that exact thing! (Which is kind of a good thing given that’s the subject of the post!)
Why do people have email subscription boxes on their websites?
The main reason for having this box on your website is so that your audience, community, readers, visitors – the people who are interested in reading your content – don’t have to keep coming back to your website to see if you’ve put up a new article, blog post etc.
It is known as push marketing and acknowledges the fact that people are busy and that even though you might be writing the most fascinating content ever, they are probably unlikely to come by your website on a regular basis just to see if you have published something new.
By giving you their email addresses through the email subscription box though, they’ve acknowledged that they like what you write, that they would like to see more of it, and that they would be happy for you to tell them when you’ve published a new blog post.
How can you get one on your website?
There’s a number of ways you can get an email subscription box on your WordPress website.
Today I’m just talking about the easiest way to start emailing people your blog posts which is to use the JetPack plugin – this plugin includes the email subscription box that comes with WordPress.com.
It is very easy to install this widget and extremely simple to use. You download the JetPack plugin, activate the Subscriptions module, place the sign up widget in the appropriate place on your website and you’re done! WordPress handles everything for you from then on including confirmation emails and easy unsubscribing.
As soon as you publish a new post, the email is sent to your subscribers and will look something like this:
Subscribers have the option of commenting on the post or liking it directly from their inbox which is pretty cool. They can also unsubscribe quite easily – which is important as not providing people a way to unsubscribe from your emails can contravene the Spam Act 2003.
Things to consider
Remember, when people give you their email address it is a sign of trust – we are giving you access to one of the last private areas we have online, our inbox.
DO NOT ABUSE THAT TRUST!
Sorry for the shouting but it really is that important. So what constitutes breaking that trust?
Essentially selling / sharing those email addresses with someone else. It doesn’t matter what value that ‘someone else’ can offer your audience – they did not sign up to receive emails from ‘someone else’, they signed up to receive emails from you. If ‘someone else’ wants access to your audience there are other ways to give them that access.
The second thing to consider is … there is really nothing else to consider!
Good luck with setting up your email subscription box – let me know how you go in the comments. And if you’d like a bit more control over what subscribers get and when, then stay tuned, I’ll be putting up a blog post on that very topic next week.
(Sorry, I just had to put in a cat image, otherwise it wouldn’t feel like I’d actually completed the blog post!)