Exit pop-up required that doesn't show for registered users

I’m building my first membership site and part of the conversion process with be an exit pop-up to try and capture the email address of people leaving the site but I don’t want it to show for anyone who has actually signed up or who is a repeat visitor.

Can anyone recommend a method/script/service that fits those requirements, I’ve googled it but the volume of info is pretty overwhelming for a non-programming novice like me plus a personal recommmedation goes a long way!


[EDIT: should this be posted in the ecommerce forum?]

Whilst Googling for a solution I found this excellent description of what I want, wanted by someone else.

[COLOR=“DarkGreen”]"Looking for an Exit Popup Script, so when visitors to the website want to exit the site a popup will appear and display content, would require a cookie to be set on the first visit.

· want this coded in Javascript and inserted on the main website page only
· do not want this script overwritten when Joomla is updated
· want a cookie set with the ability to set from 1 to 20 days
· want the good links on the main page to be coded so the popup script does not start
· want it cross-browser compatible
· want to avoid popup blockers

must be working on the clients server

Would also like to see this working on a Joomla site"[/COLOR]

That’s what I’m after too.

I don’t think it’s very ‘aggressive’, slightly irritating maybe. I close them all the time without hardly even noticing them anymore. I could disable the ‘back’ button but I’m not actually trying to stop people leaving, I’m just trying one more thing to get a signup before they go.

Not really, it’s a single click we’re talking about and in any case if they’re leaving and there’s nothing I can do to get them to sign up then they won’t be coming back anyway so their user experience is irrelevant to me. So they have to click one more thing to leave, it’s no biggy. (and it won’t show ever again to people who’ve been once or actually signed-up, see my OP) Look at the maths, if I get 200 visitors a day and sign up 20 of them, then using the popup I manage to get 5 of the 180 that left to sign up, that’s a 25% increase in my sales, just by using the popup.

It’s about the bottom line and I keep stressing that on the grand scale of things, a popup is hardly breaking all the boundaries and taboos is it, it’s a popup!

Not all marketing is as agressive as this. Not all marketing frustrates and irritates.

Exit popups are bad for the user experience. Period. Don’t you agree?

Well… you just described marketing except that I’m not stopping them from leaving, they can close the window, they’ve got a mind of their own, they don’t have to enter the competition or get the free ebook but I’m going to make them want to, hopefully. If they still don’t want to, they can leave very easily.

Let’s talk about really unethical marketing, not a popup on a website, let’s talk about the markteres who invented ‘pester power’, getting to parents through their kids, let’s talk about MacDonalds targeting 2 year olds to establish brand loyalty and how they’re the biggest toy distributor in the world despite being a fast food restaurant chain. Cigarette manufacturers lying to their customers, supermarkets pumping the smell of fresh bread into the air to make you hungry when you shop and putting ‘impulse’ buy products next the checkout and the milk and bread at the back of the shop so you have to walk past all the things you don’t need to get to them, car adverts featuring gorgeous models draped over cars using sex to make you buy their car,

I could go on and on and yet these are day to day examples of how marketers make people want things, the TV is full of advertising and yet no one seems to object to any of this stuff… but mention a pop-up…

Alex, great posts but on the small chance that a pop-up does ‘surprise’ a user with a disability, although I’m with Ravedesigns that it’s unlikely they’ll be there in the first place, frankly I can live with it. It’s not like I made them have a heart attack. It’s a pop up not a loud noise or a flashing light or something that requires more than a mouse click to get rid of.

In triggering a popup, you are taking control away from the user. In fact, you are triggering a behaviour that is the exact opposite of what the visitor wants. That’s a bad thing. When I click the back button, I do it for a reason - to get away from the page I’m on. To then have an exit popup pleading for me to stay and “take action” is annoyong at best. It’s intrusive and shows no consideration for the visitor whatsoever.

Javascripts onunload() to fire the event and whatever you have built the site in to check if they are registered.

Basic example

<BODY onUnload="alert('bye now!')">

You can tie that into your Server side stuffs to call it or not.

most people hate those popups.

anyways you can use some sort of server side scripting language along with javascript to accomplish that.

They’re only going to appear to people who left the site without signing up so any conversion at that point is better than nothing. If they didn’t work, I wouldn’t be implementing one but apparantly they work.

Got any suggestions?

Thanks Spike, I have no idea what that means right now but to be pointed in the right direction is all I was hoping for. :slight_smile: Now to go figure it out.

So does this mean you found a good membership site solution? Can I ask which one?

I’ve seen plenty of options for serving popups over the years, but I’ve never known any tied into a site so it wouldn’t serve them to registered members. Most seem to use cookies to keep track of things.

Just a thought, but why not send members to a unique url to sign in and access the site and bypass the popup alltogether?


As you may already know, I am afraid your best bet is to hire a programmer in your area.

I went with a diligent college student who had cheap rates.

He, she, can also offer advice that may better help you.

JJMcClure, I think it’s worth pointing out that some browsers may block the unload event due to the amount of abuse it’s suffered over the years (people doing everything in their power to ensure people can’t close windows). If it were me I would seriously reconsider the use of such intervention as it’s considered as much of a sin as auto-playing music (it’s a total violation of usability if nothing else). If you’re looking for more people to sign-up, perhaps have a login / sign-up system that uses a lightbox (overlaying all the content) so they need to sign in to view the content - if you REALLY need those addresses but don’t want to lose your search engine position. I know a few people will probably get grouchy at the idea… but it would work and it’s (IMO) better than using browser crippling devices. :slight_smile:

Not exactly, what I was looking for was a guide to building a membership site and after much discussion on other forusm I settled on Amember, Joomla and Aweber as the most suitable technology for the job. Just deisgning the landing page has been a nightmare, there are so many factors to consider.

Yeah that’s another option but it seems a little complicated, especially if I can just find a way to server the exit popup only once to new users and then never again.

Alex, totally understand your position on popups but this is a particular type of marketing and I have to look at this as a numbers game not from an asthaetic point of view.

If people visit the site then leave without signing up my last chance to sell to them is to capture their email before they go, it’s a standard technique, might not work on you but it does work on millions of other internet users. I’d be remiss not to include it in my sign up process.

Yep, already part of the plan. This is real ‘sales letter’ page psychology in action.

I agree. Personally, once I’ve been to a site that tries this dastardly trick I certainly don’t go there again, regardless of the quality of the content/product being sold.


As I said to Alex, that isn’t a concern for me with this particular site. Your views aside (dastardly? :lol:), they’re an effective technique for making money instead of leaving it on the table. That’s what my client wants, that’s what they’re going to get because I’m a professional who doesn’t impose my personal values on my clients on harmless issues like this, it’s a pop-up not a nigerian phishing scheme, let’s keep some perspective here.

Now, as interesting as this diversion into the morality of using pop-ups is… what I’m actually looking for is advice on the best way to implement one.

That’s surprising to hear from someone I know to have high moral standards. :slight_smile:

You cad.

OK, no one is posting anymore advice on how to implement one so let’s have the conversation about the moral side of it. (I don’t know if even using the word ‘moral’ is giving this a tone that frankly it doesn’t deserve). I actually find the pyschology behind designing sites like this membership site quite fascinating. Unusually, the visitors impression of the morals of the designer is utterly irrelevant to me, we’re not talking about something obviously immoral or unethical here, this is a just a pop-up, irritating maybe, an insultingly obvious sales pitch to the more intelligent visitor possibly, but basically harmless.

In terms of it being part of a conversion path, the implementation methodology is crtiical, have it on entry? On exit? Make it a competition or a last appeal for them to buy the product? Which technique will best increase that all important sign up conversion rate? I’m looking foward to both implementing it and testing the results. I have no qualms at all about the product itself, it’s high quality, developed by an elite athletic trainer who works with some big names, it’s not like it’s all a big con and the product is rubbish, it’s not.

If you want to see the concept design so far it’s here (6th iteration) and believe, me a LOT of thought has gone into this, you’ve seen the advice Michelle has been giving me on Clinton’s forum.

Alex, I don’t see how this is a Usability issue at all. This site is emminently Usable, it’s very carefully designed to be that way. Absolutely nothing about the placement of a single element on the page is accidental or not considered and it will be tested thoroughly to improve that Usability.

You say that it’s harmless but I would disagree, such “forceful” marketing techniques do constitute obvious accessibility problems. I spent time (during my college years) working with people who suffered a range of special needs (day care centres, mental health place, schools as a teaching assistant)… and I noticed that the more than often, mechanisms which interrupt the experience (even if it’s just the ability to go from one page to another uninterrupted) can have SERIOUS repercussions on people who suffer a range of problems… in accessibility, unwelcome and unexpected behaviour is BAD news. I can’t see how it’s anything but a usability issue (if not an accessibility issue also), you are asking to interfere with a users ability to successfully navigate away from a website which goes directly against the whole principle of usability, making tasks as easy to accomplish as possible (even if it’s leaving your site). :slight_smile:

I used to hate 3rd party popups that were quite common a few years back, but I see nothing dastardly about it whether the popups are on exit or when browsing between pages of a site (used to see more of those here on SP - though I can’t remember one recently)

Now maybe I’m a cad for thinking this way, but I’m guessing that folks with accessibility issues probably aren’t the ideal prospects for a site like this and more than likely wouldn’t come across it in their casual web browsing. If someone should come across it, I’m all for everyone having equal easy access to everything online, but how much effort do you put into this before you draw the line?

That’s the bottom line in my book. Different sales techniques work differently in different situations and the smart marketers like you take time to test and see what gives you the best results.


The Cad :slight_smile: