Customers visit websites for all sorts of reasons. They could be window shopping, comparing prices, researching a gift, or looking for something specific for themselves. They also exit for all sorts of reasons, including price barriers, distractions, user experience or simply not finding what they need quickly enough.
The average time a person spends on a web page is only 54 seconds, and data suggests that 97% of people who visit your website will never return. This means you have less than 54 seconds to convince them to stay and, if they don’t, odds are they’ll be gone forever.
An exit intent pop-up can go a long way to capture some of these unknown users and turn them into known users or even customers. In this blog, we’ll explore what exit-intent pop-ups actually are, how they work, and the best exit-intent pop-up builders out there. Plus, we’ll share 21 examples of exit-intent pop-ups to get your creative juices flowing.
What is an exit-intent pop-up?
No doubt you’ve come across exit-intent pop-ups before.
Picture this, you’re reading a blog on digital marketing or clicking through the pages of your favorite online store. At some point, you make a move to close the browser tab or shift to a different one — and a pop-up window appears with a message to grab your attention. This is an exit-intent pop-up and it’s designed to keep you on the site, turn you into a known user, or even convert you to a customer.
How do exit-intent pop-ups work?
An exit-intent pop-up software adds a short script to your website. It can be in the form of a plug-in or a simple line of code that’s embedded in the backend.
When a visitor’s cursor moves outside the browser’s upper page boundary, it tells the exit-intent software that they’re about to leave the website without buying anything or leaving their information and triggers the pop-up.
Depending on the software you’re using, you can vary the look of your pop-up or the offer you present to the user.
However, all exit-intent pop-ups include these 2 traits:
They appear over your on-screen content.
They give the user an extra incentive to stay on the website.
What about exit-intent pop-ups on mobile sites?
On mobile, there’s no scrolling to the browser’s upper page boundary to let the software know your customer is about to exit your site. Instead, pop-up tools will use a different relevant exit-intent trigger like:
Pressing the back button
Time spent on an individual page
Scrolling back up
Leaving a page idle
Intrusive pop-ups and search rankings
In January of 2017, Google rolled out an update to improve the mobile search experience. In this update, websites would be unlikely to rank highly if they used pop-ups or interstitials that covered the main content either immediately after the user navigated to a page from search.
Here is an example of what Google refers to as an intrusive pop-up:
In February of 2022, Google began using page experience as part of its desktop ranking systems. This meant that the page experience factors that had previously been applied to the mobile experience, including the negative impact of intrusive interstitials, would now be applied to the desktop experience.
To adhere to these page experience guidelines, websites should aim to:
Create separate exit intent pop-ups for desktop and mobile devices
Ensure your exit intent pop-up is useful
Continually run A/B testing
Ensure the button to close the pop-up is clear to all users
Use trusted exit-intent pop-up software
Why should you use exit-intent pop-ups?
Your customers may abandon your website for various reasons. Perhaps they weren’t interested in your content or maybe they came across something more interesting in another browser tab.
Exit-intent pop-ups serve as the last opportunity to keep a customer on-site for a longer period of time Additionally, a study revealed that exit-intent pop-ups have the power to recover up to 53% of abandoning visitors. (Optinmonster)
So, when you show visitors a pop-up, they have to make a choice. They can either take action i.e. leaving their information to download an ebook or subscribe to your newsletter, or using a discount code buying from your online store, or they can close the pop-up and leave.
As long as you’re sticking to best practices to keep your customers and search engines happy, and tracking success and optimizing your pop-ups accordingly, there’s really no downside to using strategic exit-intent pop-ups.
Exit-intent pop-ups best practices
Let’s face it, pop-ups can be annoying. But, when used thoughtfully, they can not only convert customers or keep them on-site but can add real value to your customer’s experience on your site.
To drive results, follow these best-practice tips for every exit-intent pop-up you create:
Consider other pop-up features
Whether it's chatbots, tooltips, or banners; consider what else might be popping up on the page alongside your exit-intent pop-up.
Multiple pop-ups can be annoying for customers and tend to dilute the message in your exit-intent pop-up. Speed is of the essence when a user is about to leave your site, so one clear pop-up will most likely out-perform a barrage of messages.
Offer a clear benefit with a concise CTA
Remember - this is a user who is about to exit your site. Make the benefit of sticking around crystal clear with a call-to-action that gets to the point, and fast.
Exit-intent pop-ups don’t give you much space to communicate the value proposition, so your copy needs to be brief, clear, and attention-grabbing.
There’s a fine line between having fun with your copy and diluting your messages. Walk that line like a tightrope to get the best chance of capturing your customers before they bounce.
Personalize where possible
You’ll be hard-pressed to find a blog on Ortto that doesn’t include a reference to the importance of personalization. At the end of the day, people are more likely to engage with a piece of content when it is targeted and includes offers that are relevant to them — and pop-ups are no different.
Use variables such as their geographical location and the page you are popping up on to tailor your pop-up messages.
Use eye-catching design
Your pop-up needs to, well, pop. Use bold design to capture your customer’s eye before they leave and choose relevant, beautiful, and on-brand imagery to complement it.
A friendly reminder: Bold doesn’t mean over the top or cluttered. Clean, minimalistic pop-ups can be as bold as brightly colored, in-your-face designs. It’s all about creating something that draws the eye, feels on brand, and spotlights the benefit and message being shared.
Only ask for necessary information
We know you want to know everything about your customer, but now is not the time. Ask for 2-3 pieces of essential information maximum. It might be name, email and birthday, or name and cell phone number for an SMS coupon code. Remember, you’re capturing a customer who is about to exit your site — turning them into a known user is a huge win and there will always be another opportunity to enrich your data later on.
X marks the spot
Ensure that there is a clear way for users to close that pop-up down if they want to. An ‘X’ in the top right or left corner is generally the simplest and most widely-understood option but the key is really to ensure you’re not trapping your customers in an experience that will only make them want to kill the tab entirely.
A little bit of urgency goes a long way. Offer a limited-time discount, an exclusive gift with a capped number available, or a competition. It’s worth testing out a few different urgency indicators to see what performs for your customer base.
If you’re running your exit-intent pop-ups in Ortto, new users can be captured directly into your CDP and segmented into a journey that welcomes your new known user and reminds them about the offer before it expires. Watch the gif below to see how easy it is to set up this kind of journey in Ortto.
Note: We’ve created a demo environment using a brand we love and use every day — Asana. The data, emails, and journeys are faked and have no affiliation with Asana.
Measure, test, and repeat
We’re about to share a wealth of exit-intent pop-up examples with you, but that doesn’t mean every single variation here will work for your brand. Different pop-ups will perform for different brands, products, and even pages or sections of your site. Test drive different messages, designs, and copy to see what works for your audience.
Best exit-intent pop-up tools 2022
There are plenty of options when it comes to pop-up software. It’s always best to take a look around to find the pop-up software that is right for your brand. Ensure that it integrates well with your site and that pop-ups won’t be too difficult to design, implement, or track.
These six pop-up tools are worth checking out:
If you need easy-to-build, easy-to-implement, and easy-to-measure pop-ups, Ortto is for you. We have a huge variety of Capture widgets including more conventional pop-ups and ecomm favorites like Spin the Wheel.
Our exit-intent detention ensures that you show your pop-up at just the right time, and we have automated coupon creation tools that will guarantee every customer who hands over their email address gets a unique code. You can also use pop-up surveys to get more information from your almost-exiting visitor or use video pop-ups to explain a feature or product.
No matter which type of Capture widget you go with, Reports will clearly show how each widget and corresponding email journey is performing so you can continuously optimize.
Plus, every new known user will be entered straight into your CDP to be segmented and targeted with marketing messages.
This Denmark-based company has the goal of helping small ecommerce businesses and larger retailers engage with website visitors.
Sleeknote offers pre-designed templates for gated content, discounts, free shipping, and giveaways.
What we love about Sleeknote’s UI is that it’s visually pleasing and comes with a simple and intuitive drag-and-drop editor. We also love Sleeknote’s preview function, which allows you to see what your exit-intent pop-up example would look like on your website in real-time.
Although they aren’t the cheapest in the market, the ease of use, and the phone, email, and chat support make them a popular option.
OptinMonster is one of the pioneers of exit-intent pop-up technology. Its exit-intent pop-up tool began life as a WordPress plug-in. Today, it’s a standalone application that integrates with most web platforms including Drupal, Joomla, Shopify, and WordPress.
For small businesses wanting a low-cost option, OptinMonster offers a basic package starting from $9 a month, inclusive of 2,500 page views.
If all you need is a simple static pop-up to capture a small audience segment each month, this option will suit you just fine. However, additional display options such as slide-in scroll boxes, full-screen overlays, and countdown timers attract additional costs.
When creating your first pop-up, OptinMonster gently guides you through each step, right until you hit “publish.” Unfortunately, OptinMonster doesn’t offer a free trial. However, they do offer a full refund if you change your mind within 14 days.
Getting started with Hello Bar was ridiculously easy. All we had to do was to plug in our website’s URL to create a free account and we were on our way.
Hello Bar offers a clean dashboard and a seamless UI that requires zero technical skills to master. Additionally, we were issued with quick guides on how to display ads, insert coupon codes, and more, making Hello Bar the perfect choice for non-marketers.
Hello Bar offers a free account option, which you can take advantage of if you’re after no more than 5,000 pop-up views per month together with limited design features. However, if you want your pop-up to be seen by more people or require greater flexibility when it comes to controlling the design of your pop-up, you’ll need to sign up for one of their packages starting at $29 per month.
Thanks to its ease of use and focus on beautiful design, WisePops is the go-to pop-up solution for ecommerce businesses and global brands. Their template library is enormous and comprises beautiful pop-ups for online retailers.
These include giveaways, newsletters, sign-up forms, and discount offers. Each template is easily customizable using WisePops’ drag-and-drop editor. Alternatively, you can start from scratch with a clean, blank canvas.
Feature highlights include the ability to insert two call-to-action buttons (for example, you may want to give users the option to sign up for a newsletter later) and a trigger that allows you to control how your pop-ups are displayed.
Alternatively, you may choose to display your pop-up as soon as the user loads your page or when a user scrolls down the page rather than when a cursor hovers over the “close browser” symbol.
Wisepop’s plans range from €49 to €250 per month.
Adoric is a conversion optimization tool that focuses on advanced tools and features that convert your users. It uses personalization to keep users on site, and has a huge number of templates available - from large pop-ups to minimal notification sliders.
There are some additional tools like the Countdown, Form, Multi-step Message, and Grids that help anyone, no matter how much experience they have, create a compelling and high-performing pop-up.
Adoric is free for up to 1,000 pageviews, with larger plans starting at $29 per month.
21 exit-intent pop-up examples
Before you start testing your exit-intent pop-ups, you’ll want to draw a little inspiration from the many pop-ups that have come before yours.
Here we’ve compiled 21 exit-intent pop-up examples across a range of different industries, and with different offers, CTAs, and designs.
Get ready to get inspired:
Ecomm pop-up examples
Here is an example of how incredibly simple an exit-intent pop-up can really be. Bombas get straight to the point, offering visitors a huge 20% off their first order. They’ve offered two clear ways to exit out of the pop-up, too. The X in the top right corner, as well as a ‘No I’ll continue shopping’ CTA that appears under the opt-in CTA. Bombas know that if they can get a customer across the line once, their incredible product will keep the customer there for a long time to come, so they can afford that bigger discount.
This is an example of a well-timed pop-up. It appears on product pages, after you’ve been scrolling for a little while. In other words, you’ve shown some interest in the brand and the products before it appears. The signup CTA is clear and benefits are listed straight up, no-frills attached. It’s clear, simple, and does the job it intends to.
Ritual ask almost-exiting visitors to subscribe to their email list to get $15 off bundles and other exclusive offers. The $15 off is a solid enough discount that almost-customers might be persuaded to stick around and make a purchase, while the ‘other exclusive offers’ could tempt those who are halfway there to hand over their email address.
West Elm’s pop-up entices customers to subscribe to their newsletter with a coloring book. It's a unique freebie that is likely to drive brand affinity, and is low cost to produce and distribute. Clever stuff.
Aritizia, a Canadian brand, can see I am shopping in Australia and, when I go to leave, remind me that they ship to 220 countries. The copy is clear and clever, with simple, but beautiful, typography. Aritizia gives me a couple of options - get some help, or sign up for email alerts.
Here’s an example of a perfectly on-brand exit-intent pop-up. Clean, minimal design with a beautiful picture of The Sill’s indoor plant offering. The copy ‘Get the dirt and save..’ gets straight to the pop while still playing on the product offering.
Snack brand DADA Daily pop-up with a simple CTA to sign up to their newsletter to get first access to new products, restocks and sales. The pop-up ties in with their brand without being too complicated or cluttered.
Another on-brand, clean, and simple example of a pop-up that most likely performs incredibly well for the brand.
Marks & Spencer
Here’s another example of a pop-up asking for a little extra information. The title is likely to help the brand get a sense of the individual’s gender to personalize content, but it may have been more straightforward to use browsing data or ask the user more directly what kind of content they would like to be sent.
Bright colors, a pup, a clear CTA, and a very compelling offer. Who can resist?!
B2B and SaaS pop-up examples
Zendesk’s simple, on-brand pop-up asks users if they want to take Zendesk for a spin. This leads to a landing page where users can share their name and email address in order to watch a demo, sign up for a live webinar or take a tour of the Agent Workspace.
This right-corner pop-up from bitly offers users two options - get started with a custom brand link, or read a report on why every business needs branded links. It’s clear this is a feature that bitly have identified as being compelling for brands (it definitely was for me), so they’ve honed in on it rather than going too macro with their pop-up.
Really Good Emails
Huge Really Good Emails fan over here (and was wishing there was a Really Good Pop-ups site for this blog) and this one got me hook, line and sinker. Simple, well-designed, and plays on the fact that anyone who is on their site knows what this pop-up is really all about.
Optimonk encourages users to stick around by offering them a 50% early bird discount on a course featuring a Klayvio expert. The design is key to this pop-up, it’s bold and bright without being cluttered or overwhelming, and feels very on-brand within the environment. The copy does a great job of dangling a concept that users are unlikely to be familiar with (‘The Trojan Horse Method’) to create intrigue while providing enough context (winning SMS) to show a clear benefit to downloading.
SEO expert Brian Dean does a great job of catching the reader’s attention immediately with his direct headline. It gets straight to primary goal for his audience — growing unique visitors — and makes the first step incredibly simple, asking for nothing other than an email address.
Entrepreneurs get straight to the point with their CTA about successful marketing strategies, and the ‘Get my free copy’ button.
Optinmonster plays on the very concept they provide a solution for with the opening statistics ‘70% of your visitors do exactly what you just did and never come back.’ The clear CTA here is to keep your visitors on-site by using Optinmonster, for 35% off if you claim the discount that awaits.
Other pop-up examples
Another eBook pop-up, but this one takes up the whole screen and has the very compelling headline of ‘17 questions that changed my life.’ This is the kind of click-bait headline that drives curious folks to hit that button immediately.
General Assembly pop-up
General Assembly asks users for a little more information than other pop-ups do, but it’s clear from the user’s side that handing over this information is necessary if they want to receive the most relevant classes and events. With the headline ‘Start with our free workshops,’ the benefit is clear to the user who may be about to leave because they’re not ready to pay for a class.
1st Dibs can be considered both B2B and B2C in a way. They target interior designers, architects, and designers who are shopping for their clients, customers who are shopping for themselves, and sellers who have pieces to list on the site. Because of this, their pop-up asks you to choose a tier before prompting you with a CTA.
The final word
No matter what kind of business you are, it’s worth testing exit-intent pop-ups to turn more unknown, one-time visitors into known users or, best case, customers.
Remember to keep testing different messages, forms, designs, and user experiences to discover your stickiest pop-ups.