How to Increase Your Viral Email Capture Rate: 3 Alternate List-Building Strategies

Going beyond using freebies and email newsletters to build your email capture rate and how to increase viral passalong

When building email circulation, by most accounts, email capture rate is a proxy metric. You’d be mistaken to say that it’s an exact metric because when we talk about email capture rate, we’re usually talking about the number of people who came to your site from search and social and hit the email capture conversion architecture.

But in reality, that’s only about half of the people who sign up for your email list.

For most of our clients, more than half of their new email addresses are coming from alternate sources beyond their website traffic from search and social colliding with our conversion architecture.

Here are the top three sources:

  • Offer abandons – 10%
  • Email newsletter passalong- 25%
  • Postal address email appends – depends

Offer abandons

To maximize the new email addresses you get from your paid order flows, don’t ask for the credit card until you’ve got their delivery information, including their email address and permission to use it. Capture their delivery information and then have them click a “continue” button that brings them to a second page where you ask for their credit card information. About 90 to 95% of the folks that complete the delivery information page will not complete the order. This means you’ll get about nine email addresses associated with abandoned orders for every email address that accompanies a paid order.

Not only will this help you build your email file, it also represents a great opportunity to send an abandoned recovery marketing series to the nine folks that didn’t quite finish placing the order. One of our clients converts an additional two orders from those nine abandons in the first 90 days of the relationship.

Email newsletter passalong 

The more money you have, the more money you earn.The best way to get more email addresses is to have them.

That “forward to a friend” link you see at the bottom of all our emails? It’s more powerful than you might think. On average, we see 15-35% of email captures come from friends on a mature Mequoda System. When you look in Google Analytics and see an email source ID as their OSID, that’s how you know your email went viral.

But it’s not just the forward to a friend feature that increases email capture rate. The user could have signed up for a free report, or they bought something from the email and were added to the email database.

One thing to keep in mind is that when you launch a system with 50,000, 75,000 or 200,000 email addresses, that’s very different from starting from 0. If you’re starting from scratch, you’re going to take up to 5 years to reach profitability, but those with a list can take 1-2 years and the reason for that is viral pass along through email. If you have a list, use it!

Postal address email appends

Print publishers with old but loyal lists of magazine subscribers have found great success in email appending. What companies like MelissaData, Fresh Address and AccurateAppend will do is take your list of print subscribers and mine the web to fill in any missing field of your subscriber profiles – namely their email address. This strategy is so successful that our clients who have done it have seen the 20 cents per name turn into $50 per name in revenue generated.

So if you have a database of postal addresses, use them!

If you’re sitting on a big database of postal subscribers that can be appended, the append system will dwarf anything a system—even best-practice conversion architecture in a Mequoda System—can do.

And going back to virality, you’ll find that uploading email appends will feed right back into that viral loop of email passalong.


Leave a Reply