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Email Capture: Landing Page vs. Pop Up (what brings in more leads)

A long mailing list of qualified email addresses is the most coveted asset for any business. The right email campaign has the potential of increasing conversions and improving customer retention, ultimately pumping up revenue.

The most effective way for email capture is through an online form. That’s lead generation 101. But which strategy brings in more leads, a form embedded into a landing page or a popup form on a website?

Let’s put both email collectors to the test, examine the pros and cons of each, so you can decide which one suits your business best. I’ll also throw in tips to improve your lead generation game with both email capture tools using MightyForms. May the battle for email capture begin!


Email Capture Forms

Before we talk about which email capture tool is best, let’s talk about the online form itself. In general terms, any form that collects the most basic contact information, like a signup form, event registration form, or even a payment form, can be considered an email capture form.

However, a contact form can be designed specifically for the purpose of capturing the respondent’s email address.

The idea here is to focus on the prize, so to speak. Therefore, it’s common (and best advised) to see very lean contact forms of no more than four fields. Steer away from lengthy and too elaborate contact forms, instead of attracting leads, it will scare away visitors.

Unless your business model requires specific information from respondents (like their birthdate if you’re selling wine subscription boxes, for instance) keep it simple: name, email address, and phone number fields.  Believe me, that’s plenty of information to get an email marketing campaign started.

But keep in mind that a simple contact form doesn’t mean dull or plain. It has got to be attractive enough to catch the attention of your visitors, but straight to the point and frictionless in order to encourage them to fill it out.

email capture form infographic

Using a form builder like MightyForms will ensure you nail the most compelling and effective contact form for email capture, no coding required! That’s because you can easily design a fully responsive custom contact form, even have your own branding incorporated into it.

And just as easily, you can then embed your powerful MightyForms contact form into a landing page or make it pop up to your website visitors for email capture.


Secure Email Capture Forms

Most importantly, with MightyForms, you get to build secure contact forms, compliant with worldwide privacy agreements and anti-spam laws, like the CAN-SPAM in the United States, the CASL in Canada, the LGPD in Brazil, and the GDPR in Europe, to name a few.

Rest assured that all forms created with MightyForms are end-to-end SSL encrypted and any collected data is safely stored under rigorous access control policies.

However, when you design a contact form for the purpose of email capture with the intent of adding email addresses to your mailing list, you need consent before sending any direct mail.  This is called “opt-in” permission.

The opt-in permission requirements vary by country. The US CAN-SPAM Act of 2003 for instance doesn’t require any opt-in step, as long as an easy opt-out option is provided in any email.

If you have an international audience or you rather stay protected against any dispute, it’s better to at least include an opt-in statement in your form. For a simple opt-in, you may add a custom content field to your contact form with something along the lines of “by pressing the ‘Submit’ button, you agree to receive email marketing from us.”, for example.

For even more security, you can enable the double opt-in procedure (also called confirmed subscription or closed-loop opt-in). This means the respondent will automatically receive the opt-in confirmation email as soon as the submit button of the email capture form is pressed.

You can easily set up a double opt-in message with the MightyForms autoresponder feature with a customizable text and link for confirmation.  This additional step not only ensures security compliance for your respondents, but it provides email address validation for your mailing list.  After all, a successful email capture form collects qualified leads.  


Landing Page Email Capture

A landing page, also known as a destination page or a lead capture page is a single or standalone web page shown as a direct response to a searched term on a browser. Or it’s where a visitor “lands'' after clicking on a link they saw on an email or social media.

The origin of the landing page is known to have been created by Microsoft in 2003 when they needed a targeted solution to reverse low online sales of the Office software.  Needless to say, what they’ve really found was a “marketing jackpot” that has been reproduced on and on since then to promote virtually any product, service, or idea.

Usually, a landing page is created especially for a marketing or advertising campaign, in order to promote a specific product or service. Different from other pages within a website domain, which might be for institutional, educational, and brand awareness purposes, landing pages are designed with a single goal in mind: conversion.

Technically any page can be a landing page, depending on your goal, of course, but what really defines it and sets it apart is the presence of a call-to-action (CTA) element. And by that we mean, the email capture form.

It wouldn’t make sense to place an email capture form anywhere else on a website and a landing page without one would be a tragic loss of conversion opportunity. Why? Because highly converting landing pages have been optimized for organic traffic.

A proper landing page eliminates all other distracting information and focuses only on the targeted keyword, emphasizing the value proposition with a directed sales copy meant to convert visitors into customers.

Besides being SEO-friendly, bringing in traffic from people actually interested in what you’re offering, landing pages can be targeted and customized even further.

Landing pages can be optimized based on targeting, meaning the page content is modified according to consumer segmentation, predictive analytics, or referrals.

Moreover, landing pages can be optimized based on experimentation. That means modifying content (written and overall visuals) based on A/B Testing, Multivariate Testing, Total Experience Testing, Message Matching, among others. These are all more sophisticated approaches, but if you’re in the business of selling high-end products or services, it pays off.

And if you’re in a highly competitive niche or the opposite, a barely known industry, you can always boost traffic to your landing page email capture through paid search traffic. Investing in paid ads to be displayed on search results pages (SERPs) or social media ads are sound and valid business decisions, especially when you need a quick turnaround.

Lead Generation by Landing Pages

Alright, but let’s talk numbers, shall we? According to a study conducted by marketing platform Omnisend, landing pages are the least popular email capture tool, behind a Signup Box, a Wheel of Fortune, and a Popup.

Popups make up for more than 66% of all enabled email capture forms, whereas landing forms make up for only 5.1%. However, landing pages have the highest conversion rate (23%) among all four email capture strategies.

It seems to be a quality over quantity matter. Actually, websites with 40 or more landing pages generate 12x more leads, according to Hubspot. Therefore, increasing the number of landing pages can boost your lead generation even more.

PRO Tip: if your website is on WordPress, you can try a page generator plugin, like MPG. It allows you to create thousands of unique landing pages in bulk.  It even helps you with targeted keywords for your niche. You can easily embed a MightyForms email capture form into all generated landing pages.



Email Capture Popup

Virtually omnipresent on the internet, an email capture popup form has been around over decades, simply because it works, as proven by the study mentioned before.

Once deemed annoying and inconvenient, popup forms have been improved to politely show up and disappear. A design upgrade can make popups blend in with the rest of the page being viewed or stand out in an attractive way.

When considering that landing pages are designed specifically for email capture, popup forms can be set to appear on ANY page of a website. Popup forms are definitely versatile and flexible.

Just like a landing page email capture, you can customize the overall look of an email capture popup as well. Plus, you get to choose how and when it will appear.

There are four main types of popup form: 

  • welcome mat - a full-screen popup form that slides above the page content
  • an overlay modal - front and center popup forms that appear on top of page content.
  • a top banner -  this popup form is placed across the very top of the page
  • slide-in box - this popup form manifests itself from the side/bottom of the page.

And each can be triggered either at page entrance, page scroll, at the interaction with a certain element, after some time on the page, or at the exit, even after some inactivity.

As you can see, the possibilities for email capture are endless with popup forms, no wonder it’s the most popular approach when it comes to collecting email addresses.

The downside, when compared to landing pages, is that pop-ups can hurt SEO results. In order to avoid being considered by Google as an “intrusive interstitial”, make sure your email capture popup is related to the product, the brand, and the general customer experience, making organic traffic flow as usual.

Lead Generation by Email Capture Popup

Popup forms can be quite persuasive. Even though they have a lower conversion rate (3%) when compared to landing pages, they end up enabling 10x more email capture opportunities.

And those numbers are just the overall average, meaning it can be higher depending on the industry. A more focused study conducted by iPaper analyzed over 2 billion popups (!) and found out that the conversion rate for top-performing popups can reach 28%.  

And when you think about it, a popup form IS the call-to-action (CTA) itself and not just an element on a landing page.

PRO Tip: I have covered in another article how you can make your forms pop up on WordPress using a popup builder plugin. However, if your website is not hosted on WordPress, MightyForms now offers the option to make any form pop up from a button.


Landing Page Email Capture Vs. Email Capture Popup

The showdown has been presented, it’s now time for a final round-up:

Landing Page Vs.  Popup infographic

Lead Generation Tips to Boost Email Capture

Now that we’ve gone over landing page email capture and email capture popup differences, it’s really up to you to decide what works best for your type of business and audience.

Nothing is set in stone though. There’s no right or wrong way of going about it. Go ahead and try both email collector approaches, see which one brings in more leads for you. Mix and match. When it comes to email capture, all efforts are valid.

Regardless if you apply your email capture form on a landing page or enable it as a popup, there’s always more that can be done to improve its leading generation. And MightyForms has features and functionalities to accelerate it.

Here’s the list of savvy lead generation tips to boost email capture:

1. Use optimized templates

There’s no need to reinvent the wheel. Lead generation has been tried and tested countless times, so trust the expert’s blueprint to save time. MightyForms offers free and readily available templates for lead generation.

2.Track every lead

It takes a lot of effort to get a potential customer to visit your website or landing page, let alone decide to fill out your email collector form. MightyForms ensures that any progress is tracked and saved even when respondents quit a form with the Abandoned Form Recovery feature.

3.Provide flexibility

Not all abandoned forms were meant as a drop-off. You can enable the Save & Resume option for your email capture form allowing respondents to save their progress and finish filling it out later from any device.

4. Automate workflow & integrations

Lead generation is just the beginning of the customer journey. Save time and budget for future customer retention efforts by automating the email capture stage. MightyForms enables you to automate notifications of every new lead, and automatically send a success message (or the double opt-in confirmation).

For further lead management, MightyForms can seamlessly export email capture data to other platforms, like Google Sheets or Dropbox. Easily feed your Mailchimp marketing campaign by populating your mailing list with new email addresses. Waste no time nurturing leads by connecting your email collector to Salesforce and Pipedrive platforms. Or simply create your own lead automation using Zapier integration.  

5. Leverage Form Analytics

A three-field form can only collect limited information. But MightyForms can provide Forms Analytics beyond input data. Leverage it to back up your A/B Testing or to help you decide if your email collector should be on a landing page email capture or as an email capture popup. You can even find out about the geolocation, operating system, and browser used by the respondents. Better yet, track back the source URL that directed them to your email collector.

6. Translated Email Collectors

The last tip will broaden your horizons. Apply all these tips for multilingual \email capture tools. MightyForms enables the automatic translation of email collectors with Weglot. Boost lead generation results in every language.


PRO Tip: email capture doesn’t need to be limited to landing pages or popups. You can embed your MightyForms email collector to your WordPress page. If you’re an online store, you can also include an email capture form to your Shopify or Squarespace pages.


Olivia Pompeu

Olivia Pompeu is a Communications, Public Relations and Marketing professional with over 15 years of experience in global companies, overseeing communications strategy aimed at promoting business objectives to stakeholders.