Everyone Hates WordPress Popup Plugins, But They Work
We hate WordPress popup plugins. But mostly because they're implemented poorly. Not because something that slides into our peripheral view is a horrible idea. If a popup shows up at the right time, with the right offer, I don't hate it. So it's not the popup that is the issue. It's the poor configuration.
And what we know is that these things work. They help capture leads. They help conversions when they deliver perfectly-timed discounts. And we hear the benefits (even when we don't want to) after someone has implemented them correctly.
So maybe it's time to talk about them…because there are a lot of them.
When It Comes to WordPress Popup Plugins, You Have Options
Today there are so many popup plugins that you might not even know about all of them. So what I thought I would do is simply give you a list of the top ones I know of, and help you think about how to make a decision about which one to use.
What To Watch Out For
But before we get into that, I have to make sure to remind you that in the old days we really hated these plugins, not because they were hard to configure, or hard to make them look good, but simply because they were performance hogs.
Some of the plugins you'll see listed below use your own site to process all of the logic, presentation dynamics, and timing. Others use external resources so that they won't slow down your site.
When it comes to WordPress popup plugins, you have to make sure that they're not slowing your site down, or it won't matter that they can collect leads – there won't be people left on your site to capture.
Six Popup Plugin Options
Here are six options to consider.
OptinMonster – The leading player in the space starts at $9/month (billed annually) and sets the bar for all the other players in the space. At this price, it's for a single site.
Kadence Conversions – The newest player in the game that offers its features on unlimited sites for a yearly fee of $69 (or under $6/month).
Popup Maker – The most popular free plugin in the space, powering more than 700,000 sites with more than 4,000 5-star reviews.
Convert Pro – A popular solution for $89 a year that works on unlimited sites and comes with tons of features, brought to you by the folks that gave us the super fast Astra WordPress theme.
Elementor Popup Builder – Part of the popular Elementor page builder's Pro solution, this popup builder gives you incredible control over design, which is what most people know Elementor for.
Elegant Themes Bloom – This popup plugin has a ton of templates associated with it and comes from the folks that brought you Elegant Themes – most commonly connected to the Divi theme.
How To Choose the Right One
There are four ways to think about how to choose the right popup plugin for you. I've put them in the order that I think is worth thinking about.
The first way to think about things is via performance. While many of these are fast, I think you'll struggle to make anything faster than OptinMonster. Why do I say this? Because it's less of a plugin and more of a SaaS. A lot of the processing power (especially if you're using rules to determine when to present something) is on their servers rather than on yours.
But not everyone needs the fastest thing in the world. The difference may be .2 seconds, and in that case, maybe you need to look at the other criteria.
Here are some other things to think about….
I don't know the better term to use than what first popped into my head (see what I did there?). What I mean is that if you're a Divi user, Bloom likely makes sense to you because you likely already have a license for it. If you are a big Astra person and you bought their bundle, you likely have it. The same is true with Kadence – if you've jumped into that family, it makes sense to go with Conversions. Using Elementor and gone Pro? Then you likely will use that solution.
This is a perfectly valid way to make a decision. If you already have access to one of these because of the tools you've already chosen, then that may be the way to go.
Then there's the notion of features. I don't mean which plugin has the most. I mean which plugin has the feature you need. Or more importantly, which doesn't have the feature you need.
If you need A/B testing, analytics, or integration with a specific marketing automation solution, check to see if your favorite WordPress popup plugin has what you need.
If you have nothing else to consider, price is a perfectly valid way to make the decision. I don't think it should be your first factor, but it's certainly a factor. If you don't want to spend any money at all, you can't go wrong with Popup Maker.
I hope this helps you consider which of these to use. But before I wrap up, let me make three quick suggestions so you don't annoy me with your popups.
- Maybe consider turning them off for mobile.
- Don't present them right away. Give me time to get to know you.
- Check performance. Of your specific implementation. Check it again.
If you do that, I'm pretty sure you'll get more leads, drive conversions, and not make any enemies out of your site visitors.