Is Your Thank You Page Awful? Here Are 2 Ways You Could Make It Better

Thank YouWe noted in a recent post an example of how one of our users tracks the effectiveness of his signup forms.

It occurred to us shortly afterward that at AWeber we take that feature (Ad Tracking) for granted. And it’s not the only one.

We spend so much around our features that sometimes it doesn’t occur to us that some of you are missing out on the firepower they can add to your email marketing campaigns. Some of you (and I’m not naming names here ;) ) don’t even use many of the most powerful tools at your disposal!

We think this is partly our fault. So to help correct this, we’re going to show you how various tools in AWeber can create better subscriber experiences, save you time and make your campaigns more effective. If you use them, of course.

For starters, let’s talk about thank you pages…

“Thank You Pages? Seriously?”

Now, you may be thinking,

“Thank you pages? That’s not exactly an advanced feature. Everybody has a thank you page!”

And you’d be right. Well, half right.

Yes, everybody has a thank you page – but few businesses use them effectively.

In fact, a frightening number of people decline to customize their thank you page – they just use the default page we provide as a placeholder.

I cannot begin to tell you how shocked I was while doing research for this post.

I wanted to show you some examples of creative and cool thank you pages and started looking at some of our more well-known customers’ sites…

… but many of them were using the generic thank-you page! They didn’t take advantage of the fact that when you build a web form in AWeber, you can send subscribers to a custom thank you page on your website.

The placeholder thank you page isn’t bad per se, but it isn’t specific to your business. You should be using your own page.

Why Is a Personalized Thank You Page Important?

“Do thank you pages even matter? Who cares what’s on them?”

“I mean, the subscriber already signed up, right?”

Yes, but…

  • The thank you page is the first experience new subscribers have. Yes, they’ve seen your site but that’s available to anyone.This is the first thing they see after signing up.

    It’s a chance to make a new first impression of sorts, or at the least to build on the one you made when they first came to your site.

  • If you clearly put effort into getting people to sign up – you promise great content and a powerful incentive to subscribe – but then send them to a halfhearted thank you page, it gives the distinct impression that you’re not interested in building a relationship with subscribers, just “capturing” them.

    (An aside: the word “capture,” when used in relationship with list-building, is in my opinion almost as dangerous a term as “email blast.”)

  • The instant a website visitor subscribes, s/he has one question: “What happens now?”

    If you don’t tell them, in detail, then they’ll draw their own conclusions – in other words, they’ll assume (consciously or subconsciously) things about your content, frequency, from line and other aspects of your emails.

    And we all know what happens when you assume…

Given the vast differences from one business to another, there’s no way our thank you pages should be “one-size fits-all!”

But many thank you pages are that way – they fail to shape new subscribers’ expectations, reinforce the subscribe decision or offer any guidance about what happens next or what subscribers should do next.

What Does a Good Thank You Page Look Like?

There’s not one universally awesome template for thank you pages (if there were, we’d make it, give it to everyone, and you wouldn’t be reading this article).

However, there are things that your thank you page can and should do:

  • Provide an experience consistent with the rest of your website.

    Your thank you page should look like the rest of your site, and it should be on the same domain as the page where people are subscribing.

    If someone fills our your form and goes to a page that looks nothing like the page where they filled out the form, they may worry that they did something wrong, or that they didn’t understand the form. They may hit the “back” button to go reread the form before they even read what’s on the thank you page!

  • Clearly explain what just happened, what happens next, and what (if anything) the subscriber needs to do.

    OK, so I filled out your signup form and hit the “subscribe” button.

    Did that “work?” And what does “work” mean here? What do subscribers think is supposed to happen?

    Unless you’re 100% sure that 100% of your subscribers know beyond a shadow of a doubt what to expect after signing up, you’d better tell them that:

    1. You’ve received their subscribe request and are subscribing them
    2. You’re sending them an email
    3. When that email will arrive
    4. Who it’s from (your “from” name and email address) and what it looks like
    5. What, if anything, they should do with it (especially if you’re confirming subscribers – tell them they need to click on the confirm link!)

There’s no one right way to do this – some people rely solely on text, others add images and some employ audio and video.

  • Our generic thank you page includes audio instructions for confirming. You’re welcome to embed them on your customized thank you page as well:

    Of course, you should include text instructions on your thank you page as well – the audio just supplements it!

Use whichever helps you get the message across most effectively (and if you’re using Confirmed Opt-In, test different versions of your thank you page to see which does the best job of getting subscribers to confirm).

What Good and Bad Thank You Pages Have You Seen?

Are there any thank you pages out there that have made an impression (good or bad) on you? What did you like or dislike about them?

Share your examples – and thoughts on what else makes for a powerful thank you page – below!

Related tutorial from our Knowledge Base:

How Can I Change My Thank You Page?

And a related blog post on thank you pages:

Create Expectations On Your Thank You Page